Anger at lack of action on beach erosion
HAWKE'S BAY REPORTER
Hawke's Bay councils are still in dispute about a proposed structure to protect Napier's eroding beach.
Westshore beach is slowly disappearing while Napier City Council and Hawke's Bay Regional Council debate whether a proposed H-shape breakwater complies with the coastal environment plan.
Westshore resident Larry Dallimore said it was "pathetic" that the councils had spent three years "over some wording and an application".
In 1998 engineers had deemed erosion a serious threat to Westshore properties, yet nothing had been done.
"The delay is a very good reason for some type of amalgamation of departments," Mr Dallimore said.
The councils cannot agree because they have differing interpretations of the proposed structure.
The city council has applied under a rule of the coastal environment plan that applies to solid structures parallel to the shore. The regional council believes the structure is only partly parallel to shore and partly oblique, meaning it is a non-complying activity.
City council chief executive Neil Taylor had hoped the conflict would be resolved by now. An application to the Environment Court has been drafted but Mr Taylor was unsure if and when it would be filed.
He said he had "no idea" where the discussions were at between the councils.
The city council first applied to build the structure in November 2009 but later withdrew the application. It reapplied in February 2011 but again requested the application be put on hold.
The existing breakwater, built in 199, exacerbated the erosion as it diverted waves to the southern end of the beach.
Since 1987, the city council has deposited 300,000 cubic metres of gravel and sand to replenish the beach.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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