Invercargill Mayor Tim Shadbolt believes the regional council had a "rather narrow interpretation of the Local Government Act".
Mr Shadbolt said the act included promoting the social and cultural wellbeing of communities, and he thought the regional council focused too much on the environment and the rural area rather than urban.
Mr Shadbolt suggested the two councils look at areas that concerned them both, such as urban rejuvenation, to make Invercargill a pleasure to live in.
Chairman Ali Timms said they would be more than happy to talk to the city council about urban rejuvenation projects they thought the regional council should be involved in.
City council chief executive Richard King spoke to the regional council about upgrading the yacht ramp and pier at Bluff, which was on SouthPort land.
Bluff was "the jewel in the crown" but its potential had not been realised, Mr King said.
The repair and upgrade would cost about $36,000, and could be paid for from SouthPort dividends, he said.
The upgrade would allow boats in events such as the Auckland-to-Bluff yacht race to spend time at the town, which would also benefit the economy, he said.
Ms Timms suggested the city council have a further conversation with SouthPort about the project.
Dolphins a concernGrant Meikle spoke on behalf of a group concerned with the protection of endangered Hector's dolphins. He believed better signs and education were needed, because recreational fishermen he had spoken to in Southland were not aware of things like the set-net ban. The group would be happy to work with the council on more signs, and had nationally used signs that could be put in place around the coast, he said.
The council had introduced a protection area in Porpoise Bay for dolphins through its Regional Coastal Plan, with advisory signs erected in the area.
The legal responsibility for the management of marine mammals rests with the Conservation Department, the council staff report says.
Undaria controls backed Fiordland Marine Guardians chairman Malcolm Lawson supported the council's work to prevent the spread and establishment of undaria in Fiordland. The group believed increased surveillance and monitoring were needed to eradicate the invasive kelp from the area, and an increased budget was needed to do this. Rather than being the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff, more education was needed, because it could be easily spread by spores on boat ropes, for example.
Differential rate rise opposedThe proposed dairy differential rate increase was again opposed by some submitters.
James Ryan, of Dairy NZ, believed the rate would exacerbate the tensions between the dairy farmers and the regional council, and believed some of the justification was flawed.
He believed many of the benefits dairying brought to the region had been overlooked.
Dairy farmers accepted that they contributed to the environment, which was why the sector had invested millions of dollars to minimise environmental impact, Mr Ryan said.
Winton farmer Greg Herbert said the problem with the differential rate was that it did not differentiate him from farmers who did not go "above and beyond" as he did. As farmers they knew who was not complying, and Environment Southland knew, so they should make them pay, he said.
Navigation aids funding urgedReal Journeys has approached the council to fund the installation of navigation aids at Pearl Harbour, Lake Mana-pouri.
The approaches to the Waiau River at the harbour are not adequately marked and are a safety issue.
Council staff have said navigation safety is a primary matter for the council's harbour management function.
Maritime NZ requires a risk assessment to determine the need for the aids, and has final approval on the types that would be installed.
The council supports the submission in principle and could undertake the risk assessment.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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