THE AYBA HAS A NEW WEBSITE!
The AYBA has a new website www.ayba.org.nz – check it out! We will also be opening a Facebook page shortly and your comments will be welcome! We have a new secretary – Jane - WELCOME ABOARD! Jane’s email address - firstname.lastname@example.org All mail through the Secretary please. Lynn will stay on as treasurer in the interim.
Over the weekend of March 10 to 12, Gulf Harbour Yacht Club in association with the AYBA hosted a very successful “Women on the Water Weekend” a fun weekend ashore and on the water for inexperienced and experienced sailors. A special thankyou to all the sponsors and to those skippers who most generously lent their boats. Planning is already being considered for next year’s event!
FEBRUARY OF STORMS:
Storms wiped out the Mahurangi Regatta and the Auckland Anniversary Regatta and many other club events. Some of the clubs suffered cyclone damage and flooding and we hope they are now well into recovery mode. After all the storms summer finally arrived and the clocks were turned back!
The AYBA is now working on the resolution of the submissions lodged earlier. We have a seemingly endless battle reminding the Auckland Council that this is STILL the “City of Sails” and we intend to keep it that way for all who enjoy our coastal environment, the foreshore, harbour and gulf be it for sand castles on the shore, kayaking up the estuaries, cruising the gulf or racing optis’ or foiling multihulls.
The AYBA in association with the Auckland Marina Users Association sees that there is a vital need for a Coastal Regional Plan to protect our foreshore to ensure access for all and not as the Council assumes, not just the haul out areas. The Marine Industries estimate that over half the population – that is over half a million Aucklanders - enjoy some form of aquatic activity for their sport & recreation.
The foreshore and the facilities are not only important for the health & well-being of the coastal environment but also for the health and well-being of half the population!
Prior to the Super City there were 8 Councils in the Auckland Region and over-seeing our coastline and regional parks was the Auckland Regional Council. Today there are 21 Local Boards making local decisions for their area and there is no co-ordinated Regional Plan for the protection of our coastal and marine environment.
Although Biosecurity Auckland have strong policies for the prevention of the spread of invasive species they are hampered by the lack of facilities to ensure compliance and the Auckland Council re-negs on any responsibility to ensure availability. It may not be their responsibility to provide the facilities but they must ensure the on-going availability of the space!
In the Auckland Council’s own words:
“Space in Coastal Locations are increasingly attractive to alternative development!”
Such a policy threatens many of the Club and other facilities currently on “Desirable Coastal Land”! Auckland’s Unitary Plan endorses “Intensification” – another threat.
This is why the AYBA and the Auckland Marina Users Assn. Inc. are demanding a Regional Plan – Not just of the haul-out facilities but of all our Coastal resources for the ongoing and future access to our greatest recreational facility – the Harbour & Gulf – and for the future well-being of our marine environment and the well-being of a great part of our population who finds sanctuary by and on the sea.
How many of you recharge your sense of well-being by just being in the marine environment!
BUT – THE AYBA EFFORTS TO SAVE YOUR MARINE ENVIRONMENT IS COSTING - PLEASE SUPPORT US FINANCIALLY TO ENSURE WE CAN CONTINUE THE FIGHT!
UPDATES ON SUBMISSIONS:
A. THE LANDING, OKAHU BAY, OFFICIALLY CLOSED ON FEBRUARY 28:
The LANDING is the only facility in Auckland that can take the large multihulls. It is an essential regional facility!
The AYBA presented at the meeting of Auckland Council Planning Environment and Parks Committee on the importance of the regional assets required for boat maintenance and biosecurity in the Hauraki Gulf and asked the Committee’s assistance in getting these assets declared regional assets to assist with their preservation in the face of imminent closures by Local Boards. AYBA spoke specifically on the Hardstand at the Landing in Okahu Bay, the Hardstand at Little Shoal Bay and the development at Bayswater. We asked the Committee to consider developing a wider policy towards those shore-line assets required for people to access the Waitemata and Hauraki Gulf and to treat these assets as valuable and necessary Regional / National assets.
The Council’s reply:
Capacity is sufficient if the sector shifts their maintenance and antifouling to the winter months!
There are 20 hardstands in the Auckland Region operated by commercial yards and clubs!
The leases held by commercial hardstands are managed by Eke Panuku as non-service property and Club-based hardstands on Council land are subject to a community lease. (So was Little Shoal Bay and similarly the Landing – Is there any guarantee these areas “Desirable Coastal Land” will survive?)
The council stated it is not their responsibility to provide haul-out facilities.
The Landing is the decision of the Local Community Board and will not be over-ridden by Council!
And so the AYBA has lodged an injunction with the High court seeking to repeal the Local Boards decision!
B. BAYSWATER MARINE PRECINCT:
Re the Hearing Commissions decision that the Bayswater Marine Precinct has been approved as a Residential Hub the Auckland Yachting and Boating Association Inc. has lodged an appeal with the Environment Court. Our focus is on the proposed loss of access and facilities including the storage and maintenance yard, the ramp access and sufficient trailer & marina parking for all users of the aquatic environment. The original plans and the Environment Court Decision acknowledged the possible provision of a travel lift and dry stack boat storage. This is a Marine Precinct – and should NOT be considered as a Residential Village.
Our initial costs for the lodging of this appeal have been funded but there are ongoing legal costs as we progress both cases. For this we are seeking funding which WE NEED NOW to continue the fight.
C. LITTLE SHOAL BAY HARDSTAND IS SCHEDULED TO CLOSE END OF JUNE!
Meanwhile boats can be hauled out but NO maintenance is permitted! Another problem for the AYBA to consider!
All these areas are Regional Assets vital for the Future Proofing of boating on Auckland Harbour & the protection of our Marine Environment!
D. AMENDMENTS TO THE RMA - BE AWARE!
The proposed NATURAL & BUILT ENVIRONMENT Bill – NBE - for which submissions closed on February 5th, could affect a number of clubs already “earmarked” as endangered by rising sea levels! The NBE Bill empowers NBE plans to make rules that will affect existing rights and land use consents when there is harm to the natural environment or risks associated with natural hazards, climate change. Consent authorities will be able to cancel land use consents!! A submission has been lodged on behalf of the Ponsonby Cruising Club Inc.
E. HAURAKI GULF FORUM:
The AYBA will continue to support the Hauraki Gulf Forum in its fight to control the spread of the invasive seaweed species Caulerpa which has now been found on both the Great Barrier and the Mercury Islands.
OR; direct to the AYBA Account No. ASB 12-3084-0295814-00 – please specify Bayswater/Landing.
Nga Mihi – Kind Regards, from your AYBA Executive