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Published: 2004-04-21 00:00:00

Environment Waikato is planning work on weeds and pests in the Franklin area in its draft Long-Term Council Community Plan, now open for submissions.

It is planning to promote control of woolly nightshade on both Maori-owned and private land at Port Waikato. Control of alligator weed will continue in the lower Waikato River and a community privet control scheme will continue in Tuakau.

Since the Opuatia bovine Tb possum control scheme has finished, the Council will be seeking support for a community possum control scheme to ensure gains made are maintained. The Awaroa community possum control scheme will continue over the coming year.

Also included in work planned for the year is construction of further stopbanking for Mercer West as decided by landowners, erosion control work in the main Waikato River channel, Mercer and downstream and soil conservation work on farms.

The Franklin Sustainability Project to improve erosion problems around market gardening areas of Pukekohe is ending this year after several years of funding. The emphasis will now be on transferring what was learned through the project to other parts of the Region.

The findings will be promoted throughout the Franklin area and guideline standards enforced to protect soils and minimise sedimentation of waterways.

The Lower Waikato River Enhancement Project – a collaborative project initiated by Environment Waikato to plant native plants for bank stabilisation - will continue along the lower river.

Monitoring operations will also be done in Franklin for water flow, stream and soil health, water quality, groundwater availability, quality and allocation and soil loss. An inventory of wetlands will be undertaken along with the health of forest fragments.

Environment Waikato’s Long-Term Council Community Plan is open for public submissions until Friday, May 14. It can be viewed on Environment Waikato’s website, www.ew.govt.nz or copies can be obtained from Environment Waikato's Freephone 0800 800 401.