Environment Waikato has received more than 3,100 submissions on its first draft Long-Term Council Community Plan.
Almost 13,000 matters have been raised, and Councillors will hear more than 200 people giving their submission in person next month. Submissions to the draft Plan closed on Friday.
The draft Plan included some major projects - protecting Lake Taupo, a project to manage flooding on the Coromandel Peninsula, new plans to protect natural heritage areas for future generations, a proposed uniform annual charge and a new plant and animal pest rate.
A submission form was included in Environment Waikato’s quarterly magazine EnviroCare which is delivered to every household in the Region, and more than 1300 people returned these. Property owners living outside the Region were also sent information and a submission form.
Strategic Development Manager Kevin Collins said the Council was pleased with the response.
“By comparison, two years ago we had 48 submissions, and last year 480 with about 45 people wanting to appear before the Committee to present their submission in person.”
The largest number of submissions - about 1500 – were made on the Peninsula Project which aims to protect the Coromandel from frequent flooding, improve water quality, stabilise streams and rivers and protect estuaries and harbours.
Most submissions (2817) were from individuals, but 43 companies, 42 environmental groups, 33 community groups and 13 territorial authorities also made submissions. Almost 800 submitters who live outside the Region made submissions, most concentrating on Peninsula and Lake Taupo issues. The rest were spread across all the Region’s district council areas, with almost 400 from Hamilton City.
The hearings begin on Monday, May 31 and will continue for up to a week. The Council’s deliberations on the matters raised begin on June 14 and the final Long-Term Council Community Plan will be adopted on June 30.