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Coromandel Harbour

There was a sudden outburst of information this week regarding the Coromandel Harbour plans that have been kept under wraps over recent months for no obviously good reason. 

It seems that our planners are leaning towards a piled wharf attached to the existing facilities a t Sugar Loaf.

"We need to ensure this facility is fit-for-purpose for aquaculture industry expansion as well as suiting the needs of other users including recreational fishers," says our Chief Executive David Hammond.

This alone raises issues concerning the continued merging or recreational and commercial interests - neither will be satisfied with the plan as outlined by Hammond. He indicates a substantial title dispute with iwi interests that appears likely to have a major effect on the outcome of negotiation s with the Coromandel Marine Farmers Association. In fact, it does not appear that that much progress has been made at all that will enable the situation to be resolved in the immediate future.

It seems that little progress has been made towards achieving the grand plan for Coromandel Harbour that is so much a part of Leach's great schemes that he wanted well and truely in place before his departure in October 2016 - Kopu to Kaiaua, the Great Walks and Coromandel Harbour.  Not much chance of that at the current rate of progress.

The Inner Harbour Project appears as distant as ever. The highly secretive "Partnership Proposal Document" that apparently went to Council in October will not be revealed to the public until after it has "had its final sign-off." It is of course disgraceful that we are to be kept in the dark on this document until after its adoption.

Why rate-payers should be kept in the dark on this $60m plan has never been explained. It appears that potential developers will be able to access the content of the document long before we will be allowed to become privy to its content. I think that even Hammond must realise that he is skating on very thin ice in this regard, but nothing will happen until there is a concerted demand by rate-payers that they be consulted on this matter.



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