New bylaw proposed for Waimate district’s tenting grounds

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The statutes would give the council flexibility to address unforeseen problems and create site-specific rules.  It would also cover freedom camping in the district.

Bejon Haswell / stuff / stuff

The statutes would give the council flexibility to address unforeseen problems and create site-specific rules. It would also cover freedom camping in the district.

A new statute has been proposed to cover all campsites in the Waimate district, with the aim of allowing the council to establish rules for specific locations.

The proposal was made public in a report by Park and Preserve Manager Alison Banks to the Waimate District Council meeting at Waihao Marae on Jan.

The report also mentions a proposal for a 10-20 year tree management plan for Lake Aviemore, amalgamation of financial reserves for campsites, and a campground regulation document for each campground.

Camping rules are required at all locations (the council has three campsites and a number of campsites along Lake Aviemore – seasonal – and Fisherman’s Bend throughout the Waimate district) and due to the number of locations and their differences, one size doesn’t fit all of these Circumstances, especially when it comes to freedom camping, ”Banks told the Timaru Herald on Monday.

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“For example, freedom camping is allowed in the off-season along the Waimate side of Lake Aviemore) but not during the camping season when the area is populated by campers who have purchased overnight permits or a season ticket.

“A camping statute will give the council the power to control the transition between the two seasons.

“We would also like to develop and promote some hidden gems in the district for freedom camping, but we need some specific guidelines first to ensure that our environment is protected, our community is respected and that our district’s visitors enjoy what is already available.

“The majority of visitors to our campsite are seasonal travelers and those new to the great outdoors just need guidance to ensure they have a safe and enjoyable time in our district. We have fantastic staff on site or nearby to help you whenever you need it.

The Banks report also mentions a proposal for a 10 to 20 year tree management plan for Lake Aviemore.

John Bisset / stuff

The Banks report also mentions a proposal for a 10 to 20 year tree management plan for Lake Aviemore.

“We have campsite attendants and people on the regulatory team whose job it is to remind our visitors of the rules, promote the information available, help those who are not sure and, if necessary, enforce them. The main message here is to be respectful and we can work together to clear any problems or misunderstandings.

“The Council prefers this approach rather than coming in with an iron fist and disrupting or canceling someone’s vacation.

“It is also worth noting that during the camping season, the police are authorized to enter people who cause nuisance on our campsites and sites.

Banks said the council had already had some feedback from the previous camping season and would interview as many campers as possible during that camping season (campsites and seasonal camping).

“We are also closely monitoring the government’s findings on the Freedom Camping Act, and of course there are key partners / stakeholders across the district with whom we will work. In other words, it takes a lot of work to develop a constitution, so it will take time. “

Regarding the rules for each campsite, Banks said this is now complete.

“We’re not going to get everything right the first time, so it’s open to changes, updates, or improvements as needed.”

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