As you may have seen, QLDC is undertaking informal consultation in regards to the new Navigation Safety Bylaw 2018. The 2018 Bylaw (which includes hundreds of other non-controversial topics) was adapted March 23, 2018. However, the bylaw is not complete.
The original proposed bylaw would have allowed unlimited speeds on the entire Clutha for most daylight hours. The vast majority of submitters to the original proposed bylaw wanted the opposite, they wanted motorcraft free areas. Council heard our concerns and now wants our community to help design the new bylaw as it relates to powered craft on the Upper Clutha.*
With our feedback, council will write a new bylaw. This new bylaw will then require another formal submission and hearing process for approval, which should take place in June.
It is important that you complete this survey as your views will guide the new bylaw that Council will put up for submissions. If you would like to see the Upper Clutha River powercraft free, please click on the link below. Feedback window closes at 5pm, Friday 11 May, 2018.
More Information and Clarification:
There are four options in regards to motor craft on the Clutha. Some people have commented that the wording is a little confusing. Here is a simplified version of the options, but be sure to click the link above if you want your voice heard.
Option A) Status Quo - Unlimited speeds on the Clutha during most daylight hours both above and below the Albert Town Bridge. Currently, there is a small section at the Lake Wanaka outlet that is 5 knots only.
Option B) No powered craft on ‘entire’ Clutha River. This would be from Lake Wanaka to the Red Bridge in Luggate. This is the most aggressive option in terms of removing powered craft from the Clutha.
Option C) No powered craft on the Upper Clutha above the Albert Town Bridge. Powered craft would be allowed below the Albert Town bridge at all times (currently it's 10am-6pm Summer and 10am-4pm Winter). Option B and C are not mutually exclusive. e.g. If you pick Option B it is not a strike against Option C. We have had lots of ideas regarding Albert Town downstream of the Bridge (5 knot limit to the most downstream resident/ Cardrona River, Motorcraft free area, etc…) please include these ideas in the comment section of your survey. FYI: The ATCA recommendation will include Albert Town below the bridge to the most down stream resident.
Option D) Unlimited speeds on the entire Clutha for most daylight hours. This is the original proposed bylaw that was removed after public outcry. Just to be clear, Option A is the same as Option D with the exception of the few hundred meter 5 knot section at the Lake Wanaka outlet.
It’s important to remember this is only a safety bylaw. We have received many complaints about environmental degradation, noise pollution, and shared use of the river (fishing, swimming, rafting, etc). These are very relevant points that should and will be pursued beyond this bylaw and will help guide the 10-year plan, resource consents, etc.. This safety bylaw also does not include the commercial operators with resource consents whom we receive the most complaints about. However, as far as we can tell, resource consents can and should be reviewed annually and safety bylaws such as this one would be relevant in this process (see below excerpt from existing Resource Consent).
In accordance with Section 128 of the Resource Management Act 1991, the conditions of this consent may be reviewed within 10 working days of each anniversary of the date of this consent, if, on reasonable grounds, the consent authority finds that:
i) there is or is likely to be an adverse environmental effect as a result of the exercise of this consent, which was unforeseen when the consent was granted.
ii) monitoring of the exercise of the consent has revealed that there is or is likely to be an adverse effect on the environment.
iii) there has been a change in circumstances such that the conditions of the consent are no longer appropriate in terms of the purpose of the above Act.
*Council is also asking for community feedback on three other issues (River boards, Leg Leash and Surfboards). We have not received any questions or comments about these issues to date.