16 October 2013
Two weeks into its public engagement, Council’s Roading team has only heard from two people on its Draft Roading Policies document so is urging people to have a read and have their say.
Council Roading Manager Julie Muir said many of the policies in the document were ones that she expected would be of interest to a lot of people in the district.
“People that live in rural areas will be interested in policy around droving stock along roads and stock movement across roads. It outlines at what point Council might require an underpass.”
Another key area of interest within the policies was the policy on damage to roads, Ms Muir said.
“Through the winter we get lots of calls from people in rural areas about mud and muck being tracked over the roads. The policy outlines how we will address that and what enforcement action is planned.”
Policies around trees were another key one for people to note, she said. “Where people have trees on properties that cause damage to roads, under existing legislation Council can recover costs for that damage. We have a policy that outlines the process we plan to follow.”
“In an environment of limited funding, if people are found to be directly causing costs through their actions then the community can’t continue to pay for fixing these. The cost must fall on the person responsible.”
Ms Muir said the policies signalled a “mind shift” from a previous informal approach where Council had relied on people to do the right thing or asked them to modify their activities when a problem arose, to one where enforcement would be taken and costs recovered.
“As growth and land use changes have occurred in the district there has been an increasing amount of activity occurring that is affecting the accessibility or safety of road users, or damaging the assets. Council has limited staff resources and funds to address these issues, so these policies will help clarify the action that needs to be taken and improve efficiencies.”
The Roading Policies will provide the background for the development of a Roading Bylaw, set to be adopted in 2014, which will provide the ability to undertake a more simple enforcement process.
Formal consultation will be carried out on the Roading Bylaw, but more informal stakeholder and community comment is invited on the policies that will lay the groundwork for the bylaw.
All feedback will be collated and form the basis of a report to the new Council in December.
Feedback is invited on the policies until Wednesday 6 November 2013. The policies can be downloaded from the Council website or are available for viewing at Council service centres and libraries.
Feedback on the policy can be emailed to email@example.com, dropped in to any Council service centre or posted to:
Draft Roading Policies Engagement
Central Otago District Council
PO Box 122