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Pest Strategies Proposed, Awaiting Legislation Review

Media Release

1 December 2011

Pest Strategies Proposed, Awaiting Legislation Review

A review of both the regional pest and phytosanitary pest management strategies has left these largely unchanged while Hawke’s Bay Regional Council waits for a review of legislation to take effect.

Hawke’s Bay Regional Council is proposing both a Regional Pest Management Strategy and a Regional Phytosanitary Pest Management Strategy, as required by the Biosecurity Act. The Council will be notifying the strategies for public submissions on Saturday 3 December. Copies of both proposed pest strategies will be available from Monday 6 December and submissions are to be made by 27 January 2012.

However the Biosecurity Act is being reviewed and, as amendments are expected within the next two years that are likely to require significant changes to the regional strategies within two years after that, the proposed strategies are largely unchanged.

“It’s essentially business as usual with what are already successful strategies while we await these changes to the Biosecurity Act,” said Land Services Manager Campbell Leckie.

He says that the Regional Council has a reasonable understanding of what the changes to the Biosecurity Act are likely to be.

“The administrative process for the Regional Pest Management Strategy could become simpler and some additional tools will be available to better manage biosecurity issues. We are talking to primary production sector groups and other interested parties about lining things up to make the most out of the opportunities the changes provide.”



Under the proposed Regional Pest Management Strategy, Hawke’s Bay Regional Council intends to continue provide services for Total Control (Service Delivery) pests African feather grass, Goats rue, Nassella tussock, Privet, Phragmites, Spiny emex, White edged nightshade, and Yellow water lily.

Landowners are expected to continue to continue to control Apple of Sodom, Australian sedge, Chilean needle grass, Cotton thistle, Japanese honeysuckle, Pinus contorta, Old man’s beard, Saffron thistle, and Woolly nightshade. However, the requirement to control Japanese honeysuckle will only apply around Lake Tutira, and the requirement to control Old man’s beard will only apply in the northern half of Hawke’s Bay. Collectively these plant pests will be known as Total Control (Occupier responsibility) plant pests.

Possums, rabbits, and rooks remain declared as pests. Hawke’s Bay Regional Council is proposing to continue its control of pests at specific sites to assist landowners protect specified and identified ecological values.

The Proposed Regional Phytosanitary Pest Management Strategy has also been reviewed by Pipfruit New Zealand for the Regional Council. This strategy governs the management of unmanaged pipfruit production sites (ie abandoned commercial orchards) for phytosanitary pests which affect plant health in Hawke’s Bay - Apple black spot, Codling moth, European Canker, Fireblight and Lightbrown Apple Moth (Leafroller).

The strategies will be available from Regional Council offices, can be downloaded from the Council website www.hbrc.govt.nz, and can be viewed at all public libraries in Hawke’s Bay.

Submissions on the strategies need to be made in writing, and submitters can indicate if they want to present their submission to the Council hearing in person. A hearing date will be set early in 2012, and submitters who want to be heard will be advised of that date by the end of January.

ENDS


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