Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Access leader bars Government entry to property

News Media Release from Public Access New Zealand Inc. 13 June 2005

Access leader bars Government entry to property

A campaign by farmers to close private land to public access for one week is lamentable but understandable, according to Public Access New Zealand. However Federated Farmers, rather than alienating the public by shutting them out, should be targeting the source of the problem - the Government.

PANZ spokesman Bruce Mason says that there is no widespread support within the recreational community for Government's proposal to impose without compensation 'footways' over privately owned water margins. "I don't know of anyone who asked for this measure before it was announced". Angling clubs, potentially the main beneficiaries, have rejected it.

A 5 metre wide right of access along river banks is not going to provide practical access in most situations and will not preclude obstruction by fencing and buildings. Officials have admitted that all Government intends, in effect, is to provide 'paper rights' of access exercisable only if unobstructed. As recently as 10 June Rural Affairs Minister Jim Sutton said, "if you are a deer farmer, you can keep your big fences all the way to the waterway."

"I believe these 'footways' are an election year scam designed to hoodwink urban voters," Mason said.

There are plenty of alternatives that could be taken within existing law to improve public access if Government were serious. These would result in security and practicality of access while avoiding gross infringement of private property rights.

Today, Bruce Mason launched a 'No Government Access' protest on his rural property.

"All Government MPs, their election campaigners, as well as government officials, are barred from my property until further notice". A 'No Government Access' sign is now hung on my front gate along with an orange ribbon. Unlike the Federated Farmers' protest my sign will remain indefinitely until 'footways' are dropped from Government's agenda."

If Government is prepared to entertain gross infringement of private property rights, for no good purpose, it is even more liable to infringe public property.

Labour's failure to honour repeated election pledges to extend the Queen's Chain, consisting of marginal strips, roads and reserves, may be an omen of future intent. A token access provision by way of footways would provide a convenient future pretext for privatisation of the 70 per cent of water margins currently in public ownership. Mr. Sutton wants consistency of access everywhere. This could be achieved by privatising the Queen's Chain and only retaining limited public rights as 'footways'.

Massive public opposition back in 1989 prevented Labour from disposing of marginal strips. There is hope that renewed public concern can do it again.

Everyone concerned about town-country relations and protecting both public and private property is invited to erect a 'No Government Access' sign and orange ribbon on their front gate. The greatest need is in urban areas, especially marginal electorates.

"This is a personal statement, easily taken, and potentially of greater effect than voting. Fear of the electorate prior to an election is a more potent force in shaping political behaviour than afterwards," Mason concluded.

END

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>

ALSO:

Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>

ALSO:

Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>

ALSO:

General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>

ALSO:

Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news