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Nelson City Council Facilities Under The New COVID-19 Protection Framework

Safe access to Nelson City Council’s facilities will work differently from Friday, 3 December in line with the new central government COVID-19 Protection Framework.

The new framework changes the way New Zealand manages COVID-19 risks in the community now that we have high vaccination rates. Many of the services people access on a daily basis, from a trip to the library or a swim at a Council-owned pool, will have new guidelines people will be required to follow to protect other users and staff.

The COVID-19 Protection Framework replaces the four-stage Alert Level system with a three-stage Traffic Light system.

At each stage, there are slight differences as to what restrictions are required to be put in place, but restrictions are much more lenient where a vaccine pass is required.

From Friday, Nelson will be at the Orange level of the new system, along with the rest of the South Island, and many places in the North Island.

Nelson City Council’s Incident Management Team Leader Alec Louverdis said the guidelines for Council facilities were not set in stone, and subject to change depending on the COVID-19 situation.

“People can likely expect to see changes in approach over the coming months, and while we acknowledge that people may have differing opinions on the most effective strategies, we ask that you treat staff, volunteers and anyone else in the community responsible for administering these rules with kindness and respect.

“Our role now is to ensure people can access our facilities while remaining protected from COVID-19. In some cases that will mean requiring a vaccine pass, but where a service is essential for all, we will rely on measures we are all familiar with, such as continued physical distancing and mask wearing.”

Nelson Mayor Rachel Reese says the challenge now faced by Nelson is to function as normally as possible while keeping safe.

“We want people to continue to enjoy our facilities, but to do so safely.

“It’s important that we deal with these situations respectfully; this is about the whole of the community working together.”

As owner/operator of a range of facilities, from campgrounds to venues, Council has had to make decisions about each place, that fit within the new framework. Below is a run-down of how facilities will operate at Orange. These requirements will be clearly signposted at venues and work is ongoing in regard to changes that would occur at Red:

Libraries
Library core services are an essential part of our community’s day-to-day life. For that reason, people can access our libraries without a vaccine pass.

Core services include, but are not limited to:

• using library computers, printers, scanners and photocopiers
• using Wi-Fi
• using public toilets
• using and browsing library collections
• reading newspapers
• studying or working in the libraries
• general assistance/guidance from library staff

However, a vaccine pass will be required for events, programmes, and any close contact library services, such as book a librarian.

All Nelson City Council libraries will continue to require masks to be worn at all times, and physical distancing of 1m.

Customer Service Centre
Many people need to interact with Council on a face-to-face basis, which means vaccine passes will not be required to enter the Customer Service Centre. There will be rules in place to ensure safety, as there are at Alert Level 2. These rules are: 1m physical distancing, capacity limit of 12, masks compulsory for customers, and two-way entry.

Pools and Gyms
Riverside Pool cannot be separated from the Riverside Gym, which means vaccine passes are mandatory. For the sake of consistency across Nelson and Tasman (who require a vaccine pass to enter the Richmond Aquatic Centre), Nayland Park Pool will also require a vaccine pass.

Founders Heritage Park
As Founders is largely an outdoor venue, a vaccine pass will not be required for entry, but 1m physical distancing and masks will be required.

This will not apply during events as the park can accommodate more people than usual. For all events at Founders, a vaccine pass will be required. Organisers of events will be required to provide Council with a health and safety plan.

A vaccine pass will be required for Founders Café.

Isel and Broadgreen House
Both of these heritage houses are run by volunteers. To protect their health, both facilities will require vaccine passes to enter. A 1m physical distancing rule and mask wearing will also apply.

Campgrounds
All three of the campgrounds in Nelson (Brook Valley Holiday Park, Maitai Valley Motor Camp and Tahunanui Beach Holiday Park) have long-term occupants, who are not required to have a vaccine pass to access the place they live. At Orange level this means a vaccine pass is not required at all campgrounds, but there is a requirement for 1m physical distancing.

Waahi Taakaro Golf Club
The golf course is a public utility and will not require a vaccine pass to play. As a retail venue the golf shop will require 1m physical distancing and may decide to require vaccine passes.

Wakapuaka Chapel/Crematorium
Vaccine pass requirements are at the discretion of the hirer or funeral director. If vaccine passes are used there are no limits, but masks are strongly encouraged. Without vaccine passes the chapel will require 1m physical distancing and will have a capacity limit of 25 people.

Venues
Council venues will follow event guidance from central government. The following venues will all require a vaccine pass:

• Trafalgar Centre
• Trafalgar Pavilion
• Trafalgar Park
• Greenmeadows
• Saxton Stadium
• Saxton Oval

Marina Facilities and Office
As people live aboard their boats at the marina, it is not practical to require vaccine passes to use Marina facilities. A 1m physical distancing rule will apply and mask wearing is strongly encouraged.

The marina office will not require a vaccine pass, but only one person can enter at a time, due to limits on space.

Pascoe Street Kiosk (waste/recycling)
The transfer station kiosk is an important community service and will not require a vaccine pass. Kiosk users should remain in their car and pay using a contactless method only. Mask wearing is strongly encouraged.

Citizenship Ceremonies
Ceremonies in the Council chamber will be classified as events due to the numbers that will be gathering in a confined space. This means a vaccine pass will be required, and mask-wearing will be strongly encouraged.

Public engagement meetings and events
Any Council-organised meeting where Council is engaging with the community on a project, for example, will be considered an event and therefore a vaccine pass, physical distancing and masks will be required.

Meeting with Council staff
To protect the health of staff and the public, meetings with duty planning and building officers will be held remotely where possible.

As with the COVID-19 Alert Level System, Council will update the community with new guidelines should we move to a different colour, or if there is a change for any other reason.

For more information about the COVID-19 Protection Framework visit: https://covid19.govt.nz/traffic-lights/covid-19-protection-framework/

For local information regarding COVID-19 visit: https://www.nmdhb.govt.nz/quicklinks/about-us/emergency-management-and-planning/covid-19/

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