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

Gordon Campbell: On Failing To Prepare For Either Mental Health Needs, Or Covid Outbreaks


In a week when the Covid scare in Wellington and the national crisis in mental health both hit the headlines, they also seemed like mirror images of each other – in that we seem equally ill-prepared on both fronts. In both cases, contingency planning has seeds next to non-existent... More>>

 

National: Minister Little All Out Of Answers On Mental Health

In Parliament today Health Minister Andrew Little had few answers to my questions on the mental health crisis Labour has allowed to balloon in their nearly four years in Government, National’s Mental Health spokesperson Matt Doocey says... More>>

ALSO:


Environment: Bringing Back The Health Of Hauraki Gulf

New marine protection areas and restrictions on fishing are among a raft of changes being put in place to protect the Hauraki Gulf for future generations.
The new strategy, Revitalising the Gulf – Government action on the Sea Change Plan, released today... More>>

ALSO:

NZ First Returns: Winston Peters - AGM Address

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s a pleasure to be in Auckland for the 28th New Zealand First Party Conference. It is our intention and mission to remain the most successful political party outside of National and Labour in the last three decades... More>>



Government: New Members Appointed To Waitangi Tribunal

Minister for Māori Development, Hon Willie Jackson, today announced the appointment of three new members to the Waitangi Tribunal and the reappointment of one existing member to the Waitangi Tribunal... More>>

NZNO: Nurses Reject DHB Offer And Confirm Strike Action

The New Zealand Nurses Organisation says its 30,000 members who work in DHBs have voted overwhelmingly to reject a second offer in their current round of multi-employer collective agreement (MECA) negotiations... More>>

ALSO:


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels