MINUTES OF A meeting of the Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee



Date:                          Tuesday 9 November 2010

Time:                          9.00 am


Council Chamber

Hawke's Bay Regional Council

159 Dalton Street



Present:                     K Rose (Chairman)

T Gilbertson

E McGregor

L Remmerswaal

C Scott

E von Dadelszen

A J Dick

F Wilson

H Hiha

         M Apatu


In Attendance:          A Newman – Chief Executive

M Adye – Group Manager, Asset Management

I Millner – Land Management Adviser

B Powell – Land Management Adviser

W Hesketh – Land Management Adviser

J Devonport – Land Management Adviser

C Leckie – Manager, Biosecurity

Norm Olsen – Drainage Manager

Darren Gorst – Rivers Manager

Gary Clode – Manager, Engineering

Sally Chandler – Minute Taker



Chairman Rose welcomed everyone.  It was noted that Mr Hiha and Mr Apatu were in attendance however as Maori Committee members had not yet been officially nominated to this Committee they were welcome to make comments but would be unable to vote.

Cr Wilson advised he may need to attend a meeting from 12 to 1 today.

Apology received from Councillor Neil Kirton.




There were no conflicts of interest declared.



Consideration of General Business Items


1.        Elected members remuneration – Cr Dick

2.        Cycleway – Cr Scott

3.        Dairy Liaison Meeting – Chairman Rose/ Cr Wilson

4.        Te Mata Peak Clean up – Cr Remmerswaal



Actions from Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee meetings


There were no items arising from previous meetings.



Land Management Work Programmes 2010/2011


Mr Adye presented this paper along with Land Management Staff who were present: Ian Millner, Joe Devonport, Brendan Powell and Warwick Hesketh.

Following on from a report presented to this Committee earlier in the year, which resulted in agreement from council for the Land Management teams goals & objectives.  Today’s paper sets out work programmes currently being undertaken.

Key work programmes have been divided down into 4 broad work streams as shown in attachment.

All members of the Committee commented that it was good to see this paper and the work being undertaken by the Land Management team.  In response to Committee members questions the following comments were noted:

·          A question on the existence of a local irrigator’s user group; it is believed no specific group still exists however this will be checked on and reported back. ACTION – MA

·          There will be a focus on Treaty Claimant Groups, as the process on treaty negotiations progresses.

·          It was questioned whether Land Management assistance is getting through to the right people.  How do we work on changing people’s attitudes.  Staff noted that this is an ongoing issue.  Through the Regional Landcare Scheme (RLS) funding has already been fully allocated for the year ending June 2011.

·          Staff are working in conjunction with industry leaders such as Beef & Lamb NZ, Federated Farmers, MAF who are continually looking for ways to assist their members, including promoting economic and environmental planning. 

·          In response to a question on the Afforestation Grants Scheme (AGS) Joe Devonport reported the current scheme only runs for 1 more year.  There is no government guarantee there will be any future funding.  Money allocated from the scheme this year provides the funding for planting in the following year.

·          Warwick Hesketh advised that there is plenty of scope for more Coastal Restoration Groups.  The majority are set up in conjunction with TLA’s.  He noted a Wairoa group was being established at present.

·          Assisting Landowners with resilience planning and adjusting to ‘climate change’ pressures was part of the Land Management team brief.

·          Through its involvement with the Ballance Farm Environmental Awards Council will be able to showcase winning properties.  These properties clearly show how it is possible to enhance the environment and be economically viable.

·          Both Fonterra and Dairy NZ – assist with developing nutrient budgets for their customers – tools and avenues are in place to get more value out of these.

·          Councillors requested to be kept informed as to when Field days, seminars, workshops take place.  Andrew Newman agreed this ACTION to be put in place in the New Year.

·          Land Management performance measures will be captured when reported against LTCCP and Annual Plan in 2011.

·          Tukipo floating wetland is not listed in these work streams as a priority catchment, work is ongoing with Council’s science section.

·          In response to a question on carbon credits from tree establishment and how it can be measured, Mr Newman reported that it was now possible to track forest establishment and expansion through satellite and Lidar imagery.  MfE is land mapping the entire country as part of a Kyoto protocol.  This will eventually provide information on forested land in Hawke’s Bay.

·          There was some discussion on how to incentivise farmers. Staff suggested a good example of incentivising farmers is one of the outcomes of the Huatokitoki project which will be reported on next.



Scott/von Dadelszen




Huatokitoki Community Catchment Project


Ian Millner presented this report and gave the Committee an overview of this three year project which has now been in progress for approximately 18 months.

As noted in the paper this project is funded through the Sustainable Farming Fund ($455k) and HBRC ($85k) over the three year period.

A visit to the district will be scheduled for Councillors next year. ACTION

The Committee discussed the project and the following questions and comments were noted:

·          Ian Millner advised that sensors to be implanted in some cattle will provide in-depth information on the animal i.e. when it eats, when it drinks, its movements around the paddock.

·          26 farms are taking part in the project covering approximately 17,000ha or 80% of the Huatokitoki area.

·          One of the outcomes for this project will be to showcase it to other communities. 

·          When the funding stops it is anticipated the project will be self-sustaining, with the lessons learned tying in to farm business plans.

·          Measuring the Carbon in soil as part of this project is of particular significance to Hatuma Lime who are also a sponsor of the project.

·          One of the outcomes from tracking the animals may be that riparian fencing is not required.  If you find out when and where the animal wants water you can have troughs strategically placed.



That the Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee recommend that Council:

1.      Receive this report.




The meeting broke for morning tea at 10.35 am.



Regional Pest Management Strategy Review


Campbell Leckie was welcomed to the meeting to present his paper.

It was noted that the current Regional Pest Management Strategy (RPMS) is due to be reviewed. A revised proposed RPMS needs to be in place and adopted by Council by December 2011.  A timeline of actions was provided in the paper.

Some of the highlights and comments made included:

·          The possum control programme is 2 – 3 years ahead of schedule.  This may free up funding for other opportunities i.e. rabbit control, feral cats, rats, mustelids, goats etc.

·          The public consultation process will provide an opportunity to get feedback on some of these options.  

·          Mike Adye advised Hearings for the RPMS would most probably take place early in 2012.

·          Campbell Leckie advised a regional stakeholder goat group has been established in the Wairoa region for over two years and was progressing well.

·          He also advised that the Biosecurity section was continually looking at ways to control predators such as rats, mustelids, cats and rabbits effectively.



That the Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee recommend Council:

1.    Note that Councils current Regional Pest Management Strategy (RPMS) expires in December 2011, and agree the proposed review process and timeline set out in this briefing paper.

2.    Note the key items staff propose to highlight for public input through a discussion document.

von Dadelszen/Wilson




Biosecurity Annual Report - 2009/2010

Animal and Plant Pest Annual Reports


Chairman Rose congratulated the Biosecurity Section on their achievements to date.  The Committee discussed the report and the following comments were noted:

·          Campbell Leckie reported that in the Wairoa possum control area working with fur contractors had resulted in a cost to the PCA programme of $8 per HA, which is a significant achievement.

·          The urban control programme was now focussing on areas of Havelock North after a successful programme on Napier Hill.

·          Responding to a question on controlling ‘rats’ in urban areas Mr Leckie advised this is an expensive exercise and would cost approximately $50,000 per year as opposed to the possum programme where the cost is approximately $50,000 for three years.  However this is something that can be covered in the strategy review process.

·          Mr Leckie reported that there had been some interest from people in the hill control area to continue controlling possums.

·          Mr Leckie advised that the majority of owners with privet hedges complied with their management plans.  The success rate was around 70%, however property owners that do not, are dealt with through compliance processes.

·          The North Island was still clear of Didymo and MAF provided funding assistance over the summer months for an education programme. 

·          In response to a question on Purple Ragwort on Te Mata Peak, Mr Leckie advised Darin Underhill is working with landowners in this area.  He noted it is very difficult and almost impossible to target cliff faces on the peak.

·          The successful Vector Management contract with AHB has been extended out to June 2013.  It was due to finish in June 2011. 

·          The introduction of carp to arrest the problem on Hydrilla in Lake Tutira is proving successful.  It is anticipated carp will remain in the lake for the next 20 – 25 years.

·          The Committee agreed that these good outcomes were very newsworthy and to ensure action is taken to get these great stories out. – MA to ACTION.



1.      That the Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee recommend that Council receive the Animal Pest and Plant Pest reports for activities undertaken during the 2009/2010 financial year.





Tutira Carbon Sequestration Property - Recreation Opportunity


Mr Adye introduced Steve Cave to the Committee who had prepared this paper.

Mr Newman also advised the Committee that Mr Leckie will pick up the responsibility for Councils’ forestry investment portfolio and projects.  This includes the Tutira Forestry block.

Steve Cave ran through the paper referring to a report on recreation opportunities prepared by Opus Consulting.  He advised a copy of the full Opus report (Tutira Recreation Opportunity Scoping Study) is available on request.

The following highlights and comments were noted from the discussion:

·          A visitor survey will be conducted in this area for a better understanding of visitor needs and behaviour.

·          Steve Cave noted he had two suggestions for a name the “The Property” –  ‘Papahora Forest Park’ and ‘Aki Aki Forest Park’.

·          The Tuitira Mangahuru Visionary Group were consulted as part of the Opus study.

·          The Opus study cost $13,500.

·          It was reported that the hard northern faces had been planted during the 2010 winter and were doing well.

·          In response to a comment on return on investment for the Tutira Forestry block Mr Newman advised that – funding for this study would come out of Council’s Open Space budget.  He advised that this property was only one part of Council’s total Forestry Investment Portfolio and that while some forest assets will deliver a lower return it will be balanced out with other forest investments.



That the Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee recommend that Council:

1.      Give priority to the Tutira Recreation Opportunity Scoping Study recommendations that relate to the investment property, Tutira Country Park and the Tangoio Soil Conservation Reserve.

2.      Instruct staff to:

2.1.      Undertake a baseline survey of visitors to Council open spaces in this area as the basis for understanding visitor needs and behaviour.

2.2.      Develop the investment property to include recreational opportunities.

2.3.      Draft a public use plan for the investment property that will overlay and integrate into the current management framework for investment and research planting and establishment of a “future forest”, that:

2.4.         Takes into account the landscape, historical/cultural and recreational values of the property.

2.5.         Proposed public access and facilities appropriate to the identified recreational use of the property.

2.6.         Proposes a design and detailed track plan showing all existing and future recreational tracks and linkage pathways, highlighting intended use.

2.7.         Establishes timeframes for making the property publicly accessible and budget for developing the recreational infrastructure.

2.8.         Recommend a name for the property.

2.9.         Investigate options for linking the Tangoio Soil Conservation Reserve, Investment Property and Tutira Country Park.

2.10.       Continue investigating opportunities through the wider Tutira area and build on existing stakeholder partnerships through continuing to lead the Tutira Maungaharuru Visionary Group.





That the Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee recommend that Council:

3.   Approve expenditure of $15,000 for the development of a public use plan and associated baseline survey for Council’s properties within the Tutira area. With funding to be sourced from the existing $1,000,000 provision for open space opportunities within Council’s Open Space Project.

carried 7/1

For: Gilbertson, McGregor, Rose, Scott, von Dadelszen, Dick, Wilson

Against: Remmerswaal


The meeting broke for lunch at 12.30 pm.



2009/2010 Flood Control and Drainage Schemes - Annual Reports


Norm Olsen and Darren Gorst from Operations Group presented these reports.

Drainages schemes – Mr Olsen reported that overall the year went well with budget on target at 98%.  No floods were recorded in this year.

The following highlights and comments were noted from the discussion:

·          In response to a question on stocking rates of Grass Carp Mr Olsen advised that another 200 were put into an area of Muddy Creek last week.  They were having some effect however the weed boat was still used during the year. 

·          Mr Olsen noted that Stream enhancement in the area of Raupare/Twyford had been initiated by a land owner group and the Operations Group would be involved in this ongoing process.

·          Responding to a question on land purchasing along the Awanui Stream Mr Olsen noted that there were still four purchases to take place that would take us right up to Pakipaki.  He noted it was a slow process. An easement had just been gained from the Maori Trustee at Pukapuke Tangiora and this had taken two years.  They understand the need to build stopbanks, and it is essential that Council has appropriate control over land to protect its assets.

·          Mr Olsen was asked if a Memorandum of Understanding ‘MOU’ was an option for dealing with these land acquisitions.  He said every case was different and different tools were used on a case by case basis.

Mr Gorst presented the Flood scheme reports to the Committee.

The following highlights and comments were noted from the discussion:

·          It’s believed the reduction in gravel extraction has been due to demand decreasing.

·          Sawfly population has not increased over the last three summers - a cold snap at the start of last summer assisted in maintaining low numbers.

·          The planting of exotic and native trees has stepped up. This requires a different regime from planting willows and poplars.  Different methods are being trialled and good progress is being made on finding cost effective ways of getting plants established.

·          Mr Gorst advised mulch was no longer being used around new tree plantings due to rabbits eating the mulch and damaging the young trees.  He advised that a repellent is being trialled on the new trees to keep the rabbits away.

·          In response to a question on the cost of dredging the Clive River, Mr Adye advised that following the first dredging in early 90’s it was agreed to set aside funding for this ongoing work.  It has been done once since then.  This is done as part of the Heretaunga Plains Flood protection and also for recreation purposes.

·          In the Upper Tukituki staff have now weed sprayed 125 km of river edge where Old man’s beard is still the main target.  He noted that unlike the Lower Tukituki around Haumoana where areas are grazed and the Old Man’s Beard is kept at bay, this is not an option in the Upper Tukituki as there are no open spaces.  He also commented that an area where the stock had been removed on the lower Tukituki it didn’t take long for Old Man’s Beard to pop up again.

·          Responding to a question on timing of beach raking he advised – that spring bird nesting and during white bait season are avoided.

·          The Ohuia Drainage Scheme required significant unbudgeted repairs which contributed to costs being more than budgeted.  Mr Olsen reported that this is an older pump station and it does a lot of hours.  It is planned to clear the deficit for this scheme in future.

·          In response to a question on erosion within the Wairoa scheme Mr Adye advised a risk assessment along the banks and any riverside hazards would be managed through the planning process.

·          Mr Olsen commented that drains within urban areas are gaining a lot more public exposure with proposals for enhancement work advancing.

Mr Apatu and Mr Hiha left the meeting at 2.00 pm.



That the Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee recommend Council:

1.       Receive the Flood Control and Drainage Scheme reports for activities undertaken during the 2009/10 financial year.





Gravel Resource Review


Gary Clode presented this paper.  He advised that as part of project 369 Gravel Management Project, Tonkin & Taylor were commissioned to provide Council with a draft scoping report, to identify key issues impacting, or with the potential to impact, on the sustainability of gravel extraction and advise a work programme with a 6 year time frame to undertake research and investigations to improve Councils knowledge of these issues. 

Some comments from the discussion included:

·          Both consultants and HBRC staff or students will be utilised to undertake the work.

·          The estimated costs over the 6 year period are $635,000, which would be evenly divided up.  Funding could come from a mix of sources including, increasing the levy currently charged to Gravel Extractors and from Council’s flood control and drainage schemes.

·          In response to a question on flood cycles Mr Clode said the last 10 – 20 years had been quieter, however at the end of this study better data will be available.

·          He noted that while river gravel is still in demand and extractors can probably cope with a small increase in extraction costs they are also facing higher transport costs.



That the Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee recommend Council:

1.    Agrees that the decisions to be made are not significant under the criteria contained in Council’s adopted policy on significance and that Council can exercise its discretion under Sections 79(1)(a) and 82(3) of the Local Government Act 2002 and make decisions on this issue without conferring directly with the community and persons likely to be affected by or to have an interest in the decision due to the nature and significance of the issue to be considered and decided.

2.    Confirms their support for the River Bed Gravel Review project.

3.    Instructs staff to investigate and consult with gravel extractors a funding source for the work and present this to Council for inclusion in the draft 2011/12 Annual Plan.





Ngaruroro River Flood Protection Scheme

Ecological Management and Enhancement Plan


Gary Clode presented a brief slide show on this project. 

·          The Committee endorsed this paper and agreed it was a good way forward.



That the Asset Management and Biosecurity Committee recommend Council:

1.      Agrees that the decisions to be made are not significant under the criteria contained in Council’s adopted policy on significance and that Council can exercise its discretion under Sections 79(1)(a) and 82(3) of the Local Government Act 2002 and make decisions on this issue without conferring directly with the community and persons likely to be affected by or to have an interest in the decision due to the nature and significance of the issue to be considered and decided.

2.      Accepts the findings review and endorses the Ngaruroro Ecological and Enhancement Plan (EMEP) for use in future river management.

3.      Instruct staff to prepare a report on management of the native vegetation outside the current scheme area including costs and funding source.

4.      Instruct staff to prepare a report on managing the plant pest issue associated with the braided river bed and the effect on the ecology (and gravel transport) together with a funding strategy, if required to manage the problem. 





General Business


1.        Elected members remuneration

Councillor Dick raised the issue of bringing forward the paper to discuss remuneration for Committee Chairman to the SP & F meeting on 17 November.  At present it is due to be presented at the 15 December Regional Council meeting.

Councillor Dick advised he had raised this with both the Chairman and the Chief Executive.  Councillor Wilson, in his role as Chairman, agreed to have this paper brought forward to the 17 November Strategic Planning & Finance Committee meeting.

2.        Cycleway – Cr Scott noted that VHB and Council Communications staff had a meeting last Friday to discuss the new cycleways.  Cr Scott was unable to attend that meeting as she was in New Plymouth.  She presented to the Committee a selection of photos of the impressive New Plymouth cycleway showing a stunning bridge with a stunning Mt Taranaki in the background.

3.        Te Mata Peak Clean Up – Cr Remmerswaal advised the Committee that the clean up on Te Mata Peak is about to take place and wanted to know if Council could provide some assistance.

4.        Dairy Liaison Meeting – Chairman Rose advised the Committee that the next Dairy Liaison Group meeting is taking place on Tuesday 16 November.  Councillors are extended an invitation to join this group for afternoon tea.  Five Councillors indicated that they would be able to attend.  Cr Remmerswaal put in her apologies.


There being no further business the Chairman declared the meeting closed at 3.00pm on Tuesday, 9 November 2010.


Signed as a true and correct record.




DATE: ................................................               CHAIRMAN: ...............................................