Boaties are being encouraged to make submissions on the proposed new boat cleaning rules in the upper North Island.
The Northland Council is running a two-month consultation on whether to develop shared rules on managing hull cleaning across the four biggest boating regions – Northland, Auckland, Waikato and the Bay of Plenty Toi Moana.
Options range from making it a requirement for boaties to have a clean hull at all times, only when moving, or only when moving to specifically identified places. Feedback closes on May 24.
Northland Council biosecurity manager Don McKenzie says the four Northern councils want to hear what their respective communities thought before advancing the initiative. “We’d like to encourage as many people as possible to take this opportunity to have a say on a local authority issue that traverses several regions.”
Biosecurity New Zealand manages national rules to minimise the risk of new pest species arriving on vessels from overseas, but the regulations for vessels moving around within coastal waters varies from region to region. As the movement of boats increases, so too does the risk of marine pests spreading.
With support from Biosecurity New Zealand, the four regional councils are exploring whether having hull-fouling rules, applied consistently across several regions, would be a better way forward. Visit www.bionet.nz/control/marine-pests/marinepests for more information and to submit feedback.