Part of my letter to the council was published in the Eastern Christchurch “Community News”, which hopefully means that some of the people who are voting for the local elections right now may vote differently after reading it, though scum does have a habit of floating to the top regardless.. Here’s the article:
New Brighton fishing restrictions cause stir
By Joelle Dally
The fishing ban on New Brighton pier during daylight hours (6am-6pm) on weekends and public holidays over summer came into effect today, after the Burwood/Pegasus Community Board voted in favour of the restrictions earlier this month.
For Danny Reed, Opawa, and his two children aged six and four, it may mean having to leave their fishing rods at home.
He was so outraged at the decision, he wrote to the city council expressing his disappointment.
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“The pier is the only place I can think of in Christchurch that is perfectly safe and where you have a decent chance of catching a fish that is actually worthwhile taking home to eat’ he said. “The average Joe with a full-time job and kids can generally only go fishing during the ban times”.
Those who refuse to comply with the ban could be faced with a trespass notice.
The extra security guards and seasonal wardens required for such enforcement is estimated to cost ratepayers $14- 16,000 out of the 2007/08 regional parks budget.
City council regional parks manager Kay Holder said the decision was a compromise between those who wanted a complete ban on fishing from the pier and others who wanted no changes to the current situation.
“People have been flouting the Current rules which include no overhead casting, using bait cutting boards and fish cleaning tables provided and not fishing in the no-fishing zone” she said. “We needed to make the pier safe for everyone”
Mr Reed believed it was a case of a few messy culprits and a vocal minority ruining a prime-time fishing spot for the responsible majority. He said he is looking forward to next year, when the weekend ban comes to an end.
“When people go to the end of the pier they see water and sky, in fact it’s exactly the same view of water and sky they see from the shore” he said.”Fishing gives the pier a real purpose, something to talk about and observe, and personality that will be sorely lacking”
The pier fishing restrictions will remain in place until April 6, 2008, and will be reviewed at the end of summer.