GOVERNMENT REVIEW ON PUBLIC ACCESS

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August 2007

Fish & Game New Zealand notes the ongoing development of policy to enhance public access to public resources, and supports the establishment of a public access entity, the development mapping and signage, and the requirement for territorial authorities to retain and open unformed legal roads for use by the public.

“Public access to public resources is extremely important to most New Zealanders,” said Bryce Johnson, Chief Executive of Fish & Game New Zealand, “and both the quantity and quality of this access has been eroded over recent years due to changing land use and ownership, and shifting riverbanks. The development of public access maps and signage, and underlining the value of unformed legal roads are positive steps for securing the future.”

“However, the most important mechanism is the establishment of the national access entity, and the roles, functions and funding of this agency will determine just how well new access is acquired and lost access is restored and realigned. A strong leadership role will provide a useful focus to work with the large amount of goodwill that currently exists, and adequate funding will support signage, fencing, track maintenance and other amenities that will facilitate access across private land.”

“It is also positive that the new access entity will consider the Walking Access Panel’s additional recommendations, and that if necessary, there should be options to improve the agency’s ability to resolve difficult situations.”

For more information:

Bryce Johnson
Chief Executive Fish & Game New Zealand
021 397 897

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