Resident expresses Wyomi concerns

Former Kingston councillor Tony Hutchison has repeated his concerns about the Wyomi erosion issue.

“It was a great concern to me during my term on council and and is a great concern to me now,” Mr Hutchison said. “I also didn’t agree with the unnecessary spraying along parts of Marine Parade.

"In 2012, I emailed the Department of Environment stating that it would be a ‘lack of common sense’ if the delicate sand dune area above where the beach is eroding was sprayed.

“The whole area was sprayed with a residual spray and the sand dunes were almost denuded of any vegetation.

“It looks like ratepayers are going to be hit again for the storm damage done to the foreshore at the weekend, it's something that had worried me for years.

“Do we have to wait till houses are washed into the sea before positive action is taken.?”

Mr Hutchison understands that council’s hands were tied for a long time, with the Coastal Protection Board having the final say on what would happen.

“The Coastal Protection Board as far as I am concerned they are a group of overpaid bureaucrats. They initially came down here when I was on council some years ago.

“We had a public meeting in the council chamber and created a computer presentation of what may happen by about the year 2030-40. Half the houses were going to disappear at that point.

“We made suggestions, we said we are going to have to put rocks along there to hold it. They said, ‘Good heavens you can’t put rocks!’

“So we said the next best thing would be sand bags and they said no, just cart more sand.

“They suggested we get a private engineer to do a report. The Coastal Protection Board just passed the buck onto this private engineer, he came up with a suggestion eventually of putting sand bags along the front there, which I had originally suggested, that worked pretty well in the short term.

”I am not blaming the council, I am blaming the government departments, it has been a problem for years and years and they procrastinated all the time.

“Another $100,000 is down the drain now and it’s getting more and more expensive to fix. My argument all along has been they should have done something when we had some beach there.”