25 Aug 2011

Waihi residents want buyout scheme if mine approved

8:39 pm on 25 August 2011

A bid to dig a $1 billion mine under 30 residential properties in the Coromandel has some residents demanding a home buyout scheme.

The Newmont Waihi Gold mine proposal in Waihi was released for public consultation on Tuesday and would operate for six years from 2013.

The Waihi Distressed Residents Action Team, which represents 25 households, says residents feel disempowered and are terrified about a decline in property values if the proposal goes ahead.

The group says the plan needs to offer a buyout option for people directly affected.

Newmont Waihi Gold external affairs manager Sefton Darby says residents will only be affected by a minor 30-second vibration felt each day.

However, Mr Darby says if the majority of the community wants a buyout, then Newmont would be forced to consider the option.

The plan will be subject to a Hauraki District Council hearing in February next year when the community can make submissions.