22 Sep 2008

Limiting beach access may reduce crime, say farmers

6:33 am on 22 September 2008

Federated Farmers says it wants the Manawatu-Wanganui regional council, Horizons, to consider restricting vehicle access on some beaches, to prevent thefts and vandalism on nearby farms.

The federation included the suggestion in a submission to the council.

An independant panel is hearing views on new rules for managing the region's coasts under the council's proposed "One Plan".

It combines the council's various resource management plans into one document that covers the next 10 years.

Federated Farmer's Tararua president Andrew Day says stopping vehicle access on the beaches would help prevent things such as damage to fences, vandalism, fire and stock theft from happening.

He says in some instances, people have been using the beach to access the coastal blocks and there has been all manner of illegal activities.

Mr Day says there needs to be provision for restricting access to beaches under certain circumstances.

He says it is only a potential problem where the coastal area and private property are right next to each other and generally this is not the case.