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A proposed quarry in New Zealand has some local residents coming up with inventive strategies to discuss the matter further.
A proposed quarry in New Zealand has some local residents coming up with inventive strategies to discuss the matter further.

Community floats ‘Texit’ over quarry proposal

A council’s ‘indifference’ to community concerns over a quarry proposal has led residents to propose a ‘Texit’ – essentially seceding to their neighbouring district.

In December 2017, civil engineering and resources company Fulton Hogan announced its intention to develop a 170ha site in Templeton, located west of Christchurch, New Zealand. It is understood the company aims to use the new proposed quarry as a replacement for its Pound Road quarry, which has a remaining lifespan of five years.

Templeton is situated within the jurisdiction of the Christchurch City Council (CCC) but it is located on the boundary of the Selwyn district, under whose authority the proposed land for the quarry falls.

As previously reported by Quarry, local residents have voiced their concerns over Fulton Hogan’s quarry proposal, citing potential adverse dust effects and traffic movements. Residents are now “at the end of their tether” over the CCC’s supposed ignorance of their concerns, according to a report by Stuff New Zealand.

"Originally, [Texit] was a tongue-in-cheek thing, but it made sense the more we thought about it, so maybe we should,” Templeton Residents Association (TRA) chairman Garry Kilday was quoted as saying.

“If we're not happy with our service provider – which just happens to be the city council, and we're right on the boundary and because of where we are, they're not doing anything for us – why would you not? It's only the stroke of a pen.

"[CCC] didn't want to know, they just weren't even interested in anything that was going on. But we have been writing to Selwyn District Council (SDC) and they couldn't have been more helpful,” he added.

The SDC is the authoritative body that will ultimately decide if Fulton Hogan’s proposal can proceed. A decision is expected to be made in the coming months, after resource consent applications are submitted by Fulton Hogan, possibly in May.

It is understood the CCC mayor has since acknowledged the TRA’s inquiries and had ‘promised’ to meet with Templeton residents.

Quarry contacted the TRA for additional information, asking whether a meeting with the mayor had indeed taken place and if it would stand behind seceding if the SDC did not rule in its favour.

The SDC and Fulton Hogan’s South Island regional manager were also contacted for comments on the ‘Texit’ idea – and whether redrawing Templeton’s boundaries would delay the decision on the development application.

Responses from all three parties were not received at the time of publication.

More reading
Silicosis concerns groundless, says extractive industry chief
New site proposal sparks additional dust concerns
Residents ‘wearing masks’ against quarry dust

CDE Global

Monday, 26 August, 2019 1:48pm
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