I am married to Sharon with four young children. Drumpeel is the home base for an irrigated cash cropping, beef and lamb finishing farm.
Currently I Chair Landwise HB and the Primary Sector Reference Group. A board member of Irrigation New Zealand and the Foundation for Arable Research. Locally I chaired the Tuki Tuki Stakeholder group which provided advice to the council on the future management of the Tuki Tuki River. All of which require consensus building.
I have gained knowledge and skills from these roles especially around the critical issues of water which will be essential working as a regional councillor to create policy that is balanced in its approach to economic development, the environment and is cost effective. Hawkes Bay’s continued growth is critical to support thriving communities and I will work toward achieving this as your Regional Council representative
Top 5 Issues
- Water availability and management is going to be the number one natural resource issue that Hawkes Bay and specifically Central Hawkes Bay needs to get right to meet the future challenges that climate, environment and social pressures present
- Ubran and Rural intensification will have an effect on water quality. If this is to occur then appropriate mitigation needs to occur to prevent water quality issues.
- Regional growth and development using comparative advantages is critical for the provence and communities to prosper
- Value for and accountability of money spent by Regional Council is essential to give ratepayers confidence that the council is adding value to the region.
Authorised by Hugh Ritchie of Drumpeel Road Otane
Questions answered by Hugh Ritchie
Hugh Ritchie's Reply
Thanks for your enquiry....
The proposed quarry like all commercial activities using natural resources and will need to go through due process and issues around water table and other water quality aspects will be addressed and controls put in place. What those are will be determined by the hearing and staff input. Safety issues again like all commercial activities will be managed by current regulation and labour department input and most likely raised in hearing process as well. I would question the description of good farm land as most land in that area was pretty poor farm land especially in the summer but has turned out to be very good grape land, however willing buyer willing seller is the reality and as long as the activity meets land zoning then it is not a council issue. The main issue as I see it would be extraction point and again council management of the river systems mean they continually move the extraction points to keep an even level and so moving all the equipment would be impractical and also river level would cause access loss during rainfall events again not the optimum situation. I have an open mind to the proposal and my roll would be to enforce the current regional plan and be involved in the hearing process and then make calls on any controls needed to address legitimate issues raised.
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