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OceanaGold presents proposal to extend mining life in Waihi to 2037 and beyond

Hauraki District Council
Waihi Ward Commitee


Crs S G Baker (Chairperson), D M Carmine, M P McLean, H T Shepherd, A A Tubman and His Worship the Mayor, J P Tregidga

K D Thompson (District Engineer), Ms M Day (Acting Supervisor - Resource Management Services), Mr S Clark (Parks & Reserves Manager), R Kirby (Community Services Facilities and Administration Manager) and Ms C Black (Council Secretary)


There were no apologies.


Pursuant to Section 46A(7) of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987, the Chairperson called for late items to be accepted.


THAT pursuant to Section 46A(7) of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987, the following late items be accepted for discussion.

- Price for Level Control of Swimming Pool Filter at Waihi College

The item was not on the agenda because the item was unavailable at the time of the agenda deadline.

Discussion on the items could not be delayed because the items required the consideration of the Ward Committee before the next meeting.

WWC11/61 Carmine/McLean CARRIED





THAT the minutes of the meeting of the Waihi Ward Committee held on Tuesday 13 September 2011 are confirmed and are a true and correct record.

WWC11/62 Shepherd/Tubman CARRIED


Community Policing Update: Morgan Park – Installation of Rubbish Bins

A point was noted by the Community Constable to the Ward at the last meeting that more rubbish bins are needed in parts of Morgan Park and noted that in one instance, the rubbish bin by the toilet block in Morgan Park has been damaged by youths lighting fires in it.

Cr Baker agreed that more bins should be installed in the park in particular at the netball courts. It was therefore requested that the Parks and Reserves Manager have a rubbish bin installed at the netball centre.  


COMMUNITY SERVICES MONTHLY REPORT (798039) (46 KB) Adobe Acrobat PDF document

The Community Services monthly report on activities was presented for the Committee’s consideration.


THAT the Community Services monthly report be received.

WWC11/63 McLean/Tubman CARRIED

Waihi Memorial Hall – Painting and Carpeting - Kitchen and Small Hall

The Community Services Facilities and Administration Manager showed a sample of the colours proposed for the painting of the interior of the hall and a sample of the carpet which is proposed to be replaced in the future. The painting of the Hall will start with the kitchen and will commence as soon as the hall is not in use.


Replacement crockery will be received by the end of the month due to the original crockery purchased needing to be exchanged to a smaller style as it did not fit well in the dishwasher.


Price for Level Control of Swimming Pool Filter at Waihi College (820373)

The Parks and Reserves Manager presented a letter from EPIC Systems, a company dealing with water control systems advising a price for a controlling unit that would automatically control the level of water in the filter system of the Waihi College pool.

The total price for the unit is $11,520.00 (excl. GST).


THAT correspondence be received, and

THAT $11.520.00 (excl. GST) be approved and funded from the Waihi Ward Community Facilities and Recreational Development Fund.

WWC11/64 Shepherd/McLean CARRIED

Presentation: Newmont Waihi Gold – Feedback received from Concerned Waihi Residents regarding the Martha Exploration and Correnso Projects

Representatives from the Gold Company, Mine Manager, Mr Glen Grindley and Public Relations Manager, Mr Sefton Darby were in attendance to provide an update on the applications for the Martha Exploration and Correnso projects. The representatives sought the Ward member’s feedback on the concerns they as elected members have received from concerned property owners in Waihi.

Members were invited to present comments they have received from the community.

Cr Carmine:

Residents want it considered that the Gold Company fund the Discovery Centre project.

Wish for more information about the blasting of the north wall.

Consequence of activities

Concerns that there will be large networks of ‘highways’ underground

Stopes which are not filled with solid rock – concern regarding effects of vibrations and possible liquefaction.

Acid mine drainage in the tunnels - what happens to this water and what are the effects on groundwater?

More detailed information about technical issues.

Insurance – inability to insure against subsidence due to mining underground.

What are the effects on property value?

Banks will only lend on current valuation.

Is there any compensation for loss of values?

Cr Carmine advised she was disappointed that a property report is not being put out to the public until November. She considered this needs to be addressed earlier.

Cr McLean:

Cr McLean stated he had received similar questions and concerns from residents as per Cr Carmine comments.

Community members are asking Councillors what they know about the mining plans and are concerned that there is a lack of consultation with elected members.

Cr Tubman:

What are future plans for mining in Waihi – eastern/western ends of Waihi?

Values of properties – residents believed that valuation companies will not presently value due to mining activity possibly effecting valuations.

It is perceived that Waihi is a mining town don’t buy there – which has created a drop in property prices.

Is this purely exploration?

Newmont response - 50,000 tonnes is planned to come out of mine.

Is that intended to go further out in the western end?

Newmont response - a new application would be required.

Compensation – degree of compensation.

Are you looking at compensation and how would you do this?

Is de-watering going to affect these properties? What are the subsequent effects of this process?

Monitoring – is there a possibility of independent monitoring being carried out.

Newmont response - the Regional Council has a parallel monitor located beside the mining company to check that noise, dust and vibration levels are meeting the requirements.

Council checks noise levels from Newmont’s monitoring.

Newmont’s monitoring results are sent to Sydney then they go straight to Council. These calculations are used as part of the consent.

Insurance – banks will not advance loans if you cannot get insurance.

There is a need to allay the perceptions that residents have. How?

Newmont stated they have met with insurers (Insurance Council) and (Bankers Association). Newmont have been invited to speak to these groups on these issues.

Newmont stated that they have not seen any evidence that people have been denied insurance due to the mining activity.

People are getting confused that their insurance premiums are increasing.

There is no blanket ban on property owners in Waihi. They are not aware of any issues.

Compensation – asked is there any?

Newmont stated that compensation is as a matter of goodwill. All concerns will be listened to and reviewed on a case by case basis.

Newmont stated that the mining company really only purchases properties where the land is required for further mining.

The subject land is not required to be bought by the mining company.

Vibrations are monitored via the District Plan.

Cr Shepherd:

Does the Mining Company have a contingency plan for those who want to sell?

Is there compensation?

Can the company guarantee insurance of these houses?

Is this just the beginning – how much further mining?

Where do householders stand legally?

Who pays for their legal costs if there are any concerns caused by the mining operation?

Do residents have access to legal advice?

There appears to be a newfound mistrust of the mining company. This may not be right perhaps but it is a perception.

There needs to be closer liaison with Council.

Public are getting agitated that Councillors are ill informed which is an issue when elected members cannot advise residents on what the mining company’s plans are.

There is a lot of work to be done to put this right by the company.

Cr Baker:

There is a real concern over valuation of properties.

Residents want Newmont to contribute more to infrastructure in the town e.g. kerb and channel etc.

If people want to sell and want to be recompensed, is this an option? Is there consideration of a compensation package?

Most residents do not want to move.

Elderly residents have noted their concerns, particularly in the Moresby Ave and Russell Street areas.

Issues highlighted are that concerning insurance of property.

The residents feel they are underpowered by fighting a multinational company.

There is a need for a submission process to allow residents to voice their concerns?

Newmont response – the representatives supported that the Ward members take a visit to the mine so that they can be better informed on what the mine company’s plans are.


Property values are the main issue with most residents.

They are asking - how the mining will effect my investment.

What is the quantum of the survey? And how many houses are really affected?

The Mayor advised he will be calling another public meeting so that all residents can come and discuss their concerns.

Discussion has shown that the main concerns are subsidence, vibrations and dust.

The Mayor suggested that the mine company’s presentations be shown more visually to the public using diagrams and models to better explain what they are doing.

Council wishes to continue to work with the mining company to address all concerns raised.

Need to involve real estate companies.

Even though there is a lot of perception; facts need to be advised to residents.

Communication needs to be improved to allay people’s fears.

Council has a regulatory role and representation role to address the concerns raised by residents.

Council are advocating on behalf of the community.

In conclusion, the Mayor thanked the Ward members for fronting up to the Waihi community to listen to their concerns.

In closing, Cr Baker stated that the sooner the company can make an announcement on issues raised by concerned residents and property owners the better, then, their fears can be addressed.

The meeting closed at 3.57pm.




S G Baker


15 November 2011