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Published: 2001-11-15 00:00:00

Environment Waikato has opened an office in Whitianga to provide a better service for Coromandel customers.

The new office -which is in Albert St in the centre of town upstairs in the Natal Trust building - will provide better overall service over the whole Coromandel area. It will also saving travel costs and time for staff who used to have to come from either Hamilton or the Paeroa office.

It will also allow Environment Waikato to coordinate navigation safety responses. The Regional Council has been responsible for navigation safety since July 1, including operational safety of recreational boats, use of life jackets and speed on the water. It will also deal with such issues as sewage discharge on the Coromandel, beach erosion, road works and resource management issues.

Two staff will work out of the new office, Sue and Stacey Bunting, and other staff may use the area whenever there is demand for their presence. Sue Bunting will be the first point of contact for customers, providing information, helping with mooring transfers, and other administration work for the five harbourmasters and Resource Use staff.

Resource Officer Stacey Bunting will be responsible for the overview of the harbourmasters, including navigation safety and compliance monitoring work which has previously been done from the Hamilton office. The new office will be on a 12 month trial, and its use will be reviewed towards the end of next year.