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A new method for charging non-recreational jetty users was presented at yesterday’s Southland District Council meeting, after three years of back and forth dialogue between and Rakiura/Stewart Island jetty stakeholders.
Councillor Karyn Owen questioned whether the Rakiura-Stewart Island Community Board had considered the option of charging a base rate, plus a landing fee, which could be monitored by an electronic sensor-based tag-on, tag-off system.
It would cut administration time and reduce costs for operators, and provide a way to cover the cost of wear and tear on the jetty.
Cr Bruce Ford said the board had not considered that option, but was likely to be open to it.
Non-recreational users of the jetties hold a licence from the council to use them for commercial purposes, including embarkation and disembarkation of passengers and for the loading and unloading of goods.
The annual licence fee is $1350.
In 2017, the Stewart Island/Rakiura jetties subcommittee suggested a new charging regime for non-recreational jetty use, based on patronage, might be more appropriate.
The preferred option was a base fee with an additional charge based on the number of passengers using the jetty.
However it was agreed all involved, including operators who had tried and tested different charging models, would sit around a table to discuss a new charging system before it was finally applied, from July 1, 2023.