Group's ads 'dragging property prices down'

By Fritha Tagg

Hauraki District's mayor is extremely disappointed at the negative advertising campaign being run by Waihi East Ratepayers group in the local newspapers.

WERGI has run full-page advertisements in both Waihi Leader and Hauraki Herald which have asked questions of Newmont Waihi Gold, stated the company is not a good corporate citizen and used photos of slumped houses, one of which originated in the United States.

"We [council] have done our best to get the Community Forum up and running and we continue to try to maintain property values in Waihi East," said John Tregidga.

"These ads give the impression that it is not safe to live or buy property in Waihi.

"That is just not true. They are dragging property prices down."

Mr Tregidga said the advertising campaign by WERGI has undone a lot of the good work undertaken by the community and by council.

"They might have the right intentions but the result of these ads has had a detrimental effect."

He said council had identified properties at risk from past mining activities and had taken steps to ensure they were either moved or made safe.

"With this latest resource consent application, the process will look to see if there is any risk of subsidence from the proposed underground mine operation.

"I understand some people, some properties, are genuinely concerned by blast, vibration, dust and noise and are worried about the ongoing activities but this negative advertising campaign is not doing them any good either."

Mr Tregidga believes the advertisements paint a completely false picture about Waihi.

Waihi needs to promote itself as a great place to live, as a great place to buy a house, as a great place to work, go to school and be part of the community.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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