From mowing community lawns to free Wi-Fi and buying from a contactless local businesses, the Western Bay of Plenty is gearing up for life at level 3.

But as New Zealand moves to level 3, residents are being reminded that although there will be slightly more freedoms from next week, for many there will not be much change.

Western Bay of Plenty Civil Defence western zone controller Eric Newman said people had already responded well to level 4 and similar restrictions on local travel, remaining in close family bubbles and physical distancing when away from home on essential business needed to be maintained at level 3.

He said the next phase would allow the community to support local businesses.


Business owners unable to work from home could use this week to prepare for a return to work next week, if it was safe to do so, Newman said.

"We must continue to stay close to home and not lose the gains we have made at level 4."

He urged residents to stay home and within the Western Bay.

"We need to keep the right momentum and support each other."

Requests from all-terrain vehicle (ATVs) owners to apply for new permitss, or renewal of existing permits, to use their vehicles on the beaches for the purposes of fishing will be declined under level 3.

Newman said fishing is only allowed at the shortest route from a person's home and did not include the use of ATVs for travelling distances to other fishing spots.

What level 3 looks like in the Western Bay of Plenty region:

All park facilities will remain closed or out of bounds. This includes playgrounds, toilets, drinking fountains, equipment, park benches or picnic tables.

Community facilities such as libraries, pools, art galleries and playgrounds remain closed and most council staff will continue to work from home.


Council call centres are fully operational and council meetings, public consultation and hearings will be done virtually.

Priority will be given to delivery of essential services such as water and waste and other services are still being delivered by staff working remotely. The Government's official Covid-19 advisory website
Changes under level 3 in Western Bay eegion

Residents can go to local businesses with more non-contact online shopping as well as travel in the region for essential-only options.

People will be able to have small bubble extensions to family members living locally.

Small gatherings at cemeteries will be allowed to farewell loved ones in line with the maximum of 10 people restrictions.

Free Wi-Fi will be turned back on from next Monday and be available outside local public libraries in the Western Bay of Plenty District Council service centres.

Activities must remain local and within the shortest possible distance away from home.

Boating, yachting and team sports or training are not allowed.

While the use of reserves is allowed for exercise but you still are not allowed to touch facilities such as playgrounds and public toilets.

Mowing the grass will also start again to bring grass levels back down.


Everyone is to stay at home other than for essential personal movement, relocating a home or business, medical reasons

Shared and extended bubble arrangements, travelling to permitted gatherings, and those who have an exemption to travel because of compassionate reasons are also allowed.

People are able to go to local services and businesses which are operating in a level 3 capacity, or to low-risk recreation nearby.

Only those who have to are able to leave their home to work or school.

Emergencies and giving effect to court orders

Foreign nationals leaving New Zealand and New Zealander resident returning home.

Travelling workers such as kiwifruit and seasonal workers, need to be from the same accommodation bubble or multiple vehicles will need to be used.