ROOIELS RATEPAYERS’ ASSOCIATION
REPORT-BACK ON THE MEETINGS OF THE WARD COMMITTEE FROM 1 JANUARY 2022 TO DATE
AS HELD AT THE PRINGLE BAY COMMUNITY HALL ON 30 JULY 2022.
1.1 RERA was elected to the Ward Committee(Wards 9 and 10), together with a number of other community organisations, during an election held in 2021.
Anuta Scholtz is the representative for RERA on the committee.
1.2 This report-back meeting by RERA to the RE ward is in accordance with a Municipal Council requirement (besides being a pleasure to do so). Invitations have been sent to the email addresses of property owners that are available to RERA (irrespective of whether they are members of RERA or not).
Owners, that have not received the email invitation, are invited to supply their email addresses to firstname.lastname@example.org to facilitate communication.
2.1 About 28 persons attended the meeting in person or through Zoom, which was specially made available.
3. STRUCTURE OF THE MEETING
3.1 The meeting was for report-back and clarification purposes on the following number of important matters in which RERA is involved at present.
4. ROOIELS CONSERVATION OVERLAY ZONE (RECOZ)
4.1 The RECOZ, as approved by about 100 attendees at the Cascades Meeting in November 2019, and subsequently updated with the other OM overlay zones, has been published for comments on the RE website since August 2020.
4.2 The RECOZ was handed in to the OM early this year, for processing and eventual formal public participation. We are following up on the feed-back. We may have to ask the Ward Committee to help us to get the process with the OM going.
4.3 The highlights of the RECOZ, to conserve the rural character of RE, was presented with slides and Rooielsers are once more invited to make any comments.
5. EXPANSION OF THE ROOIELS NATURE RESERVE
5.1 The aim is to protect the green coastal belt around RE, the RE estuary and the RE riverine area in the RE kloof as a Protected Area in terms of the National Environmental Management Act: Protected Areas (NEMPA).
This will be in addition to the existing Rooiels Nature Reserve, which is already registered as a Protected Area in terms of NEMPA.
5.2 The current municipal zoning of the coastal belt as Open Space 1: Nature Reserve, with its numerous development consent zonings, is not considered sufficient to protect the area against unwanted development by the OM.
5.3 The broader perspective and relevance for the expansion of the RENR within the existing regulatory frameworks was explained.
5.4 The formal application process has been commenced with a unanimous approval by the 18 eighteen CapeNature and Western Cape Government attendees of the CapeNature Review Committee earlier this year, that the coastal belt of RE should be protected.
5.5 A proposed management agreement between the RE Conservancy, CapeNature and the OM has been submitted to the OM and CapeNature. Both organisations are being followed up.
5.6 The initial proposal document and the proposed management agreement are available for comment on the RE website. It is to be noted that the slipway will be excluded in the form of narrow co-ordinates that would prevent the commercial development of the slipway.
6. The proposal extends to the high water mark (which is outdated and will have to be re-determined), but it does not include a marine reserve. It includes the Koppie and Erf 1 in the RE riverine area.
6. HANGKLIP VILLAGES CONSERVATION OVERLAY ZONE (HCOZ)
6.1 The preservation of the rural character of RE by, amongst others, low ambient night-time lighting, is also encouraged in the RECOZ.
6.2 The Pringle Bay Ratepayers’ Association has handed in a proposal to the OM for a formal arrangement through an overlay zone. The proposal is supported by RERA and the Betty’s Bay Ratepayers’ Association. The process with the OM is being followed up.
6.3 The proposal is in three parts:
6.3.1 Co-operative, by obtaining the buy-in by Rooielsers to the RE Vison and RECOZ of a rural village with a dark sky to be enjoyed by all. To this purpose the concept is explained with reference to other parts of the world where the concept of different acceptable tolerable levels of lighting is being encouraged.
6.3.2 Prospective, by ensuring that the approval of building plans incorporate external lights to be pointed downwards to prevent spillage over boundaries and for sensor-operated security lights to be employed.
6.3.3 The intention is not to fine persons, but unfortunately provision had to be made for the odd-person-out who is insensitive concerning his lighting nuisance being imposed on neighbours.
6.4 The proposal is on the RE Website for any comments. An exception may have to be formulated for when a security situation arises.
7. INTEGRATED DEVELOPMENT PLAN (IDP)
7.1 An IDP has been approved by the OM. The current IDP which should end in 2022 has been extended to 2023. The new IDP will cover the period 2023 to 2028. A public revision process will commence in August 2022.
7.2 Objections are in respect of the proposals in the IDP for low-cost housing in BB (Mooiuitsig) and RE (1,2 ha on Erf 324). RERA has already obtained the formal cancellation of the proposed subdivision of Erf 324 in the office of the Surveyor-General, with the noting of a caveat against the title deed in the Deeds Office.
7.3 RERA will encourage the OM to incorporate more specific budgets in the new IDP to address maintenance issues in Rooiels and Pringle Bay for amongst others, maintenance of roads and stormwater channels or appropriate grass swales (depressions) instead of conventional channels. On investment for the future Rooiels will be putting forward the formal protection of the nature zones in Rooiels see (5 above) and have called for further input from all ratepayers.
7.4 The submissions for the revision of the IDP, which commences in August 2022, are currently being prepared by RERA.
Rooielsers are invited to submit their comments and suggestions to RERA.
8. PROPOSED SIGNAGE
8.1 The OM is proposing certain standardised signage for the Hangklip Villages to encourage tourism.
8.2 Some of the views expressed from the floor are:
8.2.1 The low-keyness of RE and the natural ambiance is why we bought here and to retain its unique attraction as a village living closely with nature, it is not suitable for intensive development.
8.2.2 We do not want numerous bill boards to undermine the aesthetic appeal of the village.
8.3.3 Street names are important.
8.3. RE might not want “Welcome” and “Thank You“ signs. Need environmentally aware signs. Have information signs in a dedicated area, e.g. the business area .
9. GENERAL COMMENTS
The following comments from RERA are noted:
9.1 The process whereby the Conservancy will be able to comment on new building plans (as was the case for RE years ago) is being followed up.
9.2 The OM will be following up on people that are not registering their tourist accommodation businesses for the payment of higher rates.
9.3 The OM will only encourage development within the boundaries of RE, and not extend its boundaries.
9.4 Pro-actively contacting newcomers is an issue. RERA is trying to reach them through the estate agents and the existing information brochure and other steps. It would be useful if the OM could distribute relevant information about the area and the Overlay Protection zone or other special norms and regulations to all new purchasers. Rooiels is able to provide a brief for OM to use.
These are the Feedback from the Ward Committee Meetings and other related matters. They are lodged in Date order going backwards.