Mayoral Update - Statement on Water Reform Announcement

Earlier in the week we stated our Councils position and detailed our concerns. The announcement today hasn’t changed this.

Today was an opportunity for the Government to address the fundamental questions and provide key information the sector has been asking for. Instead a support package was announced.

We want to know if the reform proposal will be beneficial for our residents and the Council has a number of questions prepared that we will be asking of the Government.

Only when we have this information, can we have an honest conversation with our community and truly consider the reforms.

We are concerned to hear today there is an eight week period for us to receive full information and check it before the Government consider next steps and the process for reform. This is an exceptionally fast pace and not the best environment for good decision making.

Our community own the assets and have made substantial investment into them over a number of years and it’s our job to understand and represent them. We expect the Government to honour their agreement and allow each community to have the choice to opt in or out.

Our position remains that based on the limited information presented so far, the view of the Councillors and myself would be that we do not join the Governments reform programme at this point. We are not convinced there are benefits for the Waimakariri community but we need to consult with our community before reaching a final decision.

See our earlier statement:

https://www.waimakariri.govt.nz/your-council/news-and-information/2021/07/mayoral-update-better-water-for-everyone-what-about-waimakariri