Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Wellington council backs urgent water reform

Wellington City Council has voted to work with the region’s other region on a plan to reform local water services.

Councils across the Wellington region are this month considering a proposal on a joined-up approach to a new affordable and sustainable water delivery model.

Wellington Mayor, Tory Whanau says it is absolutely crucial that every stakeholder in the region works together on the best solution for water.

“Councils around the country are facing similar challenges. That is why we need to work towards a new model to make funding and delivery of water infrastructure more sustainable and efficient in the long run,” she said.

“We are committed to working with other regional councils to provide resilient water networks and deal with population growth.”

Hutt City Council and Upper Hutt City Council committed to the new unified approach at a Council meeting held on 6 March.

The Government’s new Local Water Done Well policy indicates that by mid-2025 councils will be required to produce water service delivery plans that meet regulatory and investment requirements.

Wellington City Council has voted to sign a joint Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will create a non-binding partnership between local councils to work on a unified water service delivery plan.

Under the MoU, one elected member from each council will sit on an Advisory Oversight Group (AOG) for the joint water service delivery plan process, alongside iwi/Māori partner representatives.

Mayor Whanau has been nominated to represent Wellington City Council.

The AOG will be chaired by an independent expert and supported by council chief executives and a joint project team. It would not be a formal joint committee or have any decision-making rights.

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