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Council seeks changes to the Water Services Entities Bill

Tuesday 26 July, 2022

Gisborne District Council submitted on the Water Services Entities Bill at the end of last week.

The Bill underpins Three Waters Reform and sets out ownership of the four new entities that will replace 67 councils nationwide for the delivery of water, wastewater and stormwater – the three water services.

Te Tairāwhiti is in Entity C with 20 other councils on the east of the North Island and top of the South Island.

Chief executive Nedine Thatcher Swann says Council’s submission acknowledges that safe, reliable, and affordable water services are critical to support good health and sustainable environmental outcomes for our people.

“Partnering with mana whenua to deliver these outcomes is very much supported, however, the concern remains around the loss of local voice and how Te Tairāwhiti will be represented at a Governance level.

“Our submission focuses on specific amendments to the Bill to provide better outcomes for Te Tairāwhiti.”

The submission lists suggested amendments to strengthen the reform outcomes for the district, notably around;

* governance and accountability to local communities

* affordability and costs of arrangements for communities

* functional integration with the other responsibilities that Council has for planning and environmental management

* protecting existing local co-governance arrangements

* transition arrangements to ensure Council can continue to provide services throughout and after the shift to the new entity.

Council has elected to speak in person to present the submission to the Select Committee.

The full submission is available to read on our website.