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Ngā whakahou waitoru

Three waters reform

Government's three waters service delivery arrangements for drinking water, wastewater and stormwater

Water Services Entities Bill

The government is proposing big changes to the way your drinking water, wastewater and storm water services are delivered.

The changes mean that in future, Council will no longer be responsible for these three water services. Instead, they would be owned and delivered by one of 4 new multi-region entities across New Zealand.

Government has introduced the Water Services Entities Bill

This bill is the first step in a significant change to the way water services are delivered in New Zealand, but it alone will not achieve this. A second bill will follow, providing for the transfer of assets, liabilities, powers, and functions to the new entities. Once this second bill is in place, the entities will be able to deliver water services, commencing on 1 July 2024.

Water services entities bill - first reading

Progress of the bill

The bill sets out how the water services entities would operate and how they will be accountable.

Our submission to the bill

Three waters reform programme
Why 4 entities?

Currently water services are provided by 67 councils across New Zealand. Many of these service 100,000 or fewer connected ratepayers. This has meant that ratepayers across the country pay greater costs to receive these services, and many communities receive inconsistent services based on their location and population.

Decisions on entity boundaries has also been  informed by an understanding of communities of interest , iwi  rohe boundaries and a consideration of water catchments.

Entity C

Gisborne District Council has been placed in Entity C and our better off funding allocation is $28.8m.
Here's a map and overview of the water services entities

Three waters reforms timeline

All water services entities operational 1 July 2024 - see timeline

Links to the Government's information

Three waters website

Department of Internal Affairs website Three Waters Reform Programme

A new system for three waters service delivery

Submissions, media releases and timeline of decisions

22 July 2022 - Our submission to the Water Services Entity Bill

26 July 2022 - Council seeks changes to the Water Services Entities Bill

7 December 2021 - Mayor continues discussions opposing three waters reform

27 October - Government announce the Three Waters Reform Programme is mandatory.

Mayor Rehette Stoltz says it’s disappointing the government will go ahead with Three Waters Reform despite our Council opting out in principle. We'll be working closely with Government on the Three Waters Reform Programme to ensure the water security needs of our community are met.

A summary of local government feedback on the three waters reform proposals

1 October - Council opts-out in principle to three waters reform

September 2021 - Meeting with ministers over reform proposal

Our Submission to Government - 30 September 2021

Summary of Feedback

Castalia Report - Advice on Waters Reform - September 2021

Our three waters


LGNZ have some questions and answers that help explain the three waters reform