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News / Western Bay Mayor joins Three Waters reform working group

Western Bay Mayor joins Three Waters reform working group

Western Bay Mayor joins Three Waters reform working group

Posted November 11, 2021
Council Matters , Environmental , Government

Western Bay of Plenty Mayor Garry Webber has been appointed to the national working group tasked with resolving sticking points in Government’s Three Waters reform.

Mayor Garry joins 19 other local government and iwi representatives making up the working group established by Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta.

The working group’s role is to recommend strengthened governance and accountability arrangements for the Three Waters Reform Programme.

The working group formation follows Minister Mahuta announcing in October that Government will make its Three Waters reform mandatory for all councils, rejecting the option to make it voluntary. The reform will see the management of drinking water, wastewater and stormwater transferred from 67 councils to four public-owned entities from 1 July 2024.

Mayor Garry says he is pleased to be selected on the working group featuring a cross section of big to small metropolitan, rural and provincial councils.

“I look forward to working with the other local government and iwi representatives to provide critical and carefully considered recommendations to inform the final entity design.

“At the end of the day our goal is to find solutions that are in the best interests of councils right across Aotearoa, New Zealand.”

Mayor Garry says it is important local councils such as Western Bay can shape the appropriate change having voiced serious concerns with Government’s draft reform proposal.

“As a Council we tried to be constructive in our feedback and so I think Government has taken note of this.”

The Working Group will report back to Government in March 2022, which ensures there is time for the advice and recommendations to inform the final entity design.