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Council Earmarks $250,000 to Water Security Initiatives in Central Hawke's Bay

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Thursday 23 May 2019

Central Hawke’s Bay District Council today earmarked $250,000 from the Rural Wards Reserve Funds to support water security initiatives in Central Hawke’s Bay as part of its Annual Plan 2019/20 deliberations.

Water security presents the most significant challenge and opportunity for a thriving Central Hawke’s Bay of the future and has been a focus of much discussion in Central Hawke’s Bay for several years.

The decision follows a thriving consultation process where the council sought views on the proposal that a $250,000 suspensory loan be provided to Water Holdings CHB Limited in the 2019/2020 Annual Plan.

The council had proposed to allocate $250,000 from the Rural Wards Reserve Fund to work specifically with Water Holdings CHB Limited and other key stakeholders to determine feasible water storage and security options for Central Hawke’s Bay.

Councillors deliberated over submissions from the public and after careful consideration, reached a consensus to earmark the $250,000 in support of investigating wider water security initiatives, using a collaborative approach at a local and regional level.

A further request was made by Elected Members to council staff to develop a framework that investigates the issues of water security to create a local package of solutions, which includes the potential role of Central Hawke’s Bay District Council, Water Holdings CHB Limited, Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, the Tukituki Taskforce and other community groups. Mayor of Central Hawke’s Bay - Alex Walker, notes the crucial importance of water security for a thriving Central Hawke’s Bay. “Water security is such a crucial issue for our district”, says Mayor Alex Walker.“Our decision today reflects our commitment to gain a broader understanding of the issue of water security and is made in light of the fact that we need to invest in options alongside our community in a collaborative way”.

Council’s intent in developing a framework that considers water security initiatives, will include a conversation with the community about what these initiatives could look like and how these are prioritised in an inclusive and contextual way.

“I want to publicly thank members of the community for their submissions. The level of thought, dedication and time put into the submissions was fantastic”, says Mayor Alex Walker. 

“I also want to recognise the shareholders of Water Holdings CHB Limited for their leadership in bringing forward this issue and we look forward to continued engagement on future options brought to the table”.

The Annual Plan 2019/20 will be formally adopted at its Council meeting on 20 June 2019.

Ends

Authorised by Chief Executive: Monique Davidson

Media contact

Monique Davidson, Chief Executive |P 06 857 8060 M 027 601 1711

Kim Parker, Communications and Engagement Manager |M 027 297 0542

23 May 2019

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