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Po­lit­i­cal and le­gal pres­sure may have led the Waipa District Coun­cil to re­visit its de­ci­sion not to go into an agree­ment to form a shared wa­ters man­age­ment com­pany with neigh­bours Hamilton City Coun­cil. By the time this edi­to­rial is pub­lished, Waipa coun­cil would have met to go over its op­tions about the pro­posal. In De­cem­ber, in a close vote, Waipa coun­cil de­cided ‘‘no’’ to the pro­posal which would have seen it go into a part­ner­ship with Hamilton, but still re­tain own­er­ship of its own as­sets. Since then, the threat of a ju­di­cial re­view has come into play, ques­tion­ing the process in which Waipa made its de­ci­sion and the out­come of the ‘‘no’’ vote. Also, at a re­cent pre­sen­ta­tion, new Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Min­is­ter Nanaia Mahuta hinted the Gov­ern­ment may be look­ing at wa­ter re­form and it wanted coun­cils to form big­ger en­ti­ties to man­age wa­ter ser­vices. Waipa coun­cil may have to de­cide whether it forms such an en­tity on its own terms with Hamilton, or be forced to do so by the Gov­ern­ment in the near fu­ture.

Lawrence Gullery

Whakapa¯ - Con­tacts

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