Taring­amotu river scheme un­cer­tain

Ruapehu Press - - Out & About - FRANCES FER­GU­SON

The fu­ture of the Taring­amotu and Ohakune flood mit­i­ga­tion schemes will be part of the Hori­zons Long Term Plan con­sul­ta­tion next year.

Ruapehu’s Hori­zons coun­cil­lor Bruce Rollinson and group man­ager of river man­age­ment Ra­mon Strong pro­vided an up­date to Ruapehu coun­cil­lors re­cently.

Strong said the fu­ture of the Taring­amotu Scheme was look­ing un­cer­tain.

Based on feed­back from the 2016 Scheme AGM and An­nual Plan sub­mis­sions Hori­zons re­solved to not rate for the Scheme for 2017-18 and to con­sult on wind­ing it up as part of next year’s LTP.

Hori­zons has con­cerns that if the scheme is wound up over the next ten years or the gains from the in­vest­ments made so far could be lost.

‘‘It has been sug­gested go­ing for­ward, Hori­zons might pro­vide the over­all man­age­ment of the Scheme while lo­cal farm­ers and landown­ers do the ac­tual work.’’

‘‘Un­for­tu­nately this is hugely prob­lem­atic not just in main­tain­ing con­nec­tiv­ity and en­sur­ing the work gets done but in meet­ing such things as health and safety re­quire­ments.

At the re­quest of the af­fected com­mu­nity, Strong said the orig­i­nal seven year pro­posed work pro­gramme was mod­i­fied into two work stages.

Stage one saw a lot of good progress made with the re­moval of wil­lows and other veg­e­ta­tion along the river­banks that had been im­ped­ing the river’s flow dur­ing flood events.

The planned stage two would see the re­moval of the re­main­ing wil­lows along with un­sta­ble veg­e­ta­tion on the river­banks and some gravel man­age­ment.

Strong said the Ohakune Scheme was iden­ti­fied as a pri­or­ity in 2014 fol­low­ing the flood event in Oc­to­ber 2013.

The cur­rent Scheme pro­posal in­cludes a se­ries of stop banks, flood walls, veg­e­ta­tion clear­ance in­clud­ing the build­ing of a flood­way chan­nel and a wetland re­ten­tion area within the Ohakune flood plain area.

Com­mu­nity con­sul­ta­tion is due to start in July and pub­lic feed­back is an im­por­tant part of re­fin­ing the plan,’’ he said.

House­holds will re­ceive a mail­box flyer sum­maris­ing what is pro­posed with a pub­lic meet­ing and work­shops with spe­cial in­ter­est groups.

RDC

Flood­ing af­fected res­i­dents in Man­gawhero Tce, Ohakune in Oc­to­ber 2013.

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