Water consent deadline looms
The Waikato Regional Council is urging a small group of farmers yet to apply for dairy shed water consents to get in before the December 24 deadline.
Under the council’s variation 6 rules, dairy farmers can still take up to 15 cubic metres a day from bores or waterways for dairy shed water, subject to water availability, but need a consent if they want more.
While still needing to apply for a consent, farmers are guaranteed ‘‘ grandparented’’ access to the level above 15 cu m/ day they were using at October 2008, provided they meet the deadline for applications.
Those who don’t meet the Christmas Eve deadline cannot be guaranteed coverage by the special ‘‘ grandparenting’’ rules.
About 90 per cent of an estimated 2600 farmers needing a ‘‘ grandparented’’ consented take have applied already.
This follows an educational effort by the council with support from DairyNZ, dairy companies and Federated Farmers, as well as a special group consent processing scheme operated by the council which has encouraged early applications en masse to help keep processing costs down.
‘‘ We’re nearly there in terms of getting in the expected number of applications,’’ farm water project manager Amy King said. ‘‘We strongly urge any remaining farmers wanting a grandparented consent at 2008 levels to ensure they meet the deadline.’’