Eketahuna Water Take For Discussion

Wednesday 18 March 2009, 3:52PM
By Tararua District Council


Discussions are to be held with the Eketahuna Community Board after members appealed a water take consent variation issued by Horizons Regional Council.

The board has taken its appeal to the Environment Court.

Concerns involve the consent period, a lack of consultation with the council, and a lack of recognition of the “special character” of both the Eketahuna community and the Makakahi River.

Water take levels from the Makakahi River have been a significant issue for all parties

with the district council frequently being non compliant as it has struggled to meet the regional council’s low flow consent requirements despite summer hosing bans.
Horizons Regional Council had started prosecution proceedings but later agreed to withdraw and allow Tararua District to seek a variation to the consent.

The application was successful and described by manager district assets Stephen Taylor as “a good outcome.”
It included some adjustment of water flows along with conditions requiring more detailed information on needs and effects on the Makakahi River prior to a review in July 2011.
The new variation was to start immediately but will now be delayed pending the appeal to the Environment Court.
The process so far had cost the council about $50,000 and this would rise significantly if the appeal went ahead, Mr Taylor said.

Chief executive Blair King and Mr Taylor will meet with the Eketahuna Community Board to progress the matter.