Future face of water services to be discussed tomorrow

Press Release – Water New Zealand

The future shape of New Zealand’s water services and infrastructure will be discussed in a forum at the Water New Zealand conference tomorrow. Media release

10 November 2011

Future face of water services to be discussed tomorrow

The future shape of New Zealand’s water services and infrastructure will be discussed in a forum at the Water New Zealand conference tomorrow.

“Water is a key strategic asset for this country,” says Water New Zealand chief executive officer, Murray Gibb.

“And the 2011 Infrastructure Plan clearly shows that of the five major infrastructure sectors, water is in the most need of attention.

“As experts in the industry, we need to be leading this discussion.

“A forum debate with members will help Water New Zealand develop a position to feed into public policy discussions that are scheduled to take place next year.”

He said “we can do better in the way we manage this resource and the infrastructure through which it is delivered in both urban and rural settings.”

The need to advance water reform is starting to be recognised at a central policy level with reform of both water and review of local governance underway.

“The review, Smarter government, stronger communities, towards better local governance and public service, aims to look at the funding, structure and function of local government, its relationship with central government, and the potential for applying the Auckland unitary council model in other metropolitan areas.”

The review is up for public consultation next year with legislation scheduled to be developed in 2013 with implementation planned for 2014.

“Auckland governance reforms have demonstrated that reform of water services arrangements can deliver better value to users.

“It’s important to keeping looking ahead and developing views on how we see the future of New Zealand’s water infrastructure.”

ENDS

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