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Dam consultation attracts more than 1400 submissions

November 28th, 2017

Submissions on funding and governance proposals for the Waimea Community Dam have closed, with more than 1400 people and organisations opting to have their say.

For the past five weeks the Tasman District Council has been consulting on proposals for the dam project. The consultation period closed on Sunday. The Council has received more than 1400 submissions.

The proposals consulted on were for a Council-Controlled Organisation to operate and govern the dam, owned 51% by Tasman District Council and 49% by Waimea Irrigators Ltd; for the Council's $26.8 million share of the project's capital costs to be funded via increased urban water charges, a District-wide fixed rate of about $29 a year and a Zone of Benefit targeted rate based on properties' capital value. The Council also proposed to underwrite a loan of up to $29m from Crown Irrigation Investments Ltd to Waimea Irrigators Ltd, which has resulted in Crown Irrigation proposing a $10 million interest-free loan to assist the Council.

Tasman Mayor Richard Kempthorne thanked everyone who took the time to think about the proposals and make a submission.

"Staff are now busy collating the submissions ready for the public hearings that will be held throughout the District in mid-December. That's an opportunity for submitters to speak to councillors directly about their views.

"The Hearing Panel, which will include the Mayor and all 13 Tasman District councillors, will consider all the submissions and make recommendations to Full Council to adopt in late February 2018."

Richard said there were still several other steps that would need to be gone through before a final go/no go decision was made on building the dam.

"That includes irrigators raising their share of capital and an acceptable tender price for construction. We should know the outcome of those early next year also."

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