Hurunui locals rally in full support opposing the Three Waters Reform
Well it’s no secret that the Three Waters Reform will not be welcomed in the Hurunui District.
On Sunday afternoon, November 14, around 60 vehicles and 150 people turned up at the Glenmark Rugby Grounds in Omihi, to show their support for Hurunui District Council opposing this recent Reform mandated by government.
A sign ‘Local Democracy Sold Down The Drain’ marked the theme for the afternoon as an array of wheels and locals gathered, keeping to their vehicles to abide by social distancing Alert Level Two restrictions.
After an opening address speech from both Mayor Marie Black and Council’s CEO Hamish Dobbie, the floor was handed over to the members of the District so they could have their say.
“The importance of water supply for our stock and for us is very important. Layers of bureaucracy won’t care a thing about farmers in the Hurunui,” said Sally McKenzie.
“Sometimes we feel like we’re dreaming it. But it’s not a dream, it’s actually happening,” said Peter Bray.
The move to recently mandate this Reform meant the promise for Councils to undertake formal consultation with their communities was subsequently dishonoured, and Dobbie said this event was about mobilising everyone in the Hurunui District to be able to make some noise and have their say anyway.
“As a local Council we’ve done all we can do for now, the government went ahead and mandated the Reform despite the promise of allowing us the option to opt in or out. So today was all about our people having their say, with enough noise and impact that will hopefully make the government think twice about what it’s doing.”
Mayor Black said it was a proud moment for her as a Mayor to see District-wide unity over the biggest piece of legislation the Council has ever faced.
“Our three waters and who controls them affects all of us, whether it’s water coming out of the tap to drink, or making sure there is a reliable water source for your stock. We’ve all absolutely had enough, and it’s time for the government to hear it.”
Hurunui District Council is currently undertaking a formal consultation process, where submissions can be lodged to support or disagree with the Council’s decision to oppose the Reform. Consultation closes on December 5, 2021.