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Purchase of Water Project Shares Considered by Council

At its meeting on Thursday 22 February, the Hurunui District Council considered the purchase of shares in the Hurunui Water Project (HWP). The council resolved to purchase up to 1190 HWP shares with a face value of $476,000 as signalled in the 2017-18 Annual Plan, subject to agreement being reached with HWP on the purchase details and formal public consultation.

As this decision by the council is subject to the results of public consultation, before any further action takes place the council will hear submissions on the draft proposal to purchase the shares and will then make a final decision to accept, modify or reject the proposal.

Hurunui District Council’s CEO, Hamish Dobbie, says the resolution from the council is a welcome one providing a way forward in the council making a significant investment that has the potential to add to the economic development of the district.

“We are currently recovering from a three year drought which underlined the importance of reliable water supplies to the district’s economy. This decision signals to the public that the council supports the continued economic growth of the communities it serves.”

In addition to the economic benefits HWP can bring to the district, the rationale for progressing the purchase of HWP shares includes the option for the council to purchase water from the scheme to supplement its own water supplies during periods of high-demand.

Amuri-Hurunui Ward Councillor Dick Davison, who chaired the decision discussion, says now that a preliminary decision has been made by the council, the community can have their say on whether or not they believe the purchase should progress.

“As this is a complex issue that is important to many in our communities, it is important that members of the public are enabled to have their voices heard on this issue before we progress any further.”

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