ACT New Zealand Rural Affairs Spokesman Gerry Eckhoff today slammed the Auckland Regional Council for allowing bureaucracy to hinder the building of farm dams and lakes, in the face of reports that water harvesting - through the building of dams, reservoirs and lakes - are against official council policy.
"The reasoning behind this is that fish living in streams apparently don't like lakes and dams -just how that is determined conjures up images of aquatic versions of the Horse Whisperer," Mr Eckhoff said.
"The benefits of water harvesting, to ensure streams and rivers continue to flow during dry periods, far outweighs the ARC's belief that fish suffer from agoraphobia (the fear of open spaces).
"The Resource Management Act is, yet again, demonstrating how it is subject to hugely imaginative interpretation.
"The Council must understand that rural New Zealand is a highly productive work place and in need of support from regional councils - which, too often, see rural New Zealand as nothing more than a recreational opportunity for urban dwellers.
"The RMA must be overhauled to eliminate these expansive interpretations and return to its purpose: to ensure the social and economic well being of communities," Mr Eckhoff said.