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Government Must Rule Out Water Royalties As Official Three Waters Campaign Launched

The New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union is calling on Nanaia Mahuta to rule out the introduction of water royalties by the four super water entities proposed by her Three Waters reforms. This comes as the Union launches a new briefing paper, submission tool, and official petition at www.ThreeWatersPetition.nz

Taxpayers’ Union spokesman Jordan Williams said, “The Three Waters asset grab is a dog of a plan. Direct local control will be replaced with a bureaucratic system in which four new entities are managed by a board appointed by a selection panel appointed by a ‘representative group’ selected by a conglomeration of iwi and councils.”

“Major decisions will require supermajorites, so in effect, iwi will have veto rights. That will hand unelected iwi groups the negotiating power to impose new costs on ratepayers such as water royalties – a payment for ratepayers’ right to use water.”

“Fresh water might be taonga, but the pipes and poo drains paid for by generations of ratepayers certainly aren’t. This co-goverance model Nanaia Mahuta proposes is a sham.”

“The Minister is pressuring all local councils to formally declare a stance on the reforms by this Friday, before they’ve had a chance to conduct consultation with their ratepayers. That’s why we are encouraging all Kiwis to sign the official petition at www.ThreeWatersPetition.nz or better yet email their local councillors to tell them opt out at www.ThreeWatersSubmission.nz.”

“Rather than just running a petition, we are empowering New Zealanders to engage directly with their local elected representatives and tell local councils to ‘opt out’ before it is too late. That why we’ve set up ThreeWatersSubmission.nz

Questions for Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta:

“Is the Minister able to rule out the introduction of water royalties under her new co-governed Three Waters regime?”

“Is she able to confirm whether there will be any limit on the water charges imposed by these new, unelected authorities?”

“If councils save money as a result of this reform, will they be required to pass these savings on to ratepayers?”

“Will councils be given the opportunity to conduct proper local consultation before the initiation of a Wellington-led legislative process?”

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