Tasman District Council Media Release – Council pursues Local Bill for dam land

The Tasman District Council has today announced it will lodge a Local Bill with Parliament to secure access to Department of Conservation land needed for the Waimea Community Dam.

The bill seeks to gain an inundation easement over 9.6 hectares of Conservation land in the Mount Richmond State Forest Park. The easement would give the Council or a Council-Controlled Organisation the ability to create the reservoir needed for the dam. The Bill also secures a right to construct the dam on Crown riverbed.

The Council today publicly notified its intention to pursue the Local Bill with print and online advertisements. This is the first step in the Local Bill process.

Mayor Richard Kempthorne said while it was disappointing the Council had to pursue a Local Bill, it was necessary if the community was to avoid serious summer water shortages for the Waimea Plains in the future.

“Despite previous agreements, over the past few months DOC has advised us we can’t use the Public Works Act to gain access to the land we need for the dam reservoir after all. A Local Bill is now the best option for gaining access to this land.”

Richard said the Bill was likely to be introduced into Parliament sometime in the week commencing 14 August, after which it will be referred to a Select Committee. The Select Committee will consider public submissions.

Mayor Kempthorne said this was another step towards securing a sustainable water supply for urban and rural communities on the Waimea Plains. 

The Bill may be inspected at:
•    Tasman District Council’s office at 189 Queen Street, Richmond;
•    Richmond Library, 200 Queen Street, Richmond;
•    Online at www.tasman.govt.nz.