A super majority of mayoral candidates oppose Three Waters:
A survey of all 291 mayoral candidates reveals there’s little love for the government’s Three Waters reforms.
The ‘2022 Local Democracy Reporting mayoral candidate survey’ also shows that when it comes to this year’s rates rises, those standing in the cities are more unhappy about them than those in the provinces.
Of all the questions asked in the survey, including on climate change, Māori wards and rates, the one on Three Waters elicited the most clear cut response.
Asked if the reforms were the best way to achieve the investment that was sorely needed in water infrastructure in many regions, 75.3 percent said they were not.
Comments attached to answers were often in caps or accompanied by exclamation marks, including this one from Whakatāne mayoral hopeful Lesley Immink.
“No – absolutely not! I do not have confidence in either the model, delivery of improved water infrastructure services or better value for money,” she said.
The opposition was even more stark comparing North Island to South Island candidates, with just two out of the 58 Mainland candidates (3.4 percent) backing the reforms. . .
How can the government keep forcing its plan for Three Waters in the face of such opposition?
There is no doubt that there are issues with three waters but the government’s plan is not the right solution to problems which differ from council to council and which won’t be solved by increased bureaucracy and consequent costs.
Central government should set the standards, and audit to ensure they’re met but leave local councils to sort out solutions which work for them.
The government’s process has been undemocratic from the start and made worse by the committee’s refusal to consider the tens of thousands of submissions made through the Taxpayers’ Union.
The Union was one of the small percentage of submitters permitted to make a verbal submission to the the select committee: