Environment and Local Body Ministers Nick Smith and Rodney Hide have named the six commissioners tasked with overseeing Environment Canterbury and fixing the region’s pressing water issues.
Deputy to chair Dame Margaret Bazley is David Caygill, who has experience in local and central government, the legal profession and chairs several organisations including the Electricity Commission.
Biographies of the remaining commissioners, David Bedford, Donald Couch, Tom Lambie Professor Peter Skelton and Rex Williams are at the link above.
I am delighted that Tom Lambie is one of the commissioners. He is Lincoln University chancellor and an organic farmer who gained a lot of respect when he chaired Federated Farmers. He has personal experience of the importance of careful water management through his involvement with the Opuha Dam.
Replacing elected councillors isn’t ideal. But these appointees have a much better mix of skills and experience to deal with the crisis facing ECan and the region’s water than an election could have delivered.