The Council adheres to legislation, statutory plans and processes - those adopted by:
- Government (e.g. National Legislation and Policies)
- Regional Councils (e.g. Regional Policies and Plans)
- Council (e.g. Strategies and Plans)
Key Legislation and Policies relevant to the 5Waters are detailed below.
Local Government Act
The Local Government Act defines the purpose of local authorities as enabling local decision-making by and on behalf of the community, and allows local authorities the power of general competence. This Act specifically requires Councils to continue to provide water and wastewater services if they do so already.
As part of the Local Government Act, we are required to produce a:
- Water and Sanitary Services Assessment
- Long Term Plan
- Activity Management Plan
- 30 Year Infrastructure Plan
Health (Drinking Water) Amendment Act 2007
The Health Act places an obligation on Council to improve, promote and protect public health within the district. The provision of water services conserves public health and helps to protect land and waterways from contamination. This Act specifically requires Councils to prepare and implement a Water Safety Plan for all water supplies. These are reviewed and resubmitted for approval by a drinking water assessor every five years.
The Water Safety Plans were completed in 2015 for all supplies and are due for renewal in 2020.
National Infrastructure Plan 2015
The National Infrastructure Plan 2015 is the third National Infrastructure Plan to be released by the Government.
The plan confirms the Government’s long term vision for infrastructure and is designed to reduce uncertainty for businesses by outlining the Government's intentions for infrastructure development over a 20 year timeframe. It provides a framework for infrastructure development rather than a detailed list of projects and it includes a series of actions.
The plan provides a Vision for New Zealand’s Infrastructure that:
“By 2045 New Zealand’s infrastructure is resilient and coordinated and contributes to a strong economy and high living standards.”
Land and Water Plan
The Land and Water Plan is a new planning framework for Canterbury, providing clear direction on how land and water are to be managed and helping deliver community aspirations for water quality in both urban and rural areas. The plan identifies the resource management objectives for managing land and water resources in Canterbury to achieve the purpose of the Resource Management Act 1991. It identifies the policies and rules needed to achieve the objectives, and provides direction in terms of the processing of resource consent applications.
The Land and Water Plan addresses six key issues:
- Competing demands for water in Canterbury;
- The need for integrated and consistent management of water and land uses;
- Issues arising from interconnected water and land resources;
- Soil conservation, gravel resources and biodiversity;
- Natural hazards; and
- Managing new and existing activities.
Find out more about this plan and how it affects you at Environment Canterbury.
Canterbury Water Management Strategy
The Canterbury Water Management Strategy is based on a shared vision for managing freshwater, and sets environmental, social, cultural, and economic targets for the coming 5, 10 and 15 years. The strategy marks a huge change in how we deal with water issues. It provides a shared vision - developed over many years via extensive public consultation - to protect our fresh water for generations to come.
The strategy has been implemented since 2010 following several years of collaborative work by the Mayoral Forum, the Steering Group, Environment Canterbury and the regionals 10 territorial authority.
Find out more about this plan and how if affects you at Environment Canterbury.
In 2009 we adopted our 5Waters Strategy. The strategy is supported by a set of sustainability principles and Selwyn specific interpretations of the four wellbeing’s (environmental, social, economic, cultural). The 5Waters Strategy identifies the depth and span of goals and actions in ‘we will do….’ format. It describes the desired position of this council activity in 60 years. The 5Waters Strategy is one of a number of strategies in place, including ‘Selwyn 2031’,
Council holds all policies in its Policy Manual.
5Waters policies detail:
- How council and its customers may undertake activities on its assets; and
- What is permitted or accepted practice across a range of council activities.
In the case of the 5Waters, policies also give residents and ratepayers an insight into the reasons why certain decisions are made. Policies are reviewed annually by Council and every 3 - 5 years by council staff.