Did you know?
Everything we flush down the toilet or that is put down our drains ends up making its way to our wastewater treatment plant. It travels down pipes, through joins and into the plant. Have you ever considered what you put into the wastewater system? Check out Wastewater Education Video and next time you're about to drop something down the loo, have another think... is that really the best place for it?
More on Wastewater
Council aims to protect and enhance the district's clean green physical environment and promote a healthy and safe community. Council owns and operates four urban reticulated wastewater collection and treatment systems with a combined length of 167.33 km. These serve the communities of:
- Arapuni - 4.17 km
- Putāruru - 36.36 km
- Tīrau - 9.02 km
- Tokoroa - 117.78 km
In addition to the reticulation systems there are associated pump stations and treatment plants.
Much of the major maintenance and capital work is contracted out on a competitive tendering basis. Council sees wastewater as a core function to maintain good public health, environmental sustainability and community safety. The Local Government Act 2002 empowers Councils to be involved in these activities.
The assets and facilities associated with this service are all owned by Council with much of the reticulation network located on Council land, including reserves. The facilities are managed by Council's Infrastructure and Maintenance department.
Everyone in the community benefits from wastewater collection and treatment services, from individual land owners to clubs, organisations and commercial and industrial ventures. It is considered desirable if a property is connected to the system or could be connected to the system.
While the service provides predominantly private benefits, the community at large benefits from the elimination of public health risks arising from open sewers and inadequate septic tank facilities. Environmentally sound treatment services reduce the adverse impact on receiving waterways. This improves the environment downstream from the treatment plants and benefits property owners in the adjacent rural areas within and beyond the district boundaries.
Of all the funding tools available, Council considers that the most efficient, effective and transparent method available is a targeted rate on a uniform basis on each serviced rating unit. Properties connected to the service pay the full charge and those that have the service available, but do not use it, pay half of that charge. Multiple charges (ie, pan charges) are levied on non-residential properties. A scale of pan charges has been established to reflect the cost of wastewater collection and treatment. These charges are used as a proxy for a user charge as direct charging is administratively both impractical and inefficient. A targeted rate on a uniform basis acts as a proxy for the private benefit and also for the public good element.