No Minister

The 3 waters reforms are anti democratic

with 4 comments

If you have infrequently and not really avidly followed the 3 waters debate, you are like me and no doubt most NZ voters. Cranmer provides an invaluable service by analysing the detail.

It is much, much worse than I thought. In my innocence I believed that the 3 waters reform would enforce consultation, but that is not the same as control. The reforms are providing for control by unelected iwi of council assets paid for by ratepayers over decades.

Section 140 of the Bill simply states that “mana whenua whose rohe or takiwā includes a freshwater body in the service area of a water services entity may provide the entity with a Te Mana o te Wai statement for water services”.

Once received, the board of the relevant water services entity has an obligation to engage with mana whenua and prepare a plan that sets out how it intends to give effect to that Te Mana o te Wai statement. And that is where it ends. The Bill is silent on what can (and cannot) be included in the statements and provides no guidance as to the outcomes that the statements are intended to achieve.

In short, there are no limits to the scope of Te Mana o te Wai statements. The relevant water entity board must simply give effect to those statements “to the extent that it applies to the entity’s duties, functions, and powers”.

Their importance in the governance structure of Three Waters cannot be overstated.

That is layered on top of the understanding that iwi get 50% control directly then whatever additional they can obtain via council and government.


Written by Whiskey&Pie

September 26, 2022 at 9:46 am

Posted in New Zealand

4 Responses

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  1. I don’t think that Labour or especially their Maori contingent, give a shit about it being “anti-democratic” so that attack is wasted ammunition. They know it is and -in keeping with the Maori Party – they don’t care because it’s colonialism and this is all about de-colonisation.

    Tom Hunter

    September 26, 2022 at 10:00 am

  2. The 2023 election will be a de facto referendum on 3 Waters extortion and “co-governance” nonsense in general. I’m confident that the voting public will see through and firmly reject this scam by indigenous “elites” and their political activist minions.


    September 26, 2022 at 11:02 am

    • I’m confident….
      I’m not confident based on that solid 22+/- 2% solid chunk that votes Labour no matter what, plus the equally stuck-on Greens around 8%, plus the Maori Party.

      And that’s before I look around at the last two years plus the people still wearing face nappies.

      Hopeful, but not at all confident.

      Tom Hunter

      September 26, 2022 at 11:07 am

    • Fredonas there is maybe some hope.

      Last week I canvassed eight out of 14 candidates by email or on facebook for Hastings City Council, both sitting and new – the other 6 I already knew enough to either rule them out (eg Anna Lorcks partner) or in as the case may have been.

      Two sitting councillors have still not replied and of the other 6 five were against 3Waters and three also said they opposed co governance which I did not specifically ask about.


      September 26, 2022 at 4:31 pm

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