Hayes out as water champion

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Embattled Tamahere councillor Wally Hayes will not have a seat on the new joint council water governance group.

Cr Wally Hayes
Cr Wally Hayes
Hayes, who had a seat on the multi-council group before it was disbanded in May, is under fire from Waikato Mayor Allan Sanson after sources said he was accused of leaking a confidential report into the mayor’s use of the “wanker” profanity in a council meeting to the media.

Hayes denies the allegation.

Waikato District Council service delivery general manager Tim Harty delivered a report to the council on Monday, reported the Waikato Times.

In it he recommended the council contribute $87,500, to a regional $350,000 spend, on a investigation to establish a council controlled organisation to manage water.

Harty also recommended councillors Clint Baddeley and Janet Gibb serve on the new group instead of Hayes.

Sanson spoke in favour of the motion.

“In promoting councillors Baddeley and Gibb they both have a certain skill set to help me with this. It’s very much in the realms of governance and finance. I can’t emphasise that enough.”

Hayes was unhappy with the resolution which was passed.

“I am bitterly disappointed to lose this role,” Hayes said. “I have spent many hours on this.”
Sanson said the issues being dealt with by the group were extremely complex.

“It will be the politicians sitting in that room that will make the decisions, not the staff.”

Harty provided a list of 14 issues that needed investigation as the council worked towards an agreement with Hamilton City and Waipa District councils by June, 2016. The other councils have already allocated funds.

“There is a substantive amount of work to be undertaken,” Sanson said.

The issues include an agreed asset valuation methodology, agreed treatment of existing council debt, development contributions, and reserves, the debt/equity position of the proposed organisation and the proposed capital expenditure programme of each council in their long term plans.

The decision-making framework, treatment of future assets, council shareholder entry and exit provisions, tariff structures and alignment of council development contributions would also be investigated.

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