Waipa District Council wants more information before it will formally consider supporting a ratepayer-owned company to manage water infrastructure.
Today Council instructed staff to do further work into how governance and shareholding arrangements would work if the council joined with Waikato District Council and Hamilton City Council to form a council-controlled organisation (CCO).
Councillors also wanted a number of other issues further investigated, including the potential impact on the existing rates rebate scheme and implications for insurance.
An independent report released in May said the three councils would save $448 million over 28 years by forming a CCO to manage water and wastewater. There would also be savings for commercial customers, lower development charges and service fees, the report said. Councils would benefit from lower stormwater costs, equating to $49 million across all three councils.
Both Waikato District and Hamilton City have already agreed in principle to form a CCO pending the outcome of public consultation.
Waipa mayor Jim Mylchreest said the additional work requested by Waipa would take “as long as it takes”.
“This is not something we will be rushed into. It’s a major decision and we will be wanting to talk to our colleagues at the other councils before moving to the next stage – if in fact that’s what we do.”
Waipa chief executive Garry Dyet said discussions into the questions raised by councillors would begin “almost immediately”.