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Consultation - Blue Bay Water Supply

Blue Bay1

Unfortunately the water upgrade for the Blue Bay sections will not be completed by Christmas 2018 as initially planned. Council have considered possible solutions to solve the Blue Bay water challenges and now wish to formally engage with affected property owners.

OPTION 1 - Water Supply Plant Upgrade

 Water Supply Plant Upgrade graphic

Points to consider:

  • Economy of scale not favourable
    Currently capital cost of approximately $678,000 shared across 44 properties.
  • Risk of Odour & colour issues
    The bore at Blue Bay is shallow, therefore there will be an ongoing risk of odour and colour issues.
  • Risk of water restrictions
    Due to bore limitations of 1.5 litres per second, strict restrictions will result in daily water limits and smart metering on each property. If daily limits are exceeded penalties will be incurred.
  • Risk of bore running dry
    In extended dry periods there will be a risk of the bore running dry due to it being shallow. This may mean trucking in water, which will incur costs.
  • Risk of cynotoxins/algae
    Due to the shallowness of the bore and aquifier there will be a risk of cynotoxins/algae.
  • Level of  water treatment
    Due to the shallowness of the bore and the aquifer a high level of ongoing water treatment will be required, i.e. chlorination, filtration, flocculation, UV disinfection etc which will incur a cost.  Costs unknown at this time.

OPTION 2 - Rain Water Tanks

Rain Water Tanks

Points to consider:

  • Rain water tank installation
    Property owners install rain water tanks, incurring initial installation costs. Council would encourage UV disinfection, 1 micron filter and leaf traps on downpipes as per Council’s rural rain water tank recommendations.
  • On-going operational costs
    On-going operational costs are low and will have to be borne by the owner.
  • Minimised health risks
  • Management of storm water
    Rain water tanks will help to manage storm water runoff from roofs.
  • Trucking in water
    Possible costs to truck water in if the rain water tank runs dry.
  • No rates for water
    Wairoa District Council’s obligation to supply water will be removed off property title. This means that property owners won’t have to pay ongoing rates for water.
  • Consenting Requirements
    It should be noted that under the Operative Wairoa District Plan any structure, over 1.5m in height including water tanks are classed as a building and therefore the water tanks need to meet the minimum set back requirements. In the Residential (Mahia) Zone which includes the Blue Bay Subdivision these are 3m from the front and rear boundary and 1.5m from the sides.  If the tank is to be inside the set-backs then a consent will be required. If the affected boundary is of a privately owned piece of land and the applicant can obtain the affected parties approval then they can apply for a deemed permitted boundary activity.  If the affected boundary is to a council owned piece of land or the applicant cannot obtain affected parties approval then it will need go through to full RMA process. These costs would have to be borne by the applicant.
  • Drinkable water

Please note: If Blue Bay property owners are considering Option Two as the best solution, Wairoa District Council will pay the fee for each property for the consents to be changed, thereby removing Council’s obligation to supply water.
However, Option Two is only possible if EVERY Blue Bay property owner decides that Option Two is the best option.

 A Partnering Approach

Partnering Approach Blue bay water consultation with clipping mask Wairoa District Council incurred costs of approximately $57,000 in pursuing the option to utilise the old bore. However, Council acknowledge that the expectation from property owners was there would be a water supply available before Christmas 2018.

Wairoa District Council has filled the four existing water tanks from the existing Blue Bay bore and has energised the water system to give the subdivision (i.e. 44 sections) three active fire hydrants.

Fulton Hogan have completely isolated the 44 properties so the water tobies on the properties are now inactive i.e. no water.

As Blue Bay residents were expecting water for this Christmas holiday period, Wairoa District Council are concerned that Blue Bay residents may try to access water from other more risky sources. Wairoa District Council would like to put three taps on the road side, connected to the existing water supply, and allow the residents over the holiday period to use this for general use such as, filling up caravan grey water systems etc (note: this water is non-potable, non-drinkable).

If Option Two is considered the best option by the property owners, then Wairoa District Council will continue to operate and maintain the three road side taps and fire hydrants.

Above each of the road side taps there will be signage to indicate that the water supplied is non-potable water not intended for drinking.

To help further reduce the risk, Wairoa District Council will filter the water with 5 and 20 micron filters, and regularly dose the water with minimal chlorine. (Note: This water is classed as non-potable water due to the Water Treatment Plant  not meeting the Drinking Water Standards NZ).

The three taps by each fire hydrant will be on the road side and due to capital cost constraints can only be located by each fire hydrant.

Wairoa District Council has advised the Ministry of Health about the road side tap solution. They understand the reasoning and are happy with the solution.

Submitting your feedback

Wairoa District Council are committed to working with Blue Bay property owners to find a solution and look forward to your feedback.

Consultations have closed on 30th November 2018.

Alternatively you can email your feedback to

Note: A Meeting with Blue Bay Property Owners could also be considered however this will prove difficult as most property owners are out of the Wairoa District.

More Information

For more information contact Stephen Heath - or 06 838 7309

4 December 2018

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