Could you pay less for your water and wastewater? Find out how.

Published on 27 January 2023


A proposal that could see water and wastewater rates reduced for many Far North households has received little feedback prompting a plea for residents to have their say before consultation on the issue ends in February.

In November last year, over 15,000 ratepayers were asked to provide feedback on a proposal to set a universal price for water and wastewater services. So far, less than 200 submissions have been received in the three-month consultation, which is due to close on Thursday 16 February.

Councillor for the district wide Ngā Tai o Tokerau Māori Ward, Tāmati Rākena, says the aim of the proposal is to better manage affordability for households connected to council water and wastewater services while also achieving compliance for council water and wastewater schemes. The proposed change would see everyone pay a universal rate for these services, whichever scheme they use. Property owners will only be charged the universal rate for the services they are connected to.

“We’d like to hear from as many people as possible so we can make the best decision we can for the community. Our ‘Have your say’ webpage has loads of information to help you make an informed decision on essentially one question – do you support the proposal to change the way we rate reticulated water and wastewater. That’s it and you’re done.”

With the cost of providing water and wastewater infrastructure increasing, there is a danger these services will become unaffordable for smaller communities. The proposed change would spread the cost burden more evenly across all properties connected to water and wastewater services.

Currently in the Far North, targeted rates for water and wastewater services are different depending on which scheme a property is connected to. For example, residents in Rāwene pay a different rate for their water infrastructure than Kerikeri residents do.

Councillor Rākena emphasises that the proposal will have no impact on property owners who cannot connect to council water or wastewater services. “If you collect your own water and have your own septic system because you cannot connect to council services, then this proposal will have absolutely no impact on you or your rates.”

He says property owners who can access services but choose not to will continue to pay the reduced ‘availability’ rate and that this may change under the proposal.

“If adopted, many ratepayers will see a decrease in targeted water and wastewater rates under this proposal. However, some ratepayers will see an increase. I urge all property owners to review the table on our website to see how the proposal might change what they pay.”

To see how the proposal could affect water and/or wastewater services over the next four financial years, see the tables below or go to our Have your say webpage, where you will also find FAQs and other information.

To provide feedback go to; or email; or arrange to present your submission in person via the submissions email.

Submissions close at 11pm on Thursday, 16 February 2023.


  • Table 1 - the impact this proposal could have in 2023 to 2024 per scheme.
  • Table 2 - the impact this proposal could have in 2024 to 2026 per scheme. 


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