The Association made a brief submission to a proposal circulated by Waipa and Hamilton City for a proposed shared services arrangement. We suggested the Councils were not being bold enough by embracing the establishment of an asset owning CCO.
The Stormwater Conference fielded more than 80 abstracts in the preliminary call. The conference committee will be reviewing them over the next couple of weeks, with authors advised of acceptance prior to Christmas. There will be 22 exhibition sites available at the Queenstown venue. Registrations will open at the end of January. Stormwater 360 has again committed to premier sponsorship of the event for 2018.
Charlotte Cudby has assisted the SW policy sub-committee with developing a “policy register” which identifies upcoming policy (or other documentation) for review. This is accessible in the SW group dropbox and will be regularly updated.
The call for abstracts for the Modelling Symposium in March has been circulated. The technical guidelines for Wastewater Network modelling have been revised. The guidelines are currently being formatted and will be available on the WNZ website shortly.
The 6 December meeting of the Backflow Committee is being held at Hydroflow premises in Auckland, where the group will be undertaking a valve-testing scenario to evaluate the current NZ testing procedures and benchmark against the Australian testing procedures. This arises from the group’s participation on the AS/NZ Standards Review committee.
A site visit was recently held at Watercare’s Mangere Biological Nutrient Removal (BNR)facility. Hampered by the weather, only 10 people attended.
The Wellington group is planning a site visit the Wainuiomata WWTP, hopefully before Christmas.
The inaugural meeting of the new YWP Central group is planned for the New Year.
Pacific Island Group
Discussions are underway over the establishment of a group to provide a forum for discussion on Pacific Island Issues. Jim Graham attended a meeting at MFAT where a variety of groups involved in aid and development works in the Pacific were present. The work is very much at the early stages.
The Association ran a very successful 2-day meeting of the group in Christchurch in November, with over 40 water service managers in attendance. Very positive feedback has been received. It is pleasing to note increased interest in the Group, in particular new membership of the NZ Defence Force who manage their own onsite water and wastewater facilities.
The final meeting of the year was held in Wellington on 23 November. Staff briefed attendees on progress with the industry led projects we were asked to prioritise in 2016. Members present agreed that the Forum was useful, but should be targeted to a dialogue on strategic issues. They asked for external parties to be brought in to address the Group as required. They want the Terms of Reference to reflect the strategic nature of the group, and the CEO was tasked with completing that work prior to the next meeting. The Group agreed that in future the Association and SPF would meet twice a year. The members did not agree that we should restrict invitations to named senior individuals, noting that if the agenda is compelling the right people will attend.