Water funding set to create new jobs
2 Dec 2020, 12:00 PM
Waitomo District Council’s (WDC) three waters projects have been approved by the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) which will see $3.5 million spent on local water projects.
The government funding is set to create between 10 to 15 new jobs across WDC’s 22 projects which are focused on improving resilience, reducing interruption of supply and reducing maintenance costs of the water network.
Tony Hale, general manager infrastructure services says “We based our projects around what was achievable by March 2022 and importantly work that could be done by local contractors. Not only will this funding create jobs, but it also brings forward our work programme by 15 years.”
One of the main projects will be to install backflow preventors district wide.
“We’ve been installing these as pipes have needed upgrading. We can now roll this out across the District. It means old water connections will be replaced reducing leaks and saving water, also long-term reducing repair call outs. These valves also prevent any possibility of greywater from washing machines and dishwashers for example flowing back into the mains water which has the potential to be a health risk.”
Tony also confirmed that water meters are not being installed as part of this funding.
Funding will also go towards the duplication of water monitoring systems to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements.
“In some cases, we’re required to record and report water measurements every minute of every day. If our equipment stops for any reason and we miss just one reading it automatically means we’re not compliant in spite of our high water quality.”
All water treatment plants – Te Kuiti, Mokau, Maniaiti/Benneydale and Piopio will have money spent on them, including purchasing back up equipment, such as generators which help keep operations running 24/7.
The Council are now working their way through quotes and purchasing equipment with projects expected to start in the New Year.