Section 125 of the Local Government Act 2002 requires local authorities to assess water and other sanitary services.
Clause (1) states
A territorial authority must, from time to time, assess the provision within its district of—
(a) water services; and
(b) other sanitary services.
For most Councils, the first Water and Sanitary Services Assessment was completed in 2005 to meet the timeframes set out in the Local Government Act at that time.
The results of the Water and Sanitary Services Assessment were then incorporated into subsequent AMP revisions, particularly where issues identified required the upgrading of infrastructure, or construction of new infrastructure.
Water and Sanitary Services Assessments have come back onto the governance agenda.
The August 2013 Cabinet Paper – Better Local Government: Improving Infrastructure Delivery and Asset Management canvassed water and sanitary services assessment issues starting on page 13, clause 72.
This Cabinet Paper is worth review as background reading. The recommendations of this Cabinet Paper were translated into the Local Government Act Amendment (No 3) Bill, which is currently before Parliament.
The Local Government Act Amendment (No 3) Bill modifies the section on Water and Sanitary Services Assessments to clarify the purpose of assessment. The text from the Bill is included below for your reference:
Given the proposed changes in the Bill, and the requirement for an Infrastructure Strategy that addresses major infrastructure issues, my suggestion is that you review your Water and Sanitary Services Assessment this year – to support your 2014 Asset Management Plan Update.
Given it is 9 years since most councils completed the first Water and Sanitary Services Assessment it seems 2014 meets the ‘time to time’ criteria.
PHOTO CREDIT: Lake Tekapo by Ross Waugh