Currently little or no river management activities are undertaken in the Middle Waikato Management Zone, apart from some riverbank maintenance in Hamilton City and some other localised areas.
Provision has been made for routine river maintenance within the management zone. Activities would include channel maintenance, vegetative management and supervision within the main channels of priority waterways.
Provision has been included for maintenance of works on the Waikato and tributaries that directly affect Hamilton City. These works include flood protection, erosion and bank protection on the Waikato River and major tributaries, including the Kirikiriroa, Mangaonua, Waitawhiriwhiri and Mangakotukutuku streams. Some of these works are outside of the Hamilton City Boundary.
During the consultation process Hamilton City Council raised concerns that works directly aimed at offsetting or arresting the effect of bed degradation in the Hamilton reach should be substantially attributed to Mighty River Power. At present it is unclear what level of future degradation can be expected, and how this relates to degradation which could be expected to occur naturally. Capital work to the value of $1.3m and annual costs of $100,000 have provisionally been allowed for in Project Watershed to address this issue.
However, before any work is undertaken there will be an investigation so that work requirements can be more clearly defined. If no works, or a lower level of works, is identified as a result of these investigations, then the financial provision for work will also be reduced accordingly. Currently the hydro contribution to river improvement work elements within this reach is set at 20 percent.
Council considers that this assessment is appropriate for the investigative work but that on completion contributor assessments for any required channel degradation control works in Hamilton be reviewed in conjunction with Mighty River Power and Hamilton City Council.