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Published: 2017-03-03 13:45:00

The Healthy Rivers Wai Ora committee’s meeting today has confirmed the closing date for submissions on proposed Plan Change 1 should stay as 8 March 2017.

It followed requests to Waikato Regional Council for an extension to the closing date from a number of groups concerned about aspects of the plan change process for the Waikato and Waipa rivers.

The council referred the request to the committee, made up of councillors and river iwi partner representatives, for a recommendation.

The committee accepted a wide range of arguments against extending, outlined in a staff report and amplified during discussions at the meeting. Those arguments included the fact that an extension created various serious risks, including compromising legal timeframes for the completion of the plan change and adding up to $700,000 in costs for ratepayers.

The committee’s decision will now be considered by the full council at a meeting on Monday.