Wastewater plant hearing adjourned

The hearing into the future of Milton's wastewater treatment plant has been adjourned as an independent panel deliberates on two days of evidence.

Panel members Mike Freeman, Dr Bill Vant and Martin Ward were considering the Clutha District Council application for a consent to increase its discharge from the treatment plant into the Tokomairiro River.

On Monday the district council and its experts gave evidence to the panel.

The next day the panel visited the plant, before the district council completed its evidence and the Otago Regional Council responded to the evidence, much of which criticised regional council senior management for their handling of the consent application.

ORC director of resource management Selva Selvarajah said allegations against senior management were unwarranted.

One of his key responsibilities was to provide professional leadership in resource consent processes and ensure council's objectives were met.

It was up to the hearing panel to form an opinion of whether or not the staff report was objective or not.

While the Milton plant had been non-compliant with consent conditions the regional council had not yet taken legal action against the district council.

He believed the existing system was not being used to its maximum potential.


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