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The Waitaki District Council has allocated $5000 in its annual plan towards irrigation in the valley.
Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher said while it was not a lot, it would allow the proposal to progress to the next stage, if desired by farmers. Irrigation was a key economic opportunity and the possibility needed to be investigated as thoroughly as possible.
A meeting would be held between the mayor, the Waitaki District Council and local farmers early next month to see whether a small-scale feasibility study for a Shag valley water scheme would be a ''goer''.
A suggestion was made a few years ago for a water retention scheme at Lone Pine, inland from Dunback, to provide water for irrigation. That would also have allowed recreational fishing, boating and swimming.