17 / May / 2021

Lower Hutt Mayor Campbell Barry has been appointed Chair of the Wellington Water Committee.

The role became vacant when Hutt City Councillor David Bassett stood down in March.

The Wellington Water Committee is a joint committee of the six councils that own Wellington Water Limited. 

The Committee provides guidance and oversight of Wellington Water.  The Water Committee considers Wellington Water’s half-year and annual reports, monitors performance and provides recommendations to shareholders on proposals.

The Committee today selected a new Chair:

  • Chair – Campbell Barry (Mayor of Lower Hutt) elected

Mayor Campbell Barry says the need to invest in the region’s water infrastructure is urgent, and with national water reforms on the horizon, the time is right to refresh the Wellington Water Committee leadership.

“Our region is facing a trifecta of water issues to work through: ageing infrastructure, significant population growth and decades of historic underinvestment. The only way we can solve these issues is to do this work collectively,” says Campbell Barry.

“What has got us to this point, will not serve us for the future.  The Committee must now act boldly and transparently as we face up to these significant challenges in our region.”

Campbell Barry says deliverability, workforce development, and Wellington Water’s capacity are the most pressing issues facing the region.  

“We know all shareholding councils are significantly increasing investment in three waters as part of the upcoming Long Term Plan process.   But budget lines alone won’t build the pipes needed to address the issues we face.  We need to ensure as an organisation, Wellington Water has the capacity and workforce to do the work.

“There is no doubt that this will test Wellington Water’s capacity.  I’m under no illusion about the work ahead, and the need to be honest and upfront with our communities to restore confidence and get the basics right,”  says Campbell Barry. 

Mayor Campbell Barry is also a member of the Three Waters Steering Committee that provides oversight and guidance to support progress toward water reform.

“Being on the Steering Committee provides a wider Wellington perspective, and it’s important that Wellington Water’s experiences are fed into the reform,” he says.