Business as usual activities

Burn dry, breathe easy

Breathing healthy air is vital to life.

At ORC, we want to deliver the best outcomes for our communities when it comes to air quality.

Our `Clean Heat Clean Air’ programme anchors our Air Quality Strategy. We’ve reached a point where we’re asking the question: “Is this programme delivering the air quality results we need?” Alongside this, the financial reserves that subsidise ‘Clean Heat Clean Air’ run out in 2020-21.

So, it’s an opportune time for us to review the subsidy programme and look at future options. The results of this review will be discussed with communities in the near future. For 2020-21 we plan to maintain our current programme, which includes ‘Clean Heat Clean Air’, engaging with communities on good practice and exploring new heating and burning technologies.

Whatever we decide to do, we want good quality air for Otago. We need to work out the best way to achieve that.

Regulatory

As regulators for the environment, we have to make sure we’re well equipped to get the work done. We’ve had our internal processes reviewed and we’re implementing improvements based on these recommendations. We’ll be better equipped to process resource consents, develop and set rules for how a natural resource can be managed, and check that the rules are being followed.

We are responsible for the regulation of ports, harbours, waters, and maritimerelated activity in Otago under the Maritime Transport Act.

In some districts this responsibility is delegated to other councils who are responsible for the waters in their patch, like Queenstown Lakes District Council.

The Central Otago District Council has requested we take back responsibility over Lake Dunstan in 2020-21.

This means that we will extend our current Harbourmaster activity to include Lake Dunstan.

To prepare for this change we will amend our Revenue and Financing Policy.

This will enable us to fairly allocate rating for this activity in the future. At this stage it’s unclear what or if there’s additional cost associated with this change in delegation – we will come back to the community in the future with an update.

Governance and engagement

Our councillors want to be involved. We have increased the number of meetings Council will have outside Dunedin and across the region this triennium and each councillor has increased responsibilities.

We’re supporting the Otago Mayoral Forum by providing the expertise needed to allow this group to discuss and explore major projects that benefit the region. We also provide a regional perspective for city and district councils in Otago when they’re reviewing their district plans.


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