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Source: Auckland Council

From today until 27 October, Auckland Council is seeking public feedback on proposed changes to the Stormwater Bylaw 2015, designed to mitigate flooding and help protect and manage the region’s stormwater network assets.

The purpose of the Stormwater Bylaw is to enable the council to efficiently and effectively manage Auckland’s stormwater by minimising damage, interference, and misuse of the network. It also helps regulate the private stormwater systems, which connect and contribute to the public stormwater network.

Auckland’s stormwater network is affected by land drainage problems such as property flooding, network contamination from illegal discharges, inconsistent management of pipe connections, and operation of private stormwater systems.

Council Regulatory Committee Chair, Councillor Linda Cooper says: “As a result of the proposed changes, we hope to see improved water quality and better protection of public health and safety when overflow points activate during heavy rain or floods, as we saw earlier this month in West Auckland.

“Every home, every development and every new house built has a stormwater system, which flows into the stormwater network.

“These proposed changes will set new minimum standards and allow for better systems to maintain both public and private assets and minimise flooding issues for the benefit of all Aucklanders.

“Climate change resulting in extreme weather events like flooding, heavy rain and coastal inundation are happening more frequently, and bylaw amendments like this will go some way towards future-proofing Auckland’s infrastructure against such impacts,” says Ms Cooper.

The updated bylaw clarifies terms, simplifies language, and seeks to further protect Auckland’s stormwater networks by:

  • specifying controls, codes of practice or guidelines for managing the public stormwater network and private stormwater systems;
  • considering additional requirements for vesting of public assets and approvals under the bylaw, including the ability to assess the carbon lifecycle associated with the construction and operation of new stormwater network assets;
  • requiring approvals for modifications or new engineered wastewater overflow points into the stormwater network to assist with protection of public health and safety when the overflow points activate;
  • restricting or excluding certain activities for parts of the stormwater network to protect public health and safety from activities such as fishing or kayaking in stormwater treatment devices like ponds and wetlands.

The Bylaw is administered by the council’s Healthy Waters department, responsible for operating and maintaining Auckland’s public stormwater network; and by the Regulatory Engineering department where approvals for infrastructure development are assessed.

Consultation on proposed bylaw changes runs from 22 September until 27 October 2021, after which the views of Aucklanders will be considered by the Bylaw Panel before the amended bylaw is put in place.

Visit aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/have-your-say for more information, to give feedback and to find out where drop-in ‘have your say’ events will be held.

Free internet access is available at council libraries or contact us by phoning 09 301 0101.

MIL OSI