There are often discussions on how we should fund our water usage - what are your views on the questions below?
1. Should the provision of water be funded centrally through the rates/taxes or should it be funded by individuals through water meters?
2. Should the water service be owned and managed by the state as a public good or run by private companies to make a profit?
1.Water is a public good and should be mostly funded through rates. The problem arises when there is excessive usage and poeple ignore the obligation to use water wisely. Conservation is an important tool of managing water usage. price is another. The unimtended consequenmces of rates based funding for water is that our elderly residents bear a disproporation part of the costs. Research by the Kapiti Coast District Council has shown that in our pricing methodology the elderly are disadvantaged. A solution is to allow a large amount of \'free\' (that is rates funded) water and then start charging at a stepped rate so that those with pools would pay for that privilage. It is however an uneasy solution.
2. Water should be managed as a public good and not run by private companies for profit.
1. Water needs to be funded centrally through rates/taxes. Metering is an extremely expensive option with no guarantee of return and the absolute certainty that no extra water is produced. As I am typing this it is raining, not just ordinary rain but truckloads of rain - enough to fill a dam for instance.
2. Water must remain in public ownership. Privatised water systems will guaranteed only one thing - price hikes as profits will be expected to increase every year.