Thames Coromandel District Council: Actions relating to a Sewerage Scheme for Cooks Beach and Ferry Landing.

This report sets out the results of a review we undertook following receipt of a complaint about certain actions of the Thames Coromandel District Council.

The complaint related to the Council’s decision that the most appropriate form of sewerage system to service properties at Cooks Beach and Ferry Landing was a reticulated scheme.

This was a policy decision by the Council, and we note in the report that it is not our role to determine whether a local authority has made the correct policy decision.

We did conclude, however, that (because of the lack of cost benefit information) it is difficult for the Council to demonstrate that the reticulation option is indeed the best use of ratepayers’ funds.

Other issues covered in the report include:

  • the manner in which the Council resolved to undertake the sewerage reticulation;
  • implications of acting over a period when certain relevant legislative requirements were being repealed and new legislative requirements were coming into force; and
  • whether the views of ratepayers on the sewerage options were adequately sought.

We believe that other local authorities will find the discussion of the issues dealt with in this report helpful when faced with making similar decisions.

K B Brady
Deputy Controller and Auditor-General

21 June 2001