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ECan withdraws prosecution on Aidanfield discharge

1 June 2005

Environment Canterbury (ECan) has withdrawn its prosecution of all parties, including Christchurch City Council, in relation to an unauthorised discharge of sediment from the Aidanfield subdivision into Dunbars Drain, a tributary of Cashmere Stream, on 6 August 2004.

Council Chief Executive Lesley Mc Turk said she was pleased the decision to withdraw the prosecution had come through mediation between the two local authorities, Aidanfield Holdings Ltd and Davie Lovell-Smith.

“The mediation process allowed us all to gain a better understanding of the issues.  As a result, the Council and ECan are even more committed to working together to ensure a long term integrated strategy for sustained drainage management throughout the city.

This has been a positive outcome and we can now focus our staff time and resources on developing and implementing an effective strategy.”

A full copy of the mediation agreement between The Council and ECan is being published tomorrow (Thursday 2 June) in the public notices section of The Press newspaper.

“This is a proactive step to ensure that all parties are fully accountable and transparent, and all the documents are publicly available,” Dr McTurk said.

Mediator Peter Skelton said, “the outcome here is a sensible and practical one in the interests of the public generally and of the ratepayers of both authorities in particular. This was very much a ‘one off’ set of circumstances,” he said. 

The Council and ECan have agreed on protocols for subdivision development which will strengthen the working relationship between the two local authorities.

“It will also give residents in Aidanfield confidence over the future of the development,” Dr McTurk said.

Future relationships between the two local authorities, including a “no surprises” agreement, will be discussed at a July meeting between Dr McTurk, ECan chief executive Dr Bryan Jenkins, their advisors  and Associate Professor Skelton.


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