Te Kāuru Upper Ruamāhanga Floodplain Management Plan
The Upper Ruamāhanga catchment encompasses the upper reaches of the Ruamāhanga River to the Waiohine confluence, and includes the Waipoua, Waingawa, Kopuaranga, Whangaehu, and Taueru (Tauweru) rivers from their headwaters within the Tararua Ranges and Eastern Hills to their confluences with the Ruamāhanga River. The catchment has a total area of approximately 1,560km².
A floodplain management plan has been developed for the catchment, Te Kāuru Upper Ruamāhanga Floodplain Management Plan. The process of developing the FMP started in 2012 and was then led by the Te Kāuru Upper Ruamāhanga Floodplain Management Subcommittee, which was established in 2014.
Te Kāuru FMP was developed in collaboration with Masterton District Council (MDC), Carterton District Council (CDC), Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa, Rangitāne o Wairarapa, and the wider community, primarily through subcommittee and as a result the FMP was adopted by the Regional Council on 25 June 2019.
The catchment currently has eight river schemes which have been in place for a number of decades. Riverside landowners are members of these river schemes and pay a targeted rate which goes towards maintanence expenses.
As outlined in section 4.1 of the Te Kāuru FMP there is a revised governance structure. There are two changes that will be made:
In December 2019 the URRMAC was established by Council. The nomination process to appoint members to URRMAC has been delayed due to COVID19. The second change, being the disestablishment of the river schemes and establishment of the river management groups will take some time to undertake with a likely completion date within the next triennium (2022-2025).
Section 4.3 of Te Kāuru FMP outlines the funding changes proposed. The funding change seeks to remove the targeted rate that riverside landowners pay and replace it with a catchment-wide rate.
The process to undertake the changes to the funding structure will take time due to the considerable size of the catchment, the required documentation to be inputted into the review of Greater Wellington Regional Council’s Revenue and Financing Policy, and the time allowed for public consultation.
This page will be updated with further information as we progress through this process.
A number of responses, both major and general, were identified in the Te Kāuru FMP that will be developed and implemented over the next several years. Each of the project responses have a priority, which can be viewed in section 4.4 of the document.
Updated modelling for the hazard maps with respect to the Waipoua Urban reach is underway and is expected to be ready for review of the Wairarapa Combined District Plan at the end of 2020. This work is being undertaken with assistance from a community-appointed project team.
Operational work programmes continue as they have in the past.
Further details will follow in the coming months as implementation of Te Kāuru progresses.