The review of the Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme is a welcome first step. Many people have approached me saying they do not have enough information to make a decision about the scheme. Fair enough, I understand that. I think it is because there is an underlying sense of mistrust in much of the information that has been provided the scheme. They feel there has been far too much spin.
To my mind there will be three essential criteria that the review needs to meet to start rebuilding trust. Firstly people need to be confident of the independence of the review. It needs to be prepared and presented without fear nor favour. I see it as part of my role as a politician to ensure this happens. Believe you me, if I don’t have confidence in the independence of the review you will hear about it.
Secondly people need to be confident that the scope of the review is broad enough to cover all of the concerns and questions that have been raised about the scheme. Fair enough. But no one knows everything so I’m looking for your help. If you have any concerns or questions about the scheme please feel free to email them to me firstname.lastname@example.org I can collate them and have them included in the scope of the review. And remember the only silly question is the one you don’t ask.
Finally, the review needs to be presented in a way which is understandable for most people, yet comprehensive enough to provide full enough explanations. This will be a fine balancing act. But we have great staff who I firmly believe are capable of meeting this demand. I am looking forward to seeing the results. I hope you are to.