Bid to stop chlorine in water will be futile
Medical Officer of Health Alistair Humphrey said he could issue the city council a compliance order to chlorinate if there was a significant risk under the Health Act, Yesterday, The Star surveyed city councillors on how they will vote today after it was revealed on Tuesday the water supply was at risk of contamination.
Councillors Jamie Gough, Mike Davidson, Pauline Cotter, Tim Scandrett, Deon Swiggs, Glenn Livingstone, Yani Johanson, and Jimmy Chen said they wanted more information before deciding what way to vote.
Deputy Mayor Andrew Turner and councillors Aaron Keown, Sara Templeton and Phil Clearwater did not return calls yesterday.
Dr Humphrey said he would consider serving a compliance order if city councillors voted against chlorination.
“Yes, there are legal options.
A work programme is under way to upgrade all city council wells by December.
It has been recommended water be temporarily chlorinated until the work is completed.
Said Cr Buck: “I will vote yes because what’s going to happen is if we don’t do it then the medical officer of health is going to tell us to do it anyway.” “If he was saying permanently chlorinate, which he is not, I would be voting differently.” The Government has recommended water throughout the country be chlorinated following the Havelock North inquiry.
But Dr Humphrey said Christchurch was a “special case” and they could fight that.
If city councillors voted against the chlorination recommendation now, it could hurt that case in the long term, he said.