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Community members needed to shape Southland's future

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Expressions of interest are now being sought for people interested in contributing to Southland’s future.

Environment Southland and Te Ao Marama (the environmental arm of Ngai Tahu ki Murihiku) are now seeking people to become members of the Regional Forum.

Environment Southland Chairman Nicol Horrell said this is a great opportunity for our community to contribute to the future of the region.

"If you are open-minded, can work as part of a team and are passionate about the future of Southland and its communities then you are just the sort of person who should apply to be part of the forum," Chairman Horrell said. "The Regional Forum will be a panel, made up of Southlanders who come together to advise us on the methods to achieve what the community wants for our freshwater."

In this important role, they will play a key part in shaping how Southland’s water resources are managed now and in the future, he said.

Te Ao Marama Kaupapa taiao manager Dean Whaanga said the Regional Forum needed to reflect the diversity of all our communities in Southland.

"It also needs to have an urban/rural balance, broad geographic representation, and will have a defined role for tangata whenua to reflect the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi," he said.

The formation of the Regional Forum was an important step in the People, Water and Land programme, which is about taking the next steps to improve Southland’s water and land.

"This programme is a partnership and is part of building a more sustainable and thriving Southland for everyone now and for future generations," Dean Whaanga said.

The Regional Forum members, once selected, will consider specific policies and rules as well as on-ground initiatives for the changes needed to improve Southland’s natural resources, and to ensure the Government’s requirements in the National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management are met.

Expressions of interest in becoming a member of the forum are now open, and more detail on what’s involved is available on the Environment Southland website, www.es.govt.nz. Applications close on Friday 15 February 2019.

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