An extraordinary meeting of Whanganui's district council scheduled yesterday was cancelled a matter of hours before its 4pm start.

The meeting was to consider a motion proposed by Councillor Rob Vinsen and called for an immediate suspension of the design process for a thermal dryer until an independent review proves the dryer is a "financially prudent " investment without participation of the Affco Group in the wastewater plant.

The dryer was a later addition to the original Cardno plan, adding an estimated $9.3 million to the costs of the rebuild, bringing that total to $41 million.

Council chief executive officer Kym Fell said the meeting was cancelled as "the original motion in the agenda is no longer at issue, and as such there is no reason to meet".

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Mr Fell said it was anticipated that another request for an extraordinary meeting was likely to be called for early next week.

"This may bring to the table new motions surrounding the wastewater treatment plant build and the wet industries' involvement," he said.

The Affco Group includes the Imlay works and Land Meats. The Imlay plant has been the biggest industrial discharger into the city's treatment plant but whether it will be involved in the new plant hasn't been resolved.