Adam Burns, Local Democracy Reporter
A move to install water meters on a one-year trial basis has been endorsed by most Ashburton District councillors during long term plan deliberations.
The council has gone back to the drawing board to establish the cost for a new long term plan approach of trialing meters on a fraction of properties over a 12 month period before agreeing to a district-wide rollout.
The matter was expected to come back to council later this week.
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A lack of robust evidence to support council claims of up to 50 per cent loss in its water infrastructure - as highlighted by numerous public submissions - was identified as a key reason in exploring a fourth option in the long term plan.
Opposition to the contentious $5 million proposal has been firm after the Ashburton District Council opened its 10-year plan to residents.
The council initially favoured an option to install 9000 water meters throughout the district over a three-year period.
Other options to install meters over a year and abandoning plans to install meters were also listed in the draft document.