The Christchurch City Council has voted to inform the Government it strongly opposes the proposed entity-based model for water services.
The proposal would see the control of drinking water, wastewater and stormwater infrastructure transfer from councils around the country to four new independent entities.
At a meeting today, councillors voted on the feedback it would provide to the Government on the proposed reform.
It agreed to include a call for the Government to pause the reform programme to enable all parties to better understand the implications of the future.
Mayor Lianne Dalziel has been vocal in her opposition to the Government's plans and while the council is unable to opt-out, it is recommending to do so.
It cannot opt-out until formal public consultation is undertaken.
In a report, Dalziel recommended that any model of delivery that prevents the council from requiring a water services entity to work towards or maintain an exemption from chlorination is unacceptable.
Councillors voted unanimously to approve the recommendations and clearly state its opposition to the proposal.
The council's issue with the reform stems from lack of information and other options for delivery.
Councillor Sam MacDonald said advice from staff shows how fundamentally flawed the model is.
"That's not to say we're opposed to any form of change.
"What's really alarming with this is, there has been millions of dollars spent on consultants and what have we really got? We've basically shown Government doesn't understand how local councils operate," he said.
In its response to the Government, it says in order for the council to be able to consider the proposed water reform further, it would require a number of issues to be resolved.
This includes that any proposal that goes ahead applies a consistent allocation of costs across all entities.
It also includes clarity around how the council's debt liability is to be transferred to the new entity on a no-cost basis.
A survey of almost 4000 Waimakariri residents shows 95 per cent are against the proposal.
Public consultation in the Selwyn district will go ahead in November.