Water and wastewater projects in the Ruapehu district have received a $4 million boost from the government.
The Ruapehu District Council has received $3,991,370 from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's Tourism Infrastructure Fund for an upgrade of Ohakune's water treatment plant and $115,500 for the Ohakune/Raetihi wastewater treatment plant feasibility study.
Ruapehu District mayor Don Cameron said the council was very satisfied with the funding.
"We already, through the Long Term Plan process, have given the community the heads-up that, with or without help from the funds, we were going to go ahead anyway. We just warned people it was going to add to our debt but obviously with $4 million that makes a huge difference."
The funding will help to fix any recurring operational issues at the water treatment plant.
In mid-July 2019, a boil water notice was issued to Ohakune residents after heavy rain caused operational issues at the plant and uncertainty about the safety of drinking the water.
Cameron said the upgrade would ensure this did not happen again.
"It needs better filtration systems which are just really overwhelmed by the amount of water that we use because we have up to 15,000 people coming in the weekends so it needs to be made for that, if not bigger."
He said the plant needed to be ready for increases in both residential and tourist numbers.
In early 2020 the council will give locals another chance to make submissions on the project, Cameron said.
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"I would be surprised if we get one submission against it. When we went out to the public the feeling was to get on with it, we can't afford not to do it."
Cameron said with an additional chairlift planned at Turoa skifield, there had been concerns around wastewater as there is no waste pipe running down Turoa.
He said there had been talks with iwi about the extra waste, whether there would be enough capacity in treatment ponds and if using a truck to carry the water coming off the mountain would be the correct process.
The feasibility study will investigate this further.
Whanganui District Council also received funding from the Ministry with $150,644 for the installation of a public toilet facility and bus shelter at Taupo Quay.