Taupō District Council and Waikato Regional Council are working together to keep protecting the water quality of Lake Taupō.
The two councils have just approved funding to continue the 2007 established Lake Taupō Protection Trust.
The trust administers an $81.5 million fund to encourage and assist land use change, purchase land and nitrogen in the Lake Taupō catchment and to fund other initiatives that assist landowners to reduce the nitrogen impact.
Both councils voted to fund the trust and initiatives for another two years at a cost of $339,598 for the first year. Waikato Regional Council will contribute $144,000, with Taupō District Council funding the difference.
Since inception, the Lake Taupō Protection Trust has successfully achieved a 20 per cent reduction in the levels of nitrogen entering the lake by setting 27 landowner agreements, each with a 999-year life.
Waikato Regional Council chairman Russ Rimmington described Lake Taupō as the jewel in the crown of Aotearoa New Zealand.
Taupō District mayor David Trewavas said continuing to support the trust was an important part of protecting Lake Taupō.
"Our lake is taonga and such an important part of who we are as a district. We must protect it and I am pleased to be part of a decision that has agreed to support further initiatives that will encourage better environmental practices and protect our water quality."
The Lake Taupō Protection Trust has been jointly funded by the Ministry for the Environment, Taupō District Council and Waikato Regional Council and overseen by Tūwharetoa Māori Trust Board, both councils, and the Crown.
A review of funding and administration arrangements was required this year, and funding from the Crown now ceased, so both councils asked for community input as part of the councils' long term plan consultation process.
Of 223 received submissions, 78 per cent were in favour of keeping the current management and governance arrangements because submitters felt they were working well and would ensure the continued protection of the lake and involvement of local expertise.
The decision to keep the trust going will be formally ratified by both councils next month, with a review of the arrangements to be completed by June 2023.