Whanganui's representatives on Horizons Regional Council are disappointed $75,000 flagged for fresh water partnerships has been stripped out of its final annual plan.
"There's so much pressure to improve, we're not meeting the demand and water quality is getting worse," councillor Nicola Patrick said.
The extra $75,000 was removed in a close vote, after chairman Bruce Gordon asked for more debate in an effort to keep the average rate rise below 5 per cent.
It was kept at 4.88 per cent, with funding increases for Total Mobility's subsidised taxi transport and improved transport service between Levin and Palmerston North.
Like Patrick, councillor David Cotton believes farmers want the council to do more in to improve fresh water.
He said ratepayers would only have paid an extra 60 or 70 cents to maintain that extra $75,000 to subsidise improvement to fresh water.
Cotton was disappointed by reports on the quality of Whanganui's coastal streams and said they would be a major focus if he is voted in again in October.
Patrick was also was also disappointed Horizons councillors decided to only livestream full council meetings, not the committee meetings where issues are debated and "the real work is done".
"We want people to hear our debates and bring us feedback and they can't do that by simply seeing the final result," she said.
The council's 2019-20 Annual Plan received 57 submissions. Nine submitters, including Whanganui's Stephen Palmer, went to Palmerston North to state their views.
The plan was adopted on May 28.