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Regional Governance Debate Reopened In Auck Region

Regional Governance Debate Reopened In Auckland Region

A single unitary authority for the Auckland region is on the shortlist of governance options that Auckland City Council last night agreed to investigate further.

Mayor Chris Fletcher welcomes debate on this proposal, which was launched in a discussion paper on regional governance by the region’s mayors in March last year.

The council also agreed to investigate the role of community boards in any structural reform that involves amalgamation of the existing territorial local authorities. Any further amalgamation will require strengthening their role to maintain local representation and grassroots democracy, says Mrs Fletcher.

The time is right for this debate, she says. The councils in the Auckland region are already working together on a number of separate reviews of services they share, including water, land transport and the Local Government Act.

"A review of governance issues will be a logical part of that and open debate was the intention of the Mayoral Forum last year when they released the discussion paper on the future of local government in our region. It is appropriate for Auckland City to take the lead, in fact this is already set out in our city’s strategic plan."

The region’s mayors have indicated their resolve to see the discussion continued and the need for a regional approach to common issues is highlighted by growth pressures, she says.

"All major issues facing Auckland councils are regional.


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“Traffic congestion, for example, is a critical issue to be solved and we recognise that both roading and public transport will need to be part of the solution. Negotiating with Tranz Rail on rail corridor access has highlighted for me the need to think and strategise regionally.”

“We need to move fast to address some of the region’s most critical issues and you cannot move forward easily if decisions are being duplicated by eight individual councils” says Mrs Fletcher.


ENDS

For more information, please contact:
Chris Fletcher, Mayor of Auckland City, tel: 307 7581 or 025 276 0013.

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