Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Active Democracy Launch

An enthusiastic group of citizens met at the Latinos Club in Wellington Sunday 6th May to investigate how to bring active democracy into local body politics in New Zealand.

A working group was set up to consider how this method of political action could be implemented in such areas as local councils and health boards.The group will report back with specific ideas on how this might work here and how the system can be placed before the public.

Paul Bruce, a Green Party spokesperson, said that New Zealand was way behind other countries such as Brazil, where over 100 cities had adopted participatory budgeting techniques. Here in Wellington, many people believed that democracy was a farce after the way a number of developments had preceded at local body level during recent years. A participatory budgeting process would lead to transparency in decision-making and avoid schemes and proposals that disadvantaged the majority of citizens being adopted after a cursory round of "consultation".

The meeting discussed recent experience in Porto Alegre in southern Brazil, where the Workers Party has been in power since 1989 and has sponsored the development of the new system. Neighbourhoods actually discuss and debate budget priorities and hold the Council to account directly if they do not get what they want. Mr Bruce, said that, in Porto Alegre the public had primary responsibility for the adoption of programmes that had led to dramatic improvements in roading, sewerage, recycling, housing, transportation, education, environmental protection and ground breaking schemes, such as the provision of free software. Satisfaction had been such that the Workers Party had been repeatedly re-elected and in recent mayoral elections, support for the incumbent administration had increased to 64% of the popular vote.

The meeting considered that there was a need for wider understanding and advocacy for the participatory process. The group will provide information and materials for further workshops and forums around the country. One approach would be to ask local body candidates to commit to implementing real participatory democracy and budgeting if elected in the upcoming elections in October.

Contact:
Active Democracy and Participatory Budgeting Group
Paul Bruce Tel 972 8699 paul.bruce@greens.org.nz
Jim Delahunty Tel 938 6943

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>

ALSO:

More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>

ALSO:

Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>

ALSO:

Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>

ALSO:

General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news