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Citywide publication one step closer

9 June 2005

Citywide publication one step closer

At an extraordinary meeting of Manukau City Council last week Councillors decided in the interests of transparency to call for competitive proposals for their new citywide publication.

"Some Councillors were under the impression that a contract had been awarded already," said Dean Myburgh, Council's Director of Corporate Resources. "This was not the case."

Officers apologised during the debate for not making specific mention of the Council's contract processes in their initial presentation to the Strategic Directions Committee in April.

There have been many comments made in public about the company which made the proposal and the process surrounding its approach to Council.

"The proposal stood on its merits with no need for political favour as has been implied, and none has been given. At no stage has any evidence to the contrary been tabled by those who have made assertions about a possible conflict of interest. Any aspersions cast on the integrity of Stix Communications and Twig Publishing are regrettable and without foundation," said Mr Myburgh.

Twig Publications was asked by the Vibrant and Strong Committee of Tomorrow's Manukau (the city's ten year strategic plan) to find a means of communicating with all residents in the city. This process began as early as March last year and has been the subject of a great deal of planning since then to ensure the proposal actually works.

"Manukau is not alone in recognising the needs and benefits of such a publication. Nearly every council in New Zealand has been communicating with their residents in a similar way for some time. Manukau City Council looks forward to providing such a medium. What makes it better than other publications is that we have identified a way to do this at no extra cost to our ratepayers," said Mr Myburgh.

Expressions of interest for the publication will be advertised later this month.


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