Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Amendments to Local Government Act Undermine Democracy

Andrew Williams MP
Spokesperson for Local Government
12 November 2012

Amendments to Local Government Act Undermine Democracy

New Zealand First Local Government spokesperson Andrew Williams warns that flawed local government reforms to be debated in Parliament this week undermine the important second tier of our democratic system.

Mr Williams says local government should return the best value for ratepayers and taxpayers, especially in providing infrastructure.

“However, the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill risks destroying the heart and soul of what makes a city or district desirable to live in.

“It would seriously hamper elected councillors from representing grassroots interests of communities.

“The watchdog role of elected officials to ensure the financial bottom line does not over-ride the greater community interest is also under threat.”

Mr Williams says there is a misconception that local government debt escalated because councils pandered to popular local interest side issues.

“That is actually a relatively small portion of council spending.

“In reality, councils had to fill enormous vacuums left by central government after decades of infrastructure neglect.

“They also had to meet the burden and costs of central government legislation such as the regulation of prostitution and brothels, dog control, and liquor licensing.”

Mr Williams says New Zealand First is opposed to selling off local government assets to help fund council activities such as pensioner and community housing.

“The local government framework was meant to be consultative and co-operative.

“The Bill is symptomatic of the Government’s modus operandi of setting up combative forms of governance with the potential to divide mayors and councillors.

“It is an unhealthy model,” says Mr Williams.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Australia Deportations: English Relaxed On Immigration Centre Conditions

Labour's Annette King: “There have been numerous reports from inside these detention centres on just how bad conditions are... If they were being held in any other foreign jail, I imagine Mr English would be somewhat concerned. More>>


Schools: Achievement-Based Funding Would Be A Disaster

The Education Minister’s speech to the PPTA Conference raising the spectre of achievement data driving a new funding system would be disastrous, says NZEI Te Riu Roa. More>>

  • Video Out-Link - PPTA Annual Conference 2015 on Livestream (Q+A dicussion suggests funding would be directed to less successful schools.)

  • ALSO:

    ECE Report:

    Key In NY: Prime Minister Addresses United Nations

    Prime Minister John Key has addressed the United Nations General Assembly in New York, focusing on a call for action in Syria and on other conflicts, reform of the veto process and on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. More>>.


    Gordon Campbell: On The Lack Of Accountability Over Philip Smith

    In New Zealand, accountability is an exotic creature rarely glimpsed at ministerial level, or among senior management. The flight to Rio by the paedophile /murderer Philip John Smith/Traynor is no exception. More>>


    More On Corrections

    Gordon Campbell: On Putin’s Diplomatic Coup Over Syria

    There’s a simple historical precedent for what is occurring in Syria. During WWII, the Allies joined forces with a known butcher and tyrant – Joseph Stalin of the Soviet Union – in order to defeat a greater evil, Nazi Germany… More>>


    Key 'Didn't Know': Brownlee Seeks Pandas In China

    While Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee is in China pushing a taxpayer funded deal to bring two pandas to New Zealand, the country’s military look set to be hit with a pay freeze, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. More>>


    Scoop Business: GCSB Willing To Extend Cyber-Attack Programme To Local ISPs

    The Government Communications Security Bureau’s ‘Cortex’ cyber-security programme has been successful in helping identify and mitigate a series of cyber attacks since its introduction and an extension to cover local internet service providers is still on the cards... More>>


    Get More From Scoop



    Search Scoop  
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news