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LGNZ urges Kiwis to get behind newly elected mayors

LGNZ urges Kiwis to get behind newly elected mayors and councillors
Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) President, Lawrence Yule, has congratulated New Zealand’s newly elected and re-elected mayors, councillors, and local and community board members and urged the public to get behind them.
“All across the country successful candidates will be now contemplating the very important work that New Zealand communities have tasked them with, by electing them as their leaders,” said Mr Yule.
“We would like to congratulate the key leaders of our largest cities, our regional councils, our small towns and those in our rural hinterland.

“Each of our new mayors has a strong vision for the future of their community, and together with their team of elected councillors and board members, will be carrying out their daily work very publicly and making big decisions on your behalf,” says Mr Yule.
“We should celebrate and support our new leaders, who will be the frontrunners in moving their elected teams towards the common goal of achieving a stronger and successful future for their community.”
With the complex environment in which local government operates and the new mayoral powers coming into effect immediately post-election, LGNZ will be providing support to help elected mayors and councillors to hit the ground running, including workshops specifically designed to address the newly introduced changes, as well as fine-tuning the wide range of skills each candidate brings to a local government setting.
While final numbers are yet to be confirmed, overall turn-out in local authority elections is likely to be lower than 2010’s 49.4 per cent, with an anticipated turn-out of eligible voters between 42 and 44 per cent.  Taking out the 2010 impacts of Auckland’s Super City and Christchurch’s earthquake which prompted voter turn-out, it is likely that 2013 will be comparable to the 2007 figure of 44 per cent.
At this point in the process, voters in the Mackenzie District Council area were the most proactive, with 61 per cent.  Hurunui District Council was recorded as having the lowest voter turn-out nationally at 31 per cent.
“It’s commendable that a good proportion of New Zealanders are having their say in how they want their local authorities to run, including having a clear understanding of the vast range of services their local governments are responsible and the impact that decisions around these services may have on them directly,” says Mr Yule.
“But there is more work to do.  Moving forward, LGNZ’s next step is to make key decisions on how to better improve New Zealanders understanding of local government and its responsibilities and action any new initiatives that will emerge.”


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