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Regional council to focus on community engagement

Regional council to focus on community engagement

In the future Environment Bay of Plenty will focus on better community engagement that aligns to its priorities, rather than on environmental education.

Policy and Planning Chair Raewyn Bennett said at a meeting today that a review on the regional council’s role in environmental education showed the Council was on the right track, it just needed to align its work better to achieve its community outcomes and focus on priorities.

“The use of education is an important part of our services and activities for achieving social change and our community outcomes,” Councillor Bennett said.

“The review recommended it continue to use education as a tool but better aligned with our priorities and refocusing on community engagement of which education is just one part,” she said.

Community Relations Manager Bronwyn Campbell said the Council already worked well with schools, business and communities.

“Following the review we’ll continue work in these areas, but will make sure our work better integrates and focuses on our priorities. We’ll also improve our reporting so that we can be sure we’re getting the best gains from our efforts.”

“We’re already looking at ways to improve our evaluation processes, how we measure performance and how we report to our executive and council,” Ms Campbell said.

“We’re also looking to refocus our Sustainable Communities work to better align to the Council’s priorities and to also work closer with staff in other areas to help them better engage with communities.

“In the sustainable business area, we’re already strengthening our relationship and involvement with the Bay of Plenty Sustainable Business Network. We’ve agreed to significantly improved reporting and this will be put in place through a contract which will be reviewed annually,” Ms Campbell said.


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