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New Queenstown Lakes District Council Takes Office

New Queenstown Lakes District Council Takes Office

Queenstown Lakes District’s incoming Mayor and Councillors officially took up their roles this afternoon after taking the oath of office at the inaugural meeting.

Newly elected Mayor Jim Boult’s first official act was to announce the appointment of Cr Calum MacLeod as Deputy Mayor. Cr MacLeod was the highest polling Councillor in the Wanaka Ward election and is returning for his second term on the Council.

Mayor Boult said his choice of Cr MacLeod as his deputy was based on the potential for a solid working relationship, as much as by the recent convention of Queenstown-based Mayors choosing Wanaka-based deputies. “It was not an automatic choice as we have a particularly capable group of Councillors and they all bring valuable attributes to the table. I am confident that Cr MacLeod and I will have a solid working relationship. He is an experienced, respected representative and takes a pragmatic approach to finding solutions. We have common views on many important topics and where our perspectives differ, I know that we will respect each other’s opinions.”

Mayor Boult also announced the establishment of four standing committees, which will come into effect from January 2017. He said the short delay would allow Council staff to draft terms of reference and delegated authority for the committee structure.

The new committees are:
· Planning and Strategy, to be chaired by Cr Tony Hill;
· Finance, Audit and Risk, to be chaired by Cr Ross McRobie;
· Infrastructure, to be chaired by Cr Alexa Forbes; and
· Community and Services, to be chaired by Cr Scott Stevens.

Mayor Boult said he believed committees provided for more in-depth analysis of important issues, which would enable the Council to carry out its business more effectively. The decision reflected the views of incoming Councillors, as well as his own preference.

The reintroduction of standing committees comes with a shift to a six-weekly meeting cycle. Mayor Boult said that the Council would meet regularly in Wanaka, as well as in Queenstown. The first ordinary meeting of the Council is scheduled for November 24.


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