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Four-year Council Terms Must Come With Right Of Recall

Commenting on reports that former National Minister and current Mayor of Nelson, Nick Smith, will chair a group exploring local government electoral system reforms, Taxpayers’ Union Head of Campaigns, Callum Purves, said:

“Ratepayers across the country are rightly frustrated by a toxic combination of sky-high rates hikes, wasteful spending and cuts to core council services. Three-year terms are one of the few checks and balances voters have on councils when they fail to keep their election promises.

“If four-year terms are to be introduced, they must come with the right of recall so that voters have the opportunity to kick out poorly performing elected officials. This would raise the political cost of squeezing ratepayers until the pips squeak and focus minds to deliver more efficient services.

“The group must also ensure that it properly consults the public on all options it is considering so that people across New Zealand can have their say on any proposed reforms. Any campaign for four-year terms will not attract public support if it is led by the very politicians who would benefit."

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