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Auckland governance - Democracy in action

22 April
Collins Comments
Auckland governance - Democracy in action

Democracy is alive and well in Auckland. In the weeks since the Royal Commission recommended the formation of a new, single Auckland council, people throughout the city have been making their views heard on the idea.

The Government agrees with the Royal Commission that streamlining local government with a single council supported by 20 or 30 local boards throughout the region will be key to providing the leadership, facilities and services that will meet the community’s needs into the future.

Under the new structure, Papakura will be within the Auckland Council boundaries. Papakura residents will get to vote for the Auckland Council Mayor and councillors in October 2010. The boundaries for the wards will be decided by the Local Government Commission by April 2010.

The local community will be represented at a local level by a Local Board. Voters will be able to elect representatives on these boards in the local elections in October 2010.

This will mean the end of the existing councils, including the Papakura District Council. Papakura Mayor Calum Penrose has expressed his reservations about the new structure and has called a public meeting at Accent Point at 7pm on Monday, 4 May to discuss the proposal. I will be at the meeting to update you and to listen to your views.

The governance plan affects the lives of everyone who lives in Auckland, and it’s important that everyone’s views are heard.
A detailed planning programme is being carried out to implement the new structure, as well as drafting of legislation to put the new structures in place in time for the 2010 local government election.

The first step is to pass legislation to enable the Establishment Board to be set up. This Board will head up the transition team and be responsible for ensuring all Aucklanders are updated on the process.

In the coming months there will be an opportunity for everyone in the community to make submissions to a Parliamentary Select Committee that will be examining the draft legislation introducing the structural changes, and report back to Parliament.

New Zealand’s success relies on Auckland’s success. It is critical that we get a governance structure that makes it a vibrant and dynamic city, but also a great place to live and raise our families.

I would encourage you to have your say.

Hon Judith Collins
MP for Papakura

ENDS

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