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Minister announces decisions on third Auck bill

Minister announces decisions on third Auckland bill

Hon Rodney Hide,
Minister of Lcoal Government
Thursday 3 December 2009

Local Government Minister Rodney Hide has announced Cabinet decisions for a third bill to complete the legislative framework for the reform of Auckland’s governance.

Rodney Hide has already brought two bills to parliament, which began the work of creating a new Auckland Council to replace the region’s existing eight councils.

"The two previous Bills have been about the what - the structure Auckland’s new Council will have, and the who - the power and roles of the mayor, councillors and local board members. This Bill is about the how", said Mr Hide.

The third bill will
• transfer Auckland’s assets and liabilities to the new Council
• protect the interests of staff who move from the old councils to the new Council
• give the new Council the powers it needs to be up and running on 1 November 2010, while ensuring that change can occur smoothly.
Cabinet made further decisions on details for the operation of local boards. It also put in place a process for the creation of new Council Controlled Organisations, and made decisions that will lead to a statutory board to represent the interests of Maori, with specific recognition of the rights of the mana whenua of Auckland.

Arrangements will be made for a Pacific advisory panel and an ethnic advisory panel to have input into Council decision making. Transition provisions for staff, assets and liabilities are also included, along with details of how Auckland will move from eight planning and rating processes to just one.

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"Less than a year from now, Aucklanders get to vote for a mayor and councillors for all Aucklanders, and for local boards with real local authority", said Mr Hide.

"After 50 years of meandering debate, a government has finally acted to meet the needs of Auckland. I will be proud to introduce the third bill before the end of the year, and look forward to it being considered at a select committee."

Cabinet papers covering these decisions will be published as soon as possible on www.dia.govt.nz

ENDS

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