Home » Commission news & contact information » Newsletter » Local Government Commission - Update 17 September 2014

Local Government Commission - Update 17 September 2014

Greetings and welcome to the latest Local Government Commission newsletter. The newsletter provides information and updates relevant to the work of the Commission. It focuses on local government structures, performance and good practice generally.

Details for how to unsubscribe or how to contact us for more information can be found at the end of the newsletter.

REPRESENTATION REVIEWS – NEW GUIDELINES

The Commission is preparing new guidelines to assist local authorities carrying out representation reviews before the 2016 triennial elections. A draft version of the guidelines was presented to local authority managers who attended the SOLGM Representation Review Forum in Wellington during August. The guidelines will undergo minor formatting revisions before they are Gazetted and published on the Commission’s website. The guidelines will replace the 4th edition published in October 2011.

MAORI ELECTORAL POPULATION

A new spreadsheet has been prepared by the Commission to incorporate updated population data regarding Maori wards and constituencies.

The document shows the number of members who would be elected from Maori wards and General wards if Maori wards were adopted by regional, city or district councils.

The table assumes that the current total membership of the council would remain unchanged. The populations are the Maori Electoral Population (MEP) and the General Electoral Population (GEP) estimated by Statistics New Zealand as at 30 June 2013. The spreadsheet is available on request from info@lgc.govt.nz 

REORGANISATION AND LOCAL BOARDS

Further reforms were made to the Local Government Act 2002 by Parliament during August. Some of the amendments impact on the reorganisation work of the Local Government Commission. The changes mean local boards will now be more widely available as an option.

The changes enable the Local Government Commission to: (i) consider the option of local boards during any proposed reorganisation, and establish them as part of new unitary authorities; and (ii) consider establishing local boards in existing unitary authorities, and deal with these proposals through a shorter reorganisation process.

A Question and Answer sheet about local boards is available at the Department of Internal Affairs website. Further background about the wider legislative reform package is available here.

NEW ROLES FOR STAFF

The CEO Donald Riezebos has been appointed to a newly created position as Principal Advisor to the Commission.

Donald will be responsible for the provision of high-level specialist advice at a demanding time of change for the local government sector. The Principal Advisor position will utilise Donald’s extensive knowledge and hands-on experience of local government administration.

An interim CEO will step into the vacancy until a permanent appointment is made. Mark Batt, an experienced manager with a background in public sector policy development, project management and legislative and regulatory matters will take on the position in the short term.

NEW WEBSITE

The Commission, with support from the Department of Internal Affairs, has recently been testing a new website through its development phase. It anticipates going live with the new site during September 2014. The website will be hosted on the existing url: lgc.govt.nz.

CONTACT DETAILS

Local Government Commission
Mana Kāwanatanga Ā Rohe
PO Box 5362
Wellington 6145
New Zealand
Phone: +64 4 4602228 Fax: +64 4 4940501
E-mail: info@lgc.govt.nz Web: www.lgc.govt.nz