Even more local body elections advice

Written By: - Date published: 6:09 pm, September 26th, 2016 - 12 comments
Categories: local body elections, local government - Tags:

Since first posting Who should you vote for? a week ago I’ve been directed to even more endorsement lists and voting guides for local body candidates up and down the country. So if you still don’t know who to vote for, check them out.

Originally posted at Boots Theory.

Candidates supporting Jobs That Count

These candidates have pledged to stand up for good jobs, strong communities and a clean environment.

Candidates supporting a Living Wage

The Living Wage Movement is calling on council candidates around the country to support a Living Wage for directly employed workers and for contracted workers delivering services on a regular and ongoing basis.

Candidates supporting the environment

Generation Zero has put together comprehensive scorecards on a range of environmental issues and collated them on a nice little website.

Candidates supporting children

Tick for Kids is calling on all candidates nationwide to prioritise policies that will improve child wellbeing.

Labour Party candidates

Green Party candidates

By far the most comprehensive list! Key campaigns are also being run in:


As part of their ongoing War for Auckland, The Spinoff have created an endorsement tool – click here!

Bike Auckland has a list of cycling-friendly candidates.

The Ratepayers Alliance (groan) endorses 25 candidates who pledge to keep average rates increases below 2%.

Look, I said I'd link to rightwing endorsement lists, but I don't have to be happy about it.

Look, I said I’d link to rightwing endorsement lists, but I don’t have to be happy about it.


Wellingtonista’s local body survey is legendary. This year they’ve had just three responses – from Diane Calvert, Justin Lester and Troy Mihaka – based on a strategy of “we’re volunteers, we aren’t working ourselves to death to help you lot get good PR.” But they make for great reading, so check them out.

The Wellington branch of the Public Health Association have a scorecard for candidates running for Capital & Coast District Health Board.

Renters United surveyed and scored Wellington mayoral candidates on renting and homelessness.

Cycle Aware Wellington surveyed candidates for Wellington City Council and Greater Wellington Regional Council on, obviously, cycling issue. The pro-Island Bay Cycleway group did their own rankings too.

Western Bay of Plenty-specific: Closing the Gap

Closing the Gap surveyed all candidates running in the Western Bay of Plenty district as an example of how to get information about local government elections.


E tū and Living Wage Aotearoa have surveyed local body candidates in Taranaki. PDF here.

Other online tools

Vote Local have produced an app which suggests voting preferences for folk in Auckland, Palmerston North and Wellington based on a range of questions.


Let me know in the comments if there are any other good endorsement sets out there!

12 comments on “Even more local body elections advice”

  1. James 1

    I loved the GIF in the post – that actually made me laugh out loud. Very good.

  2. Bill 2

    Curious on other’s take with regards Chris Trotter’s piece on Gen Zero and Mike Lee and, further, the criteria being used by both the Spin Off and Gen Zero to determine which candidates are okay and which aren’t.


    • Pasupial 2.1

      Trotter’s critique seems to be fair enough regarding the Spinoff. There’s not much evidence of fault on Generation Zero’s front though (apart from letting the Spinoff rag use their research for their own purposes).

      Generation Zero give Rob Thomas an A minus, and both Mike Lee and Bill Ralston a B minus (with Lee fractionally ahead, maybe just alphabetically) in the Waitemata & Gulf ward. The Spinoff translate that into an endorsement for Ralston, which makes me regret that I didn’t have any respect for them to lose.

      The category weighting is; 50% Transport, 20% Housing, 15% Environment (/climate change), & 15% Competence. Lee was mainly marked down on the Housing and Competence categories.


    • I think the Spinoff explained their reasoning regarding Lee pretty clearly:

      This endorsement is more anti-Mike Lee than pro-Bill Ralston.

      Lee has been a great ally for public transport over the years, and a supporter of the City Rail Link. But his performance at the Unitary Plan hearings could euphemistically be described as utterly appalling. He voted against upzoning the central city; deleting unneeded heritage protections; the removal of density controls. He voted “no” nearly double the number of times of any other councillor, and in the most crucial areas of the Plan.

      Trotter’s argument seems to be “Mike Lee has done great things in the past so how dare you not love everything he does.” That’s not particularly compelling to me.

      Martyn Bradbury is currently on the warpath against the Spinoff (“cash for copy”, “blue-green millennial” etc) so I take anything published on The Daily Blog about it with a gigantic grain of salt.

      • Bill 2.2.1

        Wasn’t really thinking in terms of Ralston.

        In between me submitting the comment above and your response, I had a look at Dunedin mayor endorsements to see what was what. Way it read to me was that very subjective criteria was being used and although they (Gen Zero) outlined or sketched out some of the reasoning behind marking someone up or down, there was no access to what candidates actually said.

        eg – not mentioning infrastructure and climate change in relation to S. Dunedin would see a candidate marked down. But since S.Dunedin is history and no amount of infrastructure improvement will save it, then (arguably) Gen Zero are endorsing people with unrealistic proposals even though they state they only want realistic proposals.

        Giving pointers is good. But there’s a ‘gatekeeper’ feel to some of it.

        • adam

          I’ve gone right off Gen Zero, the Trotter piece was the final nail for me. Just utter waffle the last few times I’ve read them. Tired centrist crap. Too much in love with the unitary plan, which is a deeply flawed. No matter how much they try to spin it.

          • Bill

            When I read their CC stuff a while back…yeah, they’re peddling a line that things can essentially carry on as normal in the face of CC. So they went into that CC box marked ‘depressing waste of time’ alongside Greenpeace and others.

            But this leverage they’re seeking to take advantage of now and how they’re doing it, alongside the fact that they’re locked into a ‘pretend and extend’ mind set with, it appears, a large resource base and a degree of pre-existing influence riding off the back of many people mistakenly viewing them as ‘neutral’ and merely ‘concerned’, I dunno…I’m thinking they might be a little bit dangerous.

            They could divert a lot of energies all of the way up the garden path.

      • Pat 2.2.2

        “This endorsement is more anti-Mike Lee than pro-Bill Ralston.”

        a curious statement given the only thing placing Ralston anywhere near Lees score is a bizarre 12/15 competence rating…..go figure

  3. Pasupial 3

    Thanks for taking the time to collate this.

    The Generation Zero site now has ratings for all mayoral candidates in Dunedin. And have apparently; “built a political compass to help guide your decisions of all 43(!) council candidate nominations” (which I take to mean that it’s up to the reader to do it themself).

    It is not without flaws, eg; under competence Hawkins has the obscure phrase; “Personable one-on-one social skills is the sole publically expressed downfall of Aaron”, which doesn’t seem to have any specific meaning (they still gave him an A for that category though). Worse, they seemed to willing to believe anything the Whiley Coyote said. And didn’t point out which two candidates are standing for Mayor only (Timmings & Bayne) who thus will be down the bottom of my rankings given their lack of commitment to the place if they can’t be bossman.

    Also, Generation Zero has Palmerston North city council ratings too, but I don’t know anything about them. About a week ago NRT had a piece on their opinion of that election which may be valuable for anyone thereabouts:


    • Cheers Pasupial, I’ll update the list accordingly.

    • Pasupial 3.2

      There was a story in today’s ODT about the Gen Zero ranking of mayoral candidates. Not too surprisingly; the current mayor who got an A-plus (equal with the GP candidate) was happy, while; a candidate who was tied for last (on D) was upset. For context; Stedman is an excop realtor who was the sole candidate who didn’t even bother turning up to last night’s Unions Otago Mayoral Candidates Forum:

      The rankings were based on five areas that included climate leadership, transportation and “political competence”… Candidates scored well if they agreed with Generation Zero’s values.

      Spokesman Finn Campbell said it was put together because there were few good ways to get information about candidates, and the number of young people voting was “really low”…

      Mr Campbell said other regions had sent questions to candidates, but in Dunedin there were only three people who could commit to the project, and they had “gone non-stop for a week to gather information”.

      The group had put together scorecards from information from mayoral forums, social media profiles and print media stories, including candidate profiles.


  4. Keith 4

    I’ve voted but…

    Since National created Auckland Council and gave us without choice, Council Controlled Organisations, that really is the Auckland Council that essentially do what they like with our money without democratic oversight and are not answerable to elected representatives……what is the point?

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