Voting papers arrive this week for local body elections – regional councils, city and district councils, community boards and local boards, district health boards and licensing trusts.
Local elections have a lower turnout than general elections, which is a shame given how much impact local authorities have on New Zealand. For example, regional councils’ are the authority responsible for rivers and lakes, and are an important intervention point for clean waterways. It’s worth voting this year on that alone. Getting pro-environment councillors across all councils would make a huge difference on both water and climate change responses.
For those of us trying to make sense of local candidates here are some resources on where candidates stand.
The Spinoff have a list of climate deniers, fudgers, and prevaricators.
The Spinoff are also hosting a website that looks at candidates and policies. We can search by residential address to see which elections and candidates are in play for where we live.
Stuff have lists of city, district and regional councils and the candidate answers to eleven questions plus a statement on climate change.
Common Climate Network have Local Government Scorecards that rate each candidate based on answers to questions about climate change and governance.
Not all candidates are covered (some don’t respond), but candidate bios/statements can usually be found on the local council websites.
If you’re not enrolled, or are unsure, details on how to enroll and vote are here. Enrollments close Friday 11th October, and last day to vote is Saturday 12th October (by midday). Voting is postal or by going to a polling station (local councils will have details on where). If you have trouble voting there are other options here.
For voting that uses an STV system, there is a post here on how to vote effectively using STV.