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National’s “supercity” policy lies

Written By: - Date published: 9:38 am, May 22nd, 2009 - 8 comments
Categories: auckland supercity, national - Tags:

democracy-under-attack

Remember – March against National’s undemocractic supercity Monday 25th, noon, Queen St

Interesting to look back at National’s local government and Auckland policy before the election. Their 2005 policy was still up on their web site in early 2008:

National will advance local government reorganisation on a case-by-case basis. We do not subscribe to the view that big is necessarily better, and note that some of the highest consumer satisfaction surveys come from small councils. We believe that the greatest gains can be made by clarifying the roles between district and regional councils.

They seem to have changed their minds on the first point, because now we’re told that big is necessarily better. But they kept their word on clarifying the roles of councils. In Auckland regional councils get terminated, it doesn’t get any clearer than that.

Let’s have a look at National’s 2008 policy, which is more specific about Auckland:

Local government reform in Auckland should focus on whether there is good regional infrastructure, sound and consistent regulation, and economic growth throughout the region, as well as making sure each community in our biggest city feels appropriately represented . A National Government will work through these issues with local government to find a solution that will benefit both Auckland and ultimately the rest of New Zealand.

National will:

Support the Royal Commission providing an opportunity for people within the Auckland region to express their views about the structures that will best achieve the goals set out above.

Consult with Aucklanders once the findings of the Royal Commission are known..

Instead of supporting the work of the Royal Commission they chucked it in the bin. Instead of consulting with Aucklanders National and ACT have made it quite clear that the decisions have already been made. Instead of “making sure each community in our biggest city feels appropriately represented” they are ignoring community voices and the current democratically elected mayors that represent them. National’s pre-election promises and policies on local government and Auckland weren’t worth the paper they were printed on.

8 comments on “National’s “supercity” policy lies ”

  1. tsmithfield 1

    “They seem to have changed their minds on the first point, because now we’re told that big is necessarily better. But they kept their word on clarifying the roles of councils. In Auckland regional councils get terminated, it doesn’t get any clearer than that.”

    Well, as I understand it the new staffing structure will be smaller numerically than the combined number of staff in the individual councils. (According to John Banks 40% less). So the new structure will be smaller than the previous structure.

    • Macro 1.1

      Well, as I understand it the new staffing structure will be smaller numerically than the combined number of staff in the individual councils. (According to John Banks 40% less). So the new structure will be smaller than the previous structure.
      And that means “better”??
      How does a person living in say Matheson Bay (RDC) get to feel that the staff in some high-rise in Auckland CBD are working for them???

  2. When does the submission period start for people making submissions to the select committee?

    I have started a clause-by-clause analysis of the Super City Bill. Hopefully some guidance/discussion around it can help a large number of people make good and effective submissions and get the bill changed to something that is at least half reasonable.

    http://transportblog.co.nz/2009/05/21/super-city-analysis/

    • Margaret 2.1

      Any time you want to start writing submissions is the right time, I have been told it would be a good idea to make sure all submissions are in by end of June, As a safety net.
      There is a longer time period than that. Could be end of July, but don’t wait. till the last minute.

  3. Natpicker 3

    You could be a little cynical here and ask, “Given that Wodders is the ring master and has his own agenda WILL submissions make any difference?”

    Maybe they will make a difference (which would explain Wodders indecent haste to rush through the bill and appoint his mates so as to avoid these nasty encumberances) or maybe not if his Nat colleagues think that it will be electorally survivable to piss of west and south Auckland to this degree.

    Lets see how Shonkee jumps, whether he has a money markets mans appetite for risk with somebody elses money.

  4. Natpicker, yes that is definitely an issue but we really need to try. Good submissions would propose an alternative that is significant yet also palatable to the government. I absolutely think that we can rid the Auckland Council of at large councillors through the submissions process – and also hopefully give the local boards some real power.

    Furthermore, if there are 20,000 submissions on this bill then the select committee hearing everyone are going to be totally screwed. It’ll be mid 2010 by the time they get through them, particularly as I suspect National will be cautious about doing “an RMA” with the select committee this time around.

    I have done some more Super City bill analysis here: http://transportblog.co.nz/2009/05/22/super-city-analysis-ii/

  5. john 5

    People of the Left should not think that Auckland is the only Local Council being looked at by Nationals beady little eyes.
    A story in the Waikato Times recently stated that council around the Waikato/Waipa had been having secret meetings.
    One assume that the amalgamation of huge areas would have been discussd . We will never know because no minutes have been kept,
    My suspicious mind tell me that only two issues need secrecy
    amalgamation and privatization. ( the two go together )
    Its interesting that the Tory /National party member, Mayor of Hamilton has just recently suggested amalgmation ..

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