I Am Going To Have A Conniption

30 Jul

Two days after submissions on the LG Amendment close, ICC run this in the Southland Times.  What logic is being used?  Highlighting this issue now means residents cannot submit to the Select Committee yet ICC will ‘present your views’.  Why not allow the residents to present their own views?  If you are right, they too will be outraged and support the council view and the Select Committee will have be inundated by submissions from  strong, resilient Southlanders that are (God forbid) both supported by and supporting their Councils.

Dare I say, ILT have handled it far better.  They have enlisted the support of the community to submit alongside them.  A gambling amendment is out for consultation until August 12.  ILT sent this letter to grant recipients asking for their support.

It looks like ICC want to entrench themselves between the residents and the Select Committee.  Can we not be trusted to speak for ourselves, directly?

Separate from how this is being handled is the misinformation.  I am most definitely having a conniption!  The breakdown will have to wait for another post.

 

Nb: I do want to add, it is not, nor has it ever been known as Better Local Services Bill.  It is the Better Local Services reform package.  It is being implemented through the Local Government Amendment (no 2) Act 2016.  I am pedantic and make no apology for it.  LOL

 

Seriously?

29 Jul

I hadn’t intended to blog today but FFS!!!!

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I am regularly asked by people, how they can speak, how long can you speak…etc…and, often, can I attend a meeting?  A lot of people are not ‘geeky’ like me, they don’t read the legislation.  It should be easy to know how they can be involved.  This doesn’t even mention the ability to request to speak. Only those INVITED to speak.  I know people that would think they can NOT approach Council to speak.

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ICHL

28 Jul

As Realist said, the last Finance and Policy meeting had proposed Holdco constitutional changes in PE.  Now we have the Report of Ian Pottinger regarding the Holdco constitution in PE.

I, however, am hoping the Southland Times are doing some investigative journalism on this:

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What do they need approval for?  Oh dear.

Meeting Agenda Is Up

28 Jul

Give ’em shit, Rangi.  Don’t know why it is in PE, though.  Some insight would be nice.  If Rangi is just suggesting a change, that is not negotiations.

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2016/2017 Annual Plan

28 Jul

I just received a copy of the 2016/2017 Annual Plan in the mail, unsolicited.  Thanks, I suppose.  As a rule, I prefer electronic information, though.  It is on their website too, of course.  It is funny to think back 5+ years ago.  I spent significant time and effort getting Council to upload documents, make agendas available.  The battle for tabled documents is not yet over but has improved.  If I seem too nice (or quiet) about Council sometimes it is probably because I am aware of how BAD it was!

My Submission So Far

27 Jul

This is what I have so far and have not submitted yet.  I will no doubt have an epiphany some time today and submissions don’t close until tomorrow.

Feedback appreciated.

Introduction
I only became aware of the amendment at the start of the school holidays.  As a mother of four, my attention was elsewhere and I was unable to read every clause and consultation document.  As a candidate in the upcoming local body elections and a long-term ‘council watcher’, I think it is vital that the ramifications are understood. The ramifications have not been articulated very well, in my opinion.  I appreciate the extensive documentation provided on dia.govt.nz.  This information is, however, the ‘sales pitch’ and more general discussion needs to be undertaken.  Less than two months after its first reading, submissions are closing. 

Key points
I OPPOSE the bill as it stands because I would like a longer consultation period.
I support Clause 23 with regard to appointments of directors.  I believe it could go further and prevent any elected members serving as directors on ANY CCO’s.
I would like confirmation that no reorganisation proposal goes ahead WITHOUT the support of the community.
I support the LGC being able to investigate reorganisation options yet reiterate the need for the final decision to lie with electors in that area.
I endorse the checks and balances placed on the LGC.

Comment
I appreciate the intention of the bill but feel the CCO framework will ‘close the doors’ to all eyes.  Unless CCO’s minutes and meetings are open to all it will mean less oversight by residents.  In Southland we have many cases of councils working together.  Joint council initiatives do not seem unworkable as the LGA stands.  The primary issues around local government failures (and idiotic decisions) seem to be based on the fact that there are no consequences.  If residents had the ability to call councils to task when they are non-compliant we may see ‘better local services’.   Councils are not following legislation as it was intended, or sometimes even as it is written, and residents can do nothing.  The Auditor-General and Ombudsman are unable to keep up and councils know that.  Any complaint to these organisations will take too long and councils will have already implemented their dodgy schemes using processes that are sometimes in opposition to the legislation, either directly or indirectly.  I support our current LGA, for the most part, but it is not being utilised correctly by councils.

Future Local Government Priority

ENSURING COUNCILS ARE BEING HELD TO ACCOUNT AND ADHERING TO CURRENT LEGISLATION.

I would like to mention that a strike-through system for amended clauses would be a lot easier.  Comparing clauses in amendments is very difficult.

A Target Is Not A Plan

27 Jul

While reading the online print version of the Southland Times this jumped out at me.

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I zoomed in, expecting to read more about SoRD’s.  It turned out to be an editorial about the DoC predator target.  Silly me, The Southland Times wouldn’t openly oppose SoRD’s.  According to them, Tom Campbell is the ‘go-to guy’ on everything Southland.  I am at a loss to know why, though.

In another article, Tom Campbell is lauding a ‘golden square’.  Is he investing in any of those properties?  Will he be doing the hard yards?  Who is SoRD’s or Tom Campbell to dictate?  How about all of those SoRD’s ‘delivery agencies’ get their shit together before orchestrating businesses.    SoRD’s is the definition of the statement above yet nearly every day it is referred to.  Currently, SoRD’s has a target and that is it!!!  Action teams have not yet reported back.  Nothing is decided and who knows, it might just be the collective vision of vested interests.

I better go now and put together my submission on the Local Government Amendment Act (No 2) 2016.  I hope our councils have.  Considering the MANY combined services Southland councils have, they better submit.  The Better Local Services reforms are designed to make combined services easier.  I have not yet found the ‘fishhooks’ that some elected members have expressed concern for.  The Commission can only investigate to my knowledge.  All roads lead to a poll (except a Council-led reorganisation?)  Speak now or forever hold your peace…

 

 

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