New mapping tool to help with representation review

12 March 2021

Waikato District Council is asking for input on potential representation arrangements for the 2022 local government elections as part of its representation review. This is a chance for the community to put forward suggestions on how they want wards, community boards and elected members arranged.

At least once every six years Council is required to undertake a review of the current representation. This is to ensure fair and effective representation for people and their communities, provide an effective voice, strengthen local democracy and help maintain confidence in local government.

As part of the final stage of early engagement for the representation review project which we’ve named Reshape Waikato, we are releasing a geographic information system (GIS) tool that allows the public to create community board and ward models.  

The online tool has an accurate map and population data for the Waikato district that enables the user to create a model that is compliant with the Local Electoral Act 2001 + / - 10% rule.  This rule makes sure that fair representation is achieved and that each councillor represents an equal number of people, or are within 10% of each other.

On the Shape Waikato representation review page there is a set of instructions on how to use the tool and EMTEL (the creators of the tool) have some useful videos to explain the different aspects within the tool.

For those that may find the tool difficult to use, there will be the paper equivalent in our offices and libraries which we used in our earlier stages of engagement.

The tool will be open from Wednesday 3 March to Monday 5 April and the models provided by the community will be used to help our Council to decide on their initial proposal for representation arrangements in the middle of this year.

To find out more about the Reshape Waikato, find the instructions for the tool and access the tool check out https://shape.waikatodistrict.govt.nz/reshape-waikato or visit one of our offices or libraries for the paper copy.