Submissions are now closed.
The Waikato District Council is now waiting for the Local Government Commission's final determination for the representation arrangements that will apply to the 2019 government elections.
In 2017, Council made two decisions in relation to its representation arrangements:
- The decision to retain the first-past-the-post electoral system (August 2017)
- The decision not to include Maaori wards in the Waikato District (November 2017).
To inform the Initial Proposal, a number of workshops with key stakeholders were undertaken. Community board/community committee/iwi workshops were held in Tuakau, Raglan, Tamahere, Pokeno, and Ngaruawahia.
The Waikato District Council 2018 Representation Review Initial Proposal was publicly notified for submissions on 20 June 2018.
- 19 submissions indicated their support of the Initial Proposal
- 126 submissions indicated that they did not support the Initial Proposal
- A number of submissions did not support moving the village of Rangiriri to the Huntly Ward (from the Whangamarino Ward)
- A number of submissions supported the proposal to split the Onewhero-Tuakau Community Board
- The majority of submissions did not support splitting the Onewhero-Tuakau Community Board.
As a result of public submissions received, the Council has decided that it will not proceed with its initial proposal to shift Mercer from Awaroa ki Tuakau Ward into Whangamarino Ward, nor to move Rangiriri from Whangamarino Ward to Hukanui-Waerenga Ward.
Also as a result of submissions received, the Council has decided against disestablishing the Onewhero-Tuakau Community Board and splitting it into two new bodies. Instead the final proposal extends the size of the Community Board to take in areas surrounding Tuakau that were originally intended to be part of a separate Tuakau Community Board under the initial proposal.
Reasons for the support or rejection of submissions on the final proposal
In response to the submissions that were received Council has amended the Initial Proposal as the Final Proposal:
- Retain Rangiriri in the Whangamarino Ward, from the Huntly Ward.
- Retain Mercer in the Awaroa ki Tuakau Ward, from the Whangamarino Ward (exceeding fair representation rules set out in the LEA).
- Retain Onewhero-Tuakau Community Board’s current structure and board area with the inclusion of the extended Tuakau north and west boundary by incorporating the entire meshblocks.
Local Government Commission Decision-Outcome of the Waikato District Council 2018 Representation Review
Council received 3 appeals to its Final Proposal; Council also made its own appeal by exceeding the fair representation criteria set out in the Local Electoral Act (see council report for the Final Proposal for details). Meaning that the whole review was sent to the Local Government Commission for their determination on the Waikato Districts representation arrangements.
A hearing was held in Ngaruawahia in February, 2019, where the Commission listened to and considered all submitters that had made appeals to the Final Proposal.
The Commission announced its decision in April, 2019, to largely endorse Councils Final Proposal, saying that the proposed arrangements, with some further minor boundary alterations provided a good balance between fair and effective representation arrangements set out in legislation. In response to an appeal, the Commission have made the following boundary alteration:
- The meshblock containing the Mercer Airfield will be moved from the Whangamarino Ward to the Awaroa ki Tuakau Ward, where the village of Mercer is. This will keep the Mercer community of interest together.
This means that for the 2019 local authority elections, Waikato District Council will continue to comprise of 13 Councilors elected from 10 wards, with the Mayor elected at large. The Commission also endorsed Council’s proposal to retain all 5 of its community boards, with an extension to the Onewhero-Tuakau Community Board area.
The Initial Proposal split the current Onewhero-Tuakau Community Board (OTCB) into a Tuakau Community Board and a Onewhero Community Committee. The majority of responses received on the Initial Proposal did not support this. A key issue in this regard from submissions was that the proposed Onewhero Community Committee would not receive the same funding that they would if the area stayed a part of the current OTCB.
Appeals and objections
Any person who made a submission on the Waikato District Council 2018 Representation Review Initial Proposal may lodge an appeal against the Council’s Final Proposal in accordance with section 19O of the LEA. The appeal must contain issues/matters raised in the appellant’s submission on the Initial Proposal.
As Council has chosen to amend the Initial Proposal, any person may lodge an objection against the Final Proposal in accordance with section 19P of the LEA. The objection lodged must identify the matters to which it relates.
Appeals and objections must be made in writing to Waikato District Council by 5pm 12 October 2018 and must include your name and contact details.
Download a submission form (found below) and send it to us via:
the enclosed submission form to:
Attn: Corporate Planner
Private Bag 544