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Notice is hereby given that a Meeting of the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee will be held on:

 

Date:                      

Time:

Meeting Room:

Venue:

 

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

6.30pm

Waikaia Community Centre
33 Wylam Street, Waikaia

 

Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee Agenda

 

OPEN

 

 

 

MEMBERSHIP

 

Members

Graeme Coats

 

 

Ray Dickson

 

 

Michael Lobb

 

 

Corey McDowell

 

 

Robin Stevenson

 

 

Shirley Walker

 

Councillor

Brian Dillon

 

 

IN ATTENDANCE

 

Committee Advisor

Rose Knowles

 

Community Partnership Leader

Kelly Tagg

 

 

 

 

Contact Telephone: 0800 732 732

Postal Address: PO Box 903, Invercargill 9840

Email: emailsdc@southlanddc.govt.nz

Website: www.southlanddc.govt.nz

 

Full agendas are available on Council’s Website

www.southlanddc.govt.nz

 

 

 


Terms of Reference - Community Development Area Subcommittees

 

Community Development Area Subcommittees are delegated the following responsibilities by the Southland District Council.

·                 Represent and act as an advocate for the interest of its community.

·                 Consider and reporting on all matters referred to it by the Southland District Council, or any matter of interest or concern to the Community Development Area Subcommittee;

·                 Maintain an overview of services provided by the Southland District Council within the community;

·                 Consider annual estimates for expenditure within the community and recommend these to Council;

·                 Communicate with community organisations and special interest groups within the community;

·                 Undertaking any other responsibilities that are delegated to it by the Southland District Council.

 

In addition to these activities, Community Development Area Subcommittees will consider how best to provide for our communities, and the people who live there, into the future.  

 

Community Development Area Subcommittees will provide leadership by:

·                 Positively representing their community and the Southland District;

·                 Identifying key issues that will affect their community’s future and work with Council staff and other local representatives to facilitate multi-agency collaborative opportunities.

·                 Promote a shared vision for the wider community of interest area and develop ways to work with others to achieve positive outcomes

 

Community Development Area Subcommittees will adopt a strategic focus that will enable members to:

·                 Provide local representation and guidance on wider community issues, initiatives and projects.

·                 Contribute to the development and promotion of community cohesion, by developing and supporting relationships across a range of stakeholders at a local, regional and national level.

·                 Take part in local community forums, meetings and workshops.

·                 Inform local residents and ratepayers on issues that affect them.

 

Community Development Area Subcommittees shall have the following delegated powers and be accountable to Council for the exercising of these powers.

 

Engagement and representation

·                Facilitating the Council’s consultation with local residents and community groups on local issues and local aspects of district wide issues including input into the Long-term Plan, Annual Plan, and policies that impact on the Board’s area.

·                Engaging with council officers on local issues and levels of service, including infrastructural, recreational, community services and parks, reserves and cemetery matters.

·                Representing the interests of the community at Council, Committee or Subcommittee meetings when a motion under debate relates to a matter that the Board considers to be of particular interest to the residents within its community.

·                Monitoring and keeping the Council informed of community aspirations and the level of satisfaction with services provided.

 

Financial

·                Approving expenditure within the limits of annual estimates.

·                Approving unbudgeted expenditure for locally funded activities up to the value of $10,000.

 

Rentals and leases

·                In relation to all leases of land and buildings within their own area, on behalf of Council;

§    Accepting the highest tenders for rentals of $10,000; or less per annum.

§    Approving the preferential allocation of leases where the rental is $10,000 or less per annum.

 

Local assets and facilities

·                  Overseeing the management of local halls and community centres which are owned by Council and where no management committee exists.  This will occur by way of relationship with officers of Southland District Council. 

·                  Appoint a local liaison person responsible for community housing.

 

The Community Development Area Subcommittees can make recommendations to Council on:

 

Assets and Facilities

·                Annually providing feedback on any asset management plans or community services strategies applicable to the community for which the Community Development Area Subcommittee is responsible.

 

Rentals and leases

·                In relation to all leases of land and buildings within their own area, on behalf of Council;

§    Recommending rentals in excess of $10,000 per annum to the Group Manager Services and Assets.

§    Recommending the preferential allocation of leases where the rental is in excess of $10,000 per annum to the Group Manager Services and Assets.

 

Contracts/Tenders

·                Recommending tenders less than $200,000 to the Group Manager Services and Assets.

·                Recommending tenders in excess of $200,000 to the Services and Assets Committee. 

·                Recommending tenders to the Services and Assets Committee where preference is not for acceptance of the highest tenderer,

 

Financial

·                Recommending annual estimates to Council

·                Recommending unbudgeted expenditure in excess of $10,000 to the Services and Assets Committee.

 

Local Policy

·                Considering matters referred to it by officers, the Council, its committees or subcommittees, including reports and policy and bylaw proposals relating to the provision of council services within the Board’s area; and

·                Making submissions or recommendations in response to those matters as appropriate. 

·                Appoint a local liaison person responsible for community housing.

 

The Chairperson of each Community Development Area Subcommittee is delegated with the following additional responsibilities:

·                 Approval of leases, rental agreements and the rollover of existing contracts under $1,000;

·                 Engaging with Community Development Area Subcommittee members to make submissions to the Council on behalf of the Community Development Area Subcommittee where a submission period is outside of the Community Development Area Subcommittee meeting cycle.  Where a Chairperson is unable to base a submission on a consensus among Community Development Area Subcommittee members, a Community Development Area Subcommittee meeting must be held. 

 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

ITEM                                                                                                                                   PAGE

Procedural

1          Apologies

2          Election of Chair and Deputy Chair                                                                             5

3          Leave of absence

4          Conflict of Interest

5          Public Forum

6          Extraordinary/Urgent Items

7          Confirmation of Minutes                                                                                                

Reports

8          General Explanation from Chief Executive                                                              13

9          Terms of Reference and Delegations 2017/2020                                                      15

10        Standing Orders                                                                                                          23

11        Elected Members Code of Conduct                                                                          87

12        Schedule of Meetings for 2017                                                                                 107

13        Council Report                                                                                                           111

 

updates

Councillor Dillon to report on activities from the District Council table.

 


Apologies

 

At the close of the agenda no apologies had been received.

 

Leave of absence

 

At the close of the agenda no requests for leave of absence had been received.

 

Conflict of Interest

 

Committee Members are reminded of the need to be vigilant to stand aside from decision-making when a conflict arises between their role as a member and any private or other external interest they might have.

 

Public Forum

Notification to speak is required by 5pm at least two days before the meeting. Further information is available on www.southlanddc.govt.nz or phoning 0800 732 732.

 

Extraordinary/Urgent Items

To consider, and if thought fit, to pass a resolution to permit the committee to consider any further items which do not appear on the Agenda of this meeting and/or the meeting to be held with the public excluded.

Such resolution is required to be made pursuant to Section 46A(7) of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987, and the Chairperson must advise:

(i)         the reason why the item was not on the Agenda, and

(ii)        the reason why the discussion of this item cannot be delayed until a subsequent meeting.

Section 46A(7A) of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (as amended) states:

“Where an item is not on the agenda for a meeting,-

(a)       that item may be discussed at that meeting if-

(i)         that item is a minor matter relating to the general business of the local authority; and

(ii)        the presiding member explains at the beginning of the meeting, at a time when it is open to the public, that the item will be discussed at the meeting; but

(b)       no resolution, decision or recommendation may be made in respect of that item except to refer that item to a subsequent meeting of the local authority for further discussion.”

 

Confirmation of Minutes

Meeting minutes of Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee, 20 March 2017

 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

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Election of Chair and Deputy Chair

Record No:        R/17/4/8785

Author:                 Rose Knowles, Committee Advisor/Customer Support Partner

Approved by:       Rex Capil, Group Manager Community and Futures

 

  Decision                              Recommendation                         Information

 

  

 

Purpose of Report

1        This report calls for the election of a Chairperson for the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee (CDA). 

2        The report also provides the opportunity for the CDA to appoint a Deputy Chairperson to act for the Chairperson if he or she is unable to perform his or her duties.

 

Background

3        The Southland District Council requires the election of a Chairperson to its CDAs.  The CDA may also wish to appoint a Deputy Chairperson who will be called on to fulfil the duties of the Chairperson if he or she is unable to perform his or her duties.  All CDA members are eligible to be nominated for these roles.

4        The system of voting for the position of Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson is “First Past the Post”.

5        There are no requirements for a formal nomination – the Councillor will call for nominations at the Inaugural Meeting of the CDA.  Members may be nominated for these roles in absentia, but cannot vote.

6        The term of office for the Chairperson and, if appointed, the Deputy Chairperson of the CDA shall be for the duration of the 2017/2020 triennium. However, a member may terminate (or have terminated) their office by:

·        Resigning as Chairperson or Deputy Chairperson.

·        A majority decision of the CDA.

·        A resolution of the CDA.

·        Being no longer eligible to hold office.

7        The Chairperson of the CDA is responsible for ensuring that the decisions of the Subcommittee are consistent with the powers delegated to it by Southland District Council.  The Chairperson is responsible for ensuring that the conduct of business is carried out in an orderly way and in accordance with Standing Orders, and any other statute that may apply from time-to-time.  The Chairperson is responsible for reviewing the business included in the agendas to ensure that matters that ought to be considered are included.

8        The Chairperson may be called on to act as an official spokesperson for the CDA on issues within its terms of reference and area of activity.

9        It is recommended that once elected the Chair undertake Chairs training and mentoring at the start of the triennium.

10      If the Chairperson is absent or incapacitated, the Deputy Chairperson must perform all of the responsibilities and duties, and exercise any powers, of the Chairperson:

·        with the consent of the Chairperson at any time during the temporary

·        absence of the Chairperson;

·        without that consent, at any time while the Chairperson is prevented by illness or some other cause from performing the responsibilities and duties, or exercising the powers, of his or her role;

·        while there is a vacancy for the role of Chairperson.

11      In the absence of proof to the contrary, a Deputy Chairperson acting as Chairperson is presumed to have the authority to do so.

12      A Deputy Chairperson continues to hold his or her position so long as he or she continues to be a member of the CDA or until the election of his or her successor, or until the close of the 2017/2020 triennium.

13      In accordance with voting procedures the CDA is called on to elect members to the position of Chairperson and, if it chooses to do so, to appoint a Deputy Chairperson.

 

 

Recommendation

That the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Election of Chair and Deputy Chair” dated 19 May 2017.

 

b)         Elects a Member to be Chair of the Subcommittee for the 2017/2020 Triennium.

 

c)         Elects a Member to be Deputy Chair of the Subcommittee for the 2017/2020 Triennium.

 

 

Attachments

There are no attachments for this report.  

 


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Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

 

OPEN MINUTES

 

 

 

Minutes of a meeting of Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee held in the Waikaia Community Centre, 33 Wylam Street, Waikaia on Monday, 20 March 2017 at 6.30pm.

 

 

present

 

Councillor Duffy

 

 

Ray Dickson

Mairi Dickson

 

 

Shirley Walker

 

 

Robin Stevenson

 

 

Mark Shirley

 

 

Cory McDowell

 

 

Michael Lobb

Wendy Lobb

Barry Lawrence

Colleen Moffatt

Graeme Coats

 

 

 

IN ATTENDANCE

 

 

Chief Executive Officer

Committee Advisor

Steve Ruru

Rose Knowles

Community Partnership Leader

Kelly Tagg


Welcome and Introduction

 

1          Councillor Duffy welcomed all present and thanked them for taking time out to participate in the local Waikaia Community Development Area election meeting.

 

He advised that Southland District Council approved at its 26 October 2016 meeting the Community Development Area Subcommittees Terms of Reference which clearly define the scope, membership, and delegations.  It is important to note is that Community Development Area Subcommittees are Subcommittees of Council and as a consequence of this they are part of the Council governance structure. Therefore as an elected representative Subcommittee members represent Council and are part of Council. Subcommittees are not “ratepayers associations” or Council “watchdogs” but in a positive and constructive way assist in contributing to Council delivery of quality services and activities for the betterment of the communities Council serves.  The Subcommittees operate as per the terms of reference and members are required to operate as per the Southland District Council Code of Conduct which all members for this triennium will receive as part of the first Subcommittee meeting and induction process for elected members

 

Councillor Duffy also advised that as part of the process for the new way of working for the Community Development Area Subcommittees and Community Boards, there is a Community Leadership Plan Workshop to be held on Wednesday 5 April 2017 at 6.00pm in the Conference room at the Riversdale Community Centre where the Subcommittee will be joined by the Balfour and Riversdale Community Development Area Subcommittees.  There are various other Workshops to be held in other locations across Southland for the remaining Community Boards and Community Development Area Subcommittees.

 

 

1          Apologies

 

Apologies were received from Councillor Dillon.

 

Moved R Dickson, seconded S Walker and resolved:

That the apology be accepted.

 

2          Chairperson’s Report

 

            The Chair, Mr Ray Dickson reported to the meeting on activities in the Township over the past three year term, which included; 

·         Lack of information on the new election process

·         Lawn Mowing Contractor to be replaced end of this year

·         Setting up of cycle trail meetings

·         Expression of thanks to all Members and Council staff

 

3          Public Forum

 

There were no Issues raised in Public Forum.

 

 

 

                  

4          Election

 

Councillor Duffy called for nominations from the public at the meeting for members of the Subcommittee for the 2016/2019 Triennium.

 

Nominee

Mover

Seconder

 

 

 

Robin Stevenson

Michael Lobb

Wendy Lobb

Ray Dickson

Shirley Walker

Graeme Coats

Shirley Walker

Ray Dickson

Mairi Dickson

Cory McDowell

Mairi Dickson

Robin Stevenson

Graeme Coats

Robin Stevenson

Michael Lobb

Michael Lobb

Cory McDowell

Graeme Coats

 

 

 

                  

  Moved Robin Stevenson, seconded Mairi Dickson that nominations be closed

 

  There being six nominations for the six positions an election was not necessary.

 

 

 

 

 

    The meeting concluded at 7.30pm.   CONFIRMED AS A TRUE AND CORRECT RECORD AT A MEETING OF THE Waikaia  Community Development Area Subcommittee HELD ON Thursday 20 march 2017.

 

 

 

DATE:...................................................................

 

 

 

CHAIRPERSON:...................................................

 

 

 

 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

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General Explanation from Chief Executive

Record No:        R/17/4/8786

Author:                 Rose Knowles, Committee Advisor/Customer Support Partner

Approved by:       Rex Capil, Group Manager Community and Futures

 

  Decision                              Recommendation                         Information

 

  

 

Purpose of Report

1.       The purpose of the report is to provide an explanation to elected members on certain legislation which controls the way in which the Council’s business may be conducted and the laws affecting elected members.

 

Background

2.       This general explanation related to the following pieces of legislation:

·        Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987

·        Local Authorities (Members’ Interests) Act 1968

·        Sections 99,105, and 105A of the Crimes Act 1961

·        Secret Commissions Act 1910

·        Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013.

 

3.       The information provided on the relevant legislation does not attempt to cover all the detailed points of the legislation, but brings to elected members attention the key issues affecting their role and functions as members of the Southland District Council for the 2017/2020 Triennium.

 

4.       The following is a brief description of each piece of Legislation outlined above.

 

5.       The Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (LGOIMA) governs the availability of information and is based on the principle that information should be made publicly available, unless one or more specific withholding grounds apply. Matters relating to requests and release of information are administered by officers of the Council.

 

6.       LGOIMA also sets meeting procedures and requirements.

 

These include:

·        The requirement to give public notice of meetings

·        The public availability of the agenda and supporting papers for meetings of the Council, and its committees and subcommittees

·        The circumstances when the Council may resolve to exclude the public from meetings, and the procedure that must be followed in such circumstances

·        The responsibility of the Chair to maintain order at meetings.

 

7.       Other laws affecting elected members which members must be aware of.

 

8.       The Local Authorities (Members’ Interests) Act 1968, which has two main aspects:

·        This Act prohibits certain contracts between the Council and its members, or with persons associated with its members. A breach results in loss of office.

 

·        This Act also prohibits an elected member from discussing or voting on an issue in which the member, directly or indirectly, has a pecuniary interest. Any member found to have contravened this part of the Act could be prosecuted, and if convicted, would lose office.

 

9.       Under the Crimes Act 1961 a member of a local authority who obtains or accepts or offers to accept any bribe to do, or not do, something, or who corruptly uses information obtained in an official capacity to get a direct or indirect pecuniary advantage, is liable to a term of imprisonment of up to seven years.

 

10.     Under the Secret Commissions Act 1910, an elected member who accepts a gift or obtains any advantage from any other party as a reward for doing any act in relation to Council business commits an offence. It is also an offence not to disclose a pecuniary interest in any contract, and also to aid or abet or be involved in any way in an offence under this Act. Conviction can lead to imprisonment for up to two years and a fine of up to $1,000.

 

11.     The Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013 essentially places elected members in the same position as company directors whenever the Council offers financial products (such as an issue of debt or equity securities). Elected members may be personally liable if documents that are registered under the Act, such as a product disclosure statement, contain false or misleading statements.  Elected members may also be liable if the requirements of the Act are not met in relation to offers of financial products.

 

12.     In addition to these key statutory provisions, if an elected member is convicted of an offence that carries a term of two or more years of imprisonment under any Act specified, or under any other Act, that member will lose office.

1           

 

Recommendation

That the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee:

1.       Receives the report titled “General Explanation from Chief Executive” dated 8 May 2017.

 

Attachments

There are no attachments for this report.  

 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

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Terms of Reference and Delegations 2017/2020

Record No:        R/17/5/10960

Author:                 Rose Knowles, Committee Advisor/Customer Support Partner

Approved by:       Rex Capil, Group Manager Community and Futures

 

  Decision                              Recommendation                         Information

 

  

 

Purpose

1        To advise the Community Development Area Subcommittee of the Terms of Reference and Delegations for Southland District Council Community Development Area Subcommittees (CDA) for the 2017/2020 Triennium which were approved by Council at its meeting on Wednesday 26 October 2016.

 

Background

2        As per the Terms of Reference, the CDAs role is to:

(a)     Represent and act as an advocate for the interests of its community; and

(b)     Consider and report on all matters referred to it by the Southland District Council, or any matter of interest or concern to the Community Development Area Subcommittee; and

(c)     Maintain an overview of services provided by the Southland District Council within the community; and

(d)     Consider annual estimates for expenditure within the community and recommend these to Council; and

(e)     Communicate with community organisations and special interest groups within the community; and

(f)      Undertake any other responsibilities that are delegated to it by the Southland District Council.

3        In addition to the activities outlined above, CDAs will also need to consider how best to provide leadership for their communities and residents, in addressing the issues they face as they look to the future.

4        CDAs have been granted by Council additional delegated powers for engagement and representation, financial, rentals and leases and local assets and facilities.  There is accountability to Council for the exercising of these powers and a requirement that they be done within Council policy. 

5        CDAs have also been approved to make recommendations to Council on assets and facilities, rentals and leases, financial input and local policy.

6        In additional to the terms of reference and delegations, Chairs of CDAs have been delegated additional responsibilities as follows:

·           Approval of leases, rental agreements and the rollover of existing contracts under $1,000;

·           Engaging with CDA members to make submissions to the Council on behalf of the CDA where a submission period is outside of the CDA meeting cycle.  Where a Chairperson is unable to base a submission on a consensus among CDA members a CDA meeting must be held.

7        Membership and quorums of the CDA remain the same as in previous Triennia with six elected members and one appointed member being a Ward Councillor.

8        The appointed Ward Councillor has speaking rights and voting rights at Community Board meetings to which he/she has been appointed.

9        Where a Ward Councillor is unable to attend a meeting of the CDA to which he/she has been appointed, another Ward Councillor from within the same Ward may attend the CDA  meeting but has speaking rights only.

10      CDAs will meet on the same timetable as the 2014/2017 triennium.  

11      CDAs may also meet outside of the regular meeting schedule to address issues which are time bound or to meet demand if there are a significant number of agenda items.  All meetings outside of the regular meeting schedule shall be called by the Chairperson.

12      CDA members will be kept abreast of operational issues and the progress of projects via regular contact with their Townships Community Engineer.

 

Recommendation

That the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Terms of Reference and Delegations 2017/2020” dated 22 May 2017.

 

b)         Note the Terms of Reference and Delegations for Community Development Area Subcommittee approved by Council at its meeting on Wednesday 26 October 2016.

 

 

Attachments

a         Terms of Reference for CDAs as approved by Council on 26 October 2016    

 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

 


 


 


 


 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

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Standing Orders

Record No:        R/17/5/9167

Author:                 Rose Knowles, Committee Advisor/Customer Support Partner

Approved by:       Rex Capil, Group Manager Community and Futures

 

  Decision                              Recommendation                         Information

 

  

 

Purpose

1        The purpose of the report is to advise the Community Development Area Subcommittee (CDA) that Southland District Council adopted Standing Orders at its meeting on Wednesday 26 October 2016 for all meetings of the Council, Committees, Subcommittees, Community Boards and Community Development Area Subcommittees which form part of the Southland District Council. 

 

Background

2        Under clause 27, Schedule 7 of the Local Government Act 2002 the Council is required to adopt a set of Standing Orders.

3        The Standing Orders will apply to all meetings of Council, Committees, Subcommittees, Community Boards and Community Development Area Subcommittees.

4        Standing Orders control who has speaking rights, the role of the chairperson, delegations and public forum, public excluded sections, agendas and the voting system.

5        The Model Standing Orders from Standards New Zealand, on which Council has based its Standing Orders, meet legislative requirements.  Standards New Zealand produces model standing orders for local government, which Council uses as a basis for its own Standing Orders.  These control the way a meeting is run and provide structure and mechanisms for managing such aspects as speaking rights and times, behaviour, quorum, agendas, public excluded sections and much more.

 

 

Recommendation

That the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Standing Orders” dated 8 May 2017.

 

b)         Note that Southland District Council at its meeting on Wednesday 26 October 2016 adopted Standing Orders for use at all Council, Committee, Subcommittee, Community Board and Community Development Area Subcommittee meetings of the Southland District Council and that it is required to operate in accordance with the Standing Orders so adopted.

 

Attachments

a         Standing Orders To Be Noted    

 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


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Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

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Elected Members Code of Conduct

Record No:        R/17/5/9157

Author:                 Rose Knowles, Committee Advisor/Customer Support Partner

Approved by:       Rex Capil, Group Manager Community and Futures

 

  Decision                              Recommendation                         Information

 

  

 

Purpose

1        To present to the Community Development Area Subcommittee (CDA) with the Elected Members Code of Conduct (the Code) which was adopted by the Southland District Council at its meeting on Wednesday 26 October 2016.

 

Background

2        Clause 15 of Schedule 7 of the Local Government Act 2002 (the Act) requires a local authority to adopt a Code which applies to all elected members.  The Council has determined that the Code will apply to all Community Boards, Committees and Subcommittees when they are acting under Council delegations. It is recommended that CDAs also agree to adopt the Code when acting under their statutory delegations.

3        The Code (Attachment A) acts as a guide to ensure a standard of behaviour that is expected from all elected members (both Councillors, Community Board and Community Development Area Subcommittee members) of the Southland District Council in their dealings with the Chief Executive and officers employed by Council and also the public. 

4        Once the Code is adopted it continues to remain in force until further amended by Council.  The Code can be amended by Council but cannot be revoked unless Council replaces it with another code.  Any amendments to the Code must be approved by Council with a resolution supported by 75% or more of the members of Council present at a meeting.

5        The Code has been revised and updated, since that which was last adopted by the Council in October 2016 to ensure that it reflects today’s expectations for a local authority Code of Conduct.

 

 

Recommendation

That the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Elected Members Code of Conduct” dated 8 May 2017.

 

b)         Determines that this matter or decision be recognised as not significant in terms of Section 76 of the Local Government Act 2002.

c)         Determines that it has complied with the decision-making provisions of the Local Government Act 2002 to the extent necessary in relation to this decision; and in accordance with Section 79 of the Act determines that it does not require further information, further assessment of options or further analysis of costs and benefits or advantages and disadvantages prior to making a decision on this matter.

 

d)         Notes the Elected Members Code of Conduct for Councillors and members of the Community Boards and Community Development Area Subcommittees of the Southland District Council which was adopted by Council at its meeting on 26 October 2016.

 

e)         Adopts the Elected Members Code of Conduct when acting under its statutory powers as provided for in the Local Government Act 2002.

 

f)          Notes that the Elected Members Code of Conduct must be complied with when the Board is acting under its delegations approved by Council at its meeting on 26 October 2016.

 

 

Attachments

a         Code of Conduct Adopted By Council on 26 October 2016    

 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

 

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Code of Conduct – COUNCIL, COMMUNITY BOARDS COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AREA sUBCOMMITTEES

 

Part One: Introduction

 

Schedule 7 of the Local Government Act 2002 (the Act) requires Council to adopt a code of conduct. Once adopted, all elected members are required to comply with the code.

 

In the context of this report, the term “elected members” refers to Councillors, Community Board members and Community Development Area Subcommittee (CDA) members.

 

This code of conduct provides guidance on the standards of behaviour that are expected from all the elected members of the Southland District Council. The code applies to elected members in their dealings with:

 

§  each other

§  the Chief Executive

§  all staff employed by the Chief Executive on behalf of the Council

§  the media

§  the general public.

 

This code also applies to all Council committees, Subcommittees and Community Boards.

 

 

The objective of the code is to enhance:

 

§  the effectiveness of the Council as the autonomous local authority with statutory responsibilities for the good local government of the Southland District

§  the credibility and accountability of the Council within its community

§  mutual trust, respect and tolerance between the elected members as a group and between the elected members and management.

 

This code of conduct seeks to achieve its objectives by recording:

 

§  an agreed statement of roles and responsibilities (recorded in Part Two of this Code)

§  agreed general principles of conduct (recorded in Part Three of this Code)

§  specific codes of conduct applying to particular circumstances or matters (also recorded in Part Three of this Code).


 

 

Elected members are primarily accountable to the electors of the district through the democratic process. However, elected members must note that the Auditor-General may hold them to account for unlawful actions or expenditure or for breaches of the Local Authorities (Members’ Interests) Act 1968.

 

The code of conduct that follows is based on the following general principles of good governance:

§  Public interest. Elected members should serve only the interests of the district as a whole and should never improperly confer an advantage or disadvantage on any one person.

§  Honesty and integrity.  Elected members should not place themselves in situations where their honesty and integrity may be questioned, should not behave improperly and should on all occasions avoid the appearance of such behaviour.

§  Objectivity. Elected members should make decisions on merit including making appointments, awarding contracts, or recommending individuals for rewards or benefits. Elected members should also note that, once elected, their primary duty is to the interests of the entire district, not the ward or community that elected them.

§  Accountability. Elected members should be accountable to the public for their actions and the manner in which they carry out their responsibilities, and should cooperate fully and honestly with the scrutiny appropriate to their particular office.

§  Openness. Elected members should be as open as possible about their actions and those of the Council, and should be prepared to justify their actions.

§  Personal judgment. Elected members can and will take account of the views of others, but should reach their own conclusions on the issues before them, and act in accordance with those conclusions.

§  Respect for others. Elected members should promote equality by not discriminating unlawfully against any person and by treating people with respect, regardless of their race, age, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or disability. They should respect the impartiality and integrity of the Council staff.

§  Duty to uphold the law. Elected members should uphold the law, and on all occasions, act in accordance with the trust the public places in them.

§  Stewardship. Elected members must ensure that the Council uses resources prudently and for lawful purposes, and that the Council maintains sufficient resources to meet its statutory obligations.

§  Leadership. Elected members should promote and support these proposals by example, and should always endeavour to act in the best interests of the community.

 

Part Two: Roles and Responsibilities

 

This part of the code describes the roles and responsibilities of elected members, the additional roles of the Mayor and Deputy Mayor, and the role of the Chief Executive.

 

Mayor

The Mayor is elected by the district as a whole and as one of the elected members shares the same responsibilities as other members of Council. The Mayor also has the following roles as a:

§  presiding member at Council meetings. The Mayor is responsible for ensuring the orderly conduct of business during meetings (as determined in standing orders);

§  advocate on behalf of the community. This role may involve promoting the community and representing its interests. Such advocacy will be most effective where it is carried out with the knowledge and support of the Council;

§  ceremonial head of Council;

§  providing leadership and feedback to other elected members on teamwork and Chairmanship of committees; and

§  Justice of the Peace (while the Mayor holds office).

 

The Mayor must follow the same rules as other elected members about making public statements and committing the Council to a particular course of action, unless acting in accordance with the rules for media contact on behalf of the Council under a delegation of authority from the Council.

 

Recent changes to the Local Government Act 2002 have provided additional powers to the Mayor.  These powers relate to:

 

§  The appointment of the Deputy Mayor and Committee Chairpersons

§  The determination of the Committee structure

§  Leadership of budget, plans and key policy discussions.

 

Deputy Mayor

The Deputy Mayor may be appointed by the Mayor.  If the Mayor declines to do this, then the Deputy Mayor must be elected by the members of Council, at the first meeting of the Council. The Deputy Mayor exercises the same roles as other elected members, and if the Mayor is absent or incapacitated, the Deputy Mayor must perform all of the responsibilities and duties, and may exercise the powers, of the Mayor (as summarised above). The Deputy Mayor may be removed from office by resolution of Council.

 

Committee Chairpersons

As noted above, the Mayor has the power to appoint Chairpersons and to form Committees.  If the Mayor declines to do this then the Council may create one or more committees of Council. A committee Chairperson presides over all meetings of the committee, ensuring that the committee acts within the powers delegated by Council, and as set out in the Council’s Delegations Manual. Committee Chairpersons may be called on to act as an official spokesperson on a particular issue. They may be removed from office by resolution of Council.

 

Councillors

Councillors acting as the Council, are responsible for:

 

§  the development and adoption of Council policy

§  monitoring the performance of the Council against its stated objectives and policies

§  prudent stewardship of Council resources

§  employment of the Chief Executive

§  representing the interests of the residents and ratepayers of the Southland District Council. (On election, the members’ first responsibility is to the district as a whole.)

 

Unless otherwise provided in the Local Government Act 2002 or in standing orders, the Council can only act by majority decisions at meetings. Each elected member has one vote. Any individual elected member (including the Mayor) has no authority to act on behalf of the Council unless the Council has expressly delegated such authority.

 

 

Community Boards

Within the Southland District there are eight community boards:

 

§  Edendale-Wyndham Community Board

§  Otautau Community Board

§  Riverton/Aparima Community Board

§  Stewart Island/Rakiura Community Board

§  Te Anau Community Board

§  Tuatapere Community Board

§  Wallacetown Community Board

§  Winton Community Board

 

 

The community board elected members, acting as the community board, have the role to:

 

§  represent, and act as an advocate for, the interests of its community

§  consider and report on all matters referred to it by the Southland District Council, or any matter of interest or concern to the community board

§  maintain an overview of services provided by the Southland District Council within the community

§  prepare an annual submission to the Southland District Council for expenditure within the community

§  communicate with community organisations and special interest groups within the community

§  undertake any other responsibilities that are delegated to it by the Southland District Council.

 

Community Development Area Subcommittees

Within the Southland District there are 19 CDAs:

 

§  Athol CDA

§  Balfour CDA

§  Browns CDA

§  Colac Bay CDA

§  Dipton CDA

§  Garston CDA

§  Gorge Road CDA

§  Limehills/Centre Bush CDA

§  Lumsden CDA

§  Manapouri CDA

§  Mossburn CDA

§  Nightcaps CDA

§  Ohai CDA

§  Orepuki CDA

§  Riversdale CDA

§  Thornbury CDA

§  Tokanui CDA

§  Waikaia CDA

§  Woodlands CDA

 

 

 

 

 

The CDA elected members, acting as the CDA, have the role to:

 

§  represent, and act as an advocate for, the interests of its community

§  consider and report on all matters referred to it by the Southland District Council, or any matter of interest or concern to the CDA

§  maintain an overview of services provided by the Southland District Council within the community

§  prepare an annual submission to the Southland District Council for expenditure within the community

§  communicate with community organisations and special interest groups within the community

§  undertake any other responsibilities that are delegated to it by the Southland District Council.

 

 

Chief Executive

The Chief Executive is appointed by the Council in accordance with section 42 of the Local Government Act 2002. The Chief Executive is responsible for implementing and managing the Council's policies and objectives within the budgetary constraints established by the Council. In terms of section 42 of the Act, the responsibilities of the Chief Executive are:

 

§  implementing the decisions of the Council

§  providing advice to the Council and community boards

§  ensuring that all responsibilities, duties and powers delegated to the Chief Executive or to any person employed by the Chief Executive, or imposed or conferred by any Act, regulation or bylaw are properly performed or exercised

§  managing the activities of the local authority effectively and efficiently

§  maintaining systems to enable effective planning and accurate reporting of the financial and service performance of the local authority

§  providing leadership for the staff of the local authority

§  employing staff on behalf of the local authority (including negotiation of the terms of employment for the staff of the local authority).

 

The Chief Executive is accountable to Council directly and not to Community Boards or Community Development Area Subcommittees.

 

Under section 42 of the Local Government Act 2002 the Chief Executive employs all other staff on behalf of the local authority.

 

Meeting Attendance

Elected members are expected to attend and participate in all Council meetings, Standing Committee meetings and sub-committee meetings to which they have been appointed, unless they have submitted an apology or obtained a leave of absence in advance for non-attendance.

 

All Councillors are expected to attend all workshops and those hearings that are held as part of the consultation process on Council documents, such as the Annual Plan and Long Term Plan.

 

From time to time, working parties will be established by the Council or a Standing Committee to achieve specific outcomes.  Elected members are expected to make themselves available to be appointed to an equitable share of these working parties, and to attend all meetings of those to which they are appointed.

 

Appointments to Other Bodies

At the first meeting following the triennial elections and on other occasions (as appropriate) Council will appoint elected members to a variety of other bodies.

 

These appointments will be made on the basis of the best person for the specific role bearing in mind the skills required, the views of the Council and location of the elected member.

 

Relationships and Behaviours

 

This part of the code sets out the agreed standards of behaviour. Some of the matters described in this part of the code reflect other legislation such as the Local Authorities (Members’ Interests) Act 1968. The majority of the code is material that the Council has decided to include of its own initiative.

 

Relationships with Other Elected Members

Successful teamwork is a critical element in the success of any democratically elected organisation. No team will be effective unless mutual respect exists between members. With this in mind elected members will conduct their dealings with each other in ways that:

 

§  maintain public confidence in the office to which they have been elected

§  are open and honest

§  focus on issues rather than personalities

§  avoid aggressive, offensive or abusive conduct

§  treat people with courtesy and respect.

 

Elected members shall maintain the respect and dignity of their office in their dealings with each other, Council officers and the public.

 

Elected members should also note that discussions are not subject to privilege.

 

Elected members will act in good faith (i.e. honestly, for the proper purpose, and without exceeding their powers) in the interests of the Council and the community.

 

Elected members should remember that they have no personal power to commit the Council to any particular policy, course of action or expenditure and must not represent they have such authority if that is not the case.

 

Elected members will make no allegations regarding other elected members or Council officers which are improper or derogatory.

 

In the performance of their official duties, elected members should refrain from any form of conduct which may cause any reasonable person unwarranted offence or embarrassment.

 

Relationships with Staff

The effective performance of Council also requires a high level of cooperation and mutual respect between elected members and staff. To ensure that level of cooperation and trust is maintained, elected members will:

 

§  recognise that the Chief Executive is the employer (on behalf of Council) of all Council employees, and as such only the Chief Executive may hire, dismiss or instruct or censure an employee

§  make themselves aware of the obligations that the Council and the Chief Executive have as employers and observe those requirements at all times

§  treat all employees with courtesy and respect (including the avoidance of aggressive, offensive or abusive conduct towards employees)

§  observe any guidelines that the Chief Executive puts in place regarding contact with employees

§  not do anything which compromises, or could be seen as compromising, the impartiality of an employee

§  avoid publicly criticising any employee in any way, but especially in ways that reflect on the competence and integrity of the employee

§  raise concerns about employees only with the Chief Executive, and concerns about the Chief Executive only with the Mayor or the Executive Committee.

 

Elected members should be aware that failure to observe this portion of the code of conduct may compromise the Council’s obligations to act as a good employer and may expose the Council to civil litigation and audit sanctions.

 

Elected members should raise operational issues with the Chief Executive in the first instance.  If it is a routine matter such as repairing a pothole, cutting of vegetation or footpath repairs, the issue should be logged with Customer Support who will enter the issue into our Request for Service system (RFS).  This enables progress on these issues to be monitored.

 

Relationships with the Community

Effective Council decision-making depends on productive relationships between elected members and the community at large.

 

Members should ensure that individual citizens are accorded respect in their dealings with the Council, have their concerns listened to, and deliberated on in accordance with the requirements of the Act.

 

Members should act in a manner that encourages and values community involvement in local democracy.

 

Contact with the Media

The media plays an important part in local democracy. In order to fulfil this role the media needs access to accurate, timely information about the affairs of Council. From time to time, individual elected members will be approached to comment on a particular issue either on behalf of Council, or as an elected member in their own right. This part of the code deals with the rights and duties of elected members when speaking to the media on behalf of Council, or in their own right.

 

The following rules apply for media contact on behalf of Council:

 

§  the Mayor is the first point of contact for the official view on any issue. Where the Mayor is absent, any matters will be referred to the Deputy Mayor or relevant committee Chairperson

§  the Mayor may refer any matter to the relevant committee Chairperson or to the Chief Executive for their comment

§  no other elected member may comment on behalf of Council without having first obtained the approval of the Mayor.

 

 

Elected members are free to express a personal view in the media provided the following rules are observed:

 

§  media comments must not state or imply that they represent the views of Council

§  where an elected member is making a statement that is contrary to a Council decision or Council policy, the member must not state or imply that his or her statements represent a majority view

§  media comments must observe the other requirements of the code of conduct, or legislation e.g. not disclose confidential information, or compromise the impartiality or integrity of staff.

§  the elected member should ensure that any comments made do not compromise Council’s statutory responsibilities.  In other words, it would not be appropriate to comment on matters before the Regulatory and Consents Committee, where this might compromise the statutory decision-making processes.

 

 

Meeting Decisions

Every elected member who has the right to speak can lawfully express his or her opinion at any Council or Committee meeting within the limits imposed by Standing Orders.  These meetings are open to the media and their comments may be reported.

 

Once a matter has been determined at a Council meeting, it becomes the Council’s position until it is lawfully changed by a subsequent Council decision.  All elected members and staff will respect this position.

 

The Mayor can make statements that accurately report Council decisions.

 

Committee Chairs can make statements that accurately report their Committee’s decisions, or factual statements about Council or Committee decisions.

 

 

Confidential Information

In the course of their duties elected members will occasionally receive information that may need to be treated as confidential. This will generally be information that is either commercially sensitive or is personal to a particular individual or organisation.

 

Elected members must not use or disclose confidential information for any purpose other than the purpose for which the information was supplied to the elected member. Decisions on whether confidential information is able to be released are to be made by the Chief Executive in accordance with the provisions of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987.

 

Elected members should be aware that failure to observe these provisions will impede the performance of Council by inhibiting information flows and undermining public confidence in the Council. Failure to observe these provisions may also expose Council to prosecution under the Privacy Act 1993 and/or civil litigation.

 

Information Received in Capacity as an Elected Member

Any information received by an elected member in his/her capacity as an elected member is official information under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (LGOIMA). As such the Council has a requirement to hold that information in accordance with the provisions of LGOIMA and the Public Records Act 2005. As such a copy of any such information should be provided to the Chief Executive so that it can be held in accordance with Council record management policies.

 

 

This duty of disclosure will require elected members to whom information may be offered on the basis that confidence be preserved to inform the intended provider of the information of the duty of disclosure and to decline to receive the information if that duty is likely to be compromised.

 

Responding to Queries Involving Liability Issues

Elected members need to ensure they respond to queries in an appropriate manner and with due regard to the legal position of Council.  At times, elected members are asked to become involved in legal disputes or insurance claims.  Such matters should be referred to the Chief Executive.  It is important that Council act in an appropriate manner with regard to legal and insurance issues.  Often our insurance cover depends on the way we address or manage an issue.

 

 

Training, Conferences and Induction

Following the triennial election, the Chief Executive will organise induction training for all elected members who require it.  This will address the role of elected members and provide valuable information about what an elected member needs to know.

 

Council has a budget for training and development of elected members.  From time to time consideration will be given to attendance at the Local Government New Zealand Conference, Local Government New Zealand Zone meetings and New Zealand Planning Institute Conference.  Other conferences or meetings may also be considered.

 

If an elected member wishes to attend a conference or meeting, then he or she should discuss this with the Mayor.

 

In the case of a Community Board or Community Committee elected member, an approach should be made to the Chairperson.

 

Costs incurred with attending training and conferences will be managed in accordance with the Elected Member Remuneration and Reimbursements Policy and the Sensitive Expenditure Policy.

 

Conflicts of Interest

Elected members must be careful that they maintain a clear separation between their personal interests and their duties as an elected member. This is to ensure that people who fill positions of authority carry on their duties free from bias (whether real or perceived). Elected members therefore need to familiarise themselves with the provisions of the Local Authorities (Members’ Interests) Act 1968 which concerns financial interests, and with other legal requirements concerning non-financial conflicts of interest.

 

The Act provides that an elected member is disqualified from office, or from election to office, if that member is concerned or interested in contracts under which payments made by or on behalf of the local authority exceed $25,000 in any financial year.

 

Additionally, elected members are prohibited from participating in any Council discussion or vote on any matter in which they have a pecuniary interest, other than an interest in common with the general public. The same rules also apply where the elected member’s spouse contracts with the authority or has a pecuniary interest. Elected members must declare their interests at Council meetings where matters in which they have a pecuniary or other conflict of interest arise.

 

Elected members shall annually make a general declaration of interest as soon as practicable after becoming aware of any such interests. These declarations are recorded in a register of interests maintained by Council. The declaration must notify the Council of the nature and extent of any interest, including:

 

§  any employment, trade or profession carried on by the elected member or the elected member’s spouse for profit or gain

§  any company, trust, partnership etc for which the elected member or their spouse is a director, partner, trustee or beneficiary

§  the address of any land in which the elected member has a beneficial interest and which is in the Southland District Council

§  the address of any land where the landlord is the Southland District Council and:

§  the elected member or their spouse is a tenant, or

§  the land is tenanted by a firm in which the elected member or spouse is a partner, or a company of which the elected member or spouse is a director, or a trust of which the elected member or spouse is a trustee or beneficiary

§  any other matters which the public might reasonably regard as likely to influence the elected member’s actions during the course of their duties as an elected member.

 

If the elected member is in any doubt as to whether or not a particular course of action (including a decision to take no action) raises a conflict of interest, then the elected member should seek guidance from the Chief Executive immediately.

 

Elected members may also contact the Office of the Auditor General for guidance as to whether that member has a pecuniary interest. If there is a pecuniary interest, the elected member may seek an exemption to allow that elected member to participate or vote on a particular issue in which they may have a pecuniary interest. The latter must be done before the discussion or vote. The Chief Executive must also seek approval from the Office of the Auditor General for contractual payments to elected members, their spouses or their companies that exceed the $25,000 annual limit.

 

Failure to observe the requirements of the Local Authorities (Members’ Interests) Act 1968 could potentially invalidate the particular decision made, or the action taken, by Council. Failure to observe these requirements could also leave the elected member open to prosecution under the Local Authorities (Members’ Interests) Act 1968. In the event of a conviction elected members can be ousted from office.

 

Standing Orders

Elected members must adhere to any standing orders adopted by Council under the Local Government Act 2002. These standing orders are subject to the same legal requirements as a code of conduct with regard to their adoption and amendment.

 

Ethics

Southland District Council seeks to promote the highest standards of ethical conduct amongst its elected members. Accordingly, elected members will:

 

§  claim only for legitimate expenses as laid down by any determination of the Remuneration Authority then in force, and any lawful policy of Council developed in accordance with that determination

§  not influence, or attempt to influence, any Council employee to take actions that may benefit the elected member, or the elected member’s family or business interests

§  Only use Council resources (including facilities, staff, equipment and supplies) effectively and economically in the course of their duties, and within other guidelines, and not in connection with any election campaign or other personal business.

§  not solicit, demand, or request any gift, reward or benefit by virtue of their position

§  notify the Chief Executive if any gifts are accepted

§  where a gift to the value of $300 excluding GST or more is offered to an elected member, immediately disclose this to the Chief Executive for inclusion in the register of interests.

 

Acceptance of substantial gifts, favours or hospitality may be construed as a bribe or perceived as undue influence.  Working meals and social occasions should be undertaken in an appropriate manner.

 

 

Disqualification of Members from Office

Elected members are automatically disqualified from office if they are convicted of a criminal offence punishable by two or more years’ imprisonment, or if they cease to be or lose their status as an elector or are convicted of certain breaches of the Local Authorities (Members’ Interests) Act 1968.

 

Under the Local Government Act 2002, local authorities, when adopting a code of conduct, must consider whether or not they will require elected members to declare whether they are an undischarged bankrupt. This Council believes that bankruptcy does raise questions about the soundness of a person’s financial management skills and their judgment in general. The Council therefore requires elected members who are declared bankrupt to notify the Chief Executive as soon as practicable after being declared bankrupt.

 

Part Four: Compliance and Review

 

This part deals with ensuring that elected members adhere to the code of conduct and mechanisms for the review of the code of conduct.

 

Compliance

Elected members must note that they are bound to comply with the provisions of this code of conduct (Local Government Act 2002, Schedule 7, section 15(4)).

 

Elected members are also bound by the Local Government Act 2002, the Local Authorities (Members’ Interests) Act 1968, the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987, the Secret Commissions Act 1910, the Crimes Act 1961 and the Securities Act 1978. The Chief Executive will ensure that an explanation of these Acts is made at the first meeting after each triennial election and that copies of these Acts are freely available to elected members.  

 

Short explanations of the obligations that each of these has with respect to conduct of elected members is attached in the Appendix to this code.

 

All alleged breaches of the code should be reported to the Mayor or Chief Executive.  Any allegation of a breach of a code of conduct must be in writing, make a specific allegation of a breach of the code of conduct, and provide corroborating evidence.

 

In response to a breach, the Executive Committee will investigate the alleged breach and prepare a report for the consideration of Council. Before beginning any investigation, the committee will notify the elected member(s) in writing of the complaint and explaining when and how they will get the opportunity to put their version of events.

 

The Council will consider the report in open meeting of Council, except where the alleged breach relates to the misuse of confidential information, could impinge on the privacy of a member of staff or of the general public or other good reason, as defined in LGOIMA, exists for considering it in public excluded.

 

Responses to Breaches of the Code

The exact nature of the action the Council may take depends on the nature of the breach and whether there are statutory provisions dealing with the breach.

 

 

Where there are statutory provisions:

 

§  breaches relating to members’ interests render elected members liable for prosecution by the Auditor-General under the Local Authority (Member’s Interests) Act 1968

§  breaches which result in the Council suffering financial loss or damage may be reported on by the Auditor-General under the Local Government Act 2002, which may result in the elected member having to make good the loss or damage

§  breaches relating to the commission of a criminal offence may leave the elected member liable for criminal prosecution.

 

In these cases the Council may refer an issue to the relevant body, any member of the public may make a complaint, or the body itself may take action of its own initiative.

 

Where there are no statutory provisions, the Council may take the following action:

 

§  censure

§  removal of the elected member from Council committees and/or other representative type bodies

§  dismissal of the elected member from a position as Deputy Mayor or Chair of a committee.

 

A decision to apply one or more of these actions requires a Council resolution to that effect.

 

Review

Once adopted, a code of conduct continues in force until amended by the Council. The code can be amended at any time but cannot be revoked unless the Council replaces it with another code. Once adopted, amendments to the code of conduct require a resolution supported by 75 per cent or more of the elected members of the Council present.

 

Council will formally review the code as soon as practicable after the beginning of each triennium. The results of that review will be presented to Council for their consideration and vote.

 


Appendix to the Code of Conduct

 

Legislation Bearing on the Role and Conduct of Elected Members

 

This is a summary of the legislation requirements that has some bearing on the duties and conduct of elected members.  Copies of these statutes can be found in the Council library or in the office of the Chief Executive.

 

Local Authority (Members’ Interests) Act 1968

This Act regulates situations where an elected member’s personal interests impinge, or could be seen as impinging on their duties as an elected member.

 

The Act provides that an elected member is disqualified from office if that elected member is concerned or interested in contracts under which payments made by or on behalf of the local authority exceed $25,000 in any financial year.

 

Additionally, elected members are prohibited from participating in any Council discussion or voting on any matter in which they have a pecuniary interest, other than an interest in common with the general public.  The same rules also apply where the elected member’s spouse contracts with the authority or has a pecuniary interest.

 

Members may also contact the Office of the Auditor General for guidance as to whether that elected member has a pecuniary interest, and if so, may seek an exemption to allow that elected member to participate or vote on a particularly issue in which they may have a pecuniary interest.  The latter must be done before the discussion or vote.  The Chief Executive must also seek approval from the Office of the Auditor General for contractual payments to elected members, their spouses or their companies that exceed the $25,000 annual limit.

 

Failure to observe these requirements could also leave the elected member open to prosecution under the Local Authority (Members’ Interests) Act 1968.  In the event of a conviction elected members can be ousted from office.

 

Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987

The Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 sets out a list of meetings procedures and requirements.  Of particular importance for the roles and conduct of elected members is the fact that the Chair has the responsibility to maintain order at meetings, but all elected members should accept a personal responsibility to maintain acceptable standards of address and debate.  No elected member should:

 

§  create a disturbance or a distraction while another elected member is speaking

§  be disrespectful when they refer to each other or other people

§  use offensive language about the Council, other elected members, any employee of the Council or any member of the public.

 

The Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 sets out the rules around provision of information.  This is summarised as follows:

 

Official Information

The term “Official Information” refers to all information (with a few exceptions) held by a local authority.  The Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 requires all official information to be available to the public unless there are good reasons for withholding it.

 

Requesting Information

In brief, the Act states:

 

·           requests should be made with “due particularity” (rather than asking for all files about a general topic, which creates a large amount of work) (section 10)

·           it is the duty of Council to assist people making requests (section 11)

·           the Council must convey its decision on whether to grant the request within 20 working days and must also indicate any charges (section 13)

·           information in documents may be made available by providing an opportunity for reading it or by providing a copy of it or by providing a summary or excerpt; however, it should be made available in the way preferred by the requestor unless there are reasons for not doing so (section 15).

 

Refusing Requests for Information

A request may be refused (section 17) if:

 

§  there is good reason to withhold it under section 6 or 7 of the Act

§  the information will soon be publicly available

§  the local authority does not actually hold the information

§  the information cannot be made available without substantial collation or research

§  the request is frivolous or vexatious.

 

Where a request is refused the Council must give its reasons and advise the requestor that there is a right to have the decision review by the Ombudsmen.

 

Sections 6 and 7 give the following reasons for withholding information:

 

§  making it available would be likely to prejudice the maintenance of the law, or endanger safety

§  withholding the information is necessary to:

-        protect privacy

-        protect information where its release would disclose a trade secret or would prejudice the commercial position of the person who supplied, or who is the subject of the information

-        avoid offence to tikanga Maori or avoid disclosure of wahi tapu locations

-        protect any obligations of confidentiality where making it available would affect the future supply of information or would otherwise damage the public interest

-        maintain free and frank discussion or protect officers and elected members from harassment

-        maintain legal professional privilege

-        enable the Council to carry out without prejudice or disadvantage commercial activities or negotiations

-        prevent the use of information for improper gain.

 

Crimes Act 1961

Under this Act it is unlawful for an elected member (or officer) to:

 

§  accept or solicit for themselves (or anyone else) any gift or reward for acting or not acting in relation to the business of Council

§  use information gained in the course of their duties for their, or another person's, monetary gain or advantage.

 

These offences are punishable by a term of imprisonment of seven years or more.  Elected members convicted of these offences will also be automatically ousted from office.

 

Securities Act 1978

The Securities Act 1978 essentially places elected members in the same position as company directors whenever Council offers stock to the public.  Elected members may be personally liable if investment documents such as a prospectus contain untrue statements and may be liable for criminal prosecution if the requirements of the Act are not met.

 

Please note that Council is not required to produce a prospectus following the enactment of the Securities (Local Authority Exemption) Amendment Act 2008.  In its place a shorter investment statement is required.

 

Local Government Acts 1974 and 2002

The various provisions of the Local Government Act 1974 and 2002 form the basis of local government.  Local government is a creature created by statute and in place to meet the requirements of the Local Government Act.

 

Elected members should be aware of the purpose of local government (section 10 Local Government Act 2002)

 

1.       The purpose of local government is:

(a)     to enable democratic local decision-making and action by, and on behalf of, communities; and

(b)     to meet the current and future needs of communities for good quality local infrastructure, local public services, and performance of regulatory functions in a way that is most cost-effective for households and businesses.

 

2.       In this Act, good quality, in relation to local infrastructure, local public services and performance of regulatory functions, means infrastructure, services and performance that are:

(a)     efficient; and

(b)     effective; and

(c)     appropriate to present and anticipated future circumstances.

 

 

In performing its role a local authority must have particular regard to the contribution that the following core services make to its communities

(a)     network infrastructure;

(b)     public transport services;

(c)     solid waste collection and disposal;

(d)     the avoidance or mitigation of natural hazards;

(e)     libraries, museums, reserves, recreational facilities and other community infrastructure

 

“(1)    In performing its role,  as outlined in section 14 of the Local Government Act 2002, a local authority must act in accordance with the following principles:

(a)     a local authority should -

(i)      conduct its business in an open, transparent and democratically accountable manner; and

(ii)      give effect to its identified priorities and desired outcomes in an efficient and effective manner.

(b)     a local authority should make itself aware of, and should have regard to, the views of all of its communities; and

(c)     when making a decision, a local authority should take account of:

(i)      the diversity of the community, and the community’s interests, within its district or region; and

(ii)      the interests of future as well as current communities; and

(iii)     the likely impact of any decision on the interests referred to in subparagraphs (i) and (ii)

(d)     a local authority should provide opportunities for Maori to contribute to its decision-making processes:

(e)     a local authority should collaborate and co-operate with other local authorities and bodies as it considers appropriate to promote or achieve its priorities and desired outcomes, and make efficient use of resources; and

(f)      a local authority should undertake any commercial transactions in accordance with sound business practices; and

(fa)    a local authority should periodically -

(i)      assess the expected returns to the authority from investing in, or undertaking a commercial activity; and

(ii)      satisfy itself that the expected returns are likely to outweigh the risks inherent in the investment or activity; and

(g)     a local authority should ensure prudent stewardship and the efficient and effective use of its resources in the interests of its district or region; and

(h)     in taking a sustainable development approach, a local authority should take into account:

(i)      the social, economic, and cultural interests of people and communities; and

(ii)      the need to maintain and enhance the quality of the environment; and

(iii)     the reasonably foreseeable needs of future generations.”

 

Sections 44-46 of the Local Government Act 2002 outline action that can be taken by the Auditor General to recover a loss incurred by a local authority:

 

“(1)  For the purposes of this section and sections 45 and 46, a local authority is to be regarded as having incurred a loss to the extent that any of the following actions and omissions has occurred and the local authority has not been fully compensated for the action or omission concerned:

(a)     money belonging to, or administrable by, a local authority has been unlawfully expended; or

(b)     an asset has been unlawfully sold or otherwise disposed of by the local authority; or

(c)     a liability has been unlawfully incurred by the local authority; or

(d)     a local authority has intentionally or negligently failed to enforce the collection of money it is lawfully entitled to receive.”

 

The Auditor General has the right to recover any such loss from each member of the local authority jointly and severally.

 

The Local Government Act deals with issues of governance, structure of local government, planning, decision-making and accountability, regulatory and enforcement, offences, penalties and other proceedings.

 

 

 

Resource Management Act 1991

This Act governs how Council should deal with land use and other planning processes.  The Resource Management Act sets out to provide a range of rules that support a sustainable environment but also permits local autonomy based around the development of a District Plan that applies to each individual local authority.

 

Privacy Act 1993

The Privacy Act 1993 explains how Council should manage issues to do with information it holds to conduct its business.  This could involve individual records relating to ratepayers or staff records for employees of Council.

 

Council must comply with the requirements of this Act and as part of this process a staff member has been appointed as the designated Privacy Officer.  Any queries in relation to the Privacy Act should be directed to the Chief Executive in the first instance.

 

Health and Safety at Work Act 2015

Council has obligations to provide a safe working place for staff and members of the public.  Attendance to health and safety concerns is part of the responsibility of each staff member and elected member.

 

Significant penalties exist where the provisions of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 are not adhered to.

 

Public Audit Act 2001

Council is publicly accountable under the provisions of the Public Audit Act 2001.  As a result of this, an annual audit is undertaken under the direction of the Auditor General.  This audit reviews the financial and non-financial performance of Council through the development and reporting of the Annual Report.

 

 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

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Schedule of Meetings for 2017

Record No:        R/17/5/9158

Author:                 Rose Knowles, Committee Advisor/Customer Support Partner

Approved by:       Rex Capil, Group Manager Community and Futures

 

  Decision                              Recommendation                         Information

 

  

 

Purpose

1        The purpose of the report is to approve a schedule of meeting dates for 2017 so that meetings can be publicly notified in accordance with the requirements set by the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987.

Executive Summary

2        The adoption of a meeting schedule allows for reasonable public notice preparation and planning for meeting agendas.  The Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 which has requirements for Local Authorities to follow for public notification of meetings.

3        The meeting schedule for the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee (CDA) is required to be set for 2017.  

4        Southland District Council approved the Terms of Reference for the Community Development Area Subcommittees at its meeting on 26 October 2016.  In the approved terms of reference was the frequency of meetings was noted as being the same as the 2014/2017 triennium. 

 

Recommendation

That the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Schedule of Meetings for 2017” dated 8 May 2017.

b)         Determines that this matter or decision be recognised as not significant in terms of Section 76 of the Local Government Act 2002.

c)         Determines that it has complied with the decision-making provisions of the Local Government Act 2002 to the extent necessary in relation to this decision; and in accordance with Section 79 of the Act determines that it does not require further information, further assessment of options or further analysis of costs and benefits or advantages and disadvantages prior to making a decision on this matter.

d)         Agrees to meet at the Waikaia Community Centre, Waikaia at 6.30pm on the following dates in 2017:

 

§ Wednesday, 31 May 2017

§ Wednesday 22 November 2017

 

 


 

Content

Background

5        An approved schedule of meetings dates is required so that meetings can be publicly notified in accordance with the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987.

Factors to Consider

Legal and Statutory Requirements

6        The legal and statutory requirements for meetings of Council, Committees, Subcommittees and Community Boards are spelt out in the Local Government Act 2002 and the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987.

Community Views

7        There are no community views.

Costs and Funding

8        The only costs for the implementation of a meeting schedule are the public notification via the daily newspaper once a month in accordance with the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987.

Policy Implications

9        There are no policy implications.

Analysis

Options Considered

10      Options considered are that if no meeting schedule be agreed, then no meetings of the Lumsden Community Development Area Sub Committee could be held.  The other option is to adopt a meeting schedule as proposed in the recommendations which enables dialogue between the Community Board and District Council Officers on a regular basis.

Analysis of Options

Option 1 – No meeting schedule

Advantages

Disadvantages

·        There are no advantages

·        Council officers and Community Board unable to achieve work in the Boards area as no meetings are being held.

 

Option 2 – Adoption of a schedule of meetings

Advantages

Disadvantages

·        Council officers and Community Board are able to achieve work in the Boards area as meetings are being held on a regular basis

·        There are no disadvantages

 

Assessment of Significance

11      The assessment of significance is that this is not significant in terms of the Council Significance and Engagement Policy.

Recommended Option

12      The recommended option is option 2 – Adoption of a schedule of meetings.

Next Steps

13      The next steps once the schedule is adopted it to ensure that each month the meetings are publicly notified to enable the Community Board to meet.

 

Attachments

There are no attachments for this report.  

 


Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee

31 May 2017

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Council Report

Record No:        R/17/5/8973

Author:                 Kelly Tagg, Community Partnership Leader

Approved by:       Rex Capil, Group Manager Community and Futures

 

  Decision                              Recommendation                         Information

 

  

 

Chief Executive

Te Anau Wastewater Discharge Project

1        Following the signing of the Deed of Agreement with Fiordland Sewerage Options (FSOI) in December, work was progressed to negotiate an access and purchase agreement with the owners of the Smith Block and undertake initial consultation with stakeholders including the neighbouring property owners, Te Ao Marama, Fish and Game, Department of Conservation and Guardians of the Lake.

2        The initial engagement with stakeholders showed that there were mixed views on the proposal with some being supportive, others being neutral while others were raising a number of concerns. Having a diverse range of views being expressed at an early stage is to be expected.

3        Initial discussions with the Smith’s commenced in early February 2017. The negotiation process was progressing largely as expected prior to a letter being received on 22 March indicating that the Smith’s no longer wished to proceed with the proposed sale. This effectively means that it will be no longer possible to use this land and as a result all work currently under way to plan for initial engineering investigations of the site has ceased.

4        The Deed of Agreement that Council has with FSOI means, from a contractual perspective, that if the Smith Block is found to not be viable then Council is able to proceed with implementation of the Kepler option. There is, however, a need for Council to firstly, formally determine whether it believes that the Smith Block option is no longer viable and then determine what steps it wishes to take.

5        A report summarising the findings from the Phase 1 work was taken to the Te Anau Wastewater Project Committee on 21 April and subsequently to Council on 17 May. 

6        Council staff will now complete a detailed business plan for the consented treated wastewater discharge scheme at the Kepler block.  However, Council is keeping the door option for another option for the treatment and discharge and is creating a process, including criteria, for identifying possible sites. 

Southland Regional Development Strategy (SoRDs)

7        A meeting of Councillors from all four Southland Councils was held in Gore on 13 March to outline and seek feedback on the work that has been progressed to date to develop a proposed new structure to drive implementation of the SoRDS Action Plan and regional development in the future.

8        At the meeting there was a good level of engagement in the strategic challenges facing the region, the question of what the region needed to do differently if it is to remain competitive on the national stage and the range of options that might exist for leading regional development across the region in the future.

9        While there might be some debate about what structures would best serve the region in the future it is clear that unless Southland pools and then looks to apply the skills and resources that it does have in a coordinated manner then the region will simply not compete on the national and international stage.

10      Recent economic data released on regional GDP shows, for example, that from 2011 - 2016 Southland’s economy grew by 3.7 percent as compared with the national average of 23.8%. As a result Southland’s share of national GDP reduced by 20%. While these results reflect the recent down-turns in the primary sector they do serve to reinforce the importance of the region taking some bold and significant steps if it is to remain relevant on the national stage.

11      The need for Southland to ‘pull together’ and work in a cohesive fashion has also been emphasised recently by the publication of the Upper North Island Story. This publication which has been released by the Upper North Island Strategic Alliance, a collective of the Councils from Northland, Auckland, Waikato and Bay Plenty, outlines the national significance from an economic development, population and growth perspective of the four regions as they collectively account for 50 - 60% of NZs population and GDP. It also outlines the challenges that lay ahead as their share of the national wealth continues to increase and the steps that they collectively need to take to manage these pressures.

12      Following the meeting in Gore work is now underway to progress the work needed to ‘flesh out’ the preferred model of creating a new entity, which would be established as a Council Controlled Organisation (CCO) but with shareholdings from a range of entities from across the broader business and community sectors. As part of the model it is also seen as important that a separate ‘arm’ of entity which is focussed on the development of tourism across the region be developed.

13      There will be a need for a community consultation process to be followed by the four Councils before the new entity can be formed. It is proposed that this process be completed via a joint committee/hearings panel process. It is anticipated that the formal reports seeking endorsement for this process will be bought to Council in May or June.

 

Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill

14      The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill, which implements the Better Local Services reforms, was referred to the Local Government and Environment Select Committee last year.

15      The Bill proposed substantial changes to the role of the Local Government Commission (LGC); the current local government re-organisation provisions; created new categories of CCOs, and provides a power for the Minister of Local Government to set performance measures for services.

16      As part of the package of reforms it was also proposed that the LGC be given the power to initiate reforms at an individual service level at any time including having the ability to remove individual service delivery into a CCO without the agreement of the Council(s) concerned and/or their ratepayers. This particular proposal raised a significant level of concern across the sector and was the subject of a number of submissions to the Select Committee.

17      The new Minister of Local Government has now announced that the Bill will be amended to require that the creation of CCOs will require the support of the affected local authorities.  The ability for the Minister to impose new non-financial performance measures for different activities is also to be removed.

18      The Select Committee was due to report back to Parliament at the end of March. It will need to finalise any amendments needed to reflect the above changes but then can be expected to report back in the near future. Hence, it is expected that the Bill will proceed through the balance of its parliamentary process in the next few months.

 

 

Fresh Water Management

19      Following on from the recent Government announcements on the management of Freshwater and in particular its ‘headline’ goal of making 90% of waterways swimmable by 2040 LGNZ has now announced the creation of a Water 2050 project. The overall aim is to lead debate about the creation of a coherent policy framework that leads to greater integration of policy discussions, particularly the setting of standards with communities’ ability to pay for the necessary infrastructure to achieve those standards. The affordability issue is a significant one for this district and a number of other rural and provincial districts which have small communities, a number of which have declining populations.

20      Other important issues that will be considered as part of this policy work include the setting of freshwater quality and quantity – standards, rights and allocation, land use, three waters infrastructure, cost and affordability, and options for funding the required infrastructure.

Land Transport Government Policy Statement (GPS)

21      The Government Policy Statement (GPS) on land transport is used to set the strategic framework within which LTNZ allocates the approximate $3 billion of Government funding used to support the development of land transport. The latest draft is currently out for consultation.

22      There are a number of factors that are influencing the change in transport demand, including population growth particularly around urban areas in the upper North Island, increased heavy freight movement, with tonnages moved projected to increase by 50% by 2042, and growth in tourism. Given these demands the draft GPS proposes that the focus should remain on the current priority areas of economic growth and productivity, road safety and value for money.

 

Better Urban Planning Report

23      The Productivity Commission released its final Better Urban Planning report on 29 March. The report represents the final outcome from the Commission’s ‘blue-skies’ review of the current urban planning system in New Zealand.

24      In its report the Commission makes 64 recommendations, including having one new piece of planning legislation to replace the current Resource Management Act, that would support and govern both the built and natural environments. The recommendations include providing greater clarification of the statutory objectives, making it mandatory to develop a regional spatial plan; creating a new process for the review of formal planning documents before they come into effect; more tools for councils to fund infrastructure; and better stewardship of the planning system.

25      The development of a Regional Spatial Plan for Southland was one of the core recommendations coming out of the SoRDS Ease of Doing Business Team work. The Productivity Commission report proposes that Regional Councils should lead the production of these plans which should place a particular focus on strategic land-use development over a 30 to 50 year period. In addition to informing future land use decisions the spatial plans would also be expected to provide a focus for infrastructure planning and development.

26      The report is also proposing that notified regulatory plans (eg District Plans and the Regional Policy Statement) would be subject to a formal review process by an Independent Hearings Panel (IHP) that would be appointed by an independent statutory agency. In effect the Panel would have the right to ‘veto’ provisions that a local authority may put within one of its statutory documents. Appeals to the Environment Court would only be allowed on points of law. This would represent quite a significant change to the current approach in which the final responsibility for such documents sits with local authorities.

27      The Government will now consider the recommendations in the Commission’s report. It can be expected that their response and decisions on what recommendations are to be implemented will be announced in due course.

 

Customary Marine Title Application

 

28      Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu have made an application to the High Court under the Marine and Coastal Area Act 2011 to have a customer marine title recognised over the marine and coastal area surrounding much of the South Island. Council, along with most other South Island local authorities have been formally served with notice of the application as required under the Act. There is also a requirement for the application to be publicly notified.

29      Council has the right to express an interest in appearing before the High Court to comment on the proposal. There is a requirement for any expression of interest to be lodged within 20 working days.  Officers are giving consideration to whether this Council should register an interest so that it has the ability to make submissions should it consider it appropriate to do so.

30      Customary marine title can be granted over a coastal area if an applicant can show that they have exclusively used and occupied an area since 1840. The rights that are granted to a party holding a customary title are outlined in section 62 of the Act but include:

 

·    The right to give or decline permission for activities requiring resource consent;

·    The right to protect wahi tapu;

·    The right to create a planning document for the area.

31      Local authorities are required to take the content of a planning document into account in their decision making processes once it has been developed.

 

Information Management

Digitisation Project

32      Work is continuing on the Property File Digitisation project which has seen approximately 80% of the paper volume previously held at Council shipped for processing.

 

Change of Address

33      A new Change of Address form and internal process is being developed for use by staff and the public will be promoted shortly.  The change of address is one of the high volume requests by the Customer Support team and the new process will streamline the process whilst also maintaining a reliable and accurate name and address information

 

Environmental Services Group

Resource Management Act Amendments

34      The amendments to the Resource Management Act have now been enacted.  There are a number of significant changes relevant to all councils such as a more nationally templated approach to planning documents, elevation of the importance of natural hazards matters, compressed timeframes and simplified processes for simple activities, and changes to Iwi participation arrangements.

35      A detailed report on these changes and their implications will be presented to Council for information at a later date.

 

Earthquake Prone Amendments to the Building Act 2004

36      These take effect on 1 July 2017.  Council has received correspondence from MBIE on various arrangements which all councils need to make in advance of the amendments and the Team Leader of Building Solutions is working through these now.

 

Building Control

37      The number of building consents issued this month is down 11% on the same month last year, and these numbers were down 23% (February) and 11% (January) relative to their respective months in 2016.  There are a number of consent applications on hold and the gap between the number of issued consents in 2017 and the number of issued consents in 2016 should reduce further next month.

38      As outlined above, the number of building consents issued so far this year is down on what was issued last year.  However, a vacancy for a consent processor has been filled and Neal Tuckey started in this role on 4 April 2017.  This will increase the department’s capacity to process more consents per month.  We continue to receive consent applications at a rate of approximately four per day on average.  Hence whilst, consent numbers are down overall for the year relative to 2016, the number of new consent applications appears to be more consistent in recent times. 

This month there is a much more even distribution of the location of consents issued across the District.  Winton and the southeast of the District has a noted increase in activity. 

 

New Dog Registration Discounts

39      Council is proposing to introduce discounts into the new dog registration fees from 1 July 2017 that will apply to non-working dogs only.  The discounts will be for neutering, containment, and responsible ownership.  The purpose of the new fees is to encourage responsible ownership, and to reduce wandering and aggression incidents in the District.  Currently, the fee is $30, and this will continue to be the base fee if all three discounts are applied. 

 

Food Act

40      The Environmental Health staff have almost completed transitioning the food businesses with alcohol On Licences to the new Food Act 2014, with this group being the first that are required to transition by 31 March 2017.  The next significant group that will have to transition by March 2018 are the food service/retail businesses that do not have On Licences; eg some cafés and takeaways. 

 

Freedom Camping

41      The Tuatapere Community Board has requested “No Freedom Camping Zone Begins” signs at the four entrances to the town, making it the second town in the District with this type of town entrance signage, the other being Te Anau.  This request followed concerns from a local camping ground operator who advised that people were camping illegally in the town and sneaking in and using the camping ground facilities. 

 

Rakiura Heritage Centre

42      Resource consent was lodged on 1 March to construct a heritage centre at 6 Argyle Street, Oban.  This application is currently on hold and once all of the necessary information is received, it will be limited notified to the property owners and occupiers within close proximity to the site.

Notice of Requirement (Edendale)

43      The application to realign State Highway 1 was publicly notified on Saturday, 8 April submissions will close on 11 May.  The decision will be made by an Independent Commissioner following a hearing.

 

District Plan Appeals

44      This has not made any progress since the last report.  Council is still waiting for the Environment Court judge to sign off on mediation dates for the remaining appeals.

45      Progress is being made on Council’s evidence for Environment Southland’s Water and Land Plan hearings which are due to be held towards the end of May.  Council submitted primarily in relation to the organisation’s core business (infrastructure affordability, equitable requirements across different activities, timing of rules having effect etc).

 

Non-notified Resource Consents

46      Resource consent application numbers remain at relatively subdued levels, with limited large scale development currently occurring in the District.  Most consents are being processed within the statutory processing timeframes.

 

Community & Futures

CDA Elections

 

47      During the month of March, Council facilitated 19 CDA election meetings.  Meetings were attended by some of the following Council representatives – Mayor, Deputy Mayor, Councillors, CEO, Group Manager Community and Futures, Community Partnership Leaders, Committee Advisers. Attendance at the meetings varied – with some having 30 or so members of the public attending while others had 4.  The majority of meetings did not require an election as 6 or less members were nominated in these instances. Some publicity was received around Council adhering to the Terms of Reference as approved by Council at its 26 October 2016 meeting related to the associated eligibility criteria for being nominated, being a nominator or being able to vote. 

48      This consistent approach assisted Council in delivering on its approved process.  What it also did was provide a forum where some of these issues around local community governance, fair and effective representation and what does all this mean for the upcoming Representation Review were able to be discussed and a general consensus was identified on these issues by the majority of the CDA election meetings.  The timeliness of being able to have these conversations as part of the CDA election meetings has been appreciated to provide further insights for the Community Governance Review and Representation Review projects underway.

 

Community Governance Project and Representation Review Project update

49      The Community Governance Project has been identified by Council as an important strategic project to assist Council in delivering its priority goals of:

·    A dynamic, effective and efficient Council;

·    The Southland Way – empowering our communities;

·    Growing our communities.

50      The Representation Review project is a requirement under the Local Electoral Act 2001.

51      There are three processes that form the representation review project:

·    A review of the electoral system;

·    A review of Maori representation;

·    A review of representation arrangements.

52      The Community Governance Project and associated background work undertaken over the past 18 months and the community engagement to be undertaken over the next nine months assists with providing background information and a context for the Representation Review project.

53      The overall review intent focuses on developing the community governance and representation framework to work more effectively and efficiently for Council and its communities.

54      It is important to recognise there are two projects that will complement each other – the Community Governance Review project and the Representation Review project.

55      The working premise of the community governance review is that there is a desire and commitment to make the future governance structure work best for the Southland district, by ensuring strong district decisionmaking while empowering local communities to participate in decisionmaking processes that reflect the needs and requirements of the district’s diverse communities.

56      The community governance review and representation review projects are aimed at enhancing community involvement so council governance structures are fit for the future and fit for purpose.

57      The representation review project is aimed at ensuring there is fair and effective representation across the district.

Stewart Island Wharves

58      The Stewart Island wharf engagement is now well underway.  A survey has been established and been widely distributed to residents on the Island, key stakeholders on and off the Island, and a selected number of ratepayers.  The survey and consultation has been publicised through the local Stewart Island News, Southland Times and the Advocate, with posters distributed throughout the Island, Riverton and Te Anau Area Offices.  The Consultant was on the Island in May and conducted a number of one-to-one interviews, public drop-in sessions and an evening public conversation café.  From here, information will be collated and the consultant will go back to those who have taken part with a summary and any recommendations being made to Council.  The final report is expected at the end of June and will go to Council July/August 2017.

Research Completed

59      Two pieces of research recently undertaken have been completed; the Stewart Island Community Facilities Assessment and the Community Organisation and Volunteer Sector research.  Once these have been received by Council they will be made available to the wider public and interested parties.  The anticipated timeframe around this will be early-mid May 2017.

Leadership Plan Workshops

60      Community Partnership Leaders are currently facilitating, with assistance from Venture Southland Community Development staff, a number of Leadership Plan Workshops throughout the District.  Workshops are being held in Winton, Lumsden, Otautau, Stewart Island, Tuatapere, Te Anau and Wyndham.  The workshops involve all eight Community Boards and 19 Community Development Subcommittee Areas and District Councillors.  The aim of the workshops are to provide an opportunity for locally elected members to meet together, collaborate, share ideas for working with other Boards, to discuss the future of their towns and villages and share how their local plans can help shape the future of the District as a whole.

Service Delivery Scoping Project

61      A consultant has been engaged to undertake a Community Futures Service Delivery Scoping Project in conjunction with the Community Futures and Customer Support Team.  The Consultant is currently finalising the project plan.  The expected completion date is July 2017.

Venture Southland Community Development

62      Venture Southland Community Development Team is currently conducting an assessment of community facilities across the Southland District for Southland District Council. The project team will be in contact with facility managers and users across the District to gain their input.

Venture Southland Business Plan

63      Each year Venture Southland develops a Business Plan detailing its proposed activities, key performance indicators and budget. The Business Plan is required to be developed in accordance with the Venture Southland Agreement 2014 - 2017 and the letter of expectation sent by combined owner councils and the letter of expectation sent by Southland District Council regarding the Community Development priority projects which are specific to the Southland District Council.

64      The Agreement outlines the information to be included in the Business Plan and the process to be followed as it is developed.

65      The Community and Policy Committee endorsed the VS BP 2017 - 2018 at its 5 April meeting.

 

2017/2018 Annual Plan

66      The feedback process for the 2017/18 Annual Plan has now been completed with Council receiving feedback from nine groups/individuals on the plan (including one from staff). Six groups spoke to the Council about their feedback on 6 April 2017. A range of issues were raised including funding requests, working with accessibility specialists during design and considering ways to assess/improve accessibility of Council infrastructure, connections to the Curio Bay wastewater scheme, working with Real Journey’s on their upgrade of Pearl Harbour visitor facilities and a range of other expenditure and rating issues including AMCT, Roading Rate Model, TR maximum and roading programme.

67      Council made decisions on the feedback on 6 April 2017. The key financial changes included providing a one-off grant in 2017/18 for the Hollyford Conservation Trust ($10,000 GST excl) and increase in the Regional Heritage Rate ($5 per rating unit GST incl), both to be funded from reserves/existing budgets. The Council also approved a number of changes to project timing, including projects to be carried forward from 2016/17 into 2017/18 and corrections to fees and charges and grants. The rate increase is expected to remain at 3.64% signalled in the Annual Plan Update 2017.

68      Council staff will proceed with development of the Annual Plan document itself prior to it being presented to the 7 June 2017 Council meeting for adoption. At this meeting Council will also be asked to set the rates for the 2017/18 financial year.

 

Community Conversations

69      Over the months of May and June Mayor Tong, Councillors and staff will be out to continue our conversations with the community.  These are an opportunity to update the community on what has been going on across Council, and to hear from our communities about some of the big picture challenges and opportunities coming up for the district.

70      The focus of these conversations is to engage with our communities, and ensure that we are all best prepared for the future.  As discussed in previous meetings, Council is refocussing its approach and sees that Council does not have to be the sole solution, and can instead be part of the solution with our communities and other agencies.

71      Council is taking a multi-agency approach, partnering philosophy and collective understanding of the issues in ensuring decisions made today by all involved in our communities and district will prepare us for the future.

72      Conversations are being held in Riverton 8 May, Te Anau 9 May, Tokanui and Catlins 10 May, Edendale-Wyndham 16 May, Otautau-Tuatapere 17 May, Winton 22 May, Lumsden 24 May and Stewart Island 12 June.  Council encourages its Board and CDA members to be active participants in these conversations.

 

People and Capability

73      Clare Sullivan has been appointed as Governance and Democracy Manager.  Clare has over 25 years’ experience in local and central government and values the importance of democracy and democratic processes.  Clare began at Council on 3 April 2017 and is very keen to get out and about and attend various Community Board meetings and upcoming CDA meetings.

74      In March, we had forty two of our front line staff attend a MH101 workshop.  This is a one day workshop that has given our people the tools to recognise, relate and respond to those who need support for their mental health and wellbeing.   Feedback on the workshop was outstanding and confidence in recognising signs and symptoms and confidence in knowing how to respond raised significantly.

 

Customer Support

75      Customer Support has now integrated staff from a variety of departments to the Customer Support area.  This is a time of transition and learning for the team as we take on a variety of tasks for Council and look to broaden the knowledge of staff and aim to resolve 80% of customer enquiries at the first point of contact for the customer.  We are taking on a range of services that are unfamiliar to many of the team so we are continuing to share and learn new tasks across the team. 

76      The new library hours for Winton have begun and for the first Saturday we received positive feedback from patrons and staff.  We will continue to monitor this as we go forward. 

77      The library collection at the Nightcaps Library situated at Takitimu Primary School will be disestablished following declining usage over the last three years.  Council has consulted with the community around this decision and has agreed to trial visits by the bookbus for a six month period commencing in August 2017. 

 

Services and Assets Group

Te Anau Wastewater Odour Issue

78      During late February and early March there have been a number of odour issues at the existing Te Anau wastewater treatment plant. Testing showed that dissolved oxygen levels in the aeration pond had reduced significantly.

79      The issues appear to have been caused by a variety of factors including septic tank waste being dumped in the ponds. A number of steps were taken in response to the issues including the introduction of additional aeration, stabilisation of the ponds pH through the dosing of lime and the introduction of a nutrient rich food source (trade name Ensol 5000) to promote algal regrowth.

80      The ponds have now recovered and are performing as expected. Staff are moving, however, to increase aeration in the ponds to reduce the risks of similar incidents occurring in the future.

 

Alternative Coastal Route Improvement Project

 

81     This project involves the Sealing, Otta sealing and associated improvement of approximately 23 kilometres of road on the last unsealed section of the alternative coastal route along the Southern Scenic Route and the two main side journeys of this section.

82     At its 15 March meeting Council approved the awarding of a tender for this project to the Roading Company. Work is now progressing with the implementation of this contract including the sourcing of the gravel needed to advance the project.

Riversdale and Nightcaps Wastewater Resource Consents

 

83      In October 2016 Environment Southland issued new resource consents for the Riversdale and Nightcaps wastewater treatment plant discharges. The release of these decisions followed an extensive period of consultation between the two Councils and affected parties with an interest in these discharges.

84      Without prior warning to this Council, the consents were issued with the term of the consents reduced from 15 years to 7 years in the case of Nightcaps and from 25 years to an effective 9 years for consent which takes effect once upgrade works, budgeted to cost $2.4 million, are completed at Riversdale which serves some 240 properties.

85     Given the reduction in term of the consents a decision was made to appeal the ES decision. Following a mediation process new terms of 10 years for Nightcaps and 15 years for Riversdale have now been agreed. Officers are satisfied that the agreement reached is a good outcome for both Councils. It finds a balance between ensuring that this Council has a reasonable period of certainty over the conditions it needs to meet while also recognising that there will need to be further upgrades to meet the requirements in the Land and Water Plan.

Havelock North Drinking Water Inquiry

 

86      The Government established an Inquiry into the issues relating to the contamination of the Havelock North Water Supply last year. The inquiry was originally due to report back to Government by 31 March 2017. The report back date has now been extended and split into two separate phases.

87      Stage 1 will address matters relating directly to the Havelock North water contamination incident and the response to that incident. It will include findings of fact and fault. Stage 1 is now due to be reported back by 12 May 2017.

88      Stage 2 will address the broader systemic issues and provide recommendations about managing water supply across New Zealand. It will examine the existing statutory and regulatory regimes involved in delivering drinking-water to see if improvements can be made. Stage 2 of the Inquiry is now due to be reported back by 8 December 2017.

89      The recommendations coming out of Stage 2 of the Inquiry are expected to be of significance for all local authorities.

Finance

90      Income is on budget year to date.

91      Expenditure is below budget year to date due and can be explained as follows;

·    A coding error has occurred with the invoices for playground inspections and will be rectified prior to the end of this financial year.

·    SouthRoads have been instructed to remove the old footpath outside the museum, these costs will be taken out of the street works budget

92      No capital expenditure is budgeted in this financial year.

 

Recommendation

That the Waikaia Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Council Report” dated 22 May 2017.

 

 

Attachments

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