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Notice is hereby given that a Meeting of the Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee will be held on:

 

Date:                      

Time:

Meeting Room:

Venue:

 

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

1pm

Gorge Road Community Centre
Factory Road
Gorge Road

 

Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee Agenda

 

OPEN

 

 

MEMBERSHIP

 

Members

Mark Hamill

 

 

George Kevern

 

 

Gay Munro

 

 

Ray Waghorn

 

 

Councillor Julie Keast

 

 

IN ATTENDANCE

 

Committee Advisor

Fiona Dunlop

 

Community Partnership Leader

Michelle Stevenson

 

 

 

 

 

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. 

 


Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

ITEM                                                                                                                                   PAGE

Procedural

1          Apologies

2          Election of Chair and Deputy Chair                                                                             7

3          Leave of absence

4          Conflict of Interest

5          Public Forum

6          Extraordinary/Urgent Items

7          Confirmation of Minutes

8          General Explanation from Chief Executive                                                              15

9          Terms of Reference and Delegations 2017/2020                                                      17

10        Standing Orders                                                                                                          25

11        Elected Members Code of Conduct                                                                          89

12        Council Report                                                                                                           109

 

Chairs Report

The Chair to report on matters that they have been involved with since the Subcommittee’s last meeting.

 

Councillors Report

Councillor Keast to report on matters that she has been involved with since the Siubcommittee’s last meeting.

 

Next Meeting

Monday 20 November 2017

 


Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

 

 

Apologies

 

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

 

Leave of absence

 

At the close of the agenda the following request for Leave of Absence was received:

Councillor Keast

 

Conflict of Interest

 

Subcommittee 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 Subcommittee 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 Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee Triennial Public Meeting held on 20 March 2017

 


 

Election of Chair and Deputy Chair

Record No:        R/17/5/11133

Author:                 Fiona Dunlop, Committee Advisor

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 Dipton 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 Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Election of Chair and Deputy Chair” dated 23 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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Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

 

OPEN MINUTES

 

 

 

Minutes of a meeting of Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee held in the Gorge Road Community Centre, Factory Road, Gorge Road on Monday, 20 March 2017 at 6.05pm.

 

present

 

Mayor Gary Tong

Councillor Julie Keast

Mark Hamill

George Kevern

Gay Munro

Ray Waghorn

 

 

IN ATTENDANCE

 

Group Manager, Community and Futures – Rex Capil

Committee Advisor - Fiona Dunlop

Community Partnership Leader - Michelle Stevenson

 


1          Welcome and Introduction

 

Mayor Tong welcomed all present and thanked them for taking time out to participate in the local Gorge Road and Districts 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

 

Mayor Tong 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 26 April 2017 at 6.30pm in the Memorial Hall Wyndham where will be joined by the Edendale-Wyndham Community Board and the Woodlands and Tokanui 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.

 

All present were asked to sign the attendance register (which is attached to the minutes).

2          Apologies

There were no apologies.

3          Chairperson’s Report

Ray Waghorn in his capacity as the Chair for the 2013/2016 Triennium shared the following with the meeting.

 

The last 3 years of the Gorge Road Community Development Area Subcommittee have seen a lot of work on the further development of the planning around the outside of the reserve.  Soon we will have small plaques showing the areas being managed by the Gorge Road School, Gorge Road Garden Club, Gorge Road Country Club and the Waituna Landcare Group.  We have had our challenges along the way but in the main have succeeded.  Thanks to all those who have given of their time to help create this project.

 

Within the Community Development area there has been the usual run of the mill concerns, but one which happened last year was the opening of a drain that turned into an expensive repair for the area.  If anyone has a problem in the village or wider area, please contact the Southland District Council so that your engineer can have it checked out.  Recently a number of dangerous trees were removed from the east end of the reserve bordering the highway.

 

Throughout the last 3 years I have attended regular meetings at the Southland District Council for chairpersons from Community Boards, and CDAs and have worked for your interests.

 

We have had a change of engineer from Irwin Harvey to Brendan Gray and I must say Thank You to Brendan for your help within the Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee even to working a spade to dig hold for trees during a working bee.

 

Consent from the Gorge Road School Board of Trustees has been received allowing us to extend the walking track on round to Factory Road and with a bit of luck this should be completed by the end of April so that walkers can do the complete loop of the domain.

 

4          Public Forum

There was no public forum.

5          Election and Appointment of Scrutineers

Mayor Tong called for nominations from the public at the meeting to be members of the Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee.

Nominees

Mover

Seconder

George Kevern

Mark Hamill

Gay Munro

Ray Waghorn

Gay Munro

Mark Hamill

 

As there were four nominations for the six places on the Subcommittee there was no requirement for an election or the appointment of scrutineers.  As a result of the reduced number of nominations, the process of electing the members would proceed.  Members agreed that they would approach members of the Community to see if they could find another two members.

6          Announcements of Results and Conclusion of Meeting

Mayor Tong announced that George Kevern, Mark Hamill Gay Munro and Ray Waghorn were elected to the Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee.

 

Moved Mayor Tong, seconded Councillor Keast and resolved that George Kevern, Mark Hamill Gay Munro and Ray Waghorn were elected to the Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee.

 


 

 

 

The meeting concluded at 6.20pm.               CONFIRMED AS A TRUE AND CORRECT RECORD AT A MEETING OF THE Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee HELD ON MONDAY 20 MARCH 2017.

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

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

 


 

 


Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

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General Explanation from Chief Executive

Record No:        R/17/5/9062

Author:                 Fiona Dunlop, Committee Advisor

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 Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee:

1.       Receives the report titled “General Explanation from Chief Executive” dated 2 May 2017.

 

Attachments

There are no attachments for this report.  

 


Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

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Terms of Reference and Delegations 2017/2020

Record No:        R/17/5/9063

Author:                 Fiona Dunlop, Committee Advisor

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 Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Terms of Reference and Delegations 2017/2020” dated 2 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    

 


Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

 

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Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

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Standing Orders

Record No:        R/17/5/9064

Author:                 Fiona Dunlop, Committee Advisor

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 Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Standing Orders” dated 2 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    

 


Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

 

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Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

 

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20 June 2017

 

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Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

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Elected Members Code of Conduct

Record No:        R/17/5/9065

Author:                 Fiona Dunlop, Committee Advisor

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 Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Elected Members Code of Conduct” dated 2 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    

 


Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

 

sdc_print

 

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.

 

 


Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee

20 June 2017

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Council Report

Record No:        R/17/5/11565

Author:                 Michelle Stevenson, Community Partnership Leader

Approved by:       Rex Capil, Group Manager Community and Futures

 

  Decision                              Recommendation                         Information

 

  

 

Chief Executive

Havelock North Water Inquiry

1        The “Report of the Havelock North Drinking Water Inquiry: Stage 1” was released in mid-May.  Stage 1 of the Inquiry has essentially focussed on what occurred at Havelock North and why.

2        The Inquiry found that there were a number of failings by Hastings District Council, drinking-water assessors appointed under the Health Act 1956 and employed by the Hawke's Bay DHB, and Hawke's Bay Regional Council, being the key parties with responsibility for the water supply regime in Havelock North. While none of the faults identified directly caused the outbreak the Inquiry notes that a different outcome may have occurred if the identified deficiencies had not existed.

3        Stage 2 of the Inquiry is now proceeding and will look at lessons and improvements that can be made more broadly to the way in which water is managed across New Zealand. This will include looking at the regulatory regimes under which the various agencies involved operate.

4        The outcome of Stage 2 is expected to have ramifications for the broader water policy settings within which all local authorities across New Zealand operate and will no doubt inform other policy work being undertaken by Central Government.

5        Local Government New Zealand will be making submissions on behalf of all local authorities. Much of this submission is expected to draw on the work completed as part of their Water 2050 project through which they have advocated for the development of a co-regulatory model to help drive the lifting of standards across the sector.

6        As part of the broader policy debate about the development of water standards it is important that there is a stronger linkage between the different aspects that need to be covered including issues ranging from the setting of standards through to the financing and community affordability of infrastructure to deliver required standards over time.

Civil Defence Review

7        The Government have decided to carry out a review of civil defence policy settings.  The review is described as: “Better responses to natural disasters and other emergencies in New Zealand”, and will be led by a Technical Advisory Group (“TAG”) which is chaired by Hon Roger Sowry. 

8        The terms of reference for the review are expected to be released at the end of May with provisional recommendations likely to go to Government by the end of August.

9        The overall focus of the review will be on the following three broad areas:

·    Decision rights – that is how should the chain of command work;

·    The nature of information flows to the public and media given available technology and the nature of the resources available locally and centrally to assist; and

·    Capability and capacity across the system including ways and means to better deploy resources depending on priorities.

10      Officers will continue to monitor the review as it proceeds and report on any outcomes of significance to Southland. 

Southland Regional Development Strategy (SoRDs)

11      Work has been progressed to develop a proposed consultation document for the formation of a new Southland Regional Development Agency as a council controlled organisation.

12      The agency would be formed as a limited liability company with its shareholders consisting of the four Southland Councils, Iwi and community based organisations to ensure that there is a ‘whole of region’ approach to regional development moving forward. Other key aspects of the proposal include the appointment of a skills based board, to ensure that the focus is on the appointment of directors with an appropriate level of expertise, and the creation of a separate tourism division to ensure that there is an appropriate level of focus placed on development of the tourism industry. This proposal is consistent with the recommendation made by the SoRDS Tourism Action Team.

13      If the proposal is accepted by all four Councils then there would be a joint community consultation exercise undertaken. This would streamline the process and ensure that there is a common set of recommendations provided back to each of the Councils.

Land and Water Plan

14      Last year Council lodged a comprehensive submission on the Environment Southland (ES) proposed Land and Water Plan.

15      ES are now moving into the formal hearings process with a requirement for detailed evidence to be submitted by 12 May although they have granted time extensions for some submitters.

16      Officers have now lodged, in conjunction with the Gore District and Invercargill City Councils   the evidence needed to support the submission previously approved by Council. The Councils are due to present their evidence at a hearing in September 2017.

Rural Fire

17      The transition process to merge Rural Fire Authorities with the NZ Fire Service to create Fire and Emergency Management NZ (FENZ) is continuing. FENZ will officially come into being from 1 July 2017.

18      As part of the transition process Council has formally resolved to approve the sale of the relevant firefighting equipment to FENZ at a nominal price. More recently officers have also been working with FENZ to agree transitional arrangements for the provision of a range of support services including Information Technology services. It is expected that these arrangements will continue through until June 2018. 

Tourism Infrastructure Fund

19      On 11 May the Government announced a new Tourism Infrastructure Fund to replace the Mid-sized Regional Facilities Fund and Regional Growth Partnership Fund.

20      The new fund will have some $25 million per annum available to assist with co-funding of tourism related facilities in district’s that meet the relevant criteria.

21      Officers will give consideration to whether there are any infrastructure projects within this District that might meet the criteria. This will be done via work that needs to be progressed to develop a programme of works needed to implement the Open Spaces Strategy that was adopted by Council in 2014. Officers will look to include these projects in the draft 2018 10 Year Plan. 

22      It is important to recognise the co-funding requirement and hence the need for funding to be available through existing budgets.

Te Anau Wastewater Discharge Project

23      On 22 March Council received formal advice indicating that the Smith Family no longer wished to proceed with the proposed sale of their land to Council for potential use as an alternate disposal site for the Te Anau Wastewater project. From a contractual perspective, Council is now able, under the Deed of Agreement that it has with Fiordland Sewage Options, to exercise the Kepler consents should it so choose.

24      At its 17 May meeting Council asked officers to proceed with the development of a Business Case for the Kepler option. This decision reflects the importance of Council continuing to progress development of this option given the need to have any alternative fully operational by December 2020, unless new consents can be obtained for the existing Upukerora discharge.

25      In parallel with the work on the Kepler Business Case officers are also progressing development of potential criteria and a process via which it might identify potentially suitable alternative disposal sites. Work is underway to develop these criteria with a report back on these going to the Te Anau Wastewater Project Committee in August.

Around the Mountains Cycle Trail

26      At its 17 May meeting Council asked to progress the development of a business case for a “Heartland Ride” option from Walter Peak to Centre Hill.

27      As part of the business case process officers are also required to advance negotiations with the three main external funders, including the Crown, to agree on the implications of Council proceeding this option on the existing contractual arrangements. To date the Crown has been clear that it expects the Council to complete the Trail to the Great Ride standard and for Council to do otherwise would be a breach of its Funding Agreement.

28      Officers are progressing the work required and will keep Council briefed as it proceeds.

Milford Opportunities Project

29      As part of the SoRDS project Central Government announced the allocation of $250,000 towards the first phase of the Milford Opportunities Project.

30      Officers have been working with the Department of Conservation to develop revised terms of reference for the project. These are being discussed with the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) which is the government agency that will manage the funding arrangements with Council. Work is also underway to identify members that might be suitable for the proposed project governance group.

 

Customer Support

31      Customer Support is currently preparing for the annual dog registrations over June and July.  With the introduction of online payments over the last two years, there has been an increase in payments received online and forms received via email.  The Environmental Health Team will send out approximately 6,500 letters to our customers for dog registration. 

32      The Nightcaps Community Library has now moved to a Book Bus service with the first stop being planned for late June 2017.  We will monitor use of the service over the next six months and also work closely with regular customers to meet their library needs.

Services and Assets

Public Conveniences

33      Predominantly, business as usual when it comes to operations, however the budgets clearly show an increase in costs for those toilets situated on the main tourist routes.  The upgrade project at Colac Bay has been deferred until the Foreshore Road access issues have been resolved.

34      The Lions Park usage counts show similar seasonal trends to previous years, the year-end totals however are likely to be slightly down on last year given the low numbers early in the season.  The reason for this is unknown, however it did coincide with the significant upgrade work on the building next door by Real Journeys which may have affected their bus parking locations.

Water Structures

35      Consultation on Stewart Island jetties is ongoing, with Southport now also wanting to divest its ownership of the Golden Bay wharf.  Plans are also underway to do some initial investigations of the Waiau River boat ramps to identify any urgent issues to be included in the 2018 Long Term Plan.  A more detailed inspection will be undertaken prior to the next Long Term Plan.

36      Licence Agreements with private berth owners at Riverton is progressing with a majority signed and returned.  The outstanding ones will be followed up.

Curio Bay Project

37      Ongoing with Council’s waste water project and Department of Conservation’s carpark completed.  The South Catlins Trust has the new camping amenities building operational as well as commencing construction on the new heritage building.  An ancillary project has resulted from all this development and the three parties in conjunction with other interest groups, are involved in a planting programme on the reserve to increase the habitat for the Yellow Eyed Penguins.

Te Anau Airport - Manapouri

38      The summer season has concluded with the last flight in early May.  The statistics should be out by next report to compare past year’s performance.  Winter period is about maintenance of ground handling equipment and general terminal tidy up, ready for the up and coming summer season which will start in the middle of August. 

39      A very positive letter of appreciation from Alliance Airlines with the way we handle our ground handling system; we achieved a best on time performance in the country with an on time performance factor of 95%, with one aircraft defect delaying departure. 

40      The Air Force display went well and one aircraft remained at the airport overnight due to a defect.  The airport staff provided security for the night.

Alternative Coastal Route Improvement

41      The Roading Company have capitalised on recent weather patterns and have made good progress in a relatively short timeframe on this project.

Alliance Maintenance Contract Renewal

42      Following the decisions made by Council at its 27 April meeting to approve the proposed new road maintenance contracts officers have been working with the contractors to finalise the contract arrangements.

43      The discussions have been very positive with a good level of buy-in to implementation of the 80:20 principle and agreement to explore a number of other new initiatives during the next contract term.

 

Community and Futures

Stewart Island Wharf Engagement

44      The Stewart Island wharf engagement process is now well advanced.  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. 

45      The survey and consultation process 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-on-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.

Milford Opportunities

46      Discussions with MBIE are ongoing although we are getting closer to having a contract for the government funding that was announced at the SoRDS launch. It is likely that the project will tie in well with some work that MBIE is looking at in relation to the tourism pressures and issues that are being faced in Queenstown.

District Facilities Project

47      Venture Southland are undertaking this project on our behalf and are currently in the process of surveying both the operators and a representative sample of users. The project will assist Council in understanding the type, range, and location of facilities in the District as well as the level of use they get.

Te Anau Community Consultation

48      The public feedback part of the process has closed and the comments collated. The next step is for the Te Anau Community Board to go through the comments and identify the projects that they see as the priorities for the Board to invest in on behalf of the community, what they might advocate for on behalf of the community, and what they cannot or do not wish to pursue.

Community Governance Project and Representation Review Project Update

49      The Community Governance Project and Representation Review Projects are aimed at enhancing community involvement so that future governance structures in Southland work best for the people of Southland to assist strong district decisionmaking while empowering local communities to participate in processes that reflect the needs and requirements of the district.

50      The Elected Member Working Group will provide feedback on the development of issues and option and assist the stakeholder and community engagement process.  It will meet over the course of the projects.

51      The Representation Review is a formal statutory process that will be informed by the feedback from the Community Governance Review.  Staff from across the Council will be involved in the project as there will be operational issues to plan for with any changes to the current representation arrangements.  The Electoral Officer Dale Ofsoske will be assisting the Council to fulfil its statutory obligations.

2017/2018 Annual Plan

52      Council made decisions on the feedback received from individuals and organisations on the Annual Plan Update 2017 on 6 April 2017.

53      The key financial changes included providing a one-off grant in 2017/18 for the Hollyford Conservation Trust ($10,000 GST exclusive) and increase in the Regional Heritage Rate ($5 per rating unit GST inclusive), 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 for the final plan has dropped slightly to 3.63% from 3.64% signalled in the Annual Plan Update 2017.

54      Council staff have incorporated the changes from the deliberations into the final draft and presented the final draft annual plan to councillors for feedback at a workshop on 17 May.  The Annual Plan will be adopted at the Council meeting on 7 June 2017. At this meeting, Council will also be asked to set the rates for the 2017/18 financial year. 

55      Once the plan is adopted, reply letters will be sent to all people who provided feedback, a copy of the Annual Plan will be available to view on the council website and hard copies will be printed and distributed the Area Offices.

56      Strategy and Policy staff will then move their attention the Annual Report and LTP.

Community Leadership Plan Workshop Update

57      Eight Community Leadership Plan Workshops were held across the District in April bringing together Councillors, Community Board and CDA members along with Community Partnership Leaders and Venture Southland Community Development staff.   Feedback from attendees has been positive and our Elected Members were challenged to look towards the future and identify opportunities, they were also asked what their township will look like in the next 3, 10 and 30 years, who will be living there and who their communities of interest will be.

58      The Community Partnership Leaders are now working to collate the results before embarking on stage two of the consultation process with key community stakeholders.

Service Delivery Scoping Project

59      Council has engaged Rebecca McElrea to undertake the above project.  The purpose is to consider future Council service delivery options for communities in the Southland District with demand from residents, ratepayers and visitors being the primary focus.  The consultant has been requested to investigate and consider the types and levels of service demanded from customers and consumers, how services could be delivered and where from.  At present we are working to develop the surveys before commencing the community engagement aspect of the process

Venture Southland – Community Development

60      The Venture Southland Community Development team has been conducting an assessment of all facilities available for community use or hire across the District on behalf of Southland District Council. The team have been in contact with facility managers in the Gorge Road area to gain their feedback on what is available and community needs over the past month, and are very appreciative of the community’s assistance with this process.

61      Venture Southland advise that funding has been secured for the new roller for the Gorge Road pool cover, and that staff have provided advice and assistance to set up a heritage Trust in the Gorge Road area.

 

Environmental Services

Resource Management Act Amendments

62      Now that the Resource Management Act amendments have been enacted, staff are working through the implications of these and will be presenting a report on this to Council at its meeting in 21 June 2017.

63      One of the major components of the amendments in the introduction of a more ‘template’ approach to planning at a national level aimed at driving more national consistency. This is likely to have significant implications for the shape of future planning documents.

64      The Ministry for the Environment is bringing a road show to Invercargill on this topic on the afternoon of 21 June, which staff will be attending.

Earthquake Prone Amendments to the Building Act 2004

65      As previously advised these take effect on 1 July 2017. 

66      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.  The Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment held a briefing session for relevant Council staff in Dunedin on 23 and 24 May 2017.

67      Councillors will recall that key elements of this can be briefly summarised as setting timeframes for assessing buildings identified as potentially earthquake prone, and timeframes for strengthening such identified buildings based on the risk zone which they are located within (Southland District Council contains High, Medium and Low zone), and based on the use of the buildings and their potential for collapse on key thoroughfares.

Building Control

68      The issued consents are down by 44% on April last year and these numbers were down 11% (March) and 23% (February) relative to their respective months in 2016.  This reduction is primarily due to a drop off in consent applications for fires, dwelling alterations and farm buildings.  There were the same number of new dwellings consented and an increase in the number of new dairy sheds being consented when compared to the same period as last year.  The value of the consented work is up by $1 Million, with three dairy sheds adding $1.2 Million or 25% to the value of work consented.

69      The distribution of work seems to remain primarily in the larger urban areas such as Winton, Te Anau and Riverton.  The average price per consented dwelling has risen by more than $70,000 from the same period last year, reflecting the greater complexity in design.  The consents issued this month will require 225 inspections before the work is completed.  We continue to receive consent applications at a steady rate and have a number of consents to process.

Dog Registrations

70      Dog registration forms are going out in the post in early June.  The new dog registration discounts are being introduced this year that recognise responsible ownership, neutering and containment.

 

Freedom Camping Bylaw

71      Local discussions are continuing concerning possibly amending the freedom camping bylaw rules for Lumsden, Waikawa and Weirs Beach.

Rakiura Heritage Centre

72      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)

73      The submission on the proposal to realign State Highway 1 closed on 11 May.  A total of 18 submissions were received and an indicative timeframe for holding a hearing will be late July or early August. An Independent Commissioner will hold the hearing and make a decision on the application.

District Plan Appeals

74      Council has just received indicative mediation dates for the remaining Proposed District Plan appeals.  The Environment Court mediation is pencilled in between 8-11 August which will be confirmed once all the parties are satisfied with the dates.

Water and Land Plan Evidence

75      Council has submitted five briefs of evidence in relation to Environment Southland’s Water and Land Plan hearings which started on 22 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). Council is going to speak to its evidence in mid-September.

Resource Consents

76        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.

 

Information Management

Digitisation Project

77      The final main shipment of paper has been sent from Council at the end of May.  This particular shipment will be the single largest being the total boxes sent to over 1,000.

 

People and Capability

78      In February 2017, Council contracted Simpson Grierson to undertake a Health and Safety Gap Analysis.  The gap analysis included a review of Southland District Councils Health and Safety Management System, discussions with key operational leaders and visits to operational locations and discussions with workers and key contractors.  The intent of the exercise was to compare our current practices with good practice so that we could identify areas for improvement. The report identifies a number of opportunities for improving our current Health and Safety practices. An Action Plan including a draft commitment, objectives and targets has been developed and will be presented to the Finance and Audit Committee in June 2017 for their approval and subsequent monitoring of progress.

Finance

79      Income in the year to date is below expected levels.  This is due to the Ward funds being transferred for the Removal and Maintenance of trees is yet to be received as income.  The forecasting for these funds was allocated to administration rather than the Recreational reserve business unity so shows the variance in both below.  This will be corrected in the June end of year figures.

80      Expenditure variance shows an over spend in the Recreational Reserve, and is due to approved unbudgeted expenditure from the Gorge Rd CDA for the removal and maintenance of trees at the Reserve.  This was funded from the old Waihopai Ward General Reserve for $7,700.

81      There are no Capital Expenditure projects for Gorge Road 2016/17.

 

 

 

 

 

Recommendation

That the Gorge Road and Districts Community Development Area Subcommittee:

a)         Receives the report titled “Council Report” dated 12 June 2017.

 

 

Attachments

There are no attachments for this report.