When you don't have a policy - you have a Royal Commission
The issues about Auckland’s future governance are complex, and the Royal Commission will provide for careful and thorough investigation and consultation to identify the most appropriate long-term governance arrangements for Auckland, to secure its future as an internationally competitive city [...]
The terms of reference direct the Commissioners to inquire into and report upon the local government arrangements (including institutions, mechanisms and processes) that are required in the Auckland region over the foreseeable future in order to maximise, in a cost effective manner:
• the current and future well-being of the region and its communities; and
• the Auckland region’s contribution to wider national objectives and outcomes.
The commission will set up base in Auckland and hire staff before Christmas. It could issue discussion papers before hearing public submissions next year. The commission has to report back to the Government by December 1 next year. [...] new North Shore Mayor Andrew Williams warned against a single city, which he said would end up being an "uncontrollable monster". [...] Bob Harvey, Waitakere Mayor: I think the Royal Commission is a terrific start but what needs to be addressed is a far bigger philosophical agenda about funding, about how funding is derived, about where funding is accessed from, different methods of rating.
Areas specifically excluded in the commission's terms include funding arrangements with central government. Mr Burton said that was because any funding from central government was up to the government of the day to decide.
We are mindful of the recommendations of the recent Inquiry into Local Government Rates and the pending Royal Commission into Auckland Local Government and while we will make every effort to assist the Royal Commission in any way we can at the same time we will not be distracted from getting on with the tasks at hand.