Auckland Commission submission
Typically last minute, I'm afraid. I'm far more interested in what others have to say:
The Auckland region could benefit from a system of unitary metropolitan bodies and a de-centralised local government to maintain a balance of accountability.
Any change from the status quo should be ultimately put to a referendum in the areas affected by any change.
Iwi having mana whenua within the region must be able to assert a territorial jurisdiction as a discrete unit of local government having equivalent status as other autonomous sub-divisions (inter alia Community Boards) upon and over their own tribal lands at the very least. Maori representation on an ethnic basis alone (ie. the "Maori roll") can not adequately represent tangata whenua as they are in a minority position in the region.
To enable effective co-ordination of public transport and the expansion and upgrading of the urban rail system an Auckland Transit Commission should be established under it's own legislation and its own independent mandate to allow it to focus on its task without interference. Members of the commission should be accountable to the region by election.
Community Boards generally should be smaller than they are at present to enable better access to elected representatives and more informed decision-making on local issues. Boards should be given more responsibilities than they have at present.
If all present councils (including the ARC) should merge to form a unitary council then the decentralisation and devolvement of responsibilities to Boards must occur.
Any unitary council should have no more than 33 members in order to stop the proliferation of commitees.
Thank you for considering this submission.