Council seeking feedback on establishment of Māori wards
The community will have a chance to have its say on the introduction of Māori wards, following a decision yesterday by Taupō District Council.
The decision follows changes to the Local Electoral Act in March, which have implications for council’s decision to establish Māori wards for the 2022 and 2025 local government elections, which was voted on in November 2020. Previously, members of the community had the right to demand a poll to reverse the decision, but the changes to legislation mean a poll received by the council last month is no longer valid.
Changes to the Local Electoral Act mean council now has more time to seek feedback from the community about their views on the establishment of Māori wards and they chose to proceed with this after discussions at yesterday’s meeting.
Taupō District Mayor David Trewavas said the changes to the legislation aimed to align the treatment of Māori wards with the treatment of general wards as much as possible.
“The decision to seek feedback means we have a chance to further engage with our community on its views and take them into consideration as we look forward to the 2022 elections.”
Mr Trewavas said this meant the community would be able to give feedback online or by post from next Friday, March 19, which would be considered by councillors at the April council meeting.
Residents and ratepayers will be invited to have their say at taupo.govt.nz/maoriwards, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by sending written feedback to Sue Mavor, Private Bag 2005, Taupō 3352, from Friday, March 19 to 5pm Tuesday, April 6. Physical feedback forms will be available from all council offices and online for the duration of the feedback period.