Local Governance Statement
This Local Governance Statement has been prepared in accordance with the requirements of the Local Governance Act 2002 Part 4 Section 40.
Functions, Responsibilities and Activities of this Council
Council's purpose is to enable democratic local decision-making and action by, and on behalf of communities, and to meeting the current and future needs of our communities. For more information on Council and its role, check out the About the Council webpage for more details.
Legislation - Obligations and Responsibilities on Local Authorities
Council exercises powers and fulfills responsibilities as described and conferred by the following legislation and subsequent amendments to these Acts, and any other legislation that may be enacted by Central Government in regard to Local Government from time to time. See full list here.
Under the Local Electoral Act 2001, there are two voting options for Council in conducting its elections. The options are the first past the post system (FPP) and the single transferable vote option (STV). See our Electoral Systems webpage for details.
Representation - Wards
The number of elected representatives for each Ward is dependent on the number of resident electors within a Ward boundary. The larger the number of eligible electors in a Ward – the larger the number of elected representatives.
Western Bay of Plenty District Council area is divided into three wards these being:
One elected for the District
Ward Councillors – 11 elected in total
Katikati-Waihi Beach Ward - 3
Kaimai Ward - 4
Maketu-Te Puke Ward - 4
Council has five Community Boards, they are;
- Maketu Community Board
- Katikati Community Board
- Ōmokoroa Community Board
- Te Puke Community Board
- Waihī Beach Community Board
Click Board link for more information.
Each Community Board has a chairperson and three elected members who are elected triennially to each Board by electors in the different community board areas. Council also appoints two Councillors to each of the Boards. Each Board elects its own chairperson at its inaugural meeting after the triennial election.
The Local Electoral Act 2001 gives Council the ability to review and establish Community Boards as part of their representation review.
The Local Government Act 2002 provides for community boards to be established at any time as the result of a proposal from the community concerned.
Council conducted a representation review in 2017-2018. The outcome of the review was to propose a reduction to four Community Boards. Feedback from the community did not support the proposal and there was no change to the Community Boards. The next review will be conducted over the 2023-2024 year to ensure that changes (if any) may be taken into account for the 2025 election.
Council established three Community Forums following the 2022 election. These are the;
Click Forum link for more information.
These Community Forums were established to provide an effective mechanism for feedback to Council on local and community issues and strategic issues relating to the various Communities.
Reviewing and Changing Representation Arrangements
Council is required to review its representation arrangements at least once every six years. This review must include the following:
- The number of elected members (within the legal required toe have a minimum of six and a maximum of 30 members, including the Mayor).
- Whether the elected members (other than the Mayor) shall be elected by the entire district, or whether the district will be divided into wards for electoral purposes, or whether there will be mix of 'at large' and 'ward' representation.
- If election by wards is preferred, then the boundaries and names of those wards and number of members that will represent each ward.
- Whether or not to have separate wards for electors on the Māori roll.
- Whether to have community boards and if so how many, their boundaries and membership and whether to sub-divide a community for electoral purposes.
Council must follow the procedure set out in the Local Electoral Amendment Act 2002 when conducting this review, and should also follow guidelines published by the Local Government Commission. The Local Electoral Amendment Act 2002 gives you the right to make a written submission to Council, and the right to be heard if you wish.
You also have the right to appeal any decisions on the above to the Local Government Commission, which will make a binding decision on the appeal. Further details on the matters that Council must consider in reviewing its membership and basis of election can be found in the Local Electoral Amendment Act 2002, or by viewing the Local Government Commission website at www.lgc.govt.nz
A representation review was completed in 2018. The outcome of the review was that Council retained its First Past the Post electoral voting system and did not establish Māori wards. The three Wards were retained with a minor boundary change between the Katikati-Waihī Beach and Kaimai Wards. Council will comprise of the Mayor and 11 Councillors, with two Councillors appointed to each of the five Community Boards. A full copy of the Local Government Commission determination is available here.
Council will undertake its next review in the 2023-2024 year and this will include opportunities for our communities to have input into the Council structure for the 2025 elections.
Members Roles and Code of Conduct
The Mayor and the Councillors have the following roles:
- Setting the policy direction of Council
- Monitoring the performance of Council
- Representing the interests of the district (on election all members must make a declaration that they will perform their duties faithfully and impartially, and according to their best skill and judgment in the best interests of the district)
- Employing the Chief Executive Officer (under the Local Government Act the Council employs the Chief Executive Officer, who in turn employs all other staff on its behalf).
For more information about the roles of the Mayor and Councillors, see here.
The current Code of Conduct document for the Mayor and Councillors and Community Boards is available here. A new Code of Conduct is yet to be adopted for the 2022-2025 triennium for both Council and the Community Boards.
Governance Structures and Processes, Membership and Delegations
Under a change to the Local Government Act in 2012 the Mayor may set the committee structure after each triennial election. After the election, conducted in October 2022, the following delegations and standing committees were established. See our Committees, Community Boards and Forums webpage for details on each.
Standing Orders - Meeting Process
The legal requirements for council meetings are set down in the Local Government Act 2002 and the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (LGOIMA). During meetings the Mayor and Councillors must follow standing orders (a set of procedures for conducting meetings). Council may suspend standing orders by a vote of 75 per cent of the members present. See the adopted Standing Orders for Council and its Committees. Community Boards are yet to adopt their Standing Orders for this triennium. Standing Orders from the last triennium still apply - see here for details.
Consultation and Engagement with the Community
Council has a Significance and Engagement Policy that provides guidance on when and how Council will engage with the community. This ensures that the community are involved and able to be involved in and share their views on the development of important plans and policies and decisions. A full copy of the policy can be found here.
Council regularly consults on a range of topics. Our current consultation items can be viewed at http://haveyoursay.westernbay.govt.nz, or read about the outcomes of past consultation in our decisions documents.
Policies for engaging with Māori
Council’s aim is to continue to develop and maintain a strong relationship with Māori. We have developed a process for engaging with Māori in the work that we do. For more information, see our webpage here.
Management Structure and the Relationship between Management and Elected Members
The Chief Executive Officer is appointed by the Council in accordance with section 42 and clauses 33 and 34 of Schedule 7 of the Local Government Act 2002. The Chief Executive Officer implements and manages the Council's policies and objectives within the budgetary constraints established by the Council. Under section 42 of the Local Government Act 2002, the responsibilities of the Chief Executive Officer are:
- implementing the decisions of the local authority; and
- providing advice to members of the local authority and to its community boards, if any; and
- ensuring that all responsibilities, duties, and powers delegated to him or her or to any person employed by the local authority, or imposed or conferred by an Act, regulation, or bylaw, are properly performed or exercised; and
- ensuring the effective and efficient management of the activities of the local authority; and
- facilitating and fostering representative and substantial elector participation in elections and polls held under the Local Electoral Act 2001; and
- maintaining systems to enable effective planning and accurate reporting of the financial and service performance of the local authority; and
- providing leadership for the staff of the local authority; and
- employing, on behalf of the local authority, the staff of the local authority (in accordance with any remuneration and employment policy); and
- negotiating the terms of employment of the staff of the local authority (in accordance with any remuneration and employment policy).
Management Structures and Relationships
The Local Government Act 2002 requires Council to employ a Chief Executive Officer whose responsibilities are to employ other staff on behalf of Council, implement Council decisions and provide advice to Council. Under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act (LGOIMA), the Chief Executive Officer is the only person who may lawfully give instructions to a staff member. Any complaint about individual staff members should therefore be directed to the Chief Executive Officer, rather than the Mayor or Councillors. See our Senior Leadership Team webpage.
Equal Opportunities Policy
Our Council is an equal opportunities employer and ensures that all procedures for recruitment, selection, promotion, training, career development and conditions of employment are non-discriminatory and apply equally to all.
Key Planning and Policy Documents
Council adopts key planning and policy documents to guide its decision making. These documents are developed following consultation with community groups, Tangata Whenua and key stakeholders in accordance with the Local Government Act 2002. All documents referred to are available on our Plans, Policies, Strategies and Bylaws webpage.
Long Term Plan
Council’s Long Term Plan is the key strategic document that outlines what communities in the Western Bay want to achieve in the next 10 years and sets a pathway for Council to reach these objectives, including what it will cost and how it will be funded. Council is required to review its Long Term Plan every three years which ensures the community is provided with the opportunity to participate in the decisions which will affect their future. The next Long Term Plan review will commence in 2023 and is due to be completed by June 2024.
Copies of the our Long Term Plans are available on our website here.
Council’s Annual Plan details the activities we intend to carry out over the coming financial year. Council adopts its Annual Plan and the Schedule of Fees and Charges annually. The Annual Plan is available to view here.
Bylaws are rules and regulations made by the Council in accordance with the relevant legislation, that affect how people live, work and play. Bylaws are reviewed periodically as required by legislation or to respond to community issues. See all Bylaws here.
Policies set out Council’s approach to different matters in accordance with the relevant legislation. Policies provide a framework for consistent decision-making by Council and provide guidance to the community on particular issues. Council’s policies are reviewed periodically or to respond to community issues and are available here.
The District Plan is prepared in accordance with the Resource Management Act 1991 and sets zoning on all of the land in the District e.g. rural, lifestyle and industrial to ensure that enough of each is available and is used for its intended purpose. The plan sets out what you are allowed to do on your property and is the method by which the Council maintains and protects our environment while allowing land use development to continue. It also identifies features such as ecological, landscapes, heritage and natural hazards that require special consideration.
Within each zone and feature, the District Plan sets out what land use and subdivision activities are permitted or require resource consent. It also sets out what the requirements are for each so that adverse effects on people and/or the environment can be managed.
The District Plan is developed through a public consultation process and outcomes may be appealed through the Environment Court. District Plans need to be reviewed every 10 years with the next comprehensive review currently underway. The District Plan can be viewed here.
Reserve Management Plans
For details on our Reserve Management Plans - see our webpage here.
Systems for Public Access to the Local Authority and its Elected Members
Council’s main office is at Barkes Corner, 1484 Cameron Road, Greerton, Tauranga. See our Contact Us webpage for details.
There are also Library and Service Centre's located in Katikati, Ōmokoroa, Te Puke, and Waihī Beach - see here for details.
Contacting Elected Members
You may contact any of our Elected Members, including Community Board members, by directing correspondence and enquiries to Council's main office or to any of the Library and Service Centres. You will then be forwarded to the member or members concerned.
Alternatively, you may contact Elected Members directly. Their contact details are available on the Mayor and Councillors webpage or for Community Board members, see the five boards listed under the Committees, Community Boards and Forums webpage.
If you have any complaints about the way your issues have been managed by Council officers and wish to lodge a formal complaint, this should be addressed in the first instance to the Chief Executive Officer, John Holyoake. His contact details are phone: 0800 926 732, or by post: at Western Bay of Plenty District Council, Private Bag 12803, Tauranga, or by email: John.Holyoake@westernbay.govt.nz. John’s office is located in the Barkes Corner Main Office.