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Rotorua pre-election report to include community wellbeing focus
16 May 2019
Rotorua pre-election report to include community wellbeing focus
Problems impacting social, environmental, economic and cultural wellbeing in Rotorua will be a key focus of this year’s pre-election report.
 
Councils will have greater responsibility for leading, facilitating and coordinating local solutions to address issues and challenges that impact on community wellbeing following Government’s re-introduction of “the four wellbeings” to the Local Government Act.
 
The change in legislation recognises councils have pivotal roles in leadership around issues impacting on community wellbeing to ensure a whole-of-community focus on local priorities and solutions, Rotorua Lakes Council Chief Executive Geoff Williams told Council’s Strategy, Policy & Finance Committee today.
 
A report and presentation to the committee outlined the changes and likely impact on Council and highlighted some of the issues facing the district including deprivation and housing. The Committee was told the changes and the important issues and challenges facing the Rotorua district will be a key focus of Mr Williams’ pre-election report which will be published in early August.
 
The report is a legislated requirement and its purpose is to stimulate informed debate in the community, encourage people to stand for the local government elections and encourage people to vote.
 
Mr Williams said the Local Government Act changes would not see funding to address issues being allocated to local government. However, Councils would be expected to not just provide community leadership, but to also identify opportunities for collaboration that could lead to positive outcomes, such as Te Aka Mauri, Rotorua’s library and child health hub.
 
Many social sector trials undertaken by Central Government agencies and ministries had not continued because they had failed to deliver the level of results expected, Mr Williams said. Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) has championed the concept of localism and talked about the importance of local leadership to bring communities together and focus on priorities and solutions to address those.
 
The Committee was told today that following the local government elections this October, Council will need to consider how it wants to work with Government and other partners to apply the wellbeings and to work on solutions to problems facing the Rotorua district.
 
The Committee passed a recommendation which will now go to the Full Council, that the incoming council (following the October 2019 local government elections) considers today’s report as part of the induction of the new council and works towards an assessment of actions that covers the re-introduction of the wellbeings and how Council can work with Government on the issues and challenges facing the district.