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Commission calls for alternative applications and other proposals for change for West Coast local government arrangements

Date: 01 Feb 2017

The Local Government Commission is calling for alternative reorganisation applications and other proposals for change to West Coast local government arrangements. This follows the Commission receiving a local government reorganisation application from two West Coast residents, supported by a petition, in 2015. The Commission determined that this application was for a unitary authority for the West Coast, that is one council for all the West Coast undertaking both regional council and district council functions.

To progress the application the Commission had to be satisfied there was “demonstrable community support’’ for reorganisation across the West Coast. Following a community engagement programme on the West Coast in June and early July 2016, the Commission decided there was community support for some change. It is now undertaking the next step in the process: the call for alternative applications, or other proposals for change, relating to West Coast local government arrangements.

Alternative applications are other suggestions for local government reorganisation and may relate to all or to one or more parts of the West Coast area.  An alternative application must include a description of the type of local government change or changes proposed, a map or description of the affected area, what the changes are seeking to achieve and what improvements would result from these changes. Other proposals for change are more general suggestions for changes to local government arrangements on the West Coast.

Anyone can submit an alternative application, or other proposal. The Commission has prepared supporting information for West Coast alternative reorganisation applications and other proposals. This can be found at West Coast Reorganisation or in hard copy at council offices, libraries and some i-Sites throughout the West Coast.

Alternative applications and other proposals must be received at the Local Government Commission by 15 March 2017. They should be emailed to info@lgc.govt.nz or posted to: Chief Executive Officer, Local Government Commission, PO Box 5362, Wellington 6140.

After 15 March, the Commission will consider all responses in identifying the “reasonably practicable options’’ for local government arrangements on the West Coast. If the Commission decides there is more than one reasonably practicable option, it must then identify its “preferred option’’. If the preferred option is not the status quo, the Commission will then prepare a draft reorganisation proposal and present it to the West Coast community for consultation.