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Useful links

Audit NZ This government agency checks and analyses the finances and operations of almost all local authorities in New Zealand as well as many council-controlled organisations.

Citizens Advice Bureaux A network of non-profit offices run by volunteers who can offer free information and advice on how to deal with council processes.

DIA Department of Internal Affairs site explaining local government arrangements.

Electoral Commission The Electoral Commission updates the electoral rolls for each local authority election. The elections are run by the councils themselves who appoint returning officers to carry out the work.

Environment The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment can investigate or review environmental planning and management by local authorities.

Human Rights Commission The Human Rights Commission can investigate complaints about a local authority discriminating against someone, for example on the grounds of their age or disability or political opinion or race.

LGNZ Local Government New Zealand is the umbrella organisation representing councils.

LGOL Local Government Online is a company which provides a shared website and other internet-based resources for councils.

Ombudsman Once all other options have been explored the Ombudsman can investigate complaints about the processes followed by council committees when reaching decisions. It also handles complaints about the release of official information by councils.

SOLGM The Society of Local Government Managers is a professional group acting for council chief executives, senior managers and other staff.

Serious Fraud Office The SFO can investigate and prosecute serious or complex fraud or corruption within local authorities.

Statistics NZ – latest information on council financial performance.

Statistics NZ – latest information on council population data.

Your local MP Sometimes your local Member of Parliament can help to advocate on your behalf with your council, or offer advice on other options available to you.

The Minister of Local Government Central government has some powers to deal with councils which are in difficulty. The Minister can ask for information, or appoint a manager, reviewer, observer, or commissioner if a council is having problems. Anyone can write to the Minister with a question about their local authority.