Bound­aries re­flect pub­lic view

Auckland City Harbour News - - News - By John Carter

Auck­land has to end some­where. The Na­tion­al­go­v­ern­ment has wel­comed the re­cent pub­lic dis­cus­sion about where that should be.

We have been con­sid­er­ing the se­lect com­mit­tee’s rec­om­men­da­tions and lis­ten­ing to your views.

We have an­nounced the cur­rent Rod­ney bound­ary will be main­tained.

That means the whole of the district will be part of the new su­percity. That change refl the views of Rod­ney and the Auck­land Re­gional Coun­cil.

We’ve lis­tened and acted.

You said the se­lect com­mit­tee’s pro­posal to split Rod­ney was not what Auck­lan­ders wanted. We heard and re­sponded.

We also de­cided to main­tain the south­ern bound­ary as rec­om­mended by the se­lect com­mit­tee. Much thought went into that bound­ary. There had been ar­gu­ments for ex­tend­ing it down to the Waikato River.

We de­cided the best op­tion for Auck­land and Franklin is to split it as rec­om­mended by the com­mit­tee just south of Pukekohe. The south­ern area will go into the Waikato.

This makes sense be­cause it means the en­tire Waikato River catch­ment will be in the Waikato.

It avoids bu­reau­cratic com­plex­ity and con­fu­sion that would have re­sulted from the bound­ary pro­posed by the Royal Com­mis­sion, and also avoids river man­age­ment is­sues.

The Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Com­mis­sion will have min­i­mal abil­ity to change the bound­aries. We are work­ing to en­sure they will make de­ci­sions that recog­nise and pro­tect com­mu­ni­ties of in­ter­est like Waiuku and Pukekohe.

Towns and ar­eas close to the bound­aries of the new Auck­land Coun­cil will have their ac­cess to ser­vices and fa­cil­i­ties like li­braries and swim­ming pools pro­tected.

The gov­ern­ment is ask­ing the com­mis­sion to look at th­ese im­pacts and make sure res­i­dents’ in­ter­ests are pro­tected. Over the longer term we ex­pect that all coun­cils will work to­gether to share ser­vices wher­ever it is ben­e­fi­cial.

Changes to lo­cal gov­ern­ment bound­aries are al­ways con­tentious and ev­ery pro­posal is likely to have vo­cal op­po­nents and sup­port­ers.

We have lis­tened and we are con­fi­dent th­ese de­ci­sions set a solid foun­da­tion for the fu­ture. – Mr Carter is the

as­so­ciate lo­cal gov­ern­ment min­is­ter

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