20 days to decide next 30 years
It’s estimated it would take a speed reader nearly two months to read the recommended Unitary Plan.
Auckland Councillors have been given 20 days to come to grips with it.
The mountain of text and the tight timeframe is now causing concern for some councillors.
The long-awaited recommended Unitary Plan for the super city was made public on July 27 and the council now has until August 19 to decide whether it accepts the recommendations.
‘‘This impacts the city for the next 30 years and we have 20 days to try understand it before we have to make key decisions,’’ councillor Mike Lee says.
‘‘I am certainly trying to understand it to the best of my ability and will give it a good crack but of course it is not sufficient time.’’
The Unitary Plan has nearly 7000 pages and Auckland University business school lecturer and ‘power reading’ expert Nick Read estimates it would take 55 days to speed read it.
To deal with the workload, councillor Denise Krum says she has been focusing on the areas she’s interested in and receiving help from council staff.
‘‘It is a very large, complex document and we cannot be expected to know all of it when it comes to the decision process. But in saying that I will feel very angry if we feel pressed to rush decisions during this period,’’ Krum says.
The Unitary Plan will follow a standard decision-making process which is carried out by the Auckland Development Committee, and chaired by deputy mayor Penny Hulse.
Councillor Cameron Brewer says because of the extraordinary nature of the Unitary Plan it should be considered by the Governing Body, which Mayor Len Brown chairs.
‘‘I am furious that the mayor refuses to chair the many days of deliberation and instead has given it to the deputy mayor to chair,’’ Brewer says.
Brown has previously stated the release of the proposed Unitary Plan is a major milestone for Auckland.
‘‘We’ve had four years of debate and everyone has had ample opportunity to have their say,’’ he said.
‘‘The process from here is that we as a council need to consider the panel’s recommendations and make final decisions.’’
The great tower of paper that would be required to print the entire Auckland Unitary Plan.