It’s clear to us that this is a new “second prize” for Mayor Guru, after it has become obvious that the earliest he can expect his vanity ‘Gateway’ project to see realisation is the end of 2024. He has already announced that he is not seeking re-election and so won’t get voter backlash from this. But any councilor who is seeking re-election and votes for this can expect it. This will be another big issue for the council elections if a majority approve it. As was pointed out at last year’s Representation Review, the three present mandated iwi only represent about 15% of Maori in the Kapiti District.

Local Hapu member Karl Webber says, “Iwi working at an operational level yes. Governance no. They need to be elected onto governance roles / councilors if they want voting rights. Democracy is at risk.”

The proposal is numbered 7.2 in the Agenda.

from Kapiti Independent News

Community Board member Guy Burns says the Kāpiti Council’s plans for Māori representation are not democratic and are not supported by many local Māori.

Guy Burns

Burns, deputy-chair of the Paraparaumu Raumati Community Board, says: “Kapiti Councillors are voting tomorrow (June 7) on proposed changes to governance — specifically Mana Whenua representation within Council’s Governance Structure.

He says: “I support Māori co-governance, but reject the current proposal because:

•           There has been no public consultation;

•           voting rights should be based on elected representation;

•           many local Māori do not support the current Iwi representation model, and;

•           the proposal appears rushed in the last days of the current triennium.

No public consultation

“With such a major change to Kapiti’s governance arrangements, I’m surprised the proposed changes have not been publicly notified with relevant consultation.

“Locals should have the opportunity to hear about the changes and provide feedback to elected representatives.

Voting rights should be based on elected representation

“Decisions made around the Council table and delegated committees should be made by those voted to power by the public.

“Even Community Board members cannot vote and having members, who are appointed by a non-democratic process, voting on Council decisions breaks from historical precedent.

“Many local Māori do not support the current Iwi representation model

“There are problems with the current system of Iwi representation with many Māori unhappy with the current structures, which appear family structured and not representative of Māori in Kāpiti. Having Māori appointed to Council by non-democratic structures will be problematic.

“The proposal appears rushed in the last days of the current triennium

“With three months to go in the triennium, such an important proposal is being rushed through without adequate publicity and consultation.

“Such a process appears to be a ‘deal behind closed doors’. I note point 24 of the agenda states:  When the new Council is elected in October 2022, they will need to consider this matter afresh.  

“If this is the case, why rush and decide now?

“I urge Councillors to reject the proposal or leave it on the table for the new Council to decide”.