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Taking the pulse of local government - 2017 survey

July 24, 2017


Partners Jonathan Salter

Local government Public law Government reform and public policy

In the lead up to this year's Local Government New Zealand Conference, Simpson Grierson in collaboration with Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) has released a survey that canvasses responses from local government mayors and chairs across the country.

Fifty five mayors and chairs gave their insights into the major issues facing their organisations and communities, with the quality of the responses being impressive, partner Jonathan Salter says.

"Funding and affordability is seen to be the biggest impediment to local authorities achieving results for their communities. For a majority of respondents, funding was the 'single biggest thing' that kept them awake at night."

Intensified financial support and investment in local communities from central government was repeatedly identified as a solution to the issues of funding.

However, an encouraging result of the survey was the diversity in the greatest opportunities open to councils and their communities, including iwi investment, local business growth, population growth, water resources, transport, and tourism.  

"Taking into account the vastly different needs and resources of local authorities across New Zealand, this result seems to suggest the presence of an overall positive responsive attitude in local government", Salter says.

Simpson Grierson and Local Government New Zealand are delighted to have collaborated on this research project.

To read the full report, please click here.