MINUTES OF A meeting of the Regional Council
Date: Wednesday 15 November 2017
Hawke's Bay Regional Council
159 Dalton Street
A J Dick
R Graham (via audio link)
In Attendance: M Paku – Deputy Chairman – Maori Committee
J Palmer – Chief Executive
J-A Raihania – Senior Planner Governance and Iwi Liaison
E Lambert – Group Manager External Relations
L Hooper – Electoral Officer
J Buttery – Governance Administration Assistant
The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting and Mr Mike Paku offered a karakia.
Cr Alan Dick advised withdrawal of his application for leave of absence for November for medical reasons.
2. Conflict of Interest Declarations
There were no conflict of interest declarations.
3. Confirmation of Minutes of the Regional Council Meeting Held on 25 October 2017
Minutes of the Regional Council meeting held on Wednesday, 25 October 2017, a copy having been circulated prior to the meeting, were taken as read and confirmed as a true and correct record.
Mrs Lambert introduced the item, advising that Mr Paku will speak to the Maori Committee recommendation on this matter and Mrs Leeanne Hooper will provide responses to any technical process questions.
Technical queries and discussions traversed:
· If the council passes a resolution to establish Maori constituencies the detail of constituency boundaries and names will be determined through the Representation Review
· A separate poll on Maori Constituencies is estimated to cost between $215-230,000, while a poll conducted as part of the next local body elections would be less expensive as a proportion of the total election costs
· If HBRC establishes Maori constituencies, those representatives will be elected by the voters on the Maori electoral roll
· RPC Act prescribes membership as being equal representation, currently 9 tangata whenua and 9 elected representatives. If total number of elected representatives on HBRC became 11 then the ‘equal representation’ issue would be resolved through proper process, in agreement with the tangata whenua appointing bodies to the RPC.
Mike Paku, Deputy Chairman of the Māori Committee, advised Councillors that the feedback and results of discussions with the Māori Community were overwhelmingly in favour of Māori representation at this council decision-making table, also supported by the RPC, highlighting:
· Consider the value that Maori bring to this Council and this region, for example the Wastewater treatment plants in both Hastings and Napier, and the value that Maori bring to the environment
· Maori have an “umbilical” relationship to the environment
· Maori believe that they have the right to sit at the HBRC table to enhance the decision making capability of the Council
· It is not the view of all. Some feel that Māori should not participate at all, some that 2 Māori seats is not enough and that there should be a 50/50 partnership.
Questions, discussions and further comments covered:
· How does the broader public feel? Should Council consult with the wider community?
· HBRC consulted with Māori, as they are directly affected. The rest of the community has an opportunity if they want to demand a poll. No clue where the broader community stands.
· What value does Council place on Maori representation around this table? The general public has 9 seats. Māori would like to add Māori representation to that to ensure iwi have fair representation
· Discussions held at the ‘formal’ Hui A Iwi but also more widely at tangi and other social gatherings to seek the views of those unable to attend those scheduled events
· Applaud the council’s Maori Committee and enthusiastic about the RPC and the high level of representation of advisory and decision making capacity on those committees
· Value Maori contributions and participation by Maori in NZ democracy, which is best in the world
· give a voice to those not represented by marae/hapu/iwi through representation for the broader Maori community is a compelling argument in favour
· Pros and cons with committees and elected representatives
· Only one Maori elected to general constituency in history of HBRC. Very hard for Māori to stand and win a general seat. Treaty of Waitangi about partnership and the voice of Maori has not been heard around this table except for once.
· Support for a poll at the next election so that the people of HB can decide
· Five councillors can make a decision to make a significant change to electoral process for HBRC, and the only way to overturn that is a poll which requires 7,000 people to sign a petition
· Disappointment from community re NCC decision not to have Maori wards
· Do not support representation based on race, religion or gender
· Issue incredibly important to people in the community
· Recent divisions in the region with RWSS and amalgamation
· Approach should be evolutionary not revolutionary
· HBRC expressly about the environment, rivers, streams, lakes, air, freshwater and coast and Maori have a view completely different from the pakeha view
· Time for HBRC to show leadership and establish Maori constituencies even though it may not be a popular decision in some quarters
· An issue that goes back to the foundation of this country - to give Maori a voice
General agreement was reached to seek further advice from the Maori Committee and RPC tangata whenua representatives about the option of Council further considering holding a poll on Maori constituencies at the next election in 2019.
That the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council:
1. Receives and considers the “Māori Constituencies” staff report.
2. Resolves in accordance with s.19Z of the Local Electoral Act 2001 to establish one or two Māori constituencies to allow for the election of two representatives for the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council with effect from the 2019 triennial elections.
3. Resolves that, in accordance with s.19ZA of the Local Electoral Act 2001, a public notice be issued, of Council’s decision and of the public’s right to demand a poll on the matter of establishing Māori constituencies.
lost 4/ 5
For: Graham, Bailey, Barker, Kirton
Against: Beaven, Belford, Dick, Hewitt, Wilson
That the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council:
2. Resolves, in accordance with s.19Z of the Local Electoral Act 2001, to not establish Māori constituencies for the Hawke’s Bay Region for the 2019 local body elections.
3. Instructs the Chief Executive to give public notice of Council’s decision in this regard.
For: Bailey, Barker, Dick, Hewitt, Kirton, Wilson
Against: Graham, Beaven, Belford
There being no further business the Chairman declared the meeting closed at 11.02am on Wednesday 15 November 2017.
Signed as a true and correct record.
DATE: ................................................ CHAIRMAN: ...............................................