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Wairoa District Council's Representation Review 2018


Representation Review 2018

Submissions close Friday 13 July

This page sets out Council's initial proposal for representation arrangements for the 2019 and 2022 elections. The goal of the review is to provide fair and effective representation for individuals and communities.

About the Review

Under the Local Electoral Act 2001, all councils have to review their representation arrangements at least once every six years. This is called the Representation Review.

Wairoa District Council is seeking your feedback on its initial proposal for representation arrangements for the 2019 and 2022 elections. Representation arrangements include:

  • the number of councillors to be elected;
  • whether councillors are elected by wards or by the district as a whole;
  • if by ward, the number, boundaries and names of those wards and number of councillors that will represent them; and
  • whether to have community boards, and if so, how many, their boundaries and number of members.

Council adopted its initial representation proposal at a meeting on 12 June 2018 and submissions are now invited, closing 13 July 2018.

What Does the Review Involve? 

The primary objective of a representation review is to ensure fair and effective representation for individuals and communities. There are three factors which must be taken into consideration:

  1. Defining communities of interest;
  2. Effective representation of communities of interest; and
  3. Fair representation of electors

 Wairoa District Council will introduce designated Māori representation for the 2019 and 2022 Local Government Elections through the setting up of one or more Māori wards (in addition to general wards).

In a poll run aside the local elections in September 2016, Wairoa electors voted 54% to 46% in favour of the establishment of Maori wards on the council.

  • This is permitted under the Local Electoral Act 2001.
  • Representatives for Māori wards will be elected by people who are enrolled on the Māori Parliamentary Electoral Roll.
  • Electors of these wards would not be able to vote for members of the general wards.
  • Similarly, people who are enrolled on the General Parliamentary Electoral Roll would vote for members of the general wards but not for members of the Māori wards.
  • All electors would still vote for the Mayor.

After taking these factors into consideration, Council now has to decide:

  1. the number of elected members (councillors)
  2. how these councillors are elected, i.e.
  • by the electors of wards; or
  • a combination of both.

If Council decides to elect members by wards, it must decide:

  • the number of wards; and
  • the ward boundaries; and
  • the names of those wards.

Council also has to decide whether to have community boards, and if so:

  • how many; and
  • their boundaries and membership; and
  • whether to subdivide a community for electoral purposes.

At a meeting on 12 June 2018, Council resolved that its Initial Proposal is for a Mayor elected over the entire district, and three (3) Councillors elected at large from a General Ward, and three (3) Councillors elected at large from 3 Māori Wards.

General and Maori Wards elected ‘At Large’



Total Population



Six (6) Councillors


Three (3) Councillors elected ‘At Large’ from the General Ward

Three (3) Councillors elected ‘At Large’ from the  Māori Ward




One (1) Mayor to be elected over the entire district




Current Representation Arrangements

The Council’s current representation arrangements consist of six councillors elected at large plus the Mayor.

The current electoral system is First Past the Post (FPP).

Earlier Processes

Prior to undertaking the representation review, the Council considered one related process:

Electoral Systems 

Council resolved at its Ordinary Meeting of 9 September 2014 to maintain the status quo of FPP and to publicly notify the right for 5% of electors to demand a poll on the electoral system. This was published on 11 September 2014 as required. Electors of the Wairoa District Council had until 28 February 2015 to demand a poll on the electoral system to be used at the 2016 triennial local elections. No poll demand was received.

It is recommended to maintain the FPP electoral system.


The following formal process is recommended:




Council resolution (initial)

12 June 2018

Public notice

14 June 2018

Public submission period

18 June – 13 July 2018 (one month)

Submissions heard

19 or 20 July 2018

Council resolution (final)

24 July 2018 (late item)

Public notice

26 July 2018

Public objection period

30 July – 24 August 2018 (one month)

Forward material to LGC

27 August 2018

Have Your Say

We want to hear your views on Council's Initial Representation Review Proposal. 

Submissions must be received by Council no later than 13 July 2018.

31 October 2018

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