Maori Status Enhanced

Iwi rep. invited to top table for all Council meetings

The Kapiti Coast District Council has voted  to formally allow the chair of the Council/Iwi liason group, Te Waari Carkeek, to attend all council and standing committee meetings.

Mr Carkeek won’t have voting rights, but will receive a $150 meeting fee per attendance.

Mayor Jenny Rowan says the move to change the KCDC governance structure, which takes effect immediately, formalises a long-standing arrangement with the chair of Te Whakaminenga o Kapiti.

Ms Rowan says Council has a legal and legislative obligation to embrace and strengthen Maori participation in local government — and is keen to talk to the community about the best way to do this.

Full Iwi rights on 3 committees?

“That’s why we are further proposing, as part of the upcoming Long-Term Plan process, to consult our community about granting Maori appointees full speaking and voting rights on each of three standing Committees. We have the ability to do this now but we’re keen to engage in a discussion with the wider community,” she says.

In 2011, Iwi members of Te Whakaminega o Kapiti held a workshop on governance issues, including discussion of a number of options intended to strengthen Iwi participation and representation.   At the same time, Council indicated that it would  consider these options as part of the review of its Governance Structure.

The Mayor says the council values its partnership with Te Whakaminenga o Kapiti and is delighted that, after years of talking, those obligations are being given more formal consideration via the Long Term Plan process.

If the council’s proposal is adopted after the conclusion of public consultation in June, the council’s iwi liaison group would recruit applicants for the positions, which would be limited to one appointee per meeting.

Other councils already have Maori appointees on standing committees.  They include Greater Wellington, Northland, Hawkes Bay and Marlborough.



Please don’t think me a racist for what I am about to write. It is the principle I am concerned about.
Why can’t the Maori ratepayers in the district put up their own candidates adn vote for them. Andre stood for council in Otaki and was not voted in, I think he was Maori, or part Maori.
Surely this is not democracy in action but favoritism. As far as I know the community has not been “consulted” on this ussue. Jenny Rowan, the Maori of the district must love you, and you have arranged payment as well, at least $750 a week of ratepayers money may now go towards token Maori presence on the council. In this time of rising costs and world financial turmoil, how else are you going to spend our rising rates, Jenny? Not on making life easier for all the superannuitants who pay your wages it seems to me.
How would ratepayers feel if you decided someone from the bowling club, or the cricket club or Kapiti College,or another local group who contribute to the community, got paid to attend all meetings during the year.
A better solution would be to do your usual consultation with the community (which always seems to end with council doing what it likes anyway) and have a Maori seat on council, voted for by ratepayers. At least this would be up front and above board, like parliament. Though more people are saying its time to abolish Maori seats there.