Voters on the Kāpiti Coast will have their say this October on who will govern the district for the next three years — and for the first time, they can vote for a separate Community Board for Raumati.
Following a representation review in 2021, a fifth community board representing Raumati was added, meaning for the new triennium there will be separate community boards for Ōtaki, Waikanae, Paraparaumu, Raumati and Paekākāriki.
The four wards (Ōtaki, Waikanae, Paraparaumu and Paekākāriki-Raumati) have not changed except for adjustments to some ward boundaries, which primarily affect the Te Horo and Raumati communities. There is also a change to the ratio of ward-based to district-wide councillors, from 5:5 to 7:3.
Issues like growth, housing and climate change are expected to be front of mind for many.
Local elections will be held around New Zealand on 8 October and the community will vote in a mayor, ten councillors and 20 community board members conducted through postal vote using the STV electoral system.
Electoral Officer appointed
Kāpiti Coast District Council has appointed Dale Ofsoske of Independent Election Services to the role of Electoral Officer, responsible for all matters relating to the delivery of the election in the district.
“Local elections are often perceived as less important or relevant when compared to national elections but every day, your local Council works to deliver the infrastructure and services that keeps your community ticking,” says Mr Ofsoske.
“A big part of local government’s job is planning to protect the things we love most about Kāpiti. Elected members need to make decisions that not only affect you today but also plan for 10, 20 or 30 years into the future. I’d say those decisions would be pretty important to most of the community.”
Voter turnout for the Kāpiti Coast District was 45.36% at the last local election in 2019, 3% above the national average of 42%.
A defining event for modern democracies
“Elections are one of the defining events of modern democracies where citizens have the power to make a difference. Your vote will count so, if you haven’t voted before, make sure you’re ready to have your say by enrolling now,” says Mr Ofsoske.
“If you voted in the last parliamentary elections and haven’t moved house since, you don’t need to do anything, you will automatically be enrolled. If you have moved or want to check your details, visit the Electoral Commission’s website at vote.nz.” \
Getting the candidates
Mr Ofsoske says the other key part of a successful election is having candidates willing to take on the job.
“Local government only succeeds if people who stand for and care for their communities are prepared to serve. As an elected member, you will need to be involved in community engagement with your council, commit to ensuring all voices are heard and work to build and protect a culture of inclusion and belonging.
You will also need to demonstrate your commitment to honouring the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi – The Treaty of Waitangi. If that sounds like you, I encourage you to think about standing,” says Mr Ofsoske.
Nominations open on 15 July 2022.
For more information about enrolling to vote or standing as a candidate visit kapiticoast.govt.nz/vote.
· Enrol for voting: until 12 August (after that you will need to cast a special vote)
· Nominations open: 15 July – 12 August
· Voting packs delivered (if you have enrolled by 12 August): 16-21 September
· Close of voting on election day: 12 noon, 8 October
· Final results announced: 13 October
· Inauguration of successful candidates: 27 October