March 24, 2023
LGNZ exit costly for Auckland
The co-chair of Local Government New Zealand’s Te Maruata Maori committee, Bonita Bigham, says Auckland Council’s decision to quit LGNZ is short sighted and will have serious consequences for the city’s Maori and Pasifika communities.
At its meeting yesterday the council voted 11-10 to quit the national body, with Mayor Wayne Brown voting both as a member and having the casting vote.
Ms Bigham says it means Auckland will no longer have access to a range of subsidised schemes.
“Something as simple as street lighting and the dimming of street lighting saves Auckland Council $1.1 million a year. Being part of LGNZ is only $400,000 a year so the cost benefit analysis, it’s a shame that wasn’t better understood,” she says.
Ms Bigham says Auckland councillor Alf Filipaina has been a long term member of Te Maruata and his wisdom and guidance will be missed, as a big part of the committee’s work is helping Maori and Pasifika navigate local government.