Representation Review - Pre-consultation Survey

Closed 13 Jul 2018

Opened 12 Jun 2018

Feedback Updated 28 Nov 2018

We Asked

We asked the public for feedback on multiple options for representation arrangements for Hamilton back in June 2018. This was part of the pre-consultation phase of the Representation Review for the 2019 Elections, a process every council around New Zealand is required to undertake at least every six years. The Representation Review considers things like the number of wards (if any) that is best for our city, how many councillors we have and whether we should have community boards.

You Said

Prior to the online pre-consultation survey, 1665 people responded to our Community Profile Survey which ran from 15 February to 30 April 2018. This survey included a question about the current representation arrangements for the city. 36% of the respondents to this survey thought the current representation arrangements for the city were adequate, 47% did not know and 17% did not think the current arrangements were adequate. 

In June 2018, 420 people completed our online pre-consultation survey which asked for feedback about four possible representation options for our city (‘at large’ (no wards), status quo, more wards and a mix of ‘at large’/wards). The survey also included questions about how many councillors we have and whether or not we need community boards.  38% of the people who completed the survey cited a preference for an ‘at large’ system and 41% preferred wards (either two wards or more than two wards). Full results of this survey can be found in the Council Report from 16 August 2018 here (points 54-102).

Further feedback from the public was also sought during pre-consultation, via a phone survey (500 respondents) and focus groups (25 participants). The survey and the focus groups focused on more specific questions to gain further clarity on feedback received via the online survey. 

The overall results from pre-consultation take into account multiple datasets, but a full summary of findings is available in points 93-102 of the 16 August Council Report online here.

We Did

The Council considered all the feedback received during pre-consultation, alongside the broader research, and decided that the existing two-ward system remains the best fit for Hamilton for at least the 2019 election.  The status quo (the existing two-ward system with a Mayor elected across the whole city and no community boards) then became the Council’s initial proposal and was followed by a month-long formal consultation process, during which the public were again invited to submit feedback.

Overview

Who represents you on Council?

Every three years councils around New Zealand hold local government elections to vote for their mayor and councillors.

In addition, every six years, all councils are required to review their representation arrangement where we look at the structure of the people who speak for you on the Council and how they get there.  This process is called a representation review.

The purpose of a representation review is to establish whether our current arrangements meet our communities’ needs and expectations for a fair and effective representation.

The review explores:

  • the number of voting areas (called ‘wards’), if any, that is best for our city
  • whether we want to elect our councillors across the whole city
  • how many councillors there should be
  • how many councillors there should be in each voting area
  • whether we want to have community boards.

Hamilton has one Mayor who is elected by the whole of the city (this is what our city looks like), and 12 Councillors.  Of these:

  • 6 Councillors are elected from the east side of the river (East Ward
  • 6 Councillors are elected from the west side of the river (West Ward)

Hamilton does not currently have community boards, nor has it at any stage in the past.

Why We Are Consulting

We are currently gathering research, data and ideas from around the city, and want to know what you think. Presenting this information to the Council will help elected members make the best decision about what fair and effective representation should look like for Hamilton.

You can find out more about the process here.

 

Please note:
Your responses to this survey will be kept confidential and anonymous.