Submissions have now CLOSED. The Local Government Commission will begin hearings on the 23 May. The Commission will then make the decision whether or not to release a final proposal.
Below is a summary of the Draft proposal for a new Wairarapa District Council. This information will help you decide how the future of the Wairarapa could be represented. We encourage all Wairarapa residents to make a submission to Local Government Commission(LGC) about the draft proposal.
Carterton District Council has made its submission to the Local Government Commission. You can view the submission here.
Councillors have released their Position Statement on the proposal in advance of its submission to Local Government Commission. The Council does not have a position about whether it supports or opposes the proposal. This position statement instead focuses on the proposed Wairarapa Council arrangements and identifies where the model can be improved and strengthened.
Draft proposal for a new Wairarapa District Council
The Local Government Commission is proposing a combined district council for the Wairarapa to be called the Wairarapa District Council. This would replace the existing Masterton District Council, the Carterton District Council, and the South Wairarapa District Council.
Summary of key features
- The Wairarapa District Council would be a territorial authority.
- The Wairarapa would remain part of the Wellington region. Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) would continue to be the regional council for the Wairarapa. GWRC would continue to carry out its current roles and responsibilities.
- There would be a new Wairarapa Committee of the GWRC to strengthen Wairarapa input into regional council issues affecting the district.
- The Wairarapa District Council would have a mayor and 12 councillors. The mayor would be elected by voters from across the combined district. The councillors would be elected by voters of each of seven wards.
- There would be five community boards centred on each Wairarapa town. There would be a total of 21 elected community board members.
- There would also be a Māori Standing Committee and a Rural Standing Committee.
The ward boundaries, councillor and community board representation is shown on the map here.
- The first elections could be held in October 2018 at the earliest. The new council could come into existence on 1 November 2018 at the earliest.
- The Wairarapa District Council would retain area offices in Masterton, Carterton and Martinborough for at least five years.
- It is proposed that the principal public office (the address for service) would be in Masterton. The principal public office can be changed in the future by the new council.
- The Commission proposes that the current rating arrangements remain in place until 30 June 2024.
- Any rates changes due to the proposed amalgamation would be capped at five per cent up or down per year. (This cap would not apply to rates changes as a result of normal council activities, such as changes to services or revised rating valuations.)
- Wastewater rates would be ring-fenced so people only pay for the wastewater scheme they are currently part of.
Proposed Councillor representation map here.
What happens next?
Visit the Local Government Commission website to find out more information.