Representation Review 2021

Submissions closed on 07 May 2021, 05:00 PM

Representation Review page image.

We are reviewing how Whangarei District Council represents our communities.

The Representation Review booklet holds all the information you need to understand the process. 

Information booklet(PDF, 1MB)

From 7 April 2021 to 7 May 2021, Whangarei District Council held an informal survey.

We asked survey participants to provide feedback on questions like how many councillors we have, whether we should continue having wards, how our councillors should be elected and whether we should have community boards. 

The Representation Review informal survey closed at 5:00pm on Friday 7 May 2021.

Informal survey results

Feedback from this survey will help councillors create an initial representation proposal, which is then given back to you for formal consultation.

Councillors will use the feedback from the formal consultation to create a final representation proposal. Once the process is complete, the final proposal will become the basis of election for the 2022 and 2025 triennial local elections. 

Question 1: What community do you identify with?

Five options were provided: Geographical, Historical, Tribal Affiliations, the whole of the Whangarei District or Something else. 

Pie chart showing options for the question what community do you identify with?

  • 37% of survey participants identify with the whole of the Whangarei District.
  • 32% of survey participants have a geographical connection to their community.
  • 2% of survey participants have a historical connection to their community.
  • 3% of survey participants have tribal affiliations to their community.
  • 25% of survey participants identify with two or more of the options provided.
  • 2% of survey participants identify with Something else.

Question 2: Do you think the current wards reflect your community?

Pie chart showing options for the question 'Do you think the current wards reflect your community?'

  • 57% of survey participants feel that the current wards do not reflect their community.
  • 43% of survey participants feel that the current wards do reflect their community

Question 3: Should we have wards?

Pie chart that shows the result percentage for the question Should we have wards?

  • 62% of survey participants want our district to be divided into wards.
  • 38% of survey participants feel that we should vote without geographical boundaries  

Question 4: If we have wards, how many wards should we have? 

Pie chart that shows the result percentage for the question if we have wards, how many wards should we have?

  • 41% of survey participants opted to retain what we currently have (6 general wards) plus Māori wards to be established.
  • 32% of survey participants do not think we should have wards.
  • 14% of survey participants feel we should have fewer general wards.
  • 13% of survey participants feel we should have more general wards.

Question 5: Are you happy with the names of the current wards? 

 Pie chart that shows the result percentage for the question Are you happy with the names of the current wards?

  • 57% of survey participants are happy with the name of the current wards.
  • 43% of survey participants are not happy with the name of the current wards. 

Question 6: How many councillors in total should represent you? 

 Pie chart that shows the result percentage for the question How many councillors in total should represent you?

  • 49% of survey participants opted to retain what we currently have (13 councillors plus the Mayor).  
  • 32% of survey participants feel we should have fewer councillors.
  • 19% of survey participants feel we should have more councillors.

Question 7: Should councillors be elected by ward or district-wide? 

 Pie chart that shows the result percentage for the question Should councillors be elected by ward or district-wide?

  • 39% of survey participants prefer to elect councillors where they live (ward based). 
  • 33% of survey participants prefer to elect councillors districtwide (‘at large’). 
  • 28% of survey participants prefer to elect some councillors by ward and some district-wide. 

Question 8: Should we have community boards? 

 Pie chart that shows the result percentage for the question Should we have community boards?

  • 51% of survey participants think that community boards could provide better representation for communities.
  • 49% prefer to be represented by Council.

What is a representation review?

He ata te arotake whakaahuatanga?

Every three years elections are held for councils.

To make sure we have fair and effective representation at these elections, councils are required by the Local Electoral Act 2001 to review their representation arrangements at least once every six years.

A representation review looks at how many councillors there should be for our District and how they should be elected - deciding whether councillors are elected from wards or ‘at large’ across the whole district, or by a mix of both.

It also looks at the boundaries and names of wards, whether or not we should have community boards, and what community you identify with – whether it’s geographical, historical, or something else altogether.

From 7 April 2021, people in Whangārei District have a fresh chance to help decide how many elected members there are, how they’re elected, and what communities they represent.

Why are we holding a representation review?

He aha e whakahaere ai mātou i te arotake whakaahuatanga? 

Our Council held a representation review in 2018, but as Whangarei District Council has voted in favour of establishing Māori wards, it triggered the need for another representation review in 2021.

During this review, Whangarei District Council must consider three key factors:

  • What are our District’s communities of interest?
  • How can those communities be effectively represented?
  • How can those communities be fairly represented? 

For our councillors to make the best decision for our communities, we need your feedback on some of these points. 

Current ward boundaries

Ngā wehewehengā i nāianei

Below is a list of wards and the councillor representation:

City wards

  • Denby: 3 councillors
  • Okara: 4 councillors

Rural wards

  • Managakahia-Maungatapere: 1 councillor
  • Hikurangi-Coastal: 2 councillors
  • Bream Bay: 2 councillors
  • Whangārei Heads: 1 councillors

You can view more information about Wards by following the link below.

Whangarei District Wards