Lots of people are getting excited about
the prospect of local government reform.
There are changes in the wind for resource management and local
government legislation – the perceived failure of some councils to hold costs
in the face of expanding responsibilities and manage resources such as water
and will certainly lead to stronger direction from central government. The Minister of Local Government is keen on
unitary authorities because he believes they are more cost effective and
deliver better outcomes. He has
signalled he is a fan for further amalgamations, but that he will not force any
change – this should come from the community themselves.
So we are seeing a lot in the media about what
people think might be desirable change to local government structure in their
patch. Some seem keen to rush headlong
into a change that may offer them solutions to their own particular
problem. However, I have always believed that change
should be carefully considered and not rushed.
There is nothing less productive than change for change’s sake.