Regional Council (Emergency Meeting) Agenda

NOTICE IS GIVEN that an Emergency Meeting of the Regional Council will be held in Regional House Chambers, 1 Elizabeth Street, Tauranga and via Zoom on:

Thursday 10 September 2020 COMMENCING AT 8.30 am

PURPOSE: To to consider the voting system to use for the 2022 Triennial Election

Fiona McTavish

Chief Executive, Bay of Plenty Regional Council Toi Moana

9 September 2020






Chairman Doug Leeder

Deputy Chairperson

Cr Jane Nees


All Councillors


Seven members, consisting of half the number of members

Meeting frequency

Six weekly or as required for Annual Plan, Long Term Plan and other relevant legislative requirements


·                Enable democratic local decision-making and action by, and on behalf of, Bay of Plenty communities.

·                Meet the current and future needs of communities for good-quality local infrastructure, local public services, and performance of regulatory functions in a way that is most cost-effective for households and businesses.

·                Set the overarching strategic direction for Bay of Plenty Regional Council as an organisation.

·                Hold ultimate responsibility for allocating financial resources across the Council.


·                Address Local Electoral Act matters and Local Government Rating Act matters.

·                Oversee all matters relating to identifying and contributing to community outcomes.

·                Consider and agree on matters relating to significant new activities or areas of involvement such as infrastructure which are not the responsibility of a specific committee.

·                Provide regional leadership on key issues that require a collaborative approach between a number of parties.

·                Review and decide the Council’s electoral and representation arrangements.

·                Consider issues of regional significance which are not the responsibility of any specific standing committee or that are of such regional significance/high public interest that the full Council needs to decide on them.

·                Adopt Council’s Policy on Significance and Engagement Policy.

·                Develop, adopt and implement the Triennial Agreement, Code of Conduct and Standing Orders.

·                Consider and agree on matters relating to elected members’ remuneration.

·                Appoint the Chief Executive, and review their contract, performance and remuneration at least annually.

·                Approve all delegations to the Chief Executive, including the authority for further delegation to staff.

·                Oversee the work of all committees and subcommittees.

·                Receive and consider recommendations and matters referred to it by its committees, joint committees, subcommittees and working parties.

·                Approve membership to external bodies and organisations, including Council Controlled Organisations.

·                Develop, adopt and review policies for, and monitor the performance of, Council Controlled Organisations.

·                Monitor and review the achievement of outcomes for the Bay of Plenty Community.

·                Review and approve strategic matters relating to the sale, acquisition and development of property for the purposes of meeting Council’s organisational requirements and implement Regional Council policy.

·                Address strategic corporate matters including property and accommodation.

·                Consider and agree on the process to develop the Long Term Plan, Annual Plan and Annual Report.

·                Adopt the Long Term Plan, Annual Plan and budgets variations, and Annual Report.

·                Adopt Council policies as required by statute (for example Regional Policy Statement and Regional Land Transport Strategy) to be decided by Council or outside of committee delegations (for example infrastructure policy).

·                Develop, review and approve Council’s Financial Strategy and funding and financial policies and frameworks.

·                Institute any proceedings in the High Court that are not injunctive proceedings.

·                Exercise the powers and duties conferred or imposed on Council by the Public Works Act 1981.

Delegations from Council to committees

·                Council has a role to monitor the functioning of all committees.

·                Council will consider matters not within the delegation of any one Council committee.

·                Council may at any time, revoke or modify a delegation to a Council committee, either permanently, for a specified time or to address a specific matter, if it considers there is good reason to do so.

·                The delegations provided to committees may be further delegated to subcommittees unless the power of further delegation is restricted by Council or by statute.

·                It is accepted in making these delegations that:

·                The committees, in performing their delegated functions, powers or duties, may, without confirmation by the Council, exercise or perform them in a like manner and with the same effect as the Council itself could have exercised or performed them.

·                The delegated powers given shall at all times be subject to their current policies and principles or directions, as given by the Council from time to time.

·                The chairperson of each committee shall have the authority to exercise their discretion, as to whether or not the delegated authority of the committee be used where, in the opinion of the chairperson, circumstances warrant it.

Powers that cannot be delegated

Under Clause 32 Schedule 7 of the Local Government Act 2002, Council must make the following decisions:

·                Make a rate.

·                Make a bylaw.

·                Borrow money or purchase or dispose of assets, other than in accordance with the long-term plan.

·                Adopt the long-term plan, annual plan, or annual report.

·                Appoint a chief executive.

·                Adopt policies required to be adopted and consulted on under the Local Government Act 2002 in association with the long-term plan or developed for the purpose of the local governance statement.

·                Adopt a remuneration and employment policy.


Bay of Plenty Regional Council - Toi Moana

Governance Commitment

mō te taiao, mō ngā tāngata - our environment and our people go hand-in-hand.



We provide excellent governance when, individually and collectively, we:

·        Trust and respect each other

·        Stay strategic and focused

·        Are courageous and challenge the status quo in all we do

·        Listen to our stakeholders and value their input

·        Listen to each other to understand various perspectives

·        Act as a team who can challenge, change and add value

·        Continually evaluate what we do




Extraordinary Regional Council                                                                           10 September 2020

Recommendations in reports are not to be construed as Council policy until adopted by Council.


E te Atua nui tonu, ko mātau ēnei e inoi atu nei ki a koe, kia tau mai te māramatanga ki a mātau whakarite mō tēnei rā, arahina hoki mātau, e eke ai te ōranga tonu ki ngā āhuatanga katoa a ngā tangata ki tō mātau rohe whānui tonu. Āmine.



“Almighty God we ask that you give us wisdom in the decisions we make here today and give us guidance in working with our regional communities to promote their social, economic, environmental and cultural well-being.  Amen”.

1.       Opening Karakia

2.       Apologies

3.       Items not on the Agenda

4.       Declaration of Conflicts of Interest

5.       Reports

Decisions Required

7.1      Electoral System Review                                                                         1

Attachment 1 - Electoral Systems Summary                                                                    1

6.       Consideration of Items not on the Agenda

7.       Closing Karakia




Report To:

Regional Council (Emergency Meeting)

Meeting Date:

10 September 2020

Report Writer:

Tone Nerdrum Smith, Deputy Electoral Officer

Report Authoriser:

Mat Taylor, General Manager, Corporate


To consider the voting system to be used for the 2022 Triennial Election



Electoral System Review


Executive Summary

Council is asked to consider the voting system it wishes to use for the 2022 Triennial Election.

Any resolution to change the current voting system from FPP to STV must be passed before 12 September 2020. If there is no Council resolution, the status quo (FPP) will remain. If Council resolves to change its voting system from the current system, then the new voting system must apply for the next two elections.



That the Extraordinary Regional Council:

1        Receives the report, Electoral System Review.

2        Pursuant to Section 27 of the Local Electoral Act 2001 agrees to:

(a)         Retain the First Past the Post electoral system for the Bay of Plenty Regional Council for the 2022 triennial election;


(b)         Change to the Single Transferable Voting electoral system for the Bay of Plenty Regional Council for the 2022 and 2025 triennial elections;


(c)         Undertake a poll of electors on the electoral system to be used by the Bay of Plenty Regional Council for the 2022 and 2025 triennial elections;


(d)         Do nothing (mandating the status quo of First Past the Post electoral system).

3        Notes that public notice be given by 19 September 2020 of the decision and the right of electors to demand a poll on the electoral system to be used.


1.        Introduction

Council is required to publically notify its decision and the right for electors to demand a poll on the electoral system to be used by 19 September 2020. A valid demand for a pool must be made in writing, signed by at least 5% of eligible electors, i.e. a minimum of 10,532 elector signatures

A presentation (Attachment 1) outlining the differences in the two voting systems, and providing information regarding which council use the different systems describing the differences between FPP and STV may assist members in determining its electoral system preference.

Of the 78 local authorities in New Zealand, 11 used STV for the 2019 elections. 2 more local authorities (Hamilton CC and Nelson DC) have since then decided to change to STV. In the Bay of Plenty region, only Tauranga City Council currently uses STV, all other authorities (Western Bay, Whakatāne, Ōpōtiki, Kawerau, Rotorua and Taupo) use FPP.


1.1      Electoral System

The Local Electoral Act 2001 provides for local authorities and their communities to choose either of the following as their electoral system for local elections:

·    first past the post (FPP) or,

·    single transferable vote (STV).


A change of electoral system can be achieved by:

·      Council resolution, or

·      a favourable outcome of a poll of electors. This poll may be:

demanded by electors, or

the result of a Council resolution.


Council is required to consider its electoral system by 12 September 2020.

1.2      Options

Council may choose any of the following options:

·      Retain FPP for the 2022 election

·      Change to STV for the 2022 and elections

·      Undertake a poll of electors on the electoral system to be used for the 2022 and 2025 elections

·      Do nothing – status quo of FPP remains.

1.3      Analysis of Voting Systems

Both FPP and STV have advantages and disadvantages.


The advantages of FPP relate to the simplicity of the process including the ways votes are cast, counted and announced.

The disadvantages of FPP relate to:

•   disproportional election results, including the generally ‘less representative’ nature of FPP councils

•   the obstacles to minority candidate election

•   the number of wasted votes.


Overall, the advantages of STV, on the other hand, relate to the people who get elected using STV. The system potentially achieves:

•   broad proportionality (in multi-member wards/constituencies)

•   majority outcomes in single-member elections

•   more equitable minority representation

•   a reduction in the number of wasted votes.

The disadvantages of STV relate to:

•   the public are less familiar with the system and possibly find it harder to understand

•   matters of process such as the way votes are cast and counted (for example perceived complexity may discourage some voters)

•   the information conveyed in election results.

The following table ptovided by SOLGM identifies further advantages and disadvantages of both electoral systems:

First Past the Post (FPP)

Single Transferrable Vote (STV)

casting votes

FPP is a straightforward system of voting. FPP is familiar to most people.

casting votes

STV is a less straightforward system of voting.


There is a need for more information for people to understand the STV ranking system of candidates.

“Tactical” voting is possible; votes can be used with a view to preventing a candidate from winning in certain circumstances.

It is virtually impossible to cast a “tactical” vote under STV. As a result, voters are encouraged to express their true preferences.

counting votes

FPP is a straightforward system for counting votes.

counting votes

STV vote counting requires a computer program (the STV calculator).

Votes can be counted in different locations and then aggregated.

Votes must be aggregated first and then counted in one location.

Election results are usually announced soon after voting ends.

Election results will usually take a little longer to produce.

election results

Official results show exactly how many people voted for which candidates.

election results

Official results will identify which candidates have been elected and which have not and in which order. They do not show how many votes candidates got overall, as all successful candidates will have the same proportion of the vote (the quota). This information, at stages of the count, can still be requested.

Results are easy to understand.

Results can be easy to understand if presented appropriately.

A “block” of like-minded voters can determine the election of multiple candidates in multi-member wards/ constituencies, without having a majority of the votes, thereby ‘over-representing’ themselves.

STV moderates “block” voting as each voter casts only one single vote, even in multi-member wards/ constituencies.

The overall election results will not be proportional to voters’ wishes, and will not reflect the electoral wishes of the majority of voters, only the largest group of voters who may not be the majority.

The overall election results reflect the wishes of the majority of voters in proportion to their support for a variety of candidates.

In single-member elections, the winner is unlikely to have the majority of votes, just the largest group of votes.

In single-member wards/constituencies, the winner will have the majority of votes (preferences).

There will be more “wasted” votes (votes that do not contribute to the election of a candidate).

Every vote is as effective as possible (depending on the number of preferences indicated) meaning there are fewer “wasted” votes and more votes will contribute to the election of a candidate than under FPP.


FPP vote processing costs are lower than for STV.


STV vote processing costs are 15% higher than FPP vote procession costs


1.4      Legislative Framework

The triennial electoral system is governed by the Local Electoral Act 2001. With regards to choosing a voting system:

·      Section 27 states that Council may resolve that the next two triennial general elections…will be held using a specified electoral system other than that used for the previous triennial general election. Such resolution must be passed no later than 12 September 2 years prior to the next election

·      Section 28 states that the public notice of the voting system for the next triennial election must be given no later than 19 September, 2 year prior to the next election


1.5      Alignment with Strategic Framework


A Vibrant Region

We work with and connect the right people to create a prosperous region and economy.

1.5.1    Community Well-beings Assessment

Dominant Well-Beings Affected

þ Environmental

Low - Positive

þ Cultural

Medium - Positive

þ Social

Medium - Positive

þ Economic

Medium - Positive


The ability for voters to participate in local government elections has a positive impact across all wellbeings.


2.        Considerations

2.1      Risks and Mitigations

There are no significant risks associated with this matter.

2.2      Climate Change

The matters addressed in this report are of a procedural nature and there is no need to consider climate change impacts.


2.3      Implications for Māori

The provisions for the public to demand a poll of the voting system for the 2022 triennial election provides Maori with the opportunity to get actively involved in the voting system for the Bay of Plenty Regional Council’s next triennial election.


2.4      Community Engagement


Adobe Systems



To provide affected communities with balanced and objective information to assist them in understanding the problems, alternatives and/or solutions.


Publicly notifying the ability for the public to demand a poll of the voting system for the 2022 triennial election provides the wider community with the opportunity to get actively involved in the voting system for the Bay of Plenty Regional Council’s next triennial election.

Timeframes are as follows:

·      12 September 2020: A local authority MAY resolve to retain or change the electoral system (from the system it used at the 2019 general election) for the next triennial election.

·      19 September 2020: A local authority MUST give public notice of the right of 5% of the electors to demand a poll on the future electoral system for the next two triennial elections and, if a resolution has been made by a local authority by 12 September, then this must be included in the notice.

·      22 February 2021: A local authority MAY resolve to undertake a poll of electors on a proposal that a specified electoral system be used for the next two triennial elections.

·      21 May 2021: If EITHER a successful demand has been received by 22 February 2021 to hold a poll, OR a resolution has been made by a local authority by 22 February 2021, then a poll MUST be held by 21 May 2021 to take effect for 2022 and 2025.


2.5      Financial Implications

If the recommendation is adopted by Council, will it result in:

- Unbudgeted work during the current financial year?

- Unbudgeted work for any of the years remaining in the current Long Term Plan?

If the answer is ‘no’ to both questions please select the dropdown option 1 and complete appropriately.

If the answer is ‘yes’ to either question please select “Budget Implications” in the building block below and liaise with your Management Accountant in order to complete the Financial Impact table.

If a successful demand for a poll is received the estimated cost to undertake a poll is approximately $430,000 which is unbudgeted in the 2020/21 financial year.


3.        Next Steps

Next Steps: What next? What resources are needed? Further analysis? Timeframes ahead. Any consultation planned. Remind Council of the process ahead. Next update to Council?

Conclusion: Short concluding remarks. Referring back to recommendations. No new content.

Any resolution passed by Council at this meeting with regards to the voting system for the 2022 triennial election will be publicly notified no later than 19 September 2020.


Attachment 1 - Electoral Systems Summary  


Extraordinary Regional Council                                                                                 10 September 2020

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