Nau mai haere mai! Get involved in Council mahi this triennium

24 Jan 2023, 8:50 AM

Kāpiti Coast District Council welcomes public participation in the business of delivering for Kāpiti. 

Every year we seek community input through a range of consultations and engagements, and there are a bunch of ways to have your say on these. Keep an eye on our regular channels to see what’s coming up. 

You can also get in touch with our elected members on issues of interest or follow the progress of debates and decision-making through the Council meeting process. 

Council meetings are where a wide range of matters are discussed and important decisions made, and you can make an important contribution. Perhaps you’ve got a unique perspective or a great idea you’d like to share. 

Whether you want to speak to elected members before or during a meeting, watch meetings in person or online, or just see what’s on the agenda, here’s what you need to know about engaging with your Council this triennium. 

Council, community board and committee meetings 

The public is welcome to attend council, community board and committee meetings. This can be in person or, where technology and resource allow, remotely. 

Council and committee meetings are held monthly or bi-monthly in the Council Chambers in Paraparaumu, with agendas available in the week prior. 

Community Board meetings are held monthly at local venues in Paekākāriki, Raumati, Paraparaumu, Waikanae and Ōtaki. 

Council and Committee meetings are livestreamed, and recordings are published to the Council YouTube channel within three working days of the meeting. Community Board meetings are not recorded or livestreamed, but minutes are available in due course. 

Speaking at a meeting 

The public is welcome to come along and speak to elected members at our meetings. 

Because there is usually a lot to cover off, and to provide opportunities to as many people as possible, public speaking time is carefully managed. 

At the beginning of Council and committee meetings there is time set aside for the public to address the mayor and councillors about agenda items. 

You'll usually have a maximum of three minutes of speaking time and the meeting chair may restrict the time when there are more than six speakers. You’re there for a good time not a long time, so make it count. Succinct communication is key. 

Public forums are back 

Fancy a more relaxed chat with councillors? This term public forums are back, offering a less formal setting to have a discussion with your representatives. 

If you want to talk about something not on a meeting agenda, you will be able to during time set aside before Council and Strategy, Operations and Finance Committee meetings. Forums will be held on request. If you wish to come along, please register ahead of time. 

Kāpiti District Mayor Janet Holborow says increasing public participation is a priority for the Council. 

“We’re looking forward to hearing people’s thoughts on a range of topics and we’re hopeful these forums will provide us with a richer understanding of what matters most to the people that live in our district,” Mayor Holborow says. 

Committees for social, climate issues established 

Many Councils have standing committees to delegate decision-making to smaller groups of elected members. 

These can allow a focus on key community issues and provide elected members with the opportunity to work on areas close to their interest and experience. 

The committee structure is developed by the mayor and put to councillors for support. Some committees, like the Strategy, Operations and Finance Committee, include all elected members. 

This term the following committees have been established, with two new subcommittees that will focus on social sustainability and climate change and the environment: 

  • The Strategy, Operations and Finance Committee: Chaired by Cr Sophie Handford.
  • The Social Sustainability Subcommittee: Chaired by Cr Martin Halliday.
  • The Climate and Environment Subcommittee: Chaired by Cr Jocelyn Prvanov.
  • The Grants Allocation Committee: Chaired by Cr Nigel Wilson.
  • The Appeals Hearing Committee: Chaired by Mayor Janet Holborow
  • The Risk and Assurance Committee: Independent chairperson to be appointed in early 2023.
  • Te Whakaminenga o Kāpiti: Chair to be appointed in early 2023.

Agendas and schedules

Agendas outlining what a meeting will cover and the process they follow are available on our website in the week prior.

They can include staff reports on things like proposed rates, council strategies or policies for consideration or adoption, and notices of motion (a request for action on a particular matter) brought to the table by elected members.

Some agenda items will be labelled “public excluded” and when these come anyone not involved in the matter will be asked to leave the Chambers. Sometimes Council will be discussing commercially sensitive matters or there will be a need to protect an individual’s privacy.

The reasons for excluding the public are outlined in the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987.

You can find the schedule of all meetings for the year ahead and agendas at our website.

Book a speaking time

If you would like to attend a meeting, speak at a meeting, or speak at a public forum it is important you get in touch with us early to let us know. 

This will help us with planning and to make sure you avoid disappointment - if there is huge demand for speaking spots, we may not be able to accommodate all requests. 

People wanting to speak at public forums can register their interest by emailing Democracy.Services@kapiticoast.govt.nz by 12noon the Monday before each meeting.  

Speakers who wish to talk to items on Council meeting agendas are encouraged to register their interest in attending public speaking time. 

Where to find key information 

Our website is the best place to find the information you need to get involved in Council business. 

Visit kapiticoast.govt.nz/your-council/meetings/ to find agendas, schedules, and information about the meeting process. 

We look forward to seeing you in 2023!