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Saturday, 22 March 2008

PHILIPPA BARRIBALL AT WORK AND REPRESENTATION

An exchange of emails last week between me and Philippa Barriball, the mayor of Thames-Coromandel, included these snippets, the first that shows what kind of a mayor she is, and the other that shows TCDC's working relationship between councillors and community boards:

'I am currently taking the roadshow presentation for annual plan around our different communities. The next two weeks are extremely pressured for me and of course Easter Weekend is when I go to all the ratepayer association meetings.'

'..of course'! When was the last time an Auckland mayor went to any ratepayers' association meeting, let alone all of them? Or gave up the Easter break to do it?

'One of the key parts of our current representation is that councillors are required to sit on community boards outside of and in addition to their own community. This is to ensure that councillors are aware of issues that face other communities and are better informed for their decision making. Just imagine if all the Auckland city councillors had to take a turn sitting on your community board--I am sure they would have a much better appreciation of your demands, so I hope that you can see the value in our model.'

I hope every islander can see the value in it, and the world of difference between TCDC's thinking on representation and ACC's.