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Friday, 7 November 2008

REPLY TO GRAHAM HOOPER'S MARKETPLACE LETTER

Please, Graham! You misunderstand completely, because once again you have not bothered with the facts or the law. The 'petition' is not a petition. It is a petition/application. An application that becomes valid if at least X registered voters sign it. Parliament has laid down that X has to be 10%. So the people that validate an application count only that far, plus a small margin to make sure, then they stop. You could collect 90% and the count would only show 10%.

It is certainly not a petition of the referendum or ballot kind, where if there were 1000 people in the population and 501 signed it they win, or if only 499 signed it they lose.

It is an application to a quasi-judicial body, the Local Government Commission, which then decides on points of law which council we should have. By far the most important point is good local government. If the LGC thinks, after rigorous examination of the facts, that we will get the best local government with Auckland City Council, we stay. If with Thames-Coromandel District Council, we move.

It is a not a popularity contest, a survey of uninformed opinion. It is a careful legal process to make sure we will get the best.

If nothing else it will put Auckland City under a microscope.