Local leaders urged to consider election run early

Local Government New Zealand is encouraging community-minded leaders to get ahead of the game and start thinking about running for their upcoming local council elections now.

“New Zealand is fortunate to have a lot of community-orientated people, who provide leadership through their local sporting, social and community organisations,” says LGNZ Chief Executive Malcolm Alexander.

“Standing for council is an incredible opportunity for these people to take the next step for their community on the issues that affect them directly and an excellent way to further develop leadership skills.”

“While candidate nominations open on 19 July 2019, we want potential candidates to start thinking about their future in local government now, so they have all the support and information they need ahead of the election,” he said.

Mr Alexander said ensuring elected representatives had the abilities, diversity of skills and training to respond to major community issues was an important part of a successful election process.

“Providing communities with a choice of candidates that they feel confident will make the best decisions for their area is vital. We also hope that a pool of competent and passionate candidates will drive even more citizens to vote this year.”

LGNZ recently announced the launch of Vote 2019 campaign, which aims to lift nationwide voter turnout in local elections and increase people’s engagement with their local council.

The national Vote 2019 campaign will showcase the value local government provides to communities across the country, with a strong focus on inspiring more New Zealanders to vote, and encouraging candidates to stand in their communities.

Significant support, including governance training and guidance through LGNZ’s EquiP professional development programme, is provided for newly elected members, and ensures a consistent level of capability across the sector. People interested in finding out more about standing as a local council election candidate are encouraged to contact their local council’s electoral officer or visit vote2019.co.nz to view the Candidate Guide 2019.

LGNZ also encourages candidates to visit www.councilmark.co.nz, to view their council’s report or encourage their council to register. The CouncilMARK™ programme is best described as a measure of performance assessment and continuous improvement that assists councils to deliver top service and value to their communities.

“We have an incredible pool of talent in New Zealand – dedicated Kiwis who are already becoming leaders in their communities.”

“Standing for their local council is a great way for these people to take the next step and have real influence over the key issues affecting their families, friends and communities, and we encourage them to come forward now,” said Mr Alexander.