My Councillor report covers the period from 8 June 2021 until 9 July 2021. It has been prepared for the July business meetings of the Waitematā Local Board. Monthly reports were also prepared for the Aotea and Waiheke Local Boards.
The purpose of my report is to detail my main activities and to share information with the public and local boards in my ward regarding governing body decisions, my attendance at events, regional consultations, media updates and key issues. This month my report includes a transport update.
- Deputy Chair, Environment and Climate Change Committee
- Co-Chair, Hauraki Gulf Forum
- Member, Auckland City Centre Advisory Board (ACCAB)
- Board Member, LGNZ National Council and Auckland Zone co-chair
- Member, Auckland Domain Committee
- Member, Appointments and Performance Review Committee
- Member, Joint Governance Working Party
- Member, Waste Political Advisory Group
- Recovery Budget, Auckland’s Long-Term Plan (2021-2031) was formally adopted by the Governing Body on 29 June (Attachment 1 Our Auckland: 10-year recovery budget delivers for Waitematā)
- On 22 June the government announced the long-awaited strategy Revitalising the Gulf – Government action on the Sea Change Plan (Attachment 2 Our Auckland: Government’s ‘Revitalising the Gulf’ plan a welcome first step)
- This report includes a transport update regarding the Regional Land Transport Plan, delivery by AT of cycling infrastructure and parking issues in the city centre.
The Regional Land Transport Plan: I decided to reluctantly vote for endorsing the RLTP when it came to the Planning Committee on 24 June because of the critical addition of resolutions d) and e) that I worked on with Cr Darby.
d) Noted Auckland Council’s commitment to Te Tāruke-ā-Tāwhiri to halve emissions by 2030 requires further change to transport and land use policy and the mix of transport investment.
e) Note that, as requested by the Planning Committee on 11 March, council and Auckland Transport staff are jointly developing a Transport Emissions Reduction Plan for Auckland that will identify the pathways to support the required emissions reductions reflected in Te Tāruke-ā-Tāwhiri, which includes:
- i) investigating the mix of future complementary transport investments that support emissions reduction;
- ii) investigating vehicle fleet and fuel decarbonisation;
- iii) investigating land transport pricing reform;
- iv) investigating urban growth management;
- v) investigating road space reallocation;
- vi) investigating behaviour change;
- vii) investigating addressing inequities arising from the impacts of decarbonisation;
- viii) reporting the approach to the Transport Emissions Reduction Plan for Auckland to Environment and Climate Change Committee and the Auckland Transport Board in August 2021 with a progress update by December 2021.
The final RLTP approved by the AT Board only decreases emissions by 1% by 2030 even with the inclusion of the government’s new EV feebate scheme and recent changes to the NZ Upgrade Project therefore a lot now hangs on getting the emissions plan right and aligning it with the RLTP. This is backed up by Council’s support for the most ambitious emissions reductions pathway proposed by the Ministry of Transport.
Parking enforcement in the City Centre: Following a presentation by AT to the Planning Committee on the Downtown Carpark I asked AT to confirm what parking management actions AT is taking currently to support the cultural and economic vibrancy of the city centre. I highlighted a range of examples where it appears AT’s current parking approach actually results in outcomes contrary to AT’s stated goals (as shown in the image right). The response from AT is attached (Attachment 6: Correspondence from Auckland Transport regarding AT’s work to support the cultural and economic vibrancy of the city centre).
The advice from AT regarding St Patricks Square appears to be contradictory however we are moving closer to a temporary designed solution using concrete blocks to stop illegal parking. AT has also confirmed that night patrols have been stepped up for the city centre’s shared spaces.
Auckland Transport’s delivery of “Healthy Streets” and the cycling programme: I have been working with the Mayor and Councillors Hills, Bartley, and Darby on a “reset” in the way Auckland Transport delivers “Healthy Streets” and the cycling programme. The correspondence attached outlines the concerns we have raised and the response from AT’s Board Chair. (Attachment 7: Correspondence with Auckland Transport regarding the delivery of “Healthy Streets” and the cycling programme). This correspondence has also been reported on by Greater Auckland.
There are positive suggestions in AT’s response in particular the proposal to appoint a new single point of leadership within AT to oversee cycling outcomes and regarding the need for stronger direction from council on delivery expectations, the trade-offs involved, and the integration of cycling improvements with renewals work. This is linked closely with issues that need to be addressed as part of the development of Auckland’s Transport Emissions Reduction Plan. Auckland Council officials are currently working with AT on these matters.
Governing Body meetings – Key decisions
The minutes for all meetings are available on the Auckland Council website. The following is intended as a summary only.
On 10 June the Environment and Climate Change Committee
- Approved the adoption of the Natural Hazards Risk Management Action Plan.
- Approved updating the Waste Minimisation and Innovation Fund guidelines.
- Supported in principle Pathway Four for Aotearoa (very strong emphasis on ‘avoid’ and ‘shift’ interventions, with a focus on early implementation) as outlined in the Ministry of Transport’s Hīkina te Kohupara – Kia mauri ora ai te iwi: Transport Emissions: Pathways to Net Zero by 2050 and approved delegation of Auckland Council’s submission to the Chair and Deputy Chair of the Environment and Climate Change Committee, Chair and Deputy Chair of the Planning Committee, the Mayor and Independent Māori Statutory Board Member Glenn Wilcox.
- Received a presentation from Auckland Zoo on their sustainability initiatives.
On 14 June the Auckland Domain Committee
- Approved in principle the following events to take place in the Auckland Domain for the calendar years 2021, 2022 and 2023:
- Breast Cancer Foundation NZ Pink Ribbon Walk
- Cancer Society Walking Stars
- Corporate Challenge
- Christmas in the Park.
- Approved the inclusion of zero waste goal to the Auckland Domain Event Operational Guidelines.
- Endorsed the Three-Year Regional Work Programme for the Auckland Domain.
- Endorsed parking restrictions for 100 Stanley Street Grafton (this introduces paid parking to the Domain for the first time). Note: On 8 June, to address issues of access, safety and amenity values of the Museum, some carparks were removed from Cenotaph Road and the Museum Circuit and gates were installed at the Titoki Street carpark to deter all day commuter parking
On 15 June The Appointments and Performance Committee
- The confidential section of the agenda was with regards to the appointment and re-appointment of CCO directors
- I was appointed to the selection panel for a new Auckland Transport director.
On 17 June the Finance and Performance Committee
- Approved, subject to the satisfactory conclusion of any required statutory processes the disposal for urban renewal purposes of 24 Upper Municipal Place, Onehunga.
- Received the June update on progress of the Emergency Budget 2020/2021.
- Agreed to support the continued exploration of opportunities for the use of Infrastructure Funding and Financing Act 2020 mechanisms to enable growth infrastructure.
- Approved the Auckland Council Group Procurement Policy.
On 22 June the Council Controlled Organisation Oversight Committee
- Received the update on the implementation programme for the Council-controlled Organisations Review.
- Approved Statement of Expectations for substantive Council-controlled Organisations. I have advocated for the use of section 92 to direct CCO’s to comply with council’s strategies but this was not supported by the Committee.
On 24 June the Governing Body
- Approved the Independent Māori Statutory Board’s proposed funding agreement for the 2021/2022 financial year which comprises a total direct funding of $3,025,621 (opex).
- Approved the decision-making responsibilities of Auckland Council’s Governing Body and Local Boards policy for inclusion in the long-term plan.
- Approved the Bylaw Panel recommendations on the proposed changes to Te Kaunihera o Tāmaki Makaurau Ture ā-Rohe Urungi Āhuru / Auckland Council Navigation Bylaw 2021.
- Approved the Group Remuneration Policy.
On 24 June the Planning Committee
- Endorsed the final 2021-31 Regional Land Transport Plan for submitting to the Auckland Transport Board for final approval
On 29 June the Governing Body
- Formally adopted the Recovery Budget (10-year Budget 2021-2031), as the council’s long-term plan for 2021-2031, including 21 local board agreements.
- A late change was made to the deaths and serious injuries (DSI) performance measures by Auckland Transport. A target to reduce DSI “by at least 50” in 21/22 was changed to “increase by no more than 70”. I supported the adoption of the budget but not this change.
On 1 July the Planning Committee
- Received the Aotea/Great Barrier Local Board input regarding the implementation of resource management and heritage legislation on Aotea/Great Barrier Island and requested that the General Manager Plans and Places and General Manager Resource Consents prepare a memorandum for the Planning Committee on the matters raised. (photo right Chair Izzy Fordham, Local Board member Valmaine Toki and Don Prince presenting to the Committee)
- Noted progress towards the Auckland Plan 2050 outcomes in the Annual Monitoring Report 2021.
- Following a presentation on the National Policy Statement Urban Development 2020, noted that the Auckland Unitary Plan Regional Policy Statement already includes appropriate policies to enable “well-functioning urban environments”.
- Approved the development of a plan change to the Auckland Unitary Plan Regional Policy Statement that includes a new policy (or policies) on reducing green-house gas emissions and criteria that private plan change requests will be required to meet to be considered as adding ‘significant development capacity’ under the National Policy Statement on Urban Development.
- In response to the intensification provisions of the National Policy Statement on Urban Development, endorsed the approaches in the areas of:
- Walkable catchments
- Qualifying matters
- Special Character Areas Overlay
On 8 July the Parks, Arts, Community and Events Committee
- approved and adopted the Economic Development Action Plan: Council’s role in Auckland’s recovery 2021-24.
- approved ‘Kia Ora Tāmaki Makaurau – Māori Outcomes Performance Measurement Framework’ including the performance measures.
- approved 2021/2022 Cultural Initiatives Fund grants, at a total value of $1.2m, for marae and papakāinga/Māori housing development
- approved the 2021/2022 financial year Community Facilities Regional Work Programme
- approved the 2021/2022 Arts and Culture Regional Work Programme and regional arts organisations’ funding allocations for a three-year term to Q Theatre, $943,944 and Te Tuhi, $604,673
- approved the Regional Sport and Recreation Facilities Operating Grant preliminary allocation programme for 2022-2024 and the Regional Sport and Recreation Grants Programme 2021/2022 budget
- approved $552,000 for 2021-2022 to Aktive – Auckland Sport & Recreation, for sport and recreation outcomes. Aktive are required to distribute a minimum of $512,000 between their delivery partners: Harbour Sport, Sport Waitakere, Sport Auckland, and CLM Community Sport. Aktive can retain up to $40,000 for regional work programmes
Attendance at events 8 June – 9 July 2021
- On 8 June I attended a drop in session for Project WAVE at Sierra Café, Viaduct hosted by Auckland Transport and attended the opening night of The Marriage of Figaro at the invitation of NZ Opera.
- On 11 June I spoke at the Karangahape Road Enhancements official opening (Attachment 2 Our Auckland: Celebrating the revamped Karangahape Road) and was hosted on a tour of MOTAT by the CE Michael Frawley with Cr Richard Hills (photo right).
- On 12 June I attended Western Springs Lakeside park planting day organized by the Conservation Volunteers.
- On 15 June attended an onsite residents meeting on Sentinel Road to discuss maintenance issues
- On 16 June I visited Aotea/Great Barrier to attend Marine Education Hui. Students of Aotea presented what they had learnt about marine ecology, their chosen motu-specific environmental issue and their solutions, including their proposed marine protected areas and why there. The event was organized by the S.E.A Trust (Sea Education Aotea) who work with all the local schools to provide sailing and kayaking and water skills training . I was also interviewed for Aotea FM
- On 17 June I attended the UDINZ panel discussion Rezoning Ponsonby ? (Attachment 4 Ponsonby News update 29 June 2021: Rezoning Ponsonby?)
- On 18 June I attended Newmarket Business Awards at the Cordis Hotel at the invitation of the Newmarket Business Association
- On 20 June I visited the From the Deck planting day event with the Conservation Volunteers.
- On 22 June I attended The Government’s Sea Change Announcement. (See Attachment 3 for the Hauraki Gulf Forum’s press release response to Government’s ‘Revitalising the Gulf).
- Also on 22 June I spoke at the launch of Auckland Foundation’s Hauraki Gulf Regeneration Fund. The fund has adopted our goals of riparian planning and shellfish restoration as its initial areas of focus.
- On 23 June I attended Waiheke Local Board Business Meeting via Skype and presented my Councillor’s update for June.
- On 24 June attended opening night of The Life of Galileo at the invitation of the Auckland Theatre Company.
- On 25 June I was interviewed by Jemima Huston on 95bFM where we discussed the Hauraki Gulf regeneration, Karangahape Road enhancements and Matariki celebrations.
Also on 25 June I attended the Kokihi Official Opening Ceremony, celebrating the opening of 95 new homes, including 47 KiwiBuilds, in Waterview
- On 26 June I attended Te Karanga ā Hape, a huge celebration of Karangahape Road and Matariki.
- Also on 26 June I attended the New Zealand premiere of The Lion King at Spark Arena.
On 1 July attended the Piki toi book launch at Merge Café
- On 2 July joined the PM, Mayor and many others to formally open Te Wānanga, the new ‘Tidal Shelf’ that extends out from Quay St in downtown Auckland as part of the upgraded Ferry Basin and Te Ngau o Horotiu the new 6 ferry piers on Queens Wharf. (photo below)
- On 4 July attended Auckland Street Choir Matariki waiata fundraising event.
- On 5 July attended Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki’s pōwhiri for Tom Irvine, who is now officially Deputy Director of the gallery.
- On 6 July I volunteered at Everybody Eats with the Mayor and Cr Josephine
- On 8 July attended the dawn karakia for the Reuben Paterson’s Guide Kaiārahia, a 10 metre high waka that rises from the Auckland Art Gallery’s forecourt pool and in the evening I attended MOTAT’s Love/Science exhibition opening