Two fewer meetings, but the mana whenua payment is not yet settled

Invercargill City Council's new mana whenua names Pania Coote, left, and Evelyn Cook with Mayor Sir Tim Shadbolt.

Provided

Invercargill City Council’s new mana whenua names Pania Coote, left, and Evelyn Cook with Mayor Sir Tim Shadbolt.

The people appointed to the mana whenua of Invercargill City Council are two meeting in their new roles, but what they will be paid is yet to be determined.

Evelyn Cook and Pania Coote, appointed by Mana whenua, officially took office on the board on October 5.

Both men have full voting rights on the Infrastructure Services Committee and the Performance, Policy and Partnerships Committee.

When it comes to plenary council meetings, they have the right to speak but will not be able to vote.

READ MORE:
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* Invercargill City Council mana whenua nominees have lined up for early October
* Invercargill city council moves closer to mana whenua representation

Before Cook and Coote stepped into this role, the board’s legal counsel, Michael Morris, prepared a report that recommended a fee of $ 19,291.50 each per year.

“This is based on the advisor’s base compensation of $ 38,583.00 divided in half, the Morris report states.

“The level of fees takes into account the fact that the roles are appointed, that they have the right to vote in the committees and the right to speak only on the board.

“It is also on the basis that voters are different and the roles appointed have no electoral basis for their nomination.”

However, at the September 28 meeting, Morris told councilors that the section of the report on recommended fees would be deleted.

Instead, the case would be referred to the next PPP committee meeting on October 12 to discuss the level of fees, he said.

“It will be an informed board debate rather than a staff setting. This was agreed upon in a conversation with the runaka.

However, when Tuesday’s Performance, Policy and Partnerships Committee meeting rolled out, board chief executive Clare Hadley called for the discussion to be postponed again and postponed to the next full board meeting on October 26.

“Michael Morris and I met with representatives of the two runaka last week and after discussing with them I suggested that it would be possible for this committee to hand over its delegation, for this point only, to the council for the council to examines it during its meeting. . “

Committee Chairman Darren Ludlow said; “If this is the time it will take, this is the time it will take” and the committee agreed.

The plan is for the mana whenua payment to be settled on October 26, although the new board in October 2022 may review the level of fees.

In the public forum section of Tuesday’s meeting, Otatara resident Tim Mulligan told councilors he believed the appointment of two representatives of mana whenua, who were not elected by the public, had compromised democracy.

During a discussion on the council representation review on Tuesday, Deputy Mayor Nobby Clark again voiced his opposition to the introduction of two unelected people.

“In my opinion, we shouldn’t have unelected people on committees who have the right to vote,” Clark said.

He said that with the way the board was structured, the two committees, over which appointees had the right to vote, made 95 percent of board decisions.

However, other advisers have come out in favor of mana whenua roles with Ludlow, Lesley Soper, and Rebecca Amundsen, highlighting all of her obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi.

Ludlow concluded the public portion of Tuesday’s meeting with a message of support for the people named Coote and Cook.

“May I offer a note of support to our mana whenua representatives and welcome you to the joys of public consultations and submissions.” Often times people have opinions about the advice we all had to endure, but I commend you for the dignity of your silence, ”Ludlow said.

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About Matthew R. Dailey

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