Elected Members Roles and Conduct
Councillors (acting as the Council) are responsible for governance, including:
- development and adoption of Council policy;
- monitoring the performance of the Council;
- prudent stewardship of Counci lresources;
- employment of the Chief Executive; and
- representation of district residents and ratepayers interests.
The Mayor is elected by the district as a whole and, as one of the elected members, shares the same responsibilities as other members of the Council.
The Mayor also has specific responsibility for:
- providing leadership to elected members and to the people of the Tararua District;
- leading the development of the Council's plans (including the Long-term Plan and the Annual Plan), policies and budgets for consideration by the members of the Council.
In exercising their leadership role, the Mayor has the power to:
- appoint the Deputy Mayor;
- determine the number of committees and subcommittees, their terms of reference and composition; and
- appointment the Chairpersons of the committees and subcommittees.
The Mayor also has the following roles:
- presiding at Council meetings - the Mayor is responsible for ensuring the orderly conduct of business during meetings (as determined by Standing Orders);
- advocating on behalf of the community;
- primary spokesperson for Council;
- ceremonial head of the Council;
- fulfilling the responsibilities of a Justice of the Peace (ex-officio);
- lead liaison with central Government.
The Deputy Mayor is appointed by the Mayor at the start of the Council's term. Under usual circumstances, the Deputy Mayor exercises the same roles as other Councillors. If the Mayor is absent or incapacitated, the Deputy Mayor must perform all of the responsibilities and duties, and exercise the powers of the Mayor, as summarised above.
The Committee Chairpersons can either be appointed by the Mayor, or appointed by the Council using the processes set out in Clause 25 of Schedule 7 of the Local Government Act 2002. A Committee Chairperson is responsible for presiding over meetings of the committee, ensuring that the committee acts within the powers delegated to it by the Council.
Community Boards are the grass roots of local democracy where people in the Board's area can take their concerns or seek assistance. Community Boards consist of four members elected alongside the Council at the local elections, as well as Councillors appointed to the Board by the Council.
A Board's role is to advocate for its residents, but it also has powers and responsibilities delegated to it by the Council.
Community Boards are constituted under Section 49 of the Local Government Act 2002 to:
- represent and act as an advocate for the interests of their community;
- consider and report on any matter referred to it by the Council and any issues of interest or concern to the Community Board;
- maintain an overview of services provided by the Council within its community of interest;
- make an annual submission to the Council on expenditure in the community;
- communicate with community organisations and special interest groups; and
- undertake any responsibilities delegated by the Council.
Code of Conduct
The Elected Members' Code of Conduct provides guidance on the standards and behaviour expected from all elected members of the Tararua District Council. Clause 15 of Schedule 7 of the Local Government Act 2002 requires a Council to adopt a code of conduct, and once adopted, all elected members are required to comply with the code.
Council's current Code of Conduct can be viewed here.
Elected members have specific obligations for their conduct under a number of Acts, which are outlined within the Code of Conduct.