Letter to the Editor: Local body perspectives

Thank you for your article (on local body governance) in Management April 2003. It was challenging and thoughtful read.

I am one of Bob Harvey’s “too old, too male and too white” councillors.

I generally agree with the direction that the new legislation is taking us and I think that Waitakere City has anticipated and inaugurated many of the procedures and good practices that are flowing from it as you mention in the article.

I appreciate that in short article you cannot cover everything, but perhaps in later analysis of how Knowhow rolls out you could include perspectives on:
* over governance in Greater Auckland
* the expectation that councillors be full-time
* cross Cultural consultation and decision making
* professional staff responsibilities, neutrality and effectiveness in briefing elected members
* joint decision making with central government and other agencies (you touch on this)
* nature of democracy and its “efficiency” (Winston Churchill stated that at its most vacuous and unpredictable it was better than civil war)

I shall leave it at that.

It is an important and fascinating area of management and leadership, as you indicate, and it is often overlooked. Thank you for writing about it and please continue monitoring the sector.

Owen Hoskin AFNZIM
cc Bob Harvey

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