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Performance

A High-performing Council

Keep a tight focus on making the council efficient and effective by applying a commercial governance model to its core operations, obtaining the input and guidance of people with high level business experience where it is most needed.

What this is about:

Auckland Council, as an organisation, can contribute much to Auckland's economic success by being as effective and efficient as possible.  A key part of the super city strategy was to replace seven different sets of rules, regulations and policies with clear and consistent region-wide policies. The other challenge has been to replace a confusing variety of processes and IT systems with a more consistent and efficient approach.

Councillors are elected to represent the interests of citizens. They do not necessarily have the specialist expertise needed to govern a corporate entity as large and complex as Auckland Council. 

My proposal is to place the core council organisation under the same governance arrangements used for Council-Controlled Organisations (CCOs), which are the same, or very similar, to the successful model of governing State-owned Enterprises. I am familiar with the model, and its strengths and weaknesses, because I was once a Senior Business Analyst in the Crown Company Monitoring Advisory Unit of the NZ Treasury, in the public hospital monitoring team.

This proposal will ensure that councillors focus on their core business of representing the needs and interests of Auckland's diverse communities, with assurance that the council organisation is being governed with the advice and input of experts in business and public administration.

How to do it:

The details of this proposal need to be developed and agreed with the CEO, as it is essential that the board provides the CEO with oversight and guidance that supports the CEO effectively.  Keeping that in mind, my proposal is that:
  • A corporate governance board would be created, reporting to the council's governing body in the same manner that the CCO boards currently do. 
  • The board will include independent directors with expertise in finance, information technology, human resources, public administration and local government law. 
  • The Mayor, and the chair of the CCO Governance and Monitoring Committee (or its equivalent), will also sit on the Board but it will be chaired by an independent director.
  • The board will will replace the CEO Review Committee.