More confusion before committee confirmed

Council forced to confirm all committee chair appointments on advice of staff.

Council forced to confirm all committee chair appointments on advice of staff.

GISBORNE District Council has finally settled the composition of the regional transport committee, but not without further confusion.

The council was forced to confirm all its committee chair appointments on the advice of staff.

An anonymous voting system was used when two of the chair positions were contested at the previous meeting.

At that meeting, Andy Cranston retained the position of chairman of the community development committee and Bill Burdett remained chairman of the regional transport committee after challenges from Larry Foster and Meredith Akuhata-Brown.

Following the meeting, however, Meredith Akuhata-Brown challenged the process followed for the election of the regional transport committee.

Legal advice to the latest council meeting confirmed the appointments reflected the majority will of the council and there had been no effect on the legal status of the committees, or their subsequent decisions.

To remove any uncertainty or residual doubt, the council was advised to confirm the appointments by normal resolution.

The council confirmed the chairs of its standing committees before reconsidering the regional transport committee for which it had to appoint four councillors to represent the four areas, as well as the chair and deputy-chair (inclusive of the four on the committee).

Graeme Thomson was chosen to represent the western area, Pat Seymour northern and Malcolm MacLean the Flats.

When nominations were called for the city area, Mr Foster was asked if he wanted to stand and he said he did.

He had been contacted by Meredith Akuhata-Brown who did not wish to be available, he said.

But council chief executive Judy Campbell said she had received a text from Ms Akuhata-Brown, who was temporarily absent from the meeting because of an emergency, and she said she did wish to stand.

Mr Foster said in that case he would stand down and Ms Akuhata-Brown was appointed.

Mr Burdett was elected unopposed as chairman of the committee and Mr MacLean was elected deputy chairman.

GISBORNE District Council has finally settled the composition of the regional transport committee, but not without further confusion.

The council was forced to confirm all its committee chair appointments on the advice of staff.

An anonymous voting system was used when two of the chair positions were contested at the previous meeting.

At that meeting, Andy Cranston retained the position of chairman of the community development committee and Bill Burdett remained chairman of the regional transport committee after challenges from Larry Foster and Meredith Akuhata-Brown.

Following the meeting, however, Meredith Akuhata-Brown challenged the process followed for the election of the regional transport committee.

Legal advice to the latest council meeting confirmed the appointments reflected the majority will of the council and there had been no effect on the legal status of the committees, or their subsequent decisions.

To remove any uncertainty or residual doubt, the council was advised to confirm the appointments by normal resolution.

The council confirmed the chairs of its standing committees before reconsidering the regional transport committee for which it had to appoint four councillors to represent the four areas, as well as the chair and deputy-chair (inclusive of the four on the committee).

Graeme Thomson was chosen to represent the western area, Pat Seymour northern and Malcolm MacLean the Flats.

When nominations were called for the city area, Mr Foster was asked if he wanted to stand and he said he did.

He had been contacted by Meredith Akuhata-Brown who did not wish to be available, he said.

But council chief executive Judy Campbell said she had received a text from Ms Akuhata-Brown, who was temporarily absent from the meeting because of an emergency, and she said she did wish to stand.

Mr Foster said in that case he would stand down and Ms Akuhata-Brown was appointed.

Mr Burdett was elected unopposed as chairman of the committee and Mr MacLean was elected deputy chairman.

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