Information for prospective candidates video transcript
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Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Kia ora koutou, good evening and welcome to our online information session for prospective candidates looking to stand in the Te kōwhiringa pōti o Tamaki Makaurau or the Auckland Council local elections 2022.
We're so glad that you could be here with us for tonight’s korero, a conversation about key messaging, key information, bits and pieces that you a prospective candidate, will find handy and that will come in handy should you wish to stand to be an elective member on our fabulous council, representing our communities from Tamaki Makaurau.
In no particular order joining me for a panel discussion this evening and to address your pātai or your questions and answers, I have Dale Ofsoske, the electoral officer, give us a wave Dale.
I've also got Warwick McNaughton, who is our deputy election officer and is a veteran in this space he's also one of our esteemed principal advisors. Good evening and welcome to you, Warwick.
I've also got Erin Temu, lovely to see you registrar of electors from the Electoral Commission. And then I've also got the fabulous the lovely Elodie Fontaine, who is the elections program manager from Te kōwhiringa pōti o Tamaki Makaurau.
And just helping out in the background, we've got the lovely Litia and also Marina, who are helping us facilitate the session this evening.
For your information, we also invite you to participate by way of the Questions and Answer feature, which is at the bottom of your screen. If you've got a comment, if you've got a question that you want the panel to address tonight, please go ahead and pop in your comment or your pāti there in the tool and we'll get to them towards the end of our session.
The way that our session will run is momentarily I'll hand over to Elodie for a presentation or a PowerPoint on our kaupapa. Then after that, we'll get some high-level thoughts from our panel and also start taking questions and answers from you without further Ado. Over to you, Elodie.
Elodie Fontaine: Thank you, Eddie. Tia, can you please move to the next slide?
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): No trouble. While we get the team to sort that out. This is a great moment for a segway into the next slide. Back to you, Elodie
Elodie Fontaine: Thank you, Eddie. Thanks, Tia. So just starting with a few of the key dates for this upcoming election, the nominations for candidates will open on Friday the 15 July and will close at 12 noon on Friday 12 August.
No late nominations will be accepted. Voting will open on Friday the 16 September and will close at twelve noon on Saturday 8 October. And there again, no late votes will be accepted.
In terms of becoming a candidate the big question is, can you candidate? And the answer is yes, you can. You don't need any specific qualifications to become a candidate in a local election, and people from all walks of life can stand and be elected.
So the criteria to be eligible to stand is that you have to be over 18 years old and registered under New Zealand electoral role and a New Zealand citizen and nominated by two voters from the area.
You are standing for some of the key skills you need to be a successful elected member and represent the people of Tamaki Makaurau are to commit your time, be able to think strategically and make decisions, be open minded, be committed to Te Tiriti o Waitangi, be able to build relationships, have great communication skills and be familiar with technology.
Elodie Fontaine: The reason why you should consider becoming a candidate is it allows you to contribute to your community and connect and build networks.
It is an actual career, it is a paid job and so this would allow you to start a continual career in local government. It allows you to take on the role of community leadership and to make the most of your unique talents.
And we just have a quote here that you don't have to have a PhD, be a doctor or a business owner to bring something that no one else can. So this is the end of just our introductory section.
Feel free to pop in any question in our little Q and A section and I'll hand over to Warwick for the next section.
Warwick McNaughton: Thank you, Elodie and hi to everybody. Just a slide here about basically how Auckland Council works.
There are two complementary decision-making parts. There's the Governing Body which is the mayor and councillors, and 21 local boards which work autonomously and make decisions within their areas of responsibility while maintaining an active working relationship.
So that's the governing body, the mayor and 20 councillors who are elected across 13 boards. The mayor of course is elected across the whole of Auckland and local boards comprising 149 elected members across 21 local board areas.
Next slide, the roles that you can stand for firstly, there's the role of Auckland which is elected by all Auckland voters and leads the Governing Body.
Then there's the role of councillor. All councillors are elected by ward at the moment and so we call them ward counsellors. These are members of the Governing Body who focus on the big picture and on region wide strategic decisions. They are elected from 13 different wards.
All elected members make a declaration after they are elected and councillors declare that they will act in the interests of the whole Auckland region.
Warwick McNaughton: Then you might be interested in standing as a local board member. Local board members represent the communities in the areas and make decisions on local issues, activities and facilities. There are 21 local board areas.
And again in inaugural meetings, local board members make their declarations in terms of acting in the interests of their local board area. Next slide.
Just to give you a taste of what it might be like to be an elected member, you might read and prepare for the upcoming week's meetings. You might be voting in various decision making meetings and committees. You can attend most meetings remotely. This is true at the moment. Once COVID-19 is over and we go back to the normal legislative provisions you'll be expected to attend in person.
You will probably be engaging with members of the public, listening to their views, attending events like public meetings, citizenship ceremonies, or the opening of a new facility like a park or cycleway or representing the council at community and cultural events like Matariki, Chinese New Year, Diwali, Pacifica Festival and Auckland Pride Festival. Or you might be taking part in community activities like a working beach for a local stream regeneration project.
What you would be responsible for is helping decide how Auckland spends its funding, its money, making decisions that will help define the future for our communities, helping businesses grow and prosper, deciding how to meet the current and future needs for infrastructure, public services and regulations, helping manage our assets worth $42 billion.
Warwick McNaughton: Of course, those are just some bullet points items. And of course there's a lot of other things that decision making that you would be involved in.
Salary and time commitment and the Remuneration Authority, which is an independent legislative body sets selected member salaries based on the expected time and work commitment of the role in on the size and population of the area.
The Remuneration Authority reviews salaries every year on 30 June. The numbers included below are accurate as of March 2022 but will be slightly different for new members after the 2022 election.
So the mayoral role is considered by the Remuneration Authority to be a fulltime role with significant professional and personal commitment, including after hours and weekends as required, with annual salary of $296,000.
Deputy mayor is appointed by the mayor from amongst the 20 councils that's a full time role 40 plus hours a week, annual salary of $165,582. Ward councillors are also deemed to be a full time role by the Remuneration Authority.
Some councillors take on additional responsibilities such as chair of the committee and so would receive additional remuneration, but their annual salary ranges between $113,174 to $138,912.
Elected members can also claim expenses, so you're not out of pocket for doing your job.
Warwick McNaughton: In terms of local boards, the Remuneration Authority also sets the salaries of local board members. The numbers vary based on a number of factors, including the population, the level of expenditure and the value of assets in the board area.
This is what the Remuneration of Authority calls I think it calls it council sizing and it deems different councils to be of different sizes, taking these factors into account and will set salaries based on the size of the council. So the three roles and local boards are the local chair, which is deemed by the Remuneration Authority to be a fulltime role.
The chair is appointed by the board at its inaugural meeting after the election and its annual salary ranges from $58,000 to about $100,000. The variation there is due to the difference in sizes between the different local board areas and their responsibilities.
Local Board Deputy chair, also appointed by the board at the enrolment meeting, and salaries range between about $35,000 to $60,000.
And for a local board member considered to be a part time role, the annual salary ranges from $29,000 to $50,000. And again, our local board members can also claim expenses.
Warwick McNaughton: Okay, just some other points about if you do get elected, what you should expect.
Your first few months will be busy. You will need to commit time to the onboarding process. So there are a series of sessions held after the elections to help newly elected members get all the gear, learn about their responsibilities, and so on. So you need to set time aside to do that. So this includes setting up your paving technology, learning about the council systems and processes.
There'll be lots of reading and days of training sessions to learn about the job, attending the inaugural event and meeting your supporting staff. So the Governing Body has an inaugural meeting, its first meeting where every member swears the declaration to act in the interests of the region. And each local board also holds an inaugural meeting where each local board member makes a declaration to act in the interest of their local board area.
So just a suggestion there. Don't book any holidays following elections as onboarding and inaugurations will take place immediately after. Thank you, so Elodie will take the next section of the presentation.
Elodie Fontaine: Thank you, Warwick. Now going over the different ways you can become a candidate.
So in Auckland local elections, you can be an independent candidate. This means you run on your own, but you can still express your political colours or ideas.
Or you can run as an affiliated candidate to a particular political organization or party. So this means being officially selected and endorsed to represent the party as a candidate. If that's something you would like to consider, you should contact the party directly that you would like to represent to discuss the process with them.
Or the third option is on the tickets. A ticket means that you get together with one or more of the candidates to support each other's campaigns. This can be an advantage if you have less name recognition and you can learn from those with more experience and more established networks.
Candidates on the ticket can share campaign costs. Some candidates get together and chip in throughout the three year term, so it's not a big financial burden at election time. Tickets are usually between likeminded individuals who agree to a policy or support a local issue, but they can also have members with a range of political affiliations.
Elodie Fontaine: In terms of standing, you can make the choice to stand for multiple positions at a time. So you could stand for Mayor, for a position as a ward councillor, and for one or more local board positions, but you have to pay the $200 deposit fee for each of those position.
You stand for if you do get elected to more than one position, the highest position takes precedence. You can stand for only one board position, but you can stand for more than one local board area. If you do so, you must state your area of preference and if you are elected to more than one local board, you will only be able to serve on one of those. The cost of campaigning.
So all campaign costs are to be paid by the candidate. Council does not provide any funding and the law limits how much you can spend on your campaign, and that limit is based on the population of the area you are standing in.
Some candidates spend close to nothing and others spend several thousand dollars. The law requires candidates to declare any donations and campaign expenses to the electoral officer by December 2022. Some typical expenses include holdings and election signage, posters and leaflets or ads in the local community, newspapers or other media.
In terms of campaigning tips, what we would advise is to have a plan and set yourself a budget. If you are new to this, it might be helpful for you to find a mentor, talk to someone who has experience running for an election.
You could also look at cost effective ways to run a campaign and these could include advertising or promoting yourself through social media. It could also involve door knocking or attending local events and community meetings, as well as participating in Meet the Candidate events.
So these events will be facilitated by community groups closer to the election and this would be an opportunity for you as a candidate to meet the public, answer the question and just present your views and what you would like to achieve should you be elected.
We also advise that you make the most of voteauckland.co.nz, which is our election website. On there you can find all the information you need to become a candidate, but after the candidates are confirmed later in August, you would also have an opportunity to upload a full profile and talk about yourself to potential voters and explain how you stand on a number of issues.
You should obviously be aware that your campaigning may be impacted by COVID-19 restrictions, and so we definitely advise that you stay up-to-date with the Ministry of Health recommendation, as well as our own Auckland Council COVID- 19 section where you can find all the latest guidance with regards to COVID.
So how to get started? Well, you should start now, start getting into your community, start building your networks. Now is also a good time to understand the issues that matter for your communities and also that matter across Auckland as a whole.
It would be helpful to understand how council works and start understanding what the role of elected members involved. So that could be through checking out meeting agendas online or attending a public council meeting. So you can get a feel for how decisions are actually made.
It is important that you know the rules for running a campaign. So there again, you should go to our Vote Auckland website to find out the details or get in touch with Dale, our electoral officer if you have any specific questions. Once again, we advise that you seek some help from people with more experience and potentially identify a mentor.
And it is also important that you think about your own personal resilience and support networks and how you manage through this time that can be quite demanding on an individual. And I'll hand over to Warwick for the last section.
Warwick McNaughton: Thank you Elodie. Okay, just getting into the paperwork, some tips in terms of filling in your nomination.
Make sure you fill the right nomination form. There are different variations for the different positions and areas. This might seem obvious, but we did run into trouble at one election where some election candidates ended up filling in the wrong nomination forms.
Ensure you are two nominators are enrolled in the area you are standing for. Call the electoral office if you want to check. This is very important. We sometimes receive nominations from candidates and the people the two nominators who have signed are not actually enrolled in that particular area, which means that the person who is the candidate has to go and get fresh signatures and that takes time.
Check, recheck and check the forms. Again, get someone else to review the forms. Get your forms in early so that if there are problems, you have time to fix them. And we have had real situations where people have left it too late. They have brought in the nomination form and say at 11:00am on the day that nominations close at twelve noon, only to find that there are problems with their nomination form and they've had to go out and sort them out.
And when they get back, it's too late. Don't forget to include your photo and candidate statement that are optional but important to help voters know more about you.
You will need to pay your $200 deposit when you lodge your nomination. Okay, in terms of finding more information, make the Most of the Vote Auckland website for all the information on how Auckland Council works, how to be a candidate and how to vote.
You can also find out about previous candidates expenses or previous elections results. Check your enrolment details are up to date on vote.nz, the electoral officer and this sale is responsible for the conduct of the election. For any question on election procedures, email email@example.com or call the 800 number.
Finally, you could email the Elections team on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Continuing with more information, you can watch council meetings online there are webcasts and so on or read the agendas and minutes. Read research literature that has been conducted on candidates and voting and that's on our Knowledge Auckland website knowledgeauckland.org.nz.
Read the Local Government Statement. The Local Government Statement is a document which is required to be published by each Council following every election, which sets out the key information about the functions, activities of the Council and all the representation arrangements and so on, so that Local Government statement is available on the Auckland Council website.
Warwick McNaughton: Also, we suggest you find out more about rules for election boardings and signage, and I need to just alert you to the fact that the rules are contained in an election signs by law and that by law is under review at the moment.
Some of you might have read in the Herald this morning an article relating to alcohol signs. It's the same bylaw, so the reviewed bylaw will be decided by the Governing Body at its May meeting this month. We're not expecting the bits in it that relate to election signs to change much, but please be aware that the bylaw is changing.
In the meantime, all of the rules around election signs are on the Auckland Transport website. Thanks. Before we have questions, can I just make the point that a lot of what might have been in this presentation is designed to be realistic and to enable you to make proper decisions about the commitments involved, but please do not be put off. Thank you.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Thank you very much, both Elodie and Warwick for an excellent presentation this evening. I've got some great questions in the Q and A box there, including a really great one that I can see here from Kushal, which I'll come to in a moment. But my immediate question is from one of our webinar participants. Now Elodie, where might people be able to find this PowerPoint? Will they be able to find this PowerPoint at the conclusion of tonight's webinar?
Elodie Fontaine: Thank you, Eddie. So we haven't got the PowerPoint available at the moment, but we will be making it available on our Vote Auckland website along with the video recording of tonight's session.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Fabulous. Thank you very much. Now you would have seen a question there in our Q and A function about pretty much what type of experience do you need to be a candidate? I'm going to just plant that question there and park it for a moment.
What I want to do is maybe perhaps back the truck up a little bit and give our viewers both tonight and also viewers going forward, a little bit of context around the civic participation element or what it really looks like at the moment, particularly for local government.
We've got Erin Temu here register of electors from the Electoral Commission. Erin, typically at the local elections space. What does diversity look like at the moment in terms of candidates or participation? Erin, if you will.
Erin Temu: Thank you, Eddie. Obviously, every year there's a different pool of candidates that put themselves forward for every election. Who knows who will be in that pool this time around. But we're talking to our communities to get diversity and interest for being leaders within their community.
So we have different portfolios, Māori, Pacific, the ethnic groups, as well as looking at communicating with our disabilities community, just to be able to bring some key messages to get involved and participate in this local election.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Thank you, Erin. I wanted to come across today or one of the misconceptions and you'll have seen this cycle after cycle Dale. Dale is the electron officer in the Electoral Commission. Dale, good evening to you.
Tell us a little bit about your role as the electoral officer in the relationship that you sort of typically have with prospective candidates and candidates alike.
Dale Ofsoske: (Technical difficulties with Dale connection)From council so by legislation and there's a certain process that we have. We work very closely with the candidates all the right electoral rolls.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): See that we've just lost our connection there or something, And I might just put that question on pause and come across to you, Warwick. I noticed that we had quite a few of those key dates that we have had up earlier. And is there any leniency? I noticed that nominations closed at 12 noon on Friday the 12 August.
What if I happen to be out in the car park looking for a park and I find one and it's three minutes past Warwick. How stringent are these deadlines for nominations and for putting in my candidate nomination form, if you will.
Warwick McNaughton: With both closing of nominations and closing of the poll on election day, we're standing at the door looking at the clock, and when the clock strikes twelve, the doors close. That's it. Now that's in the interest of being fair to everyone.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Fabulous. Thank you, Warwick. Dale, I see that you've re-joined us down. Could you tell us a little bit more? We heard most of the spiel, but perhaps towards the end around the electoral officers wrong and the relationship with candidates.
Dale Ofsoske: We have quite a close working relationship with candidates. Candidates talk to me about what they can and can't do and I steer them in the right direction, making sure, because we want all candidates to run a good election campaign and I can steer them and guide them in that area, provide some assistance and advice with regard to legislation and good practice.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Wonderful. Thank you so much, Dale. Now panelists, I know that you've now had an opportunity to mull over the question that is there in the Q and A function there from Kushal, and it's a great one.
Do I need to have any experience in community service? Now, I know none of us have ever served in public office, but many of us, many of you around the screen, have worked intimately and closely with elected members and have run many an election.
So what I might do is I might come to you, Warwick, and perhaps Elodie, do I need to have community experience and just broadly, what kind of things might people expect to have or possess to be a candidate? Warwick.
Warwick McNaughton: Thanks, Eddie. Look, I think the key is in the last sentence that you mentioned there. It's what the people expect. There's no legislation, of course, that governs this.
But if as a voter, I'm looking at all the candidates, am I looking at someone who's got the most experience? I will probably take that into account. I will probably filter that in terms of what I consider to be relevant experience.
And in the past, people have put down this experience, the fact that they've been on the kindergarten committee and so on. So in terms of voting for someone who's managing billions of dollars of assets, I'm not sure that would count too much for me.
I think it is fair to say that incumbent members probably have a bit of an advantage here because they already have the experience of being part of the council framework and of making decisions on behalf of the Auckland Council.
So it's a mixed answer. It depends on what the voter is looking for. And I would think that a voter would take experience into account, but it would need to be relevant.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Thanks, Warwick. Have you had any observations as the program manager for the upcoming elections around what kind of calls what kind of experience, in addition to our contribution to the patai this evening.
Elodie Fontaine: Thank you, Eddie. The only thing I would add is that it is really helpful for people who are elected to understand how council works and the key projects and issues for the region and the local areas they are standing for so that they can properly represent the people of Auckland.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Wonderful. One of the things that I do wonder is you often get people that are very, very passionate about becoming a candidate, about standing for the city, about doing all the campaigning. And I guess this question is twofold.
So I'm looking at Dale and I'm looking at Erin, and the first question I'll address to Dale is if I just want to bypass all of that stuff, I don't want to wait until the key dates. I want to get out there now and start campaigning and put up my hoardings or print my T-shirts. I want to tell the world that I want to stand for the greatest city in the world. Dale, can I walk out on the streets and do that tomorrow?
Dale Ofsoske: You certainly can, with some limitations. So you can start campaigning now, getting your tee shirts, getting your policy out of the public arena. What you can't do now is put your public signs up on council land. There's a time restriction of that for nine weeks under the current bylaws - nine weeks before election day, but certainly everything else, get your strategy, get your meeting people, getting your message out there in the community. You can start now.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Wonderful. Thank you, Dale. To our viewers and listeners both tonight and in the future, Erin is the custodian of our fabulous Orange Man, who is often associated with central elections. But also, we work quite closely, as you've heard our panelists tonight with the Electoral Commission.
Erin, what kinds of tools? What's the website? How do I go to make sure that my enrolment details are up to date? And if they're not up to date and I want to become a candidate, I actually kind of need to be registered. Erin, tell us a little bit about the mahi that you do.
Erin Temu: So our role at the Electoral Commission and the local elections is to ensure that the electoral roll information is up to date and provided to each council.
So we are not involved in the conduct or the administration of the elections. But we do provide the rolls to the councils so that they can send out the voting papers. So if your enrolment details are not up to date, maybe you've shifted house, you can go to our website, Vote.nz, and you can use your driver's license or your passport or your real me verified identity to actually enrol.
If you don't have those forms of ID, you can call our 0800 number 0800 367 656 to ask for an enrolment form to be sent to you. But you can also check to see if your details are up to date on our Vote.nz link. So that's our part in this.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Awesome. Thank you, Erin. I want to follow that up with two questions I'm going to aim them at Elodie tonight. So we would have heard that Vote NZ is indeed the website to make sure that your enrolment details are up to date and go on the commission website.
Elodie, tell us what the flagship website will be. And once you've given that, I'll ask you a follow up question about diversity of candidates. What's our website?
Elodie Fontaine: Our website is voteauckland.co.nz, the go to place for everything about this Auckland local election.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Fabulous. Thank you so much Elodie. Elodie, the second question that I have is everybody around the screen and all of our viewers know that Tamaki Makaurau is one of the most diverse cities in the world in terms of our efforts or outreach for the candidate phase.
Are we looking to do anything in the diversity space to encourage people from all the diverse ethnic groups and cultural groups to stand for election?
Elodie Fontaine: Thank you, Eddie. We are doing everything we can to encourage participation in this election. And so that means encouraging people from, as we said earlier, all walks of life, all backgrounds to stand because we really want everyone, every Aucklander to be represented.
And that means diversity of candidates. Most of our efforts are through our community partners, so we are relying on community groups that have genuine ties with those diverse communities to help us promote the messages, help people consider standing, help share information. So that is definitely a big part of our program this year.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Thank you, Elodie. Warwick, in one of the slides that you presented earlier tonight, you spoke there's a dedicated slide on the dynamic or the relationship which we know is not quite fixed between local boards and the Governing Body.
Warwick, I guess I just want to come back and talk about sort of the so called freedom flexibility. If I'm a local elected member, which on the slide was about 12 to 24 hours a week, it's a part-time role. How might I manage? Am I expected to prioritize my commitments as an elected member, say, if I got a standard nine to five job, how might that dynamic work?
Because a lot of our people that are wanting to come in and come into the space are quite new. They want to dabble a little bit of local government and this might be the way to do it. Warwick, have you any thoughts on how a person might manage different responsibilities in that space?
Warwick McNaughton: That's a very key question and a key issue in terms of people participating as candidates.
For someone who's on a fixed 40 hours a week job, it does actually become quite hard if you're standing for a local board. It's a bit easier than if you're standing for the Governing Body. Most local boards tend to schedule their meetings to the early evening hours, but often they will hold workshops during the daytime.
So someone who is wanting to stand as a candidate for a local board and they are in an employment situation ought to have a discussion with their employer about how flexible the employer can be and letting them attend workshops and so on.
My understanding of local boards, I'm not intimately involved in the running of local boards, but typically a local board would have one formal meeting per month, which they call a business meeting, and one or two workshops a month. Apart from that, there may be other ad hoc meetings arranged, but that would be the minimum.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Awesome. Thank you, Warwick. Wonder if they were still with us otherwise. This is also something that I understand that you might be. Well, you can answer for it. Say I've decided to become a candidate either in the local board space or as a ward counsellor or as a mayoral candidate. Do I have a limitless? Is there a cap, essentially to what I can spend to print myself some T shirts, to put my face over a billboard or something down or work?
Do I have a limit in terms of what I can spend on my campaign might come to you work to address some of the local board stuff and then come to you, Dale, for the mayoral candidates.
Warwick McNaughton: Certainly. Yes, there is. And that's set on the Local Electoral Act by Parliament. And the limits are really to protect candidates. Candidates don't want to be pressured by other candidates who they are competing with to spend the big dollars. This ought not to be a game for people who are rich. So my understanding is that that is why there are limitations on expenditure but daily life has additional comments.
Dale Ofsoske: Yes, it does depend on the area you're standing for. So if you're standing for a large ward, you can spend a higher amount of dollars. And that's really to reflect that, you've got to communicate with more electors. The mayoralty is unique. It is based on the number of electors and the population of Auckland and on the current statistics.
Not that most candidates spend this amount, but there is a limit of $680,000, for example, for the mayor to stand for the mayor of Auckland. So it's a sizable sum that when you're dealing with a considerable number of electors, about 1.2 million electors, you've got to get around that number.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Thank you, Dale. My next question is in the PowerPoint presentation, I saw that there was a nominal figure. There are $200 if I was signing up to be a candidate. My question is, is that $200 refundable, Dale?
Dale Ofsoske: Yes, it's refundable in most circumstances. So if you poll greater than 25 per cent of the lowest successful candidate and you return your electoral expenses return, then, yes, you get your deposit back. If you poll less than that 25 per cent, then that $200 is forfeited and is paid into the council to help fund the election.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Wonderful. Thank you very much for that, Dale. What I'm going to do now is just get Elodie to perhaps prepare, I want to throw across to you for some of our key dates going forward in terms of further sessions.
Also understand that we've got some dedicated sessions where we'll have a sign language interpreter. Accessibility is one of our key things. So, Elodie, I'll throw it to you in a moment in terms of what our remaining dates are. But Warwick, Dale, Erin, we're going to wrap this up momentarily. Are there any final concluding thoughts that you might like to share this evening before I throw across to Elodie?
Warwick McNaughton: Not for me, Eddie.
Erin Temu: I think what our communities are asking is around the Māori wards and district health wards. So any information that's available would be appreciated around those subjects.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC)Awesome. Thank you, Erin. Over to you now, Elodie.
Elodie Fontaine: Thank you, Eddie. So we have our next session online with a New Zealand sign language interpreter available at the session next week on the 5 May, starting at 6pm.
We will have another two online session on 5 and 14 July. And we also have a number of drop in sessions available in our facilities. So in a number of libraries across the region, at the mention time and date, you can just pop in and meet a staff member, get some information about running as a candidate, get your questions answered. All the details are available on our website as well.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Thank you, Elodie.
Warwick McNaughton: Having said before, I had nothing to add, I can set a little bit of information and answer to Erin's points.
In terms of district health boards, they're going out of existence so standing for a member of district health board is no longer an option.
In terms of Māori wards, Auckland Council will not have Māori wards for the 2022 elections. It has resolved that it supports Māori wards in principle provided it can increase the number of councillors now. Legislation to enable it to do that is pending very soon so we fully expect Auckland Council to have Māori wards for the 2025 elections.
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Awesome. Thank you very much Warwick. Well, folks, it looks like we've exhausted the Q and A function and we've had some pretty good discussion tonight around both key messaging for how to be a candidate and also some key information going forward in terms of websites, key dates and where you can access some extra systems or materials.
That's all from me for now, thank you to Erin, Warwick, Dale, Elodie and also our support crew Litia and Marina for all of the mahi and all of the hard work this evening.
I do want to plug our next online information session that Elodie has referred to 6pm to 7.30pm or a bit earlier if we finish everything that we have to cover on 5 May and again you can find all of that information one last plug Elodie, give us our website one more time before we sign off this evening.
Elodie Fontaine: VoteAuckland.co.nz
Eddie Tuiavii (MC): Thank you very much for tuning in tonight and we look forward to seeing you again very soon. Good evening indeed.
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