With elections coming up in October, three local authority representatives give us a look at their work. Christchurch City Council pushes stage 1 of the roading management plan forward with greater emphasis on traffic reduction management. It looks like the permanent community centre building will start in late October, with a completion date in June 2020, nearly 10 years since the September 4 quake, when the wall fell out in the old community centre, making the building unusable. We take a look at the Smith family, who ran a printing factory in Springfield Rd, had the first telephone in Christchurch and took an active part in the life of the city, in particular Methodist church activities and votes for women. Two new columns start this issue: one on gardening and another on being a grandfather. Click on the image to the right to download.
St Albans News asked several current councillors and community board members about workloads and roles. An article was created, based largely on replies from three councillors or community board members who responded, for the August/September St Albans News but for space reasons some details were omitted. Nominations for local authority candidates close on August 16. This is how Cr Pauline Cotter replied by email. These notes are the raw material from which the article draws.
I will try to give you an outline of the hours of work from my perspective, although it varies from Councillor to councillor of course.
I am a City Councillor.
Council meetings per month. =. 3 full days. Council meetings
1 half day ITE committee meeting ( Chair)
1 Parking sub committee meeting..1 hour ( Chair)
Land drainage working group meeting every 2 months = 4 hours per meeting (CHAIR)
Canterbury joint waste committee meeting. 3 per year = 4 hours
Canterbury agency for Energy Trust. Every 2 months @ 2hours (Chair)
Canterbury Museum Trust Board 1 per month = 4 hours
CHristchurch West Melton Zone Committee. 1 per month = 4 hours
Christchurch Urban contaminants working group. 1 per month = 3 hours
Climate Change sub committee 1 hour per fortnight
Council briefing Every Tuesday = 7 hours
ITE seminars and workshops = 4 hours / month
Community Board meetings 2 per month = 4 hours each
Community Board Seminars 2 per month = 2 hours each
The Mayor sets the committees and selects Chairs, but in consultation with the councillors.
Reading time for Council meetings @ 8 hours per meeting, can be more, but it depends what is on the agenda and how many attachments. Agendas can be 400 pages or more at times.
Reading time for ITE @ 8 hours, can be more.
Reading time for other meetings varies but at least 2 hours.
E mails = @ 3 hours per day
Phone calls vary, but an hour or so per day.
Residents association 3 per month. = @ 2 hours each
Meetings with staff outside of official meetings = @ 4hours per week
Meetings with constituents. = @ 2 hours per week
Openings, launches, events etc. @ one or 2 per week.
NOTE: this is estimation only as its hard to quantify on an average basis as each week is so different. However I think I am working at least 60 hours per week.
I absolutely recommend serving on a community board before standing for council. It’s a very good training ground for Local government processes. Biggest challenge is how slowly the wheels turn, takes ages to get things done, but that’s democracy.
Consultation Drop in sessions can be challenging when residents are opposed.
Its hard to fit family life in if you are a city councillor.The hours are very random, sometimes I can work 7.30am – 8.30pm straight through, other days may be more work at home, others start later finish earlier… very random, absolutely no pattern really, and a call on your weekend time as well, and evenings.
St Albans News thanks Pauline Cotter for taking the time to respond as this gives potential candidates and the rest of Christchurch a better idea of what she does and the time commitment involved.
By Cr Pauline Cotter, Innes Ward
By now you should have seen the information booklet on options, stages and priorities for the Northern Corrider downstream effects, providing you with the 4 drop in sessions to be held in St Albans March 20, 25, 26 and April 4, or visit ccc.govt.nz/have your say if you cant make any of these. Your feedback is valuable and important.
This project is the most long standing and controversial issue St Albans has ever had imposed on it, and emotion is understandably running high because this is something the community has strongly resisted for decades. Please make you views known; what you strongly oppose, what you support, any other ideas you have.
As the City Councillor for Innes I am aware of conversations in the community reflecting strong support for options like park and ride/cycle facilities, High occupancy vehicle lanes, traffic calming for vulnerable residential streets, slow zones, safety measures for pedestrian and cyclists, and protection for local businesses . These are all align with the Governments’ Global Policy Statement for Transport, will also contribute positively to our Climate change goals , and should be considered in that context.
I am aware too of concerns that traffic diversion away from Edgeware Village could have adverse effects on businesses, concerns around any proposed parking losses, effects on other local business areas, noise, emmissions, rat running.
I am also hearing that some residents would like to see nothing, or minimum treatment, with the idea that if its hard for the cars to get through then people will be more inclined to use Public Transport, park and ride or other alternatives.
So please continue to engage on this complex issue by making a submission by 15th April. There will be an opportunity for you to speak to a combined meeting of the Papanui /Innes and Linwood/Central/Heathcote Community Boards.
The final decision will be made by the full Council later in the year.
(Editor’s note: This article was inadvertently left out of a multi-part piece on the roads consultation in the April/May edition of St Albans News. We apologise to Cr Cotter for the omission)
At the February 14 Christchurch City Council Meeting councillors had the opportunity to ask questions about the downstream effects management plan (DEMP) dealing with traffic coming off the motorway in 2020.
This transcript with timestamps was prepared by Mark Wilson and should be used as a guide to the video recording on the city council website. http://councillive.ccc.govt.nz/video/8236
The answers were provided by independent traffic engineer Dr Shayne Turner or Richard Osbourne who is employed by the city council and works alongside Dr Turner. Councillors’ questions and comments are in bold. Some answers have been abbreviated and/or interpreted by Mark Wilson.