Three Waters Reform

Currently the majority of our three water services (drinking water, wastewater and stormwater) are publicly owned and delivered by our 67 local councils. We have 61 territorial authorities and seven unitary authorities providing services, along with major providers in Auckland and Wellington. Water service and delivery forms a large part of a council’s responsibilities, along with local planning, roading, waste collection etc. Ensuring accountability is kept at a local level means communities have a say in the water governance matters important to them. But this is about to change. Continue reading

Treaty-Based Local Governance

There are several mechanisms to encourage Māori to participate in local government that are specific to Māori citizens. These are set out in a range of Local Government related Acts, the Resource Management Act and Treaty settlement legislation. Continue reading


Democracy Action strongly opposes the decisions of District Health Boards to prioritise Maori and Pacific patients on elective surgery waiting lists. We believe priority should be based on clinical urgency and the time a patient has waited, not their race. When someone is bumped up on a list, someone else must be moved down. Continue reading

Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act

The Marine and Coastal Area Act has resulted in over 580 applications for the recognition of customary rights and customary marine title over 10 million hectares of our foreshore and seabed, out to 12 nautical miles (22 kilometres), including harbours, estuaries and river mouths, the airspace above and many of the minerals below. Continue reading