Welcome to our September Update. This month we highlight the following issues:
- making submissions on the review of the Plant Variety Act;
- the upcoming local body elections;
- another example of how our democracy is being undermined - the Hamilton City Council;
- the Waitangi Tribunal's recently released report on our freshwater and geothermal resources.
No doubt you will be well aware it is local government election time again. It can all seem a bit complicated and hard to figure out who to vote for. Therefore, we strongly urge everyone to take every opportunity to question the candidates on the issues you are concerned about. To help you make an informed choice, one of our members has put together a list of questions which you may like to ask the candidates – please see ‘Vote for me! Local body elections 2019' further on in this newsletter. Once you have identified candidates you can support, maybe you could offer your help as they campaign.
Last month’s Democracy Action update featured the item ‘The PVR regime is undergoing a review, proposing a new decision-making process’, regarding the Government’s review of the Plant Varieties Act 1987. It was suggested you make a submission on proposals of concern. Please note that time is fast running out to have your say – 5pm on Monday 9th September is the deadline. Please see following article and our August newsletter for details.
Another organisation seeking feedback from the general public is Local Government NZ. They have released a discussion paper ‘Reinvigorating Democracy: The case for localising power and decision making to councils and communities’. We have been invited to read this paper, critique their ideas, come up with our own, and start a wider debate about where decisions on important matters should be made in New Zealand. Feedback is due by 15 December 2019. See the ‘Reinvigorating Democracy’ item in the August Update for details.
You may have noticed the recent release of stage 2 of the Waitangi Tribunal's inquiry into our freshwater and geothermal resources, which contains a number of highly controversial recommendations. While we have yet to read the 600 page document, our newsletter contains links to those who have offered an overview of the report. Please see 'Waitangi Tribunal releases report on freshwater and geothermal resources'
There are a couple of submissions currently in circulation you may be interested in signing. They are:
Please also share with your contacts.
Upcoming events which may be of interest:
- Democracy Action working group meeting, Monday 9th September. All welcome. Please email for details: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Gathering to commemorate Governor Hobson, Saturday 14th September, Grafton, Auckland. Please see article 'Event to commemorate Governor Hobson' for details.
You are welcome to share the information in this newsletter with your friends, family and other contacts. Also, please direct to our website anyone who may be interested in the issues we cover and would like to be added to our mailing list. See: https://www.democracyaction.org.nz/aboutThank you for your continued interest and support. If you have any suggestions you would like to offer, or if you need further information or help, please do not hesitate to contact us at email@example.com