Caution urged on Waikato council amalgamation proposal

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The Public Service Association is calling for a cautious approach and extensive consultation before any possible amalgamation of Waikato’s local government arrangements. This follows the Property Council’s Waikato branch launching a petition for amalgamation.

The PSA represents staff working at all seven councils within the Property Council’s proposal.

Glenn Barclay, PSA Acting National Secretary, said “Any proposal for local government amalgamation must be supported by evidence and demonstrate clear advantages over the status quo.”

“Amalgamations are costly and disruptive for residents and council staff, so the reasoning behind them has to be solid.

“Community engagement must be genuine and run throughout the entire proposal process.
 
“Democratic ownership and control of public services should be a cornerstone of any proposal.

“Any proposal must ensure the ability of council workers to maintain quality services, and to enjoy decent work.

“Local government exists to serve the needs of local communities, and amalgamation proposals must safeguard those needs,” said Glenn Barclay.