24 Aug 2013

Auckland councillors vote to keep advisory panels

5:00 pm on 24 August 2013

Auckland councillors have recommended the city's ethnic and Pacific advisory panels should be retained after the local body elections.

They also suggested the incoming mayor and council should give the panels more say in policy and greater accountability to their communities.

A review into the panels' future after October's election says members are frustrated council hasn't taken the advice they were appointed to give.

Mayor Len Brown says it's clear there needs to be change.

He says the first and most obvious thing that needs to happen is establishing a very clear link between the work of the advisory panels and the governing body.

Councillor Christine Fletcher says if the views of Pacific and ethnic communities are marginalised, Auckland won't get the change it needs.

She says the next mayor needs to bring the panels closer to key council committees.

Councillors recommended the next mayor meet the Pacific and ethnic advisory panel members immediately after the October elections to talk about changes.