A commitment to connecting with all communities underpinned the swearing in of councillors and community board members at the inaugural meeting of the Western Bay of Plenty District Council.
John Scrimgeour gained unanimous support as Deputy Mayor.
Mayor Garry Webber is pleased with John’s appointment and says it is testament to his strong contribution over the past two terms as Te Puke-Maketu Ward councillor and as previous chair of the Long Term Plan and Annual Plan sub-committee.
“John’s experience outside of Council, an active community person who has a strong commercial background in the agricultural and horticultural sectors, will add value to our Council.”
Five new councillors, James Denyer, Anne Henry, Christina Humphreys, Murray Grainger and Monique Lints were also officially sworn in.
They join existing councillors Mark Dean, Margaret Murray-Benge, Don Thwaites, Grant Dally, Kevin Marsh, and John Scrimgeour along with Mayor Webber who has been re-elected for a second term.
Commenting on the make-up of the governance team, Garry says it offers a solid mix of new talent with a rich depth of business acumen, community focus and governance skills that will serve the District well.
“Having this experience around the table will be fundamental to building on Council’s strong financial performance and community focus.
“Our new committee structure reflects this, particularly the introduction of three Ward Forums that will see a greater focus on engaging with community groups and organisations on the Katikati-Waihi Beach Ward, Kaimai Ward and Maketu-Te Puke Ward.
“Elected members don’t have a monopoly on leadership – we need to connect and work productively with other community leaders in all walks of life, especially at a local level.
“To make good decisions we need to hear the diversity of views in the community and the new Ward Forums are fundamental to this.”
In addition to the Ward Forums, Council resolved to establish the following sub-committees and chairpersons at the inaugural meeting:
• Annual Plan and Long Term Plan Committee – Deputy Mayor John Scrimgeour (chairperson)
• Audit and Risk Committee – Mayor Garry Webber (chairperson)
• Policy Committee – Mayor Garry Webber (chairperson)
• District Plan Committee – Mayor Garry Webber (chairperson)
• Regulatory Hearings Committee – Deputy Mayor John Scrimgeour (chairperson)
• Performance and Monitoring Committee – Don Thwaites (chairperson)
• Katikati-Waihi Beach Ward – James Denyer (chairperson)
• Kaimai Ward – Mark Dean (chairperson)
• Maketu-Te Puke Ward – Kevin Marsh (chairperson)