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Post-Election Training

We have provided post-election training for local authorities since 2007 and will be doing so again post local government elections.

The following are the courses that we offer:

Decision making in the political environment

A four-hour workshop for elected members that supports effective decision-making which is critical to any elected representative’s role. This workshop provides information and case studies on the processes that are used to make decisions and includes material on relevant legislation, tactics for decision making and the roles and responsibilities of various “players”. It also provides participants with a Word-based tool to measure and use “community intelligence” – elected member contacts with the community and how to integrate the knowledge they have with their community into decision making.

Facilitators – Steve McDowell and Vern Walsh

Conflicts of interest/code of conduct

This three-hour workshop provides insight to elected members on the principles relating to conflicts of interest and how to manage situations where members are conflicted.  The workshop will discuss financial and non-financial conflicts, processes to systematically assess potential conflicts of interest and scenarios to demonstrate types of conflicts of interest. Every local authority is required to adopt a code of conduct for the elected council (it is discretionary for Community Boards).  Understanding the requirements for inclusion in the code and the implications of the code to elected members is important in ensuring that members do not breach the code. Clarity on the process for investigating an alleged breach of the code is covered in this workshop along with the key contents of the code.

Facilitators – Steve McDowell and Vern Walsh

Standing Orders and Effective Meetings

A four-hour workshop to assist members understanding the process and rules of Council, Committee, sub-committee and Community Board meetings which is integral to good decision making. Having a good working knowledge of the Councils Standing Orders helps individual elected members contribute effectively to debates and decision making. This workshop identifies key Standing Orders and a range of practical examples on how Standing Orders can be applied in the meeting environment including establishing meeting protocols.


Facilitators – Steve McDowell and Vern Walsh

Chairing meetings effectively

This four-hour workshop identifies the pre / during / post meeting systems and processes for effective chairing of a meeting. We address what high-quality leadership of a meeting looks like and techniques that can be applied to ensure meetings lead to quality discussion and decision making. We explore the best practice elements to effective chairing including the working relationships needed, and dealing with “interesting” scenarios that crop up during meetings.

Facilitators – Steve McDowell and Vern Walsh

One-on-One Chairs Mentoring / Training

We provide one-on-one mentoring and training for a chairperson to increase their effectiveness. The process includes a pre-meeting preview of your agenda and likely processes/situations that will occur during your meeting, observation of you chairing a meeting and a post-meeting review and evaluation report. We are available over the subsequent months for continued support either by phone or email.

Facilitator – Vern Walsh

The role and functions of a District Licensing Committee

The Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 (SSAA) introduced significant new responsibilities for local government. This four-hour workshop will provide members of a District Licensing Committee and the staff that support the committee (Governance Advisors, Secretary of the District Licensing Committee and Inspector) an overview of the Act and the systems and processes that a Committee follows including the process in which meetings of the committee are undertaken.

Facilitator – Steve McDowell

Introduction to the Resource Management Act

Local government has responsibilities for regional/local planning under the Resource Management Act (RMA). This five-hour course provides an overview of the framework of the RMA at a national, regional and local level. Using examples, case studies and scenarios we will canvass a wide range of topics including the purpose and principles of the RMA, developing regional and district plans, the processes for resource consents, hearings and decision making, monitoring and enforcement.  This course will be invaluable for elected members wanting to become accredited planning commissioners who will be undertaking the Ministry for the Environment “Making Good Decisions” course.

Facilitator – Steve McDowell and guest facilitator

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