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A publication by Dr Oliver Hartwich, Executive Director of The New Zealand Initiative, on options to enable stronger local economies.

This guide has been designed to assist journalists, in their coverage of local government. With the local authority elections approaching, a better understanding of the sector will assist journalists in their coverage of the important issues facing voters.   

Local government is one of the most important and powerful influences on the health and wellbeing of communities and populations. The decisions local government makes affect the determinants of health. As such, local government has the ability to improve population health and reduce inequalities in New Zealand.

Published in 2011.

Published by NZIER, this report addresses the question ‘is local government fiscally responsible?’ In brief it concludes that it is not clear that rates revenue or expenditure are too high. The result according to Mr Micawber should be ‘happiness’.

This report was produced by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and Local Government New Zealand as part of the Core Cities Project. The research was undertaken in partnership with Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Wellington, Dunedin and Christchurch Councils. It is the first product of a staged project.

The purpose of this paper was to develop a Local Government Cost Index (LGCI) based on the cost structures of New Zealand’s local governments.  

For the 2010/11 financial year, funding was approved by the Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) National Council for a shared services programme of work.