A near-record number of entries have been submitted into the 2021 LGFA Taituarā Excellence Awards®.

Chief Advisor, Raymond Horan, reports that there have been 43 Excellence Award entries across the seven categories, just shy of the record 45 received last year.

“There’s a diverse range of projects across the full range of local authority services, from a partnership to deliver better housing outcomes in the local area, to a redesign of property information systems,” said Raymond.

There is a COVID-19 recovery and response theme in this year’s entries, especially in the steps local authorities have taken to unlock efficiency gains and find cost savings in response to budget constraints.

As always, the competition for the Minister for Local Government’s Award for Excellence in Council-Community Relations will be particularly intense with 11 entries. This is one of the Awards that will be presented by the Minister for Local Government, Hon Nanaia Mahuta at the upcoming Taituarā Gala Dinner on 6 May 2021.

Taituarā was also extremely pleased to see record levels of entry into the BERL Award for Collaborative Government Action and the Buddle Findlay Award for Bicultural Leadership with nine entries in each.

“One of the key messages in our last three Briefings to the Incoming Ministers has been that challenges of life in the 21st century require central and local government to think and act collaboratively. This year’s nine entries cover housing, employment, climate change and some change to land information processes, with a strong COVID-19 response underpinning,” said Raymond.

“Likewise, the sector is increasingly recognising that working in partnership with Māori is good local governance. The fact last year’s winner in this category (Te Arawa Catfish Killas) went on to claim the Supreme Award seems to have stimulated further interest in this category. We’ve also noted that the entries this year cover a wide spectrum of local governance, not only the environmental management functions where many of the first partnerships originated.”

This year Taituarā introduced a new category, recognising those local authorities that have demonstrated leadership in promoting great outcomes for the environment. Four councils have submitted entries in the GHD Award for Environmental Leadership.

These awards and the Dinner would not be possible without our eight excellent sponsors: LGFA, BERL, Buddle Findlay, Capability Group, Datacom, the Department of Internal Affairs, GHD, and Martin Jenkins. Taituarā thanks them for their support for excellence in the sector.

The winners of these awards, including the LGFA Supreme Award Winner, which will be selected from amongst the seven category winners, will be announced at the Taituarā Gala Dinner in Wellington on 6 May 2021 along with Taituarā’s Overseas Manager Exchanges (sponsored by Civic Financial Services, Marsh and AskYourTeam), the Emerging Leader of the Year Award, and the winners of the New Zealand leg of the JLT/Marsh Australasian Management Challenge.

If you would like to be part of this celebration of excellence in local government management, register for the Gala dinner. 

For further information about the contents of this story please email Ann Thomson, or ring her on 027 2943852.

The following are the entries in the 2021 Excellence Awards:

Auckland Council – Compost Collective

Auckland Council – Future Fit

Auckland Council – Internal Cost Savings in Response to Covid-19

Bay of Plenty Regional Council – Our Organisation’s Journey to Sustainability

Central Hawkes Bay District Council - Jobs for Central Hawke’s Bay

Environment Canterbury – The Bromley Odour Pilot

Environment Canterbury – Po Mātai Kō

Far North District Council – Nothing But Net

Gisborne District Council – Tairāwhiti Employment Programme

Greater Wellington – Greater Wellington’s Low Carbon Acceleration Fund

Hamilton City Council – Flexible by Choice

Hamilton City Council – FPP or STV – what's your choice?

Hamilton City Council – Hamilton City Councils Nature in the City Strategy

Hamilton City Council – Weaving Together the Peacocke Community

Hastings District Council – Hasting’s District Councils Place Based Housing Solution

Horowhenua District Council – Manawatu River Loop Regeneration Project

Kaipara District Council – Kaipara Kai

Kaipara District Council – Mana Enhancing Agreement with Te Roroa

Napier City Council – Covid-19 Response and Recovery Plan

New Plymouth – NP Partners

New Plymouth District Council – Te Hono: New Plymouth Airport Terminal Project

Otago Regional Council – Opening the Door to a More Agile Future

Panuku Development Auckland – Te Ara Awataha

Panuku Development Auckland - Te Whakaoratanga i te Puhinui

Porirua City Council – Love Local Initiative

Porirua City Council – Pacific Island Language Week

Selwyn District Council – A World Class Customer Experience Transformation Project

Selwyn District Council – SDC Community Engagement on the Proposed District Plan: Because it Matters

Tauranga City Council - Trailrider

Tauranga City Council – Vital Update

Tauranga City Council and LINZ – Notice of Change (NOC) Project

Waikato District Council – Reshape Waikato

Waikato Regional Council – Transfer of functions S33 RMA

Waipa District Council – Premier Parks Campaign

Waipā District Council – Te Ara Wai Journeys

Waipā District Council – Waipā District’s Online Property search

Waipā District: Waipā leadership development programme - setting staff up to succeed

Wairoa District – Engage and Educate the Public About Levels of Service

Wairoa District – Freedom Camping Initiative

Wairoa District - Whakamanhia Ā Te Wairoa

Western Bay of Plenty District Council – Transfer of Ownership of Panepane Purakau

Whakatāne District Council – Kia Kaha Whakatāne

Whangārei District Council – Whangārei District Council – Organisation Strategy