Entry received from: Tasman District Council
Category: The Minister of Local Government’s Award for Excellence in Council-Community Relations
As part of the planning for the 2022 triennial elections and a new Council, a key focus for Tasman District Council was ensuring that our residents were informed about the elections, about Tasman District Council and what it does, about candidates and encouraged as well as enabled to vote. We were aware of the challenges facing the sector with voter turnout and with the changing environment and attitudes towards central and local government.
We developed a 'Stand for Tasman' campaign and worked on initiatives to support the campaign. These included the in-house production of videos of candidates as well as of a previous Mayor for the public to access which received thousands of hits and increased public awareness of Council, the 2022 elections and the candidates. The initiative to produce videos of candidates reading their candidate profiles was unique to Tasman District Council.
In terms of success, we had a voter turnout of 48.89 per cent which was well above the national average of 40 per cent and were third in the country for voter turnout amongst the provincial councils. We produced a fresh and engaging Pre-election Report and had 45 candidates stand (some for more than one position so 48 nominations in all), 43 of whom participated in the preparation of candidate videos. All the positions on Council and the community boards were filled. But this has only been a part of our journey to improve our relationship with our communities which we will continue to prioritise.
Thank you to our category sponsor