Cost breakdown gives idea if we are getting bang for buck
Or rather Councillors wasting time on trivial matters that are not in their jurisdiction or stewardship of care as elected representatives of Auckland Council!
As a result of the continued and controversial situation around the Regional Policy and Strategy Committee meeting last week in concern with the TPPA I have sent a Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act request (LGOIMA) into the costs of running a Council Committee of the Whole.
The purpose is not to establish democracy being expensive but rather Opportunity Costs presented when Councillors go around and waste Committee time on some of the most trivial stuff I have heard. That being what is of importance could have been deliberated or resolved on (via Resolution) or how much more time Councillors would get to spend with constituents rather than wasted tied up in a Committee.
Here are the questions I have sent to Council which are due to reply back in full by November 12:
Costs of Running a Committee of the Whole Meeting at Auckland Council
From: Ben Ross October 14, 2015
Dear Auckland Council,
Given the recent public interest on the cost of running an Auckland
Council Committee of the Whole or the full Governing Body I have
the following questions please:
- What is the cost per hour in running one of Auckland Council’s Committee of the Whole and the Governing Body? Cost to be broken down by the following please:
- Councillor and if applicable IMSB (Independent Maori Statutory Board) wages (worked at their annual salary divided by a standard 40 hour week)
- Average cost per hour of support staff such as democracy advisors to be at a Committee of the Whole
- Average cost of an Executive Manager being present such as the CEO for the Governing Body meetings, COO for Regional Policy and Strategy, CFO for Finance and Performance, and Chief of Strategy for the Auckland Development Committee (again worked at their annual salary divided by a standard 40 hour week)
- Stationery costs such as printed agendas and any support material needed for a Committee of the Whole you would reasonably expect (does not include Public Input section)
- Catering costs given tea, coffee and lunches are provided for the Committees of the Whole when in session
- Cost of physical infrastructure costs on a per hour basis when a Committee of the Whole is in session such as power, water and broadband bandwidth given the CoW’s are live streamed
- As an extra what is the cost of preparation for a Committee of the Whole or the Governing Body. This includes:
- Support staff putting agendas together
- Stationery costs not covered by question 1 above
- As a comparison exercise can figures for the 12/13, 13/14, 14/15 financial years (so actual costs rather than budgeted costs) be also produced to run the Committees of the Whole in Quarterly amounts please.
With Regards and Thanks