Minister completes tour of 54 rural and provincial councils

Kieran McAnulty has met 54 rural and provincial councils in his new role as Minister of Emergency Management, Associate Minister of Local Government, and Associate Minister of Transport.

“It was really important to me that I got out within the first few months of becoming a Minister to meet all rural and provincial councils in person to introduce myself and hear what each council had to say,” Kieran McAnulty said.

“I’ve gained a lot of insight through these visits, both on my portfolios and wider Government work. I’ve taken all the feedback I’ve received on board, and passed it onto Minister of Local Government Hon. Nanaia Mahuta and the Prime Minister.

“The feedback from these visits has been incredibly valuable and led to a number of announcements including the formation of the Local Government Reform Ministerial Group, $44 million to retrain and attract council staff, and most recently a $10 million programme to support rural water suppliers upgrade their infrastructure to meet minimum water standards.

“The conversations with councils have also informed the pending Emergency Management bill, as local government’s connection to their communities gives a lot of strength to our emergency management system.

“This is the first time we’ve had a Minister with responsibility across Local Government, Transport, and Emergency Management. These are portfolios with a massive impact on rural and regional areas so I wanted to be sure that I was connecting with local councils while getting my head around the portfolios.

“There are big projects the Government is working hard on that will affect local councils. As a Minister I’m now part of those projects and I want to make sure I have a finger on the pulse of these districts so I can provide a rural and provincial perspective in future decisions.

“I’m looking forward to continuing to work alongside local councils and my parliamentary colleagues to make sure rural and regional perspectives are heard,” said Kieran McAnulty.