Local Democracy and the Consideration of Community Views: Obligation and Observance
WE THE PEOPLE(S): PARTICIPATION IN GOVERNANCE, p. 284, Claire Charters, Dean R. Knight, eds., Victoria University Press, Wellington, 2011
39 Pages Posted: 11 Mar 2012 Last revised: 5 Apr 2015
Date Written: October 6, 2011
This chapter addresses the framework for participation in local democracy in New Zealand. In particular, the chapter looks closely at reforms of local government legislation that sought to capture and mandate the participation of citizens in local decision-making, including the adoption of a provision that requires local authorities to take account of community views whenever they make any decision. The chapter also looks at the role of the judiciary in supervising compliance with the novel legislative regime. Concerns are raised about juridification, with the courts strictly enforcing the obligation to take into account community views. This chapter questions whether this was the legislative intent and points to signals in the legislation that a degree of political judgement and some latitude are required when assessing when and how community views will be factored into decisionmaking.
Keywords: local democracy, administrative law, decision-making
JEL Classification: K10
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation