Local Government Reform is critical to Perth's future

You are invited to join us to explore the issue of local government reform, the difference between amalgamation and integration and the impact for the future of the Perth region.

You will hear from special guests Rodney Hide, QSO former New Zealand Minister for Local Government with key responsibility for Auckland’s reform to ‘super city’; Mark Ford and Rob Fisher, key personnel involved in the Auckland Transition Agency; and Jude Munro, former CEO of the City of Brisbane. Their accounts of the reform experiences from elsewhere will provide valuable insights that can help Perth develop the best model for the long term and the transition arrangements to a new model.

Meet our speakers and panellists

Rodney Hide, QSO

Rodney Hide is New Zealand’s leading proponent of accountability and transparency in government. He is also Parliament’s most highly qualified environmentalist. He entered Parliament in 1996 as an ACT list MP and became the Leader of ACT in 2004.

Rodney has Masters Degrees in Economics (from Montana State University) and Resource Management (from Canterbury/Lincoln Universities). He is widely acknowledged as one of the country's most effective politicians, Rodney Hide is a tireless promoter of ACT’s vision of a free and prosperous New Zealand where the role of government is limited to protecting the freedoms of its citizens.

A classical liberal from a hard-working background, Rodney made his name in Parliament as a defender of ordinary Kiwis’ rights and freedoms.

The founding chairman of ACT Party predecessor the Association of Consumers and Taxpayers, and founding president of ACT when it was established in 1994, Rodney has been instrumental in the establishment and evolution of ACT as New Zealand’s liberal party.

Rodney was Minister for Local Government (2008-2011), Regulatory Reform (2008-2011) and Associate Minister of Education (2010-2011).

Mark Ford, CNZM, BA

Mark Ford is the Chief Executive of Watercare Services Limited. He held the role from 1994 to 2009 and was reappointed following the company’s expansion to include retail operations.

He is an experienced chief executive, director and chairman who has worked in the water, forestry, transport and petroleum industries. From July 2009 until his recent reappointment to Watercare he was Executive Chairman of the Auckland Transition Agency, the government agency responsible for planning and managing the transition to Auckland’s new governance arrangements.

Mark also served as Chairman of Auckland Transport from 2010 until September 2012. He is Independent Chair of the Christchurch Client Governance Group for the Infrastructure Rebuild and also a member of the Better Public Services Advisory Group. Since the end of the financial year, Mark has been appointed Chairman of Solid Energy Limited.

Rob Fisher, ONZM, LLB, Dip TP

Rob Fisher is a barrister who has specialised in resource management, public law and local government law. As a litigator, he appeared frequently before the Environment Court, the High Court and the Court of Appeal.

In a 40-year legal career, he has provided strategic advice and expertise to both private and public bodies, especially in the consenting of large infrastructure projects. Rob is currently the General Counsel at Watercare Services Limited, commencing February 2011. He holds responsibility for statutory and environmental planning resource consents and policy. He was the Legal Advisor to the Auckland Transition Agency (ATA) for the 18 months ending 1 November 2010, when the new integrated Auckland Council came into being.

Rob was previously a partner at Simpson Grierson from 1974, and Chairman from 1999 until retiring from the practice to take up the position at the ATA in July 2009.

Jude Munro

Jude Munro is a former CEO of 4 Local Councils in 3 Australian States, including Brisbane City Council where she was CEO for 10 years up until 2010.

She is passionate about cities and was awarded an Order of Australia in 2010 for her work in local government.

She was appointed to the COAG Taskforce on strategic planning of cities. She is a member of the Independent Panel to Review Local Government in NSW. She was the chair of the Panel to review Councils in southern Tasmania in 2011.

She is a former Queensland President of the Institute of Public Administration of Australia and is a member of Chief Executive Women. She is a non executive director and runs her own consultancy business.

Acknowledgement of Country

The Committee For Perth acknowledges the traditional custodians throughout Western Australia and their continuing connection to the land, waters and community. We pay our respects to all members of the Aboriginal communities and their cultures; and to Elders both past and present.