Incoming Invercargill Mayor announces deputy, new committee structure

Invercargill’s new Mayor Nobby Clark has named his deputy, and detailed a new governance structure set for introduction at Invercargill City Council.

Mayor Clark successfully secured the Mayoral seat at the October 8 local body election and will be formally sworn into the role on 20 October, along with his new Council.

In preparation, Clark has named incoming Councillor Tom Campbell to become deputy mayor.

“Tom comes to Council with an extensive resume in corporate and directorship roles, he is known in the community for his management role at the local aluminium smelter and his work with Southland Regional Development Strategy (SoRDS),” he said.

“He comes with a no-nonsense reputation and has a drive to restore confidence and pride in the city.”

Clark was also set to amend the existing committee structure, in turn shifting decision-making power back to full council.

The existing Governance structure was introduced in May 2020.

“A lot of Council decision-making had been delegated to committees and with a new Mayor and Councillors it’s now time to take those decision-making powers back in order to best represent ratepayers,” Clark said.

“This new structure is designed to encourage more debate at Council meetings and to ensure key areas of interest to the community are best served.”

This would set a new foundation for council activities, identified streams of work and set measured targets for progress, he said.

As part of the new structure four new committees will be formed; Risk and Assurance, Finance and Projects, Community Wellbeing and Infrastructure, which will be chaired by
independent consultant Bruce Robertson, Cr Grant Dermody, Cr Darren Ludlow and Cr Ian Pottinger, respectively.

Clark has also identified the importance of a single focus role “to ensure the delivery of a new-build museum within three years”.

“In light of that importance, I have appointed Councillor Nigel Skelt, the highest polling candidate, who would normally be considered for other governance leadership, to this critical role.

“It is acknowledgment of his abilities around the rebuild of the stadium after its collapse and his drive to resolve the Anderson House upgrade, which is now completed.”

In addition, Clark would also introduce a range of other portfolios for Councillors.

Portfolios are commonly used on Councils and aim to enable more effective sector engagement between the Council and the community.

The additional portfolios will be Housing, Southland Health, Leisure and Recreation, Youth Education and Employment, and Regional Development.

“These portfolios will be allocated to Councillors who will have a greater focus on these important areas,” he said.

Mana whenua roles would be retained, but would not sit on full council, Clark said.

“I have to also acknowledge our outgoing councillors Becs Amundsen, Marcus Lush, Lindsay Abbott and Graham Lewis. Their combined experience and perspective was an important part of our work around the table and I wish them all the best in the future.”