We have been working to prepare for Local Advisory Committees (LACs) being established by 2021 as per our commitment in the 2017–2021 Statement of Intent. The establishment of LACs will be key to Fire and Emergency maintaining a strong local community presence throughout the country.

Following two pilots in the Greater Auckland region and Mid-South Canterbury in 2016/17, we ran a successful trial LAC in Hawke’s Bay in early 2018. The trial confirmed that LACs will enable us to better connect with, and broaden our existing reach into communities, to facilitate risk and need conversations to inform local planning. You can download and read the Summary of Key Learnings and Considerations

We will use the key learnings from the trial to inform the final design and implementation of LACs nationally. 

We can begin to establish LACs once LAC boundaries have been set. Earlier this year, the Board released a public consultation document inviting submissions on a proposal to establish the boundaries for LACs. The discussion document proposed that LAC boundaries match existing Civil Defence Emergency Management Group (CDEMG) boundaries. There are currently 16 CDEMGs in New Zealand. Twenty-four submissions were received during the consultation period and the Board is considering the feedback received through those submissions prior to making decisions about LAC boundaries.

Next steps

The LAC trial confirmed that LACs will require careful set up and will take time to establish. Having the right capability and support in place within Fire and Emergency to support LACs with dedicated resources at both a national and local level will be critical to their success.

Given the significant amount of work and change currently underway within Fire and Emergency to integrate our organisation, the Board has agreed that final recommendations on LAC boundaries and potential options for implementation will be considered in the first quarter of 2019.

This timing will allow recommendations and potential options to be considered alongside other work underway in the organisation. In particular, the development and implementation of the proposed new Operating Model, which will consider the skills and capability required to support LACs, and the relationship between proposed LAC boundaries and proposed operational boundaries.

For more information, visit the Local Advisory Committees page on the Portal.

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