perceptions of local government

What is driving perceptions of local government?

Feb 2024

The Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier’s review of eight Councils in relation to concerns on closed door meetings was released at the end of the previous reporting period. We had expected to see an impact on perceptions of satisfaction with residents’ opportunities to have their say. However, figures are up from the October report.

On the whole, satisfaction levels have improved from October with the trend line over the year looking consistent in terms of overall perceptions.
Following a slow quarter where focus was on the election, online discussion over the summer quarter has been slower again and, as usual, presents a more negative view of resident sentiment. People are predominantly using it as a channel to express discontent. The squeaky wheels are useful as an early warning system for what might become a movement of discontent.

The most consistent discussion across the period came from Wellington with comment on financial management, certain actions from the Mayor and further friction over Māori representation.

The information presented here provides a holistic view of public perceptions by combining data from a nationally representative sample of New Zealanders with social media trend analysis.

If you would like to unpack this more, get in touch with Liz Morley