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Published: 2012-07-26 00:00:00

Waikato Regional Council has today appointed its representatives to a new body which will meet to discuss matters relating to public transport in Hamilton city.

In May the council backed a decision to disband the regional public transport committee and make public transport governance matters the responsibility of the regional transport committee, chaired by Waikato regional councillor Norm Barker.

For Hamilton, which accounts for about 90 per cent of the region’s public transport network, the decision was made to establish a new body comprising two elected members each from the regional council and city council, and a representative from both the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) and disability sector.

Councillors Paula Southgate and Lois Livingston were today appointed to represent Waikato Regional Council on the new body. Cr Jane Hennebry has been selected as an alternate should one of the appointed members be absent.

At its meeting on Thursday 5 July, Hamilton City Council formally appointed councillors John Gower and Margaret Forsyth to the entity, with Angela O’Leary as the alternate.

The new body’s objective is to oversee the implementation and monitoring of the Regional Public Transport Plan as it affects Hamilton city. It will meet for the first time next month and at that time will decide on the frequency of meetings and other matters pertinent to its functioning.

Also during today’s council meeting, amended terms of reference for the regional transport committee were supported.

The amendments reflect the committee’s new public transport governance role and relate to overseeing the development, implementation and monitoring of the Regional Public Transport Plan.

The council previously agreed that public transport related matters for the satellite/rural councils will be discussed at separate sessions of the regional transport committee to be convened twice a year.

Formal arrangements, including service level agreements, are also being established between the regional council and territorial authorities.

A regional public transport advisory group will also be convened as required to discuss public transport matters of regional significance and the rollout of national projects and initiatives across the Waikato. The group will comprise staff from the regional council, territorial authorities and NZTA, with the regional transport committee’s access and mobility representative.