“I want to put the people and communities of Auckland front and centre of our region. That means decisions and responsibilities to involve those friends, family and neighbours who are best placed to understand their communities.
“I want to do this because I believe it is the most effective and efficient form of governance.
“The real strength of democracy has been lost under the first term of Council as the opportunity to engage the 1.5 million experts on our region has been subordinate to centralised control.
“We have amazing opportunities and we must learn how to use them. We must reduce Council spending, be completely transparent and improve accountability.
“By engaging the many groups and constituents across Auckland and delegating responsibility to them, I believe we can make better decisions, faster decisions and cheaper decisions.
“So I’m going to be taking some decisions away from Council and passing them to local boards. A greater role for local boards means we can cut back Council without cutting services. We can reduce spending, save money and eliminate the culture of excess which has built up over the past six years.
“With money saved, I’m going increase funding to local boards so they can meet the needs of their communities.
“Auckland’s biggest challenge is managing growth and I’m going to tackle it with a vastly different approach to that seen so far. I’m going to prioritise and phase growth in centres and suburbs with infrastructure capacity, not sprawl it across the city with little thought and even less imagination.
“I’m going to focus much of this growth on additional CBD’s in South Auckland and the North Shore where a new city, a modern city, will develop over the next two decades. This new city will become a place where people want to live, work and socialise. It will have the best transport, the newest services, the finest architecture.
“And we’ll be able to afford it by building to scale and leveraging land value increases, instead of tearing up our unique character neighborhoods and retrofitting them with services they were never designed to accommodate.
“I’m so excited about the years ahead, I hope you are too,” said Palino.