Does the system work to inform discussion?

Asset management, consultation, and accountability.

Overall, we believe the examples that we saw in 2021 indicate that the system has potential to support genuine open consultation.

We have pointed to some of the interesting examples that resonated with us. There are many other local authorities that did a good job of engaging with their communities.

However, our audits lead us to ask:

  • Are consultation documents the best way to generate interest, understanding, and feedback?
  • Is the importance of infrastructure consistently reflected in consultation?
  • Are trade-offs clear?
  • Are the implications of decisions drawn out – particularly in terms of real-world changes in the way local people will experience services?
  • Are links between big strategic issues (such as climate change or economic development) and investment in specific projects (such as upgrading a particular plant or expanding an individual community centre) well made?