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HBLASS Governance

HBLASS collaboration is focused on core services to ratepayers and within council operations. The opportunities for collaboration to improve service and value mostly emerge from councils’ staff and the combined leadership teams from all councils. All councils’ leadership teams work together to identify, resource and support HBLASS collaborative work.

A CE Forum meets regularly to consider strategic initiatives for collaboration and provide guidance and support for the HBLASS operational initiatives. The HBLASS CE Forum is made up of the Chief Executives of all five councils and an independent chair:

Toni Goodlass

HBLASS Programme Manager

HBLASS Collaborative Leadership

The CEs have established a workshop approach for second tier leaders to take ownership in developing an ongoing work programme for HBLASS Collaboration. The Terms of Reference for the group are set out below.

Terms of Reference


The purpose of the Collaborative HBLASS Leadership Group is to identify, resource, support and communicate the development and implementation of collaborative initiatives that improve service and value across Hawke’s Bay.

Guiding Principles

The following Guiding Principles outline the way the 5 Hawke’s Bay councils work together:

Democratic accountability and governance

While thinking and planning regionally, all councils maintain their authority to implement a local solution relevant to the people living in each Territorial Authority; within the agreed common goals. To enhance regional cohesion it is necessary to consider the diverse communities, industries and businesses, both urban and rural, and significant Maori, Pacifica and Asian communities; this approach is intended to build and sustain regional harmony and productivity.

Collaboration First

Counterparts from each council get to know each other, share plans, practices and issues. They also work towards a bigger picture shared vision with common goals through open and honest conversation. Customer value, using the diverse knowledge and experience, sharing information, learning and creative thinking are valued in working groups. All initiatives: plans, reviews, audits, specifications, business cases, projects and business cases include a conversation about possible collaboration with all counterparts before starting a new initiative.

Joint Procurement

Councils collectively buy goods and service amounting to tens of millions each year. Contracts, licenses, agreements and purchase orders present opportunities for collaboration and joint procurement within Hawkes’ Bay and with other LASS organisations leading to improved service and reduce costs.

Alignment and Change

While working towards an overall regional direction, shared goals and a roadmap for improved service and value, it may take years for all councils to be aligned on the roadmap for implementation at the individual council level (budgets, pre-existing contracts, legacy solutions etc). Be prepared to let go of predetermined, individual council solutions over time to achieve a common goal.

Work to improve customer service and value through streamlined, cost-effective processes, best business practices, leading change and innovation. Collaborative business and service reviews, processes and policy improve consistency and reliability in delivery of services creating capacity, critical mass of expertise, opportunities for development, reduced costs, improved efficiency, innovation and/or increased value. All Councils are capable of and subject to benchmarking and comparison with all councils in New Zealand.


Initiatives are adequately resourced and investments in people, goods and services provide value and learning. Full disclosure and honesty is the norm.
Full justification and business case with options, impact and risk assessment are required for all proposed budget, capital and structural solutions identified.


Explore and develop opportunities between Hawke’s Bay councils and with other Councils or organisations to improve service and value.


  1. All councils’ Leadership Team members (2nd Tier Managers) are invited to participate in regular HBLASS Collaboration workshops (at least quarterly) to identify opportunities, monitor progress, share learning, grow a more collaborative culture and lead the change inherent in initiatives.
  2. The HBLASS Leadership Group may invite a professional collaborator to accelerate the results.
  3. The HBLASS Leadership Group builds agreements, guiding principles, ways of dealing with differences and an effective and efficient process for this work.
  4. The HBLASS Leadership Group reports to and is accountable to the CE Forum. They also consult, inform and communicate in their own council.


  1. The HBLASS Leadership Group shall meet at least every 3 months initially.
  2. The HBLASS Leadership Group shall at all times create shared and priority goals for improved service and value across Hawke’s Bay through a consensus process.
  3. Minutes of the HBLASS Leadership Group’s agreements shall be published and shared with the CE Forum and all councils’ leadership teams.
  4.  All councils’ staff communication as well as ratepayer communications will be generated at least quarterly by the HBLASS Leadership Group.

Service and Value Initiatives

  1. The HBLASS Leadership Group shall select/appoint a senior leader to act as the champion/sponsor for each initiative and provide appropriate resources from each council to form an effective working team.
  2. The HBLASS Leadership Group shall define the communication, decision-making, accountabilities and reporting for each initiative.
  3. The HBLASS Leadership Group shall assist the CE Forum by reviewing and providing commentary and advice on strategic projects for shared services.
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