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Have your say at meetings

Every Council meeting has time allocated for people to speak to the Council, either as part of a public forum or a deputation. People can also speak in support of a written submission made about a particular Council consultation.

Please note that anything you say, including personal information such as your name, will be available to the public and media as part of the decision-making process.

There are two ways you can have your say at a council meeting, in a public forum or in a deputation:

Public forums

Public forums let members of the public bring matters to the attention of the Council. The matters being raised are not on the agenda of the meeting at which the presentation is being made. 

If the matter that you have spoken about is not on the agenda then no resolution can be made on your presentation, but Council officers may be asked to prepare a report for consideration at a subsequent meeting. 


Deputations enable a person, group or organisation to make a presentation to a Council meeting covered by that meeting's agenda.

If the matter that you have spoken about is on the meeting agenda then your comments will be taken into consideration by the Council when they are considering that report.

Have your say quick guides

  • PDF 112KB Open file
  • PDF 147KB Open file
  • PDF 120KB Open file

What to do if you would like to speak at a public forum or deputation

If you would like to speak at a public forum or deputation, please contact the Governance Team on 06 759 6060 at least one working day before the meeting. We will discuss the rules around the processes including time limits and obtaining permission to speak.

Guidelines for attending and speaking at a Council meeting

  • Public Forum and Deputation sessions are not a forum to request information. General requests for information are best made by calling us on 06 759 6060.
  • You cannot question elected members at the meeting.
  • You may not be disrespectful or offensive – if you are then the chair may terminate your speaking rights.
  • Placards, banners and signs are prohibited, you may be asked to remove items from the room.
  • The public may not make a disturbance during the meeting and the chairperson has the right to have disruptive people removed.  
  • Council meetings are public meetings, which means anyone can attend and observe proceedings on any day the Council meets.

Speaking in support of a submission at a Council meeting

Submissions are your opportunity to provide feedback on matters the Council is consulting on. A submission tells us what you agree with, what you are concerned about, disagree with or feel should be changed or what other issues you would like considered. For the majority of submissions processes, you will be given an opportunity to speak to your written submission at a Council meeting.