Key Points:

Eden Park funding and water rates are not the only items under the microscope at Auckland City. The new John Banks-Citizens & Ratepayers council is planning to slash the number of council committees and give them simple names.

Deputy mayor-in-waiting David Hay said yesterday that the present 12 committees could be reduced to five, in line with a recommendation from chief executive David Rankin.

Gone will be committee names, such as environment, heritage and urban form, and urban strategy and governance created by former deputy mayor and intellectual Bruce Hucker.

In their place will be simple names, such as city development, finance and strategy, and transport and infrastructure.

Mr Hay, a former deputy mayor under Mr Banks and Les Mills, said the existing 12 committees used up a lot of staff time generating reports and attending meetings.

One of C&R's driest councillors and finance committee chairman in the 2001-2004 Banks council, Doug Armstrong, is expected to get finance again. The other committees are up for grabs.

After three years out in the cold, C&R won 11 of the 19 seats, giving Mr Banks a comfortable working majority for the new term.

Last term, C&R was reduced to just six seats, largely because of opposition to the eastern highway which saw a new ticket, Action Hobson, secure two council seats and a majority on the Hobson Community Board.

On Saturday, Action Hobson was decimated when councillors Christine Caughey and Richard Simpson were dumped and C&R won a clean-sweep on the Hobson Community Board.

Christine Caughey said an aggressive campaign from C&R over the past three years, painting Action Hobson with City Vision-Labour and big rate increases, plus a low voter turnout "did us".

She said Action Hobson led a lot of progressive thinking on council. Auckland was in for a period of retrenchment and regressive thinking under C&R. Initiatives on heritage, urban design, sustainability and investment in broadband were under threat.

Christine Caughey said Action Hobson had resolved to continue.

City Vision-Labour were the other big losers at the polls, going from eight to five seats. The left-leaning ticket lost one seat each in the Western Bays, Tamaki-Maungakiekie, Eden-Albert and Roskill-Avondale wards.

Leader Richard Northey put the losses down to internal divisions and high rates. A low voter turnout was another factor.

He said City Vision would work with Mr Banks and C&R on areas of consensus but said the ticket had capable councillors who would form an effective opposition.

Meanwhile, two new councillors are waiting for the final results tomorrow to see if they will hang on to slender leads. Independent Denise Roche holds a six-vote majority over sitting councillor Faye Storer for the Hauraki Gulf seat and Focus Eden-Albert candidate Mark Donnelly holds a 22-vote majority over City Vision's Neil Abel in the Eden-Albert ward.

Mr Abel said it was unlikely he would overturn the result on special votes, saying a shift to the right and boundary changes bringing part of Epsom into Eden-Albert contributed to his loss.