While there was an appetite for a lower North Island super city, the Wairarapa should not be included within it, Wellington's Mayor Celia Wade-Brown told the Local Government Commission today.

The mayor, who made her submission at a public hearing, said there was a case for change to the council structure, but councils did not broadly support the proposed model.

The commission last year proposed one council would take over the functions of the existing nine councils: Masterton District Council; Carterton District Council; South Wairarapa District Council; Upper Hutt City Council; Hutt City Council; Wellington City Council; Porirua City Council; Kapiti Coast District Council, and the Greater Wellington Regional Council.

The new council would have a shared decision-making structure, the commission said.

Advertisement

Power would be shared between the governing body (a mayor and 21 councillors) and 60 members of local boards.

Ms Wade-Brown's submission said the lack of broad community support was due to the limitations of the model.

"The limitations are that it combines a number of separate communities of interest, it is one of the least efficient models that the commission considered practicable, [and] there are serious questions in relation to how effective the 'shared governance' model actually is..."

If a referendum was held now it would be "clearly negative", Ms Wade-Brown said.

Her submission recommended a separate Wairarapa council and one or more metropolitan councils west of the Rimutakas, which may or may not be unitary entities.

If the original proposal were to go ahead, the land covered would be 8000 square kilometres - 3000 square kilometres more than the area covered by Auckland Council.

"That is a huge area," she said.

She said there was already cooperation between the councils and pointed to the planned airport extension which needed funding from the whole region.

Wellington City Council chief executive Kevin Lavery also contributed to the submission said the plan as it stood "won't get off the line".

But he said, while the council's proposal would mean a change to legislation, there was support for it.