The proposal by Hamilton mayor Andrew King to change the city council's name to Kirikiriroa City Council has drawn overwhelmingly negative reaction in Hamilton and on social media.

Many people labelled the move a waste of money and a distraction from the real issues facing the city as it debates a new 10-year plan.

Mayor King's suggestion is in his monthly report which is due to be discussed by the council on Thursday.

Earlier this week more than 6000 people responded to an informal poll by the New Zealand Herald on what the city council's name should be.

Advertisement

Sixty per cent were in favour of keeping it as Hamilton, Kirikiriroa was favoured by 15 per cent, while 25 per cent liked the idea of The Tron City Council.

Debate raged all week on social media with a majority against the idea but many others urging the suggestion be seriously considered.

Samaria Mason supported the proposed change.

"How many of you are Maori? How many of you had your identity ripped away? How many of you have lived in a colonised country that thinks respecting your language is a joke and waste of ratepayers' money," she said.

Paul Gilling commented, "Rates increase upon rates increase and all he wants to do on top of that is change the council's name?"

Adrienne Calderwood commented, "Stop Mr Mayor, this is our money not yours, what an insane waste of dollars."

On Tuesday evening, a petition started by the Taxpayers' Union had reached more than 600 signatures to "oppose the use of ratepayer resources on a proposal to change the name of the Hamilton City Council".

In his report to council the mayor said: "I have had a number of discussions with local iwi representatives, including King Tuheitia, about Hamilton being more culturally aware of our partnership with Maori.

"I believe a significant step in this process would be renaming council to Kirikiriroa City Council."

Councillor Angela O'Leary told Hamilton News earlier this week: "This is clearly just a random idea that the mayor has had. I am hoping the discussions on Thursday will be a lot fuller and a bit more informative.

"We went to a Seed Waikato meeting the other day. There was a question from one of the youth in the audience on how we could move towards more of a bilingual city and the mayor said no we don't really do anything in that space. That would have been a good place to raise it."

Ms O'Leary said the city should be embracing te reo more but the city needs to have a plan and a vision about it.

"We need to ask what are we trying to achieve here and not just some random idea that has popped into someone's head saying let's just change the name of the council and be done with it."