No homes, poverty-stricken and poor health were some of the issues Bay of Plenty leaders discussed and offered digital solutions to work to give people the services they deserve.

To have a thriving society, all agencies, groups and communities need to be connected, and one of Bay of Plenty leaders suggestions is digital data sharing of a person's information.

The leaders gathered for the first triennial Bay of Plenty Local and Central Government leadership forum this morning in Rotorua Lakes Council Chambers.

Minister Chris Hipkins joined the meeting as the state services minister and spoke of the need to break down barriers between agencies and create a partnership between central and local governments.


This is ahead of the legislation to replace the State Sector Act which would be delivered to Parliament next week.

"The nature of the way in which the people dealt with the Government was changing and there was more room to partner with services on the frontline," Hipkins said.

The idea of better using data and information across sectors was a suggestion into how this could help streamline information.

This would bring consistency, better the region and lessen the workload for individual sectors.

Family harm, homelessness, housing quality and poverty were growing areas of concern in the region, said the leaders.

What came out of the discussion of the region's hardships was how they crossed over sectors and agencies.

A discussion about how information from Government agencies could be shared across between each other to provide the public with the services they needed in a timely matter.

Ōpōtiki District Council mayor Lyn Riesterer said there were issues within the way population data was collected and used which needed to be addressed for accurate dispersal of money.


Rotorua mayor Steve Chadwick said Bay of Plenty local leaders did not want solutions.

"We want partnerships to empower us," she said.

Director of Education Ezra Schuster was appointed the role of the Bay of Plenty public service leader last month and the role involved the bridge between central and local governments.

"A lot of the challenges our families face, the social development, the justice, the health, this is a really good opportunity to bring them together ... we need to be more deliberate."

Schuster said there were four priorities for central and local governments: How to engage early; how to have a thriving whānau; how to have strong rangatahi (youth) and how to build a strong community.