Look, I get it.
People are juggling jobs and family and a pandemic and getting enough sleep and health and more.
Asking them to also stay abreast of what their local council and regional council and maybe community boards, too, are up to is just a bridge too far for some.
Many people only tune into the local government frequency is when there's been a major failure or a change that grates negatively against their day-to-day lives.
Sometimes, by the time they notice the issue, it's too late to have any influence over it.
The decision is made, the process is steaming ahead and those too-late concerns are fading into the distance.
It creates a feeling of mistrust when people feel their voices aren't heard.
Councils, in my experience, tend to measure their consultation success not by whether every voice was heard, but by whether appropriate efforts were made to give enough people a chance to have a say.
That sounds a bit cold but there have to be some practical limits - we can't make every decision by (expensive) binding referendum.
I think councils could definitely try harder to engage the people in their communities.
Cutting the waffle, finding more creative ways to reach people and grab their attention, and talking to people more plainly about the decisions that affect them would be a good start.
But participation in a democracy is a two-way street and the responsibility is not with councils alone.
It's also up to us, as residents and ratepayers to listen in and speak out.
So, consider this a heads-up: Long-term plans are coming up over the next few months.
Don't be put off by the dull name. Basically, every three years councils make a 10-year budget.
Lots of direction-setting decisions are made not only about how much of your money to collect and how to spend it, but about what services to provide and not; what projects to start and not; what problems to solve and which ones have to wait.
Several councils in growing areas, such as the Bay of Plenty, have flagged this year's issues as some of the most challenging they have ever dealt with.
Tauranga has the unique situation of a commission in charge to deal with, as well.
The decisions made in these plans will touch your life.
You deserve to have a voice in the making of them.
If you care about the future of your street, your neighbourhood, your suburb and your city, the time is coming up to tune into Council FM again - even if it's just for a few months.