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Auckland Council deputy mayor, Penny Hulse. Auckland Council deputy mayor, Penny Hulse.[/caption] The study was to take place after the Unitary Plan became operational in the middle of next year, however the committee wanted to begin the study as soon as possible given the high level of interest in port activities. As a result of today’s meeting, work will immediately being on designing the Port Future Study including its terms of reference and scope. These will be reported back to the council within a month. The study itself will begin as soon as possible after that, will involve a wide range of community stakeholders and will be complete within a year. “The people of Auckland have made it very clear they want to be involved in any discussion about the future of our port and bringing the study forward is the sensible thing to do,” said committee chair Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse. “We must immediately set to work on the study’s terms of reference which need to be innovative and inclusive so we can hear all of the different voices.” Ms Hulse and Mayor Len Brown expressed their concern that Ports of Auckland had not always fully engaged with Aucklanders and their desire for a culture change within the company. The committee also discussed a letter from Auckland Council Chief Executive Stephen Town to Auckland Council Investments Limited outlining the council’s expectations of its board in relation to the Ports of Auckland. —  ]]>