Policy advice to support informed decision making

A policy paper is a long-form report with recommendations. It takes an indepth look at a problem, considers options to address it, and recommends a solution. Critical thinking and consideration of alternatives has the potential to save a council a lot of time and money, and to achieve postive outcomes.

However, writing a policy paper requires focused attention, and it can be difficult for staff to make the time for fresh thinking about an issue when juggling all the other demands of their job.

If your council doesn’t have a policy advisor available to take a long hard look at a complex issue, I can help by preparing a policy paper for you.  You can click here to find out about my process for writing policy papers.

Benefits of hiring me to write your policy paper

√ Focused attention on your project to meet your deadlines

I work on one project at a time in a quiet home office. This makes it much easier for me to think deeply about one issue at a time, and to complete large writing projects in a timely way. 

√ Understanding of the legal context

I am familiar with the legislation, national policy statements and other requirements which affect local government, as well as the role of legal advice in council decision making.

√ Policy experience

I have worked as a policy planner and a planning adviser at a council. In 2022 I developed a series of policy papers in my current role. These are described below.

Examples of my work

Policy advice example

LIM improvement project

I wrote three policy papers to provide recommendations on:

– the content to include in LIMs

– how to enhance the online customer experience

– a staff structure to support the delivery of LIM services.

Client feedback (on Report 1):

“I want to acknowledge your superb analytical skills, ability to hone in on the issues and easy report writing style. A pleasure to read. The recommendations are spot on.”

Clare Barton |Group Manager Environmental Management

Nelson City Council

“Debra is a highly proficient writer and policy analyst. Debra always delivers what she says she will in a professional manner and in a way that is engaging and easily understood.”

Matt Heale, Manager Environment, Nelson City Council

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