I am a retired engineer and businessman. I have lived in Auckland for 23 elections and for 20 of those electoral terms I have been generally very happy with the governance of our beautiful city. Since the amalgamation I am astonished at the direction our recent councils have taken. It’s time to scrutinise the value we get for our rates. Council spends $2 million a day on staff and about $1 million a day on debt servicing. We should be asking our incoming hopefuls how they will work to stem these costs. I also have a concern about mangroves in estuaries in the area. Some rivers have growth rates of 8.6 percent. We won’t have these estuaries if we don’t act to reduce the spread.
What are the three crucial issues facing the Hibiscus Coast?
- 1. A crucial issue for all of Auckland is Council expenditure. The North Shore receives benefits at a little over one-third of what we contribute.
- 2. The mangrove explosion in our estuaries.
- 3. Council expenditure on wages and debt servicing
How would you address these?
- 1. Start now by asking mayoral candidates what their financial plan is to make things more equitable.
- 2. Under the new Unitary Plan residents are able to remove mangroves back to the 1995 populations.
- 3. Same as item 1. Make the Mayor commit to rate reductions. We need to get candidates to commit to reducing rates. Readers can help by asking these questions themselves.
What do you hope to achieve as a member of the Local Board?
I would undertake to exercise my limited right as a Local Board member, on behalf of residents, to get answers from Council on issues of concern in our community. I also hope to enhance my campaign over mangrove control with the capability provided by the position of an elected board member.