Why I am running for PNCC

Basically one word sums it all up - CHANGE!

I want to widen the cross-section of society that stands for Council - we need new faces, new ideas, and people that are willing to work together as a team to get things accomplished. I keep hearing about 'unfinished business' from current Councillors. If there's still "unfinished buisiness" maybe its time for a new Council to move in, finish it off, and move on. Lets move this city forward.

I love living here. I was born in the district and now have a young family. I want to create the best possible community for my son to grow up in -a place he can be proud to call home, a place with economic growth and strong community pride.

I want to encourage people to vote. I represent Change - we need diversity of ages, cultures, and professions representing and serving our people. I'm hoping to encourage more people to get involved with local poltics and place a vote.

Why Ashhurst/Fitzherbert

I want to give a more vocal representation to the smaller fringe communities of Ashhurst, Summerhill area, Pohangia Valley, Massey, and Linton. I feel these areas often get overlooked by Council. I've especially noticed this since working at Linton for the past 10 years - often people are left in the dark on issues and events happening in our community.

If elected I will host monthly 'Councillor Coffee sessions' in both the Fitzherbert and Ashhurst areas for members of our ward to express concerns or raise issues in an informal and comfortble environment. I am honest, down to earth, and very approachable and want to be the eyes and ears of the Ashhurst/Fitzherbert ward. In the past, I've felt that Councillors tended to be too formal and unapproachable which often leads to people feeling to intimidated to approach them. This is one of the many things I want to CHANGE. Councillors are meant to serve their communities. Lets not forget that.

Public Relations - need for better communication!

By far my biggest concern for Council is the lack of communication on issues to the public. When asking your average 'Joe' (neighbor, friend, family member) what they think Council does - people usually reply by grumbling something about collecting rubbish and taking rate money for upgrading the Square. Is that the perception that we have of our Council??? No wonder most people are disgruntled. The public are not aware of the services that Council provides....the first class library, the free family events, the management of parks and reserves, the growth of our economy, roading and infrastructure, support of Sport Manawatu, Vision Manawatu, Destination Manawatu, community groups, cemetaries, wastewater treatment plant...I could go on and on. But why would average 'Joe' know these things? We don't promote it enough to our own community.

I remember when they were doing construction work on the square and they kept emptying the duck pond. I couldn't understand why they were filling and emptying the pond several times? Was something broken, what was to happen to the ducks? Well I later found out from a council employee that they attempting to get rid of the lime within the new duck pond to make it safe for the ducks. If someone would have just put up a sign or something in the paper then this questioning wouldn't have even been necessary.

Why are people grumbling about the cost of rubbish bags? Becasue they haven't heard the full story, or perhaps don't understand about PNCC's recycling efforts. These are just two minor examples of how I feel the Council doesn't communicate very well with our city. Of course there are major examples; wind farms, bridge building, and land developments that also relate to this.

Let's hire someone in a Public Relations role within Council to activly promote the good works that are being done. We constantly hear the senstionalized negative stories from the press, and suprisingly a majority of Council's successes are put to the side. If we gain the support of the community and everyone is on the same page, perhaps we can stop some of this grumbling once and for all. PNCC is here to work for you - to create the biggest benefit for the largest amount of people. In fact there are hundreds of people all working together to activly make this a more vibrant and productive city - we just don't hear about them.

City Pride

City Promotion
Promote Palmy and get people out of the mindset that it's a boring place. My partner moved here from Wellington to the disgust of many people questioning her decision. This is the perception of many people outside (and many inside) the city. You just need to go to one of the many free events and festivals held every year to know this isnt true. But more can always be done! How about attracting some world class events (agricultural/ student based/ military)?

City Beautification
Huge amounts of money have been spent to spruce up the CBD, which includes our newly developed Square. Agree with it or not, it's there, but if you walk around on a Friday/Sat/Sunday morning with your family you'll be greeted with litter, vomit, and urine. Not a good look for our city. Where has the city pride gone? "Lets get the basics right first"

Enforcing litter fines, and promoting Adopt-a-roadway campaigns. The clean, green image we'd like to portray as a nation is being swept aside due to lack of morals and respect for our environment.

Encourage more recyling by providing color coded wheelie bins to seperate materials (such as those found in Melbourne).I fully support the user pays system. Our landfill costs have gone up dramatically, and we have a magnificent new recycling facility to help curb our wastes - lets use it and promote it even more than we are now.

Continuation of CBD redevelopment, to make our city appear attractive and alive

City Safety
Lobby Central Government to increase the Police on the Streets - they're doing a great job, there's just not enough of them.

Community and Economic Development

I believe we need Councillors that equally support both the Economic and Community Development of our city. You can't place more emphasis on one over the other - as they are both needed to maintain a vibrant city and place to live. Often it's the loudest voice of the smallest group that gets heard - shouldn't we be changing that to do the greatest good for the most amount of people?

Economic Development
Did you know that 80% of new jobs created in Palmerston North were by existing firms instead of attracting new businesses? Lets take a step to increase new buisnesses to move here.We need to continue to increase the profile of Palmerston North to ensure that businesses stay and grow in Palmerston North to strenghten our local economy. We need to increase the profile of Vision Manawatu and publicise and profile the economic development taking place in our community. Many people aren't aware of the world class industries that are happening right in our own backyard. Lets make this more known to our community, our region, our country, and globablly. It's time to put Palmerston North on the map!

I support

  • Council being more open and friendly towards businesses - we are all in this together, lets find ways to grow together.
  • More work being done to retain graduate students in our area - more work-while-study schemes to give them expierence ini our community. We want them to stay here after graduation.
  • Global recognition of our region's strengths (Defense, Education, Health, Infrastructure Development and Agricultural Research...) and increasing the profile of Palmerston North
  • Making our city more vibrant and attractive though high profile event, sporting activities, and conferences

Community Development

Youth Issues

Things I support:

Student City - A fantastic way to include the students in our city - to attract them to study here, and keep them here after graduation. Massey, UCOL, and IPC are an important part of our community. Lets get them more involved, and show them how great Palmy really is.

Palmerston North Youth Council - this needs a revamp to include delegates from all schools, and to encourage them to be involved in Council decisions that involve youth.

Provide things for youth to do to combat boredom - support community groups that work with our youth.

Parks and Playground development - Palmy is a great place to raise kids with lots of free activities, festivals, and activities. By maintaining and updating these facilities we give our children areas to explore, engage, and learn.

Rates and Finances