Tauranga's new (or returning) councillor

By: Blogger

Straight from city council
A personal view,
by Councillor Steve Morris

Whoever is fortunate  enough to be elected won’t find it boring; every  day is different.

In the morning you can be arguing the merits of a $100m piece of infrastructure that will affect the city for 70 years and in the afternoon, sitting in a resident’s home, listening  to a dispute they are having with their neighbour  about a tree.

If you’re considering standing, beware. Residents expect councillors to work almost full-time these days and weeks can vary between 25-50 hours plus. Former councillor and now MP Clayton Mitchell would be at council all day and then attend to his business until the early hours of the morning. Cr Clout did both for a while too but then sold his business to concentrate on council. Former councillor and local celebrity, Tony Christiansen, lost his seat after his attendance record was published in 2013;  he topped the poll just three  years earlier.

Two other former councillors have indicated they might stand; Murray Guy is desperate to get back onto council and this would be his third try since losing his seat. John Robson was arguably the most capable councillor last term. A self-made man, he stood by his election pledge of offering a ‘money-back guarantee’ and paid the proportion of his salary that he lost by back to the community.

There will be new faces standing too. It will be hard sorting the wheat from the chaff.

I wish you all the best with your decision; the size of your rates bill depends on it!