Rex Nicholls, husband of former mayor Kerry Prendergast and a long-term Wellington city councillor till he stepped down in 1998, has decided to stand for the council again. He lodged his nomination this morning.
His policies can be judged from two recent letters to editors.
Discussion on Wellington’s local government amalgamation to date has been about “how” rather than “why”… The big question is: “Will we make savings? Would amalgamation provide a better and cheaper service while allowing individual communities a voice?” If not, smaller amalgamations would be more appropriate at this time. The region just doesn’t need, nor is it ready for, the full “super- city” model.
We must maintain Wellington CBD’s economic grunt. Though there’s been sensible movement in the rates differential, commercial ratepayers still heavily subsidise the residential sector. Amalgamated areas would expect their residential rates to be similar to those of Wellington’s but the CBD couldn’t support such an impost.
Possibly the most important issue is quality of governance. Wellington needs good people to represent it on a larger council. I’d like to think some smart people read these comments and start working toward building their profile for the next election. Name recognition is the reason people get voted on to a council and the last thing a new council here needs is the recycling of some existing faces.
- The Dominion, 25 June, 2012.
Imagine 10 new councillors around the Wellington City Council table. Imagine the new ideas they’d have for the city, the energy, the innovation, the expertise. The council is bereft of ideas and stagnant. They can’t even make up their minds about a bypass around the Basin Reserve. They cancel meetings because they have not generated any ideas to discuss and debate. What we have now is a situation where, once someone is elected, name recognition keeps them in power forever, I’m starting to think! There should be a time limit imposed: Say three or four terms maximum (nine or 12 years). We have people who’ve been there 25 years… I think the most important campaign this year is to bring in new blood. Not only do we need good new people to put their names forward, but we need the voters to be more discerning and opt for new instead of out-of-date candidates.
- The Wellingtonian, 28 March 2013.
Also lodging his nomination today, former councillor Rob Goulden, who was voted out at the last election. He’s standing for the mayoralty, as well as for a seat at the council table.