Chief Executive’s challenge: are you ready for tough decisions?

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2/08/2019 3:35:00 p.m.

Whanganui District Council’s Chief Executive, Kym Fell, is encouraging people to stand for Council in October, saying it’s important to have people around the table who are prepared to make tough decisions when necessary.

“Anyone thinking of standing for the Council needs to understand how to work as a team to achieve outcomes for the community. They need to be visionary, open-minded and at times willing to make unpopular decisions for the greater good of our district,” says Mr Fell.

“While we continue to manage our finances prudently, there are tough decisions ahead, especially around levels of service and affordability - and having the courage to stop projects which add little value to our community.”

“It is also important to have diversity around the Council table which is representative of the community. Our district’s diversity needs to be reflected as much as possible through the people who make decisions on behalf of the whole community. We need people from all walks of life and with a variety of backgrounds.”

The Council’s 2019 Pre-Election Report is now available online and Mr Fell says it provides an opportunity for both candidates and voters to get a better understanding of Whanganui District Council’s current position and direction ahead of the local body elections.

A pre-election report is a requirement for all councils and must be prepared by the Council’s Chief Executive.

Mr Fell says the report contains the latest information on projects as at the end of July 2019. It also contains a considerable amount of financial information as required under the Local Government Act 2002, including past and prospective financial statements.

“Throughout the campaign and during your term, if elected, you’ll need to be informed and prepared. We currently have a number of big projects and issues on our plate, including the Sarjeant Gallery redevelopment project, the revitalisation of Whanganui’s port, and a number of major stormwater upgrades along with improving the resilience of our roading network.

“It’s important that you understand who you represent and their expectations and priorities. What does your community really want and need?”

Mr Fell says voters also need to understand the Council’s direction and elect those people who best represent their aspirations for our district. “On voting day, your choices are important. They will absolutely have an impact on your district and its liveability further down the track. So I encourage you to do your research. Find out who your candidates are and ask them what they stand for.”

As well as reading the Pre-Election Report, Mr Fell urges potential candidates to read the Council’s Our Whanganui: Leading Edge strategy which underpins Council decision-making.

Nominations for Election 2019 close at 12 noon on Friday, 16 August 2019. More information, including the pre-election report, is available on the Whanganui District Council website.

ENDS

Page reviewed: 02 Aug 2019 3:35pm