Archive for August, 2007

Hello Waimakariri!

26 August 2007
Welcome to . This is a blog for people interested in the Waimakariri District, New Zealand.

While it is currently related to my candidacy for the Council (Rangiora Ward), if successful in the coming elections I am considering keeping it going.

This is my first attempt at setting up a blog, so I am on something of a voyage of discovery.


First elected to the Rangiora Borough Council in 1983, I served continuously on that Council and its successors until 2001. 

I was Waimakariri Deputy Mayor from 1995 to 2001.

Between 1986 and 1995 I chaired the Finance committees of the Rangiora and Waimakariri District Councils and from 1998 to 2001 I chaired the Audit Committee. At the time of the 2001 local body elections, I decided not to seek re-election.  I was finding that the time demands of the dual role of Councillor and Assistant Principal of Rangiora High School were too much.

I have been involved in education all my working life. After retiring as Deputy Principal of Rangiora High School in 2005, I have worked as a teacher adviser for the University of Canterbury.  Currently this is part-time and if elected, I will not seek work there in 2008.

For the past six years I have chaired the Council’s Rangiora Ward Advisory Board.

I am involved in a wide range of community groups: the Rangiora Community Watch, the Rangiora Methodist Parish, the Rotary Club of Rangiora, the Ashley-Rakahuri Rivercare Group, the Ashley Community Church restoration committee and the Waimakariri Community Arts Council.  I am also a patron of the North Canterbury Musical Society and a trustee of the Waimakariri Art Collection Trust.  One little job that I do is as an attendant every two or three months at the Rangiora Museum.  I am also an Alternate Civil Defence Controller for the District.

In my work as a teacher, I coached cricket and hockey for many years.

I believe Rangiora and the Waimakariri is a great place to live.  I love its sense of community, its diversity and its productivity.  If elected, I will work, as I have done in the past, to make it an even better place.  I want to build on the start made by my pioneering ancestors who arrived in Woodend in 1858-1860.

As in everything in life, there has to be a balance.  We live in a democracy, and part of that involves people saying what they want and are able or prepared to pay for.  Assets have to be maintained and, if affordable, enhanced.  This applies to roads and drains, to parks and halls and to the whole range of infrastructure for which the Council is responsible.  Whatever is done has to be sustainable, both financially and environmentally.

We also have to acknowledge that in these early years of the 21st Century, people expect a reasonable standard of amenity, a clean environment and a local economy that is encouraging to business.  Councils can assist through sound planning, sensible regulation and careful maintenance and development of infrastructure.  They can also help provide the democratic environment that enables the community as a whole decide where it wants to go.

 I have little patience with the parochialism that bedevils some public discussion here.  As far as I am concerned, the fact that I live in Rangiora is irrelevent.  I could quite happily live in any other part of the District.  To me, the important question is always: is this good for the Waimakariri District?  As a councillor I will, if elected, be a Waimakariri councillor, not a parochial Rangiora one.

Finally, I would like to thank people for the huge number of supportive comments I have received since I announced my candidacy.

Authorised by D L Ayers, 279 High Street, Rangiora 7400 

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