I live in the Ahuriri Ward and have been in Napier for five years.
I am a mother, and grand-mother with two children and three grand-children living in Hawke’s Bay.
As a writer, historian and publisher I recently had the pleasure to research and write the history of King George’s Hall, Bay View, for the centenary celebrations in 2011. I enjoy discovering and writing about Napier’s fascinating and unique history.
I support local representational democracy. My main objective as a Councillor is to do that job well. I will speak and act for the people’s best interests at all times, with the over-arching intention of achieving best values for Napier and Napier rate payers.
I have had previous local body experience as a Wellington City Councillor from 1992 – 2004. I believe in sound governance, supporting basic Council services efficiently; and I acknowledge the importance of balancing economic, cultural, social, recreational and environmental issues.
I am standing as an independent councillor.
I am always available. Telephone 06-8336-334
Top 5 Issues
- Representation of the people.
I look forward to being a Ward councillor for Ahuriri and attending to the needs and special issues that may arise. I served as a Ward Councillor in Wellington for three terms and understand the benefits of such a system. It gives communities individual opportunities and a sense of local pride in their accomplishments.
However, representation of the wider city goes hand-in-glove. Success is infectious and Ahuriri’s flourishing community is an example to be emulated.
- The Westshore erosion issue.
I support a move to select the best solution for the coastal erosion problem, and that is implemented, without further delay. It has been deferred for far too long, causing much unrest in that community.
Largely an engineering project, withy large expense involved, it will need a strong minded Councillor to seek a review of the solutions presented to date, debate them and demand resolution.
- Business, employment and prosperity.
Council can play a part in this. Without these ingredients a community struggles to maintain a quality of life; economic development is part of natural growth in a modern age and I support Council developing appropriate business initiatives, partner-shipping and creating incentives.
- Leasehold land.
The issues around residential and commercial leasehold land is another that has hung around for far too long. It is now an imperative for resolution. The new rates, announced last year for the renewal terms of residential 15 and 21 years leases, has pushed the financial boundaries – they are unreasonable. The unimproved value system of land and building distorts the true values; there is no logic, no wonder many do not understand it! If it is such a mystery then it’s not a democratic method for valuation by local authority land owners, who actually represent us! This is arguably one of the most serious considerations for change.
The commercial leases present a similar financial problem, but present a different scenario around the ability to free-hold. This factor is holding Napier’s business community back and needs reviewing.
We need some hard talking and decision making. I look forward to the debate.
- Community service.
Community service is both a bottom line necessity and top-line priority. People, people, people. I believe Council can be a lot more effective in serving all age groups and people from all walks of life.
I have always been involved with community and enjoyed expanding this into contact with our local council. When the children were growing up our suburbs needed better parks, reserves, walk-ways and sports fields, a new library, better footpaths, street lighting – the lot!! What we had was OK but not good. We needed up-grades and safety issues attended to. I then discovered how talking with our local Councillor (we operated under the Ward system) and being introduced to officers of our Council could work wonders. They listened and were eager to get things right. It took time but we got there.
Then a bi-election was called and I stood for Council, was elected and was on a roller coaster to civic discovery. The processes and policy developments of Council take time to become familiar with.
I arrived at a time when the first District Plans were being written by Councils who were complying under the new legislative rules. Town and Country planning was out and RMA was in. What a learning curve!
I really enjoy Council work and would like to continue, applying what I have learnt to the Napier City Council.
My career has been in business. I am a publisher and with my husband established the Millwood Press. This still operates but less than before as we are semi-retired. Many will know my book: “The Life and Times of James Walter Chapman-Taylor”. The discipline of research, writing and reading manuscripts is helpful in being a competent Councillor, as there should be many reports to read and analyse before entering debate.
I have always believed a good Councillor is one who does not form firm resolve before reading the facts, listening to other points of view and seeking consultation. That way one is open to learning and making an informed decision. The rate payers deserve that. It is why I have always stood as an Independent, free of commitment to any political party, or entrenched ideas.
One needs time to perform well, and I did not seek public office until I was semi-retired. One needs to be available and without too many other demands.
I hope to hear points of view in response this profile: Judy Siers 06-8336 -334
Authorised by Judy Siers of 28A George Street, Hospital Hill, Napier