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Sunday
Feb172019

Same Council, But For How Long?

The only remaining question that may (or may not!) be answered at Tuesday's meeting relates to the intent of sitting members to stand again. I have heard conflicting stories (not unusual!) about just about everyone around the table. All I can say with certainty is that Sandra will stand again, and aims to blow any opposition 'out of the water.'

Sandra is no tyro, and probably will, by consistently cultivating her 'base,' and ensuring that there is minimal challenge to her rule at the Council table. Only McLean provides any level of resistance, and he is usually batted away with disdain to the square leg boundary.

But councillors are another 'kettle of fish.' I have heard so many rumours about Strat that I have given up. He was adamant about standing a year ago, then around Christmas, he was standing down, and going back to Chairing the Board - a God-given right apparently, to enable Diane to take a three year break before standing for Mayor - faint hope!

Then he announced a week or two ago that he is "going back on Council - under pressure from the environmentalists." These permutations are 'par for the course,' so don't hold your breath. Strat has a very high opinion of his achievements, including the Jack McLean Centre, Queen St toilets, and the the Thames Urban Development Project - more consultants have apparently been appointed - when will it ever end? Strat claims to be the 'torch- carrier' for the 'environment lobby,' but I have seen little evidence of this at Council.

Rumours of 'standing down' have surrounded Jan Bartley, Murray McLean, Rex Simpson  and Tony Fox. Now it appears that all intend to stand again - all excepting Jan Bartley that is, who is clearly 'on the outer,' and who will certainly be challenged.

One outsider mulling his chances of giving the Thames group 'a run for their money' is Russell Skeet - a thoroughly public spirited candidate (and regulat commenter pn my posts!), well versed in every aspect of council affairs, and who in my view would make a thoroughly solid alternative to the current lot.

Sally Christie, appears unassailable with a substantial majority (400) from 2016, but questions remain as to her ability to give justice to to both her role on the Council, and on the Waikato District Health Board. Rex Simpson, who scrapped in by 19 votes has contributed little, and is certainly someone who should be challenged.   

I will comment on others as time goes on.  Anyone with information about potential candidates, announced or otherwise, is welcome to contact me direct at billbarc@slingshot.co.nz

 

 

 

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