Hamilton City, New Zealand

Chris Hughes

I am a long time resident of Hamilton. I was until retirement, a Director and Chairperson of Staples Rodway Waikato, (now Baker Tilly), Chartered Accountants.
I was a Board member and Honorary Treasurer of Fieldays Society for 12 years and was a member of the Opportunity Hamilton Board.

In New Zealand, in my view, it is critical that our vision is for a well educated, healthy, progressive and prosperous community which can only be achieved by treating everyone as equals. There is no room for separatism in a cohesive, harmonious society.
I believe New Zealand is currently at a cross roads. Recent actions by central Government cause me deep concerns as they have the potential to change our country from a long standing democracy to an undefined new model where the suffrage definition of Öne Person One Vote” is under threat.
I am committed to asking the questions that matter and getting results that will deliver the greatest benefits to all in our community.
I wish to ensure our long standing version of Democracy endures for my children, my grandchildren and spanning forward to future generations of positive thinking well educated citizens in New Zealand.
WRC should be an enabler and supporter of new business initiatives. As a professional I am very pro business. New business creates opportunities for employment which benefits our communities both locally and nationally. Currently the Waikato has 9% of the population residing in New Zealand however the Waikato only contributes 8% of the New Zealand GDP. My goal is to help develop plans that encourage new business investment in the Waikato region.
The only way I can influence my vision for the region is to become a councillor. As a friend told me recently, you cannot influence change from the outside.

Valuable ratepayer resources are being wasted on projects which do nothing to grow prosperity in the region for the greater community. Rates are increasing but in my view these increases are not delivering improvements to our community.
Crime is increasing and ordinary citizens are being subjected to physical abuse by mostly young citizens who have no respect for law and order. This lack of respect needs to be understood and measures implemented which instils in our residents a respect for law and order and for fellow citizens.
Hamilton city centre has been converted into a zone where use of private motor vehicles is discouraged. This in turn forces residents to shop in the outer suburbs which may not be a bd thing but is turning the central city into a ghost town. Unoccupied shops now the norm on Victoria Street and its surrounds. This is not the sign of a vibrant, healthy city.

I am a member of the National Party. I have assisted with delivery of electioneering circulars in previous elections. I was for a period Honorary Treasurer for the Hamilton East electorate.

In Hamilton, the Crown is trying to seize control of $1.45billion in assets, but is only paying $58 million in compensation. This is akin to theft. The proposed new ownership structure is needlessly complicated and local ratepayers will have little to no influence over future maintenance of existing Three Waters (TW) assets or over the development of new TW assets. Minister Mahuta has stated this restructure will create 9,300 new jobs in the TW sector and that no existing employees in the sector will be made redundant. To me this reads of massive increases in costs with no defined benefit to ratepayers. In my view there is a far better model for reform of the TW assets which would see local control remain over these assets while still allowing access to low interest loans for development of future TW asset infrastructure. These views have very recently been highlighted in a submission by the Auditor General to the Three Waters Select committee. An excellent example of a far more efficient restructure model was presented by Andreas Heuser, Managing Director of Castilia, a consulting firm specialising in water sector improvement and solving the worlds infrastructure challenges.

Í am strongly opposed to any preference based on ethnicity. We are all New Zealanders and wards should be representative of all the voters of the region. Separate wards for Maori are not needed and should be removed. If a referendum of all voters in the community supports Maori wards then I would accept this mandate for the people of the region.

No. One person one vote is Democracy. I certainly do not support co- governance with Mana Whenua. I have no idea where this construct came from. It is a distraction and should not be a part of New Zealands Democratic political landscape.

‘Local Government should be for the people by the people. The Big Brother knows best push by Central Government must be resisted. In my view, any mandates imposed on local Government should be vetoed wherever possible and where this is not practical the Central Government should be funding these initiatives. In my view Central Government actions and directives should be limited to New Zealand wide functions. All local functions and activities must be driven by the voice of the communities in the region.

No answer provided. 

Voter apathy. It is therefore the responsibility of those elected to deliver change and positive outcomes for our communities. Only then can we reasonably expect greater voter engagement and turnout at local body elections.


Yes, three maximum.

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