Adrienne Staples. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

STEVE RENDLE
steve.rendle@age.co.nz

Former Masterton District Council chief executive Pim Borren is one of three candidates who will fight for the lone Wairarapa seat on Greater Wellington District Council, but incumbent Adrienne Staples is welcoming the competition.

“That’s democracy – I don’t see it as a threat,” she said, having won the seat in 2016 from a field of five.

The pair are joined by Richard Moore, the owner-operator of a polystyrene recycling operation who is sick of councils who say “can’t” when it comes to the cleaning up the environment.

Borren, who was unsuccessful when his job at MDC had to be readvertised, said his background as an economist made the regional council a logical fit.

All three candidates believe the environment is an election issue.

“I obviously have a big interest in economic development but it is a question of balancing environmental sustainability with that economic development,” Borren said.

Moore lives in an off-the-grid property near the Waiohine Gorge, and said he was “not going to be the one singing Nearer, My God To Thee on the deck of the Titanic” when it comes to the environment.

“We’ve already hit the ice berg – the people in first class may not think there is a problem but back in steerage we know exactly what has happened,” he said.

Solutions were already available for managing waste, but they needed to be developed and encouraged.

“I believe the sustainable future we all yearn for is possible – but we need councils and central government to make sensible decisions,” he said.

“I am about change.”

Staples also highlighted the need to manage responses to climate change – “it’s already upon us” – and from an economic standpoint, reiterated the need for improved train services.

But this was not something that ratepayers could fund by themselves, she said.

“There has to be pressure on the government for them to come to the party,” she said.

Borren said he was not tempted to stand for MDC – “The regional council is a much better organisation for my skill set.”

Wairarapa’s population restricts its representation to one person, which Borren said required a strong voice.

“Wairarapa makes up two-thirds of the greater Wellington region, and it needs to be heard.”

Finalised candidates

Tararua District Council

Mayor [c=current mayor] – Collis Tracey – c; James Harold; Mitch McHardy

Southern Ward

4 vacancies [c=current councillor] – Alison Franklin – c; Shirley Hull – c; Peter Johns; Raylene Ann Treder; Rena Tyler

Eketahuna Community Board

4 vacancies [c=current councillor] – Terry Carew; Denise Clifton; Charlie Death – c; Steen McGhie; Pauline Wilson – c

Greytown District Trust Lands Trust

3 vacancies [c=current councillor] – Matt Bell; Phil Holden; Wayne Regnault – c

Masterton Community Trust

6 vacancies [c=current councillor] – Mena Antonio – c; Brent Goodwin – c; Lucy Griffiths – c; Aileen Haeata; Bex Johnson; Jock Kershaw – c; Alan Lodge; Belinda Milnes; Ray Southey; Karl Taucher – c

Montfort Trimble Foundation

2 vacancies [c=current councillor] – Stan Braaksma – c; Jason Christensen; Belinda Milnes

Masterton Trust Lands Trust

4 vacancies [c=current councillor] – John R Bunny – c; Gary Caffell; Chris Gollins; Tom Hullena; Alan Lodge; Belinda Milnes; Adam Graeme Parker; Sandy Ryan – c; Karl Taucher – c

Wairarapa District Health Board

7 vacancies [c=current councillor] – Don Baskerville; Tony Becker; Stephen Butcher; Joy Cooper; Norman Gray; Peter McCardle; Helen Pocknall; Ryan Soriano; Leanne Southey – c; Jill Stringer