Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull is congratulated by granddaughters
Carli (left) and Kaia Hutchison moments after being sworn
in at yesterday's Dunedin City Council meeting. Photo by
Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull donned the robes and chain of
office for the first time yesterday, pledged to do his best and
received an enthusiastic hug from two future ratepayers.
It was not a bad start to his first official day in office,
even if the future ratepayers in question were his
granddaughters, Kaia Hutchison (5) and her 6-month-old sister
The young pair were among a packed public gallery of friends
and family watching as Mr Cull and the city's 14 councillors
were sworn in at yesterday's inaugural Dunedin City Council
meeting for the new term.
Among the intake were two new faces, Crs Richard Thomson and
Jinty MacTavish, and one returning one, Cr Lee Vandervis.
Welcoming them, Mr Cull said he also wanted to acknowledge
the community that voted for and shaped the new council.
"I have to admit this position is not where I thought I would
be three years ago ... when I first embarked upon council."
However, he was "very aware" of the responsibilities that
came with the job, as well as the community's expectations.
"I will do my best to live up to those expectations."
Mr Cull outlined plans to address council operating costs,
while continuing the development of the city's
infrastructure, particularly digital infrastructure, and
making the city more resilient to economic challenges.
He also vowed to tackle those challenges, while ensuring the
council stayed in touch with its community.
"We all know what a tightrope that could be. It's not an easy
job," he said.
The council also acknowledged the service of outgoing
councillors Michael Guest, Richard Walls and former mayor
Cr Paul Hudson praised Mr Chin's devotion to the city.
"I have never worked with a mayor who has given so much of
his time and so much of his self, and given up so much of his
family life, to serve his community," he said.
The council also acknowledged the efforts of retiring
community board members Pam Mason, from the Mosgiel Taieri
board, and Nancy Higgins and Murray Holland, from the
Waikouaiti Coast board.