Duncan Butcher gives his farewell speech at his last
council meeting at the Otago Regional Council yesterday.
Photo by Craig Baxter.
Retiring councillor Duncan Butcher had the last word at
yesterday's final meeting of the Otago Regional Council's
2010-13 three-year term.
It was Cr Butcher's last council meeting after 24 years
representing the Dunstan constituency on the regional
''I've enjoyed the last three years but not enough to make me
change my mind,'' he said.
As it was his last meeting, Cr Butcher, chairman of the
finance and corporate committee, took the opportunity to move
the adoption of the council's annual plan and audit report.
''Since it's the last annual plan I've been involved in.''
He described his time on the council as an ''exciting ride''
which began when the regional council was formed in 1989.
''The ORC has been a big part of my life for the past 24
Cr Butcher also experienced the introduction of the Resource
Management Act in 1991, helped develop the first regional
policy statement and pest management strategy and was
instrumental in the development of the council's 1C and 6A
water plan changes.
He and wife Maureen intended to stay in Cromwell, but Cr
Butcher aimed to spend more time with his family, especially
with his North Island-based grandchildren. Chairman Stephen
Woodhead paid tribute to Cr Butcher's dedication and input
over the years.
He had been closely involved in the development of policy
which had a significant impact on the direction Otago had
''He has a greater impact than anyone in the past, or will
ever be able to have in the future of local government in New
Cr Michael Deaker made a point of praising Cr Butcher's
enthusiasm, energy and his approach to sustainability, as
well as his thoroughness, leadership and intelligence.
''No-one knows Otago, not just Cromwell, but all of Otago,
better than that man.''
Cr Butcher's retirement would leave a huge hole at the
council table, he said.
The council adopted the annual plan, which showed it employed
130 people, down from 134 the year before.
In the top salary band in the 2012-13 year, four were paid
between $180,000 and $279,000, compared with two the year
before, who received remuneration in the $200,000 to $319,999
bracket. Eight were in the $120,000 to $179,000 bracket and
14 paid between $100,000 and $119,000.
New chief executive Peter Bodeker had received $151,420 since
his employment in November, while former chief executive
Graeme Martin received $82,262 for his work from July 1,
2012, to November.
Mr Woodhead received $120,068 and deputy chairman David
Shepherd $61,186, while councillors' remuneration ranged from
$38,303 to $56,484.