Activity campaign endorsed but councillors slow off mark

Fliss Butcher
Fliss Butcher
A new $110,000 marketing campaign promoting active lifestyles in Dunedin has the support of the Dunedin City Council, even if it prompted some councillors to break out in a nervous sweat yesterday.

The "MoveMe" promotion has been developed in the past two years, supported by $110,000 in council funding, and aims to encourage active lifestyles by promoting Dunedin's recreation opportunities.

Councillors at yesterday's community development committee meeting were presented with the glossy results, including modelled photographs of active residents and details of a seven-week walking plan participants could sign up to online.

Most councillors were quick to endorse the project, but some began to squirm when it was suggested they sign up.

Cr Fliss Butcher led the charge, saying councillors should all sign up as one team to support the initiative.

"We're putting money into it ... Maybe we should put our mouths where our money is," she said.

She proposed a recommendation to that effect.

Committee chairman Cr Bill Acklin quickly suggested adding the words "should they wish to" to the recommendation, but Cr Butcher refused to budge.

She argued the exercise required would be something all councillors were already doing anyway: "Right?"

Cr Acklin's response: "Some of us probably not as much as we should be."

Cr Lee Vandervis said councillors should take up gardening instead of the MoveMe programme.

"I personally find waving a chainsaw in my spare time does it for me ... We don't need this pile of paperwork to understand the garden is really an ideal place to go."

Cr Acklin then moved to outflank Cr Butcher, saying two separate votes would be taken: one to approve the promotional campaign, and a second to approve councillors' participation in it.

The division was "just in case" councillors wanted to vote against participating themselves, but still wanted the programme to proceed, he said.

Cr Butcher then agreed to add the word "encouraged" to her recommendation, letting councillors decide for themselves whether to sign up later.


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