Garey deputy, appointments made

Christine Garey
Christine Garey
"The city is in safe hands," says Dunedin's new deputy mayor, Christine Garey, as she prepares to take up the mantle of leadership.

The appointment of the second-term Dunedin city councillor and former Otago Peninsula Community Board chairwoman was announced yesterday afternoon, along with other key positions in the new council.

Cr Garey said she thought working with new Mayor Aaron Hawkins would be "fantastic".

"I feel very comfortable about working with Mayor Hawkins and ... I believe it's the start of a positive era. That's not to say it wasn't a positive era before, but it's a different one."

The finance and council-controlled organisations committee will be led by Mike Lord with deputy Doug Hall; community and culture will be led by Marie Laufiso with deputies Ms Garey and first-time councillor Carmen Houlahan; infrastructure services Jim O'Malley with deputy and new councillor Jules Radich; planning and environment David Benson-Pope with first-time councillors Sophie Barker and Steve Walker as deputies; economic development by Chris Staynes
with deputies Andrew Whiley
and Rachel Elder.

Cr Whiley has been made head of the bylaws subcommittee and Cr Garey will lead the grants subcommittee.

A notable omission from the heads of committee was mayoral runner-up Lee Vandervis, who was offered the role of deputy chairman of infrastructure but turned it down.

Cr Vandervis, who Mr Hawkins said had accepted roles as chairman of the Dunedin Heritage Fund, and an appointment to the Otago Museum board, described the offer of deputy chairman as "insulting".

"[It is] perhaps useful for new councillors to get some exposure to the role of chair, but not of interest for council's most experienced councillor, who has been there and done that same infrastructure services deputy chairmanship for three years, many years ago when Cr Andrew Noone was chair."

Cr Vandervis also directed the Otago Daily Times to a blog post where he claimed Mr Hawkins had "faltered in his first decisions as mayor".

While Cr Garey joked that having a hamstring injury prevented her from hitchhiking to work, she said she and Mr Hawkins saw eye-to-eye on environmental issues.

"My views are aligned with Aaron's. I have a different take on them because I come from a different age, and I come from a female perspective ... but we have the same views about the outcomes we want for the city."

The city was facing a number of "growing pains", but there were "so many positive things as well".

"As I said on the campaign trail, we've got a housing issue, climate change is the overriding issue that we have to address and we've already started that work. We need to embed it in council operations, that's really important."

Transport issues were another priority area she identified.

She was pleased to be working on a council with a good proportion of women, and feedback she had received from women in the city was that it was positive to have a woman in a leadership position.

Mr Hawkins said he was excited about the diversity of skills and talent the election delivered, and all councillors would have important roles to play under his leadership.

"The election has delivered a diverse range of talent and skills around the council table and my expectation is that all councillors, regardless of their appointments, will have much to contribute over the next three years."


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The tax and spend crowd have their #1 & #2 as heads. May they show some more financial acume than before.

Correct me if I am wrong but the city is stronger and better than ever before. So you wanted Dunedin to move forward paying peanuts for the same or better results?
Borrowing is how to increase your net worth in this day and age or you stagnate and die. Dunedin is not one of the top leaders amd calulations for the future are looking even better.
Being a Vandervis questioning everything, abusing everyone and agreeing to nothing isn't the way forward. He lost and will be 67 at the next election so most likely he will never be mayor, get over it.

"The city is in safe hands," says Dunedin's new deputy mayor,

Kezza "safe hands" was your exact mantra during electio campaign. Nice to meet you?

Nonsense. Tim Shadbolt is mayor again at his 72. There are qualified people who performed complex surgeries in their 90's.
What an arrogant agism from someone who accuses most #1 voted mayor candidate in toxicity rudeness and what not. He would be the mayor now if not questionable STV system, think about it.

And yes you are wrong, Dunedin used to be in much better shape most of previous century (compared to other cities), arguably once it even was reachest place on the planet. The fact that we caught the wave last few years gives little credit to DCC: most of the country caught higher waves i.e. it is self-serving bias.

I'm so tired of listening to these politicians bloviate about how great they are and all the great things they are going to do for Dunedin. Actions speak louder than words. Like most people, I could care less how they get to work and nobody believes for a second that Garey would hitch to work if it wasn't for her hamstring. Why pander? Your safe until the next election! Maybe if you drove to work you might understand the frustration most citizens feel about the parking situation in Dunedin. Impossible to find a spot and outrageous to pay $4 hr to use. You think issues like that might help local merchants. Yes, envormentsl issues like bike Lanes are important but not at the expense of people putting food on the table and paying bills. All of you need to get a clue and stop pandering to specific segments of the population. Do what's best for the city and the people! And stop saying the election results show a mandate by the people! Less than half the population cared enought to vote and the new mayor was elected with 12% of the cities vote. That's not a mandate! People have lost faith in the system, they lost faith in people like you! Stop the bickering and do your job!

Actually, those who did not vote have no mandate to moan. Cr Garey is class. More than you can say for the kneejerk anti Council brigade.

So what are you saying?

Is this right? "...climate change is the overriding issue that we have to address and we've already started that work. We need to embed it in council operations, that's really important." So is climate change THE overriding issue? Is not the replacement of the power poles, renewal and maintenance of the water reticulation and drainage and the sewers, the lowering of harsh rates on the businesses of Dunedin THE MAIN ISSUE? If not, why not? Look at all the empty shop premises in George St. please, and find out how to help make conditions better for businesses to make money and to employ people in Dunedin.

May the destruction of our city continue, yet more roads closed (unless they contain cycle ways), power poles not replaced, shops remain empty etc.
Lets watch Rome burn while 1&2 pontificate and pander to each other.
How a guy got to be mayor whilst only ever 'working' at the university and not in the real world is beyond me.

Or we could have add petrol by electing Vandertrump.

You have just lost the argument by name calling, very childish.

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