Four signal intentions to stand

Jim Boult. Photo: ODT files
Jim Boult.
Four people have already signalled their intention to stand for the Queenstown Lakes District Council in this year's local body elections, for which nominations open tomorrow.

Three incumbent councillors have announced they would not be standing again this year - Alexa Forbes intends to seek election for the Otago Regional Council instead, Wanaka's Ross McRobie is eyeing up a seat around the Waitaki District Council table and Arrowtown ward representative Scott Stevens has announced he would not be seeking re-election.

While Mayor Jim Boult has said he will seek a second term, to date no-one has announced a challenge.

Election issues this year are likely to include the future of Queenstown Airport, infrastructure pressures and water-quality issues.

Meanwhile, Local Government New Zealand has launched a campaign to get people to vote in local elections, which tend to suffer from lower turnout than central government elections.

The Queenstown Lakes District had a turnout of 54% in 2016 - higher than the national average of 43%, but lower than the top turnout of 71% in the Chatham Islands.

The #Vote2019NZ campaign is based on domestic and international research about who is and who is not voting, why they are not and what would persuade them to tick the boxes.

Measures to build elector turnout will include a strong focus on younger voters.

Nominations for local and regional council are open until August 16.

Voting documents will be delivered from September 20, and voting will close at noon on October 12. 


At a glance

QLDC candidates so far ...  
Queenstown/Wakatipu ward (6 seats):  Penny Clark (incumbent), Craig Ferguson (incumbent), John Glover, John MacDonald (incumbent), Val Miller (incumbent), Grant Scannell.
Arrowtown ward (1 seat): Heath Copland.
Wanaka ward (3 seats): Quentin Smith (incumbent), Cherilyn Walthew.
Mayor (1 seat): Jim Boult (incumbent).

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