Will Pow­er­lynk’s David Hay stand up?

Central Leader - - News - By Scott Mor­gan

Voter con­fu­sion could sky­rocket in the up­com­ing Auck­land En­ergy Con­sumer Trust Elec­tions over the iden­tity of Pow­er­lynk can­di­date David Hay.

The left-lean­ing group’s can­di­date shares the same name as the deputy mayor of Auck­land city, who is a Cit­i­zens & Ratepay­ers coun­cil­lor based in the Avon­dale-Roskill ward.

The five-mem­ber trust, cur­rently dom­i­nated by four Cit­i­zens & Ratepay­ers mem­bers, owns 75.1 per­cent of elec­tric­ity com­pany Vec­tor and re­placed the Auck­land Elec­tric Power Board in 1993.

Cr Hay says he’s had to tell peo­ple he’s not stand­ing for Pow­er­lynk af­ter cam­paign bill­boards went up re­cently.

While the long-serv­ing coun­cil­lor is con­cerned about po­ten­tial con­fu­sion among vot­ers, he says there’s noth­ing he can do about the sit­u­a­tion.

“I think peo­ple ought to get elect- ed on merit. If he gets elected on merit good on him, but I wouldn’t like him to get elected on my name.”

Pow­er­lynk’s Mr Hay stood for the Green Party dur­ing the gen­eral elec­tion and works as a pol­icy an­a­lyst for the Manukau City Coun­cil.

Cr Hay says his name­sake is com­ing from a dif­fer­ent po­lit­i­cal per­spec­tive to his own.

“I ex­pect his CV reads quite dif­fer­ently to mine.”

Mr Hay says hav­ing the same name as the deputy mayor is a point of in­ter­est but he doesn’t be­lieve peo­ple will be puz­zled by the dou­ble-up.

“I’m not con­fused and I don’t think other peo­ple need to be.”

But the Grey Lynn res­i­dent says he did have to point out he wasn’t Cr Hay when do­ing some work for the Auck­land City Coun­cil.

“I had to be clear with the call cen­tre there were two David Hays in the build­ing so they got the right one.”

Mr Hay says one of the ma­jor changes he’d like to see is a clear dis­tinc­tion made be­tween Vec­tor and its sub­sidiary com­pany Vec­tor Com­mu­ni­ca­tions, which lays broad­band ca­bles along­side power ca­bles.

Pow­er­lynk’s lone AECT mem­ber Shale Cham­bers says Mr Hay was se­lected for his knowl­edge of pol­icy rather than his name.

“He knows the trust and Vec­tor very well. The can­di­date book­let comes with a photo, so I don’t think there will be any con­fu­sion.”

Vot­ing pa­pers in the postal bal­lot will be sent out on Oc­to­ber 15 and must be re­turned be­fore Oc­to­ber 30. Con­sumers that live in the for­mer Auck­land Elec­tric Power Board area, made up of Auck­land and Manukau city coun­cil res­i­dents, along with some house­holds in Pa­pakura, get to vote.

There is one bal­lot pa­per is­sued per con­sumer while joint ac­counts also only re­ceive one bal­lot pa­per.

As share­hold­ers in Vec­tor, house­holds re­cently re­ceived the trust’s an­nual div­i­dend of $320.

Pow­er­lynk Auck­land En­ergy Con­sumer Trust can­di­date David Hay.

Auck­land city deputy mayor David Hay.

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