Law­ton de­parts with long to do list

Central Otago Mirror - - CONVERSATIONS - MAR­JORIE COOK

Ella Law­ton has for­mally con­firmed her res­ig­na­tion as Queen­stown Lakes coun­cil­lor and been given a large ‘‘to do list’’ from her coun­cil col­leagues to take to the Otago Re­gional Coun­cil.

Law­ton lodged her nom­i­na­tion for the va­cant seat in the Dun­stan ward of Otago Re­gional Coun­cil on Fri­day.

Her late mother, Dr Mag­gie Law­ton, held the seat from Septem­ber last year un­til her death from can­cer on March 13.

Law­ton said her res­ig­na­tion was ‘‘with a heavy heart’’ but the de­ci­sion was made eas­ier by sup­port from coun­cil staff, coun­cil­lors, friends and fam­ily.

The sec­ond-term coun­cil­lor thanked her col­leagues and said she had en­joyed her ser­vice.

‘‘It is dif­fi­cult to un­der­stand what it is like to be in this seat un­less you have been there,’’ she said.

Her part­ing re­quest was for coun­cil­lors to fo­cus on so­cial policy along­side eco­nomic devel­op­ment ini­tia­tives.

‘‘So­cial policy has to sit along­side that as we con­tinue to change and grow as a com­mu­nity,’’ she said.

Law­ton re­minded the coun­cil­lors she and her mother had a plan for how they wanted to work to­gether for the district so it could be well gov­erned and well planned.

It was es­sen­tial to have good re­la­tion­ships be­tween the two au­thor­i­ties and, if elected, she would be pleased to de­liver the Queen­stown Lakes District Coun­cil’s sub­mis­sion to the Otago Re­gional Coun­cil’s 2017 an­nual plan.

‘‘If you could just vote me in we could get on with it,’’ she said.

She would cam­paign for strong lead­er­ship, solid sci­ence, com­mu­ni­ca­tion, in­no­va­tive so­lu­tions and a clear plan on how to pay for things.

She encouraged her col­leagues to ‘‘dig a whole lot deeper’’ in their sub­mis­sion to the re­gional coun­cil’s 10 year plan.

Mayor Jim Boult wished Law­ton well and said he would watch the elec­tion process with in­ter­est.

If elected, he hoped she would take the ‘‘to do list’’ with her.

‘‘I have very much en­joyed your con­tri­bu­tion and would like on record that you have been a tire­less ser­vant of the district, par­tic­u­larly the Up­per Clutha and Wanaka,’’ Boult said.

Cen­tral Otago farmer and for­mer re­gional coun­cil­lor Gary Kel­li­her is chal­leng­ing Law­ton in the by­elec­tion.

SUP­PLIED

Queen­stown Lakes District coun­cil­lor Ella Law­ton.

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