Murrell one week away from may­oralty

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - KRIS DANDO

The four-term coun­cil­lor and chair­man of Porirua City Coun­cil’s Te Komiti is the only per­son to an­nounce his can­di­dacy for the Porirua may­oralty, va­cated by Nick Leggett.

If his is the only nom­i­na­tion, he au­to­mat­i­cally be­comes mayor, ac­cord­ing to Porirua City Coun­cil.

Six years ago, when Jenny Brash stood aside, there were nine can­di­dates for the city’s top job. This time, de­spite an empty may­oral seat, there is only one con­firmed can­di­date.

The clos­ing date for nom­i­na­tions for coun­cil­lors and may­oralty can­di­dates is this Fri­day, Au­gust 12.

Murrell, who has been en­dorsed by Leggett and Mana MP Kris Faafoi, said it was a weird feel­ing hav­ing no op­po­si­tion at this point.

‘‘There’s a chance I’m go­ing to be stand­ing un­op­posed, but I’m tak­ing noth­ing for granted,’’ he said.

‘‘I’m stand­ing back and wait­ing. I have my bill­boards and pam­phlets ready, but I may not need to go the whole hog yet [if no one else stands].’’

Only one may­oral can­di­date from the past two elec­tions was yet to con­firm if she was or was not stand­ing.

For­mer deputy mayor Liz Kelly, who lost her Western ward seat in 2013, said she had not de­cided yet.

‘‘I’m talk­ing to peo­ple who mat­ter to me and once we’ve had that con­ver­sa­tion, I’ll de­cide,’’ she said.

‘‘I’ve said [since 2013] ‘never again’, but I still have a vi­sion for Porirua that I hope to see ful­filled.’’

Rus­sell Mar­shall and Litea Ah Hoi, who stood in 2010, Brian Collins, who stood in 2010 and the last elec­tion in 2013, all said they would not be stand­ing. Ah Hoi laughed when con­tacted.

‘‘I’ve been there and done that and I’m not even stand­ing for coun­cil this time,’’ she said.

Murrell, who is 68, said he would wel­come com­pe­ti­tion for the job, de­bat­ing is­sues that mat­ter to peo­ple in Porirua. Rates, Trans­mis­sion Gully’s ef­fect on the city and the CBD up­grade are im­por­tant in the com­ing tri­en­nium, he said.

He en­vis­aged him­self as mayor for a max­i­mum of two terms.

‘‘I firmly be­lieve I’m the right per­son and can build some mo­men­tum, mak­ing sure Porirua is in a solid state.

‘‘I know the sys­tems that coun­cil op­er­ate in and that’s a big ad­van­tage, be­cause a new per­son [with­out coun­cil ex­pe­ri­ence] will find it ex­tremely frus­trat­ing.

Murrell said he would not en­dorse any coun­cil­lors stand­ing.

Suc­cess­ful coun­cil­lor and may­oral can­di­dates are an­nounced on Oc­to­ber 8.

Euon Murrell may stand un­con­tested as Porirua mayor.

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