Your vote is your com­mu­nity voice

Matamata Chronicle - - Front Page - By KA­T­RINA TANIRAU

Do you use the roads? Do you re­cy­cle? Do you take your kids to the park? Do you own a dog? Do you swim at the pools or bor­row books from the li­brary?

If you an­swered ‘‘yes’’ to any of these ques­tions, you use Mata­mata-Pi­ako Dis­trict Coun­cil ser­vices and are af­fected by the decisions coun­cil­lors make, so your vote in lo­cal body elec­tions is im­por­tant.

Dur­ing the last two lo­cal body elec­tions, 41 per cent of the Mata­mata-Pi­ako Dis­trict’s vot­ing pop­u­la­tion took part.

The na­tional av­er­age is 50 per cent and al­though the dis­trict’s sta­tis­tics are not the low­est in the Waikato, res­i­dents still need to be in­formed about why it is im­por­tant to vote.

Mata­mata- Pi­ako Dis­trict Coun­cil CEO Don McLeod said the decisions the next coun­cil make could af­fect the com­mu­nity for sev­eral years.

‘‘It’s im­por­tant to vote so that the peo­ple mak­ing those decisions re­flect the val­ues and is­sues you want for our dis­trict,’’ Mr McLeod said.

‘‘There are state­ments about each can­di­date on our web­site []. ‘‘We en­cour­age peo­ple to read these and seek other in­for­ma­tion about the can­di­dates so they can make an in­formed vote.

‘‘ Democ­racy is a hugely im­por­tant part of New Zealand so­ci­ety. If you have an in­ter­est in see­ing our com­mu­nity stay strong and con­tinue to de­velop, you should take the op­por­tu­nity to vote.’’

Coun­cil elec­toral of­fi­cer Sandy Barnes said ‘‘your vote is your voice’’.

‘‘If you’re sat­is­fied or dis­sat­is­fied with the cur­rent coun­cil, you need to vote so that your voice is heard,’’ she said.

Vot­ing pa­pers are sent out dur­ing the week of Septem­ber 20, and spe­cial vot­ing forms are also avail­able from coun­cil of­fices from Septem­ber 20.

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