Aiming to be voice for the community
A man who is heading a campaign to introduce extra features into the planned Matamata Memorial Centre will attempt a second run at becoming a councillor for the Matamata-Piako district.
Kevin Tappin managed 1980 votes at the 2013 elections, just behind Bob McGrail, who is not contesting re-election. Tappin hasn’t spent the past three years dwelling on the result though, and says he only decided to put his name forward recently.
He was born, bred and educated in Matamata, his father was also in local politics, serving for one term on the Matamata Borough Council in 1971.
He is the owner/operator of Hurricane Computers on Arawa Street. He has served the community through Rotary, Lions, on both the Matamata Public Relations Association and Matamata Business Association committees and is a member of Grey Power.
Country music is a passion he shares with his wife Kay, a wellknown singer. They are both on the executive of a group which brings high-profile entertainment into the Waikato and Bay of Plenty.
Tappin is also a sound engineer at Mill Corner Studios. He is currently spear-heading the charge to find an extra $1million for a stage and wing facility to be added to the planned memorial centre.
In 2010, Tappin was elected onto the now de-established Matamata Community Board, and says the longer he sat on that board, the more he realised how important it was for ordinary com- munity members to have a say on district plans and policies.
‘‘I enjoyed the experience and we, as a board, managed to get a lot of things achieved. It made me conscious of having representation on council. I went to every council meeting over a three year period, to see how it all worked.’’
He says that apart from a passion for getting the memorial centre rebuild right, he doesn’t have any fixed agenda or personal projects to try and push through. He just wants to be a voice for the community, to represent their concerns and take to council the issues people talk to him about.
It’s a job he believes he’s fulfilling with the community already.
‘‘I know people don’t mind talking to me. Because I ama local businessman, people often come in and talk about their concerns in the community and I’d like to be in a position to voice those discussions at the council table.’’