Vot­ers show low in­ter­est in elec­tions

Matamata Chronicle - - Your Paper, Your Place - MIKE BAIN

‘‘It's your op­por­tu­nity to have a say on how the Mata­mata-Pi­ako district is run over the next three years.’’

A fi­nal push is being made to en­cour­age peo­ple to have a say in this year’s lo­cal govern­ment elec­tions as ini­tial voter turnout fig­ures look abysmal.

As at Septem­ber 29, only 1631 votes have been re­ceived for the Mata­mata Ward mean­ing there’s still 7355 vot­ing pa­pers to be re­turned.

Vot­ing pa­pers must be in the mail by Oc­to­ber 5, or handed into any coun­cil of­fice be­fore mid­day Oc­to­ber 8.

Coun­cil­lors have a lead­er­ship role across the district and rep­re­sent the views of the com­mu­nity.

There are five Mata­mata Ward can­di­dates con­test­ing four seats, in­clud­ing Joanne Aoake, Brian Hunter, James Sains­bury, Kevin Tap­pin and Adri­enne Wil­cock.

Mata­mata-Pi­ako District Coun­cil is en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to be­come in­volved in the elec­tion.

‘‘These de­ci­sions will have a big im­pact on the fu­ture,’’ says elec­toral of­fi­cer Sandy Barnes.

‘‘It’s your op­por­tu­nity to have a say on how the Mata­mata-Pi­ako district is run over the next three years.’’

Mayor Jan Barnes is urg­ing the peo­ple to vote as its not only good to have your say but it’s im­por­tant to un­der­stand you are elect­ing peo­ple to make de­ci­sions on your be­half.

‘‘Although there is just the one elec­tion for the Mata­mata Ward with five con­tenders for four po­si­tions, there is still the plenty of rea­son to give the vot­ing pa­pers the tick,’’ said Barnes.

‘‘I want ‘ my’ peo­ple of Mata­mata, Mor­rinsville and Te Aroha to vote for the Waikato Re­gional Coun­cil as well as the Waikato District Health Board.’’

Ques­tions are being asked by Lo­cal Govern­ment New Zealand (LGNZ) as to what more can be done to en­cour­age vot­ers.

Na­tion­wide there is a lack of en­gage­ment from vot­ers aged 18-29 and LGNZ is sup­port­ive of vot­ing on­line.

As part of a na­tion­wide cam­paign, chil­dren aged be­tween 11-15 have been able take part in a kids vote through schools in or­der for them to learn to en­gage in the vot­ing process.

Find out more about the can­di­dates at http://mpdc.nz/ vote.

Mata­mata-Pi­ako mayor Jan Barnes is en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to vote in the lo­cal govern­ment elec­tions.

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