Shat­tock to carry man­date

South Waikato News - - Front Page - LUKE KIRKEBY

Jenny Shat­tock be­gan as a daugh­ter of the South Waikato and now she’s its mother.

Shat­tock, who was born in Pu­taruru and grew up in Toko­roa, is the dis­trict’s new mayor after a con­vinc­ing win in the lo­cal body elec­tions on Satur­day.

She was 1100 votes ahead of her clos­est ri­val Tracey Deane with a to­tal of 2972 votes after 98 per cent were counted.

After nine years as deputy, Shat­tock put her win down to ex­pe­ri­ence.

‘‘I am ab­so­lutely thrilled and hum­bled be­cause the peo­ple have cer­tainly given us a man­date to carry on the work that has been hap­pen­ing be­cause all sit­ting coun­cil­lors got back in,’’ she said.

‘‘I think peo­ple saw the ex­pe­ri­ence but we have got a bal­ance and it is a re­ally good coun­cil com­ing in.’’

She said ri­vals Deane, Alan Blair, and Jar­rad Gal­lagher each brought strengths and all had to cam­paign hard for votes.

‘‘Ev­ery­body wanted the job. We all worked hard for it so I wish them well in their fu­tures,’’ she said.

‘‘I must say I was qui­etly con­fi­dent. I had to be be­cause [the for­mer coun­cil] had done some re­ally good stuff and the ma­jor­ity of peo­ple recog­nise that.’’

Shat­tock said it was an ex­cit­ing time to be lead­ing the coun­cil.

‘‘The South Waikato is a cool place and one of the big­gies I’d like to achieve over the three years is more jobs, youth par­tic­i­pa­tion, and youth re­cre­ation but also im­prov­ing the South Waikato’s rep­u­ta­tion.’’

She re­ferred to her­self as a ’’safe pair of hands’’ and said there will be no sur­prises with her lead­er­ship.

‘‘I am not go­ing to make huge changes but there is one thing I did hear while cam­paign­ing and that is that peo­ple want to be heard,’’ she said.

‘‘I want to set up be­fore each coun­cil meet­ing an open fo­rum. It will only be for half an hour and it will be struc­tured but peo­ple will be able to come in and talk to elected mem­bers.’’

Shat­tock said she she would like to thank her sup­port­ers.

‘‘Neil is a hard act to fol­low and I have re­ally been priv­i­leged work­ing with him but I am dif­fer­ent,’’ she said.

‘‘I am a lot more prac­ti­cal and see things quite dif­fer­ently than he did but I am still strate­gic and al­ways look­ing to­wards the fu­ture.’’

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