Local elections

Insights Newsletter
2 February, 2024

For those of you who aren’t residents of Wellington’s coffee-infused bubble, you may not be aware that we’re on the brink of yet another local election.

Political nerds around the world have rejoiced at the prospect of the Lambton General Ward by-election – a name as enticing as it is short.

The by-election is to fill the vacancy on the Lambton General Ward Council when Green MP Tamatha Paul achieved promotion from council to parliament.

There are seven nominated candidates, all but one of whom are declared independents. Their visions for Wellington vary wildly, from focussing on our water infrastructure to advocating for a return to feudalism.

However, it is our position here at the Initiative that none of the candidates really get Wellington. None of them has put forward a programme that can revitalise our little capital and inspire a new sense of civic pride in living in the world’s second-most famous windy city.

We have compiled a list of local policies that candidates would be wise to adopt if they have any ambitions of winning. These are:

More road cones: the council has already done an excellent job of piling the streets of Wellington with road cones. Not only do they guarantee that commuters get to spend even more time in their cars, they also provide free housing decorations for Wellington’s large student population. Two benefits for the price of one? It’s a no-brainer!

Free street showers: After nearly four decades of local council bravely ignoring Wellington’s decaying water pipes, we now lose approximately 40% of our water - much of which leaks onto the streets.

Trying to fix all the pipes at once will be too expensive, so instead, it’s time for a cost-effective and innovative solution: reconvert the leaks into free street showers! It’s environmentally friendly, cheap, and would save time for those in a rush to get to work in the morning.

Increase town hall funding: Many councillors support big spending to save Wellington’s heritage-listed town hall. But they don’t go far enough. We need to not only save the town hall but also put it on wheels so we can whip it up Mount Victoria in case of an earthquake. It’ll cost billions and inconvenience everyone, but it’ll be worth it.
If any councillor is brave enough to adopt these policies, they are almost guaranteed victory.

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