Arrowtown decides

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The council by-election race for Arrowtown steps up a notch tonight.

The three candidates - Howard Scott, Scott Stevens and Basil Walker - will front the local village association’s meeting as the town decides who will replace community stalwart Lex Perkins.

Tonight’s meeting kicks off at the community rooms in Centennial Avenue, Arrowtown, at 7.30pm.

Papers to Arrowtown ward residents are being sent out from today and votes have to be in the hands of the electoral officer by midday on May 1.

Mountain Scene asked the candidates to make their pitch to readers in their own words. Here’s what they said. 

Howard Scott

My family has been a ratepayer in Arrowtown for 60 years. Four generations of my family have enjoyed Arrowtown and the fabulous environment of the wider district.

Over the last 60 years my family has holidayed and resided, at different times, in Arrowtown.

Arrowtown is in my blood and I consider it a privilege to stand in the Arrowtown ward by-election.

I like businesses to be profitable, communities to be peaceful and safe and people to have eventful and fun lives.

I see the role of the Arrowtown ward representative on the council to bring these values together as harmoniously as possible.

To achieve this, consultation with the ratepayers and residents of the ward is essential.

As your representative, I will cast my vote at council according to the views of the ward.

If my personal opinion is in opposition to the clear views of the ward I will ask that my personal view be recorded in the council minutes, but I will cast my vote according to the wishes of the ward.

Scott Stevens

The Arrowtown community has driven its own destiny since 1862. However that right to self-determination and Arrowtown’s unique voice is seriously under threat. A vote for Scott Stevens in the Arrowtown ward by-election is a vote for dedicated local representation.

I live in Arrowtown. I work in Arrowtown. I play in Arrowtown. I understand the people and enterprises that form this area and have a keen interest in the history and character of Arrowtown. My experience in running an
Arrowtown-based business and restoring historic cottages in Arrowtown has taught me the balance between progress and protection.

I have followed council business for 10 years as editor of the Lakes Weekly Bulletin. Now the time is right to put my credibility on the line.

The future of dedicated local representation for Arrowtown depends on your vote.

I encourage all Queenstown Lakes residents to see for yourself how unique and special Arrowtown is during the Autumn Festival. A week celebrating everything that is truly unique about this special corner of the Wakatipu.

Basil Walker 

I enter the Arrowtown by-election understanding the issues because I attend each Queenstown Lakes District Council monthly meeting and speak at public forum. I attended the entire Plan Change 50 hearing.

I asked council to refrain from forging ahead with the Queenstown Convention Centre (QCC) until the PC50 decision is released. I was ignored. It’s a year since the mayor stated $20 million from government is required for the QCC to proceed.

Government has said NO. We await the mayor’s credibility.

I challenge the QLDC for expending ratepayer funds on the QCC in direct opposition to existing conference facilities and private development of a similar-sized venue. 

A construction loan of $45m over 50 years, at 6.5 per cent, will cost $107m in interest only. It may take a private judicial review to protect ratepayers. I oppose corruption, deceit and the overuse of secret meetings.

I will be an objective voice for Arrowtown. I respectfully seek your vote.