The Northern Advocate and NZME Northland digital and radio platforms are giving voters a chance to hear why the candidates standing deserve a vote on October 17.
Northern Advocate reporter Imran Ali and The Hits Northland day announcer Charmaine Soljak have interviewed candidates from the three Northland electorates – Whangārei, Northland and Te Tai Tokerau.
We caught them on video, too, so head to thenorthernadvocate.co.nz and thehits.co.nz to read about the candidates, listen and watch what they have to say.
Over the next two weeks, The Hits Northland, the Northern Advocate, and the Northland Age will introduce you to the candidates, so you can be well informed before you cast your vote.
Today we look at some of the candidates in the Northland electorate.
An unconditional basic income for every adult and child in Northland is the answer to the biggest issue facing the region— poverty and climate change.
That's the view of Opportunities Party candidate Helen Jeremiah who said having that income and less reliance on tourism to boost the local economy meant everyone would be able to spend and raise their standard of living.
"Our party policy at the moment is $250 for everyone over 18 and $40 for children. The beauty of the unconditional basic income is that if you want to boost the economy at any time, you can raise it and it gives money to everybody equally and then they spend, especially the poor.
To listen to the Hits Northland host Charmaine Soljak's interview click here
Her party, she said, was big on house prices generally and one of its policies was to slow down immigration a bit and to raise taxes on properties slightly to keep prices stable.
"Tax on investment in property ownership is far less than the tax on other forms of investment and that's why people invest in houses and chase each other, buying houses off each other and that's one of the main drivers of house prices."
She is in favour of the Ports of Auckland moving to Northport and on genetically modified organisms (GMO), she is urging caution.
"We need to be careful. Scientists make mistakes. They don't know everything but the Opportunities Party is in favour of using GMOs where it helps for instance to protect our local wildlife, we might be able to do something with rats or something.
"In the past, I've been pretty much against it because I think globally New Zealand is in a unique position to be GE free and if something went wrong, we'd be the one place that could be. Same as Covid. It's easier for us to keep dangerous things out."
In her opinion, Northland needs to keep its territorial authorities rather than to amalgamate them.
"I think they are far enough from the people as it is. The Opportunities Party supports more funding for local authorities to do things properly."
On how her party intends to deal with the methamphetamine scourge in Northland, Jeremiah gave the analogy of an experiment where rats in an empty environment were given a choice between drugs and water.
They chose drugs.
"When they did the experiment again with a lot of entertaining things for the rats to do, they chose water over drugs, so I think the way to deal with it is to make sure that our people have hope, have exciting lives and then they won't want drugs.
"If we could regulate and tax it the same way as we are planning to do with marijuana to have as much money as possible to help people who have fallen into the trap and get addicted.
"Keeping new people from starting with lots of good things for them to do...sports, give them an unconditional basic income so they can choose, and not necessarily jobs although jobs might be voluntary work but making them feel involved in the community," she said.
Bob Jones has had the greatest influence in her life.
"When he said on the national radio round about 1980 that 'oh there was no such things as human rights' and so that got my back up and I thought 'maybe he's right about that' but we've got to have some rights.
"That's when I decided that the most important right that we can have is the right to share the natural resources, water. Someone who needs to use more than their share they need to pay."
* Go to the Northernadvocate.co.nz for video.