Palmerston North mayor Grant Smith says Palmerston North is in great shape and the main challenge facing the region is sustainable growth.

"We have a new vision around small-city benefits versus big-city ambition," Smith said.

"It's ensuring that we keep those really good things in the small community but also have some stuff that bigger cities enjoy."

Smith says there are initiatives in place to cope with the demand for affordable housing and says the goal is to make Palmerston North liveable for all.


"We want to keep rates on check. We can't keep continuing to raise rates but that comes with a caveat from central Government," he said. "Local government only receives 12 per cent of the total rates and tax take of New Zealand so it's a very centralised model."

Smith says climate change is being taken seriously.

"We've already reduced our carbon footprint by 17 per cent and we've got an aim to do 25 per cent by the year 2028. We could always do more and I think we may need to revisit some of those stats because we're already starting to hit some really good numbers."

If he's re-elected, Smith's focus will be on continuing to make Palmerston North a vibrant city without leaving anyone behind.

"I understand that you've got to bring everybody with you, so you're only as strong as your perceived weakest link."

Smith encourages everybody to vote, with papers arriving in letterboxes this week.

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