Three of four Southern Ward Tararua councillors have confirmed they will be standing again in this year's local body elections, with the longest-serving still deciding.

Deputy Mayor Bill Keltie of Pahiatua, who has been on the council for 15 years, said the council's work towards improving major assets was his favourite achievement to date.

"I still have to make a decision on whether I will be standing for the Southern Ward at the next election," he said.

"I think our progress and accomplishments on improvements to our major assets - water, sewerage, and the upgrading of our towns, the sharing of staff and processes with other councils - has put this council in a good position for the Government's directives."


First-term councillor Tracey Collis has "always enjoyed a close relationship with Eketahuna" and is excited to see the town's upgrade come to fruition.

"I have been fully involved in the town upgrade project and am excited with our plans for the town and the potential they will unlock," she said.

"I look forward to watching them come to fruition and am proud of the way the process has worked to date, with a high level of transparency throughout consultation with the community."

She said her future goals as a councillor would be to ensure the issues of internet access and speed in the Tararua District was paid close attention to.

"As a rural district, I feel if we do not stay as adequately connected as our provincial neighbours we will penalise our students, businesses and residents, and this will hinder any population growth," she said.

"Keeping the Tararua an affordable and enjoyable place to live has to be high on my list as well. I have to justify rates increases to my husband, too."

Councillor Peter Johns of Woodville, who is serving his fourth year in total, was elected to Tararua District Council at the end of last year through a by-election following the resignation of Warren Davidson.

He will be standing again this year with the goal of ensuring rates rises are kept to an "absolute minimum without compromising vital services or a weakening of our roading asset".

"In addition, I believe it essential to encourage settlement and business development in the district to ensure job creation and a stronger rating base," he said.

Second-term councillor Shirley Hull of Pahiatua said she was excited to stand for councillor again this year and hoped to enhance communication between the community and local government.

"People will say that I have more community interaction than many of the councillors," she said.

"I'm an avid Facebooker, I have my own community chat page, and I keep in touch with people through that throughout the district.

"So I'm a real sharer of information in and around the community, and that's one of my strengths - getting out and about and communicating with people."

She said that as a grandmother with all of her children and grandchildren living in the district, she had "a huge responsibility" to make the community as positive and energetic as possible "so that [her] children and grandchildren can grow up in a really nice place".

She said she liked connecting with councillors in other communities "because you find out what they're doing and what solutions are on the table".

"When we all come together as councillors, that's when we can have that conversation with government representatives about any new legislation or changes that we would like to see, or wouldn't like to see."