Local elections 2019

Candidate Jo Meiklejohn is looking to become a Whanganui councillor after working for almost a decade as a council wage earner.

Meiklejohn has eight years' experience working at Whanganui District Council as a team leader of parking and animal control.

The candidate has also previously worked in the Ministry of Health's audit, risk and compliance department, and also worked as a business analyst for the ministry.

It's that combination of experience Meiklejohn said will give her an upper hand come election time.

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"I believe it gives me a really strong edge because I can hit the ground running. I've submitted to council, I've been in workshops with councillors so I have a relationship with current and previous councillors.

"I know how it works and I've sat on the other side of the table, and for me it'll be easy to slip into that councillor role."

Meiklejohn currently works as a part-time school administrator, which will allow time for her to commit to the council.

If successful, Meiklejohn would like to ask more questions at the council table.

"I believe we need good decision making, especially in our current climate of growth within Whanganui.

"Urban growth has filtered down through the regions and the council's decisions are starting to show returns, but I believe that our regional growth will not always be there and there will be hard decisions to be made.

"From my experience sitting in council meetings, sometimes questions I would've asked are not being asked."

She said she would want to be part of a council that takes a deeper look at how decisions are made, and how debt incurred by those decisions is carried by future generations of ratepayers.

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Meiklejohn highlighted waste minimisation as one of Whanganui's high-cost issues and said the council's decisions made around waste minimisation haven't been the best.

"We've got to work as a team to make change and you make change with what the majority of people want and can afford."