Miccio warns against 'negative minority'
Former Nelson city mayor Aldo Miccio is leaving for Auckland, with a parting call for the council not to pander to a "negative noisy minority".
Miccio, who rates amongst the highlights of his mayoralty winning Cricket World Cup 2015 hosting rights and keeping rates low, also slates "the terrible self-interest politics that goes on in this city".
He spent two terms on the council, losing the mayoralty at the last election to Rachel Reese.
He has sold the family's Hardy St home to Christchurch buyers and is heading to Auckland.
The move was "predominantly because of work commitments but also a bit of a family adventure for us all.
"Nelson has and always will be my home, with my family and many of our friends here and strong historical roots.
"It may only be a temporary move for a few years, but we are playing that by ear as we could end up anywhere."
He names his best moments on the council as: "Hosting the Rugby World Cup; winning Cricket World Cup rights and getting vision 2060 through, and all while finally getting council books in order by delivering needed efficiency gains in the council to deliver the lowest combined three-year rate rise of any council term in 24 years and finally been able to lower forecast debt".
However, he identified two examples of what he said were self-interest politics amongst his worst moments.
"The previous term when council at the last minute, from what I would describe as undue and excessive influence upon some councillors and staff, then voted against building a new town hall theatre on the Rutherford Holding site, and then the even more shocking walkout of three councillors to disestablish a quorum to avoid voting and passing the Farmers development that would have been completed by now.
"These two developments would have significantly changed for the better the dynamics of our city for the greater good of all of Nelson and would have gone a long way to reverse our current ailing city CBD."
His biggest hope for Nelson was that it kept the momentum of the previous six years of the council going and did not give up.
"Nelson needs to stand up with confidence and drive forward with projects such as the city enhancement plan as specified in the Heart of Nelson, drive forward with the gondola project and support the gondola trust, move forward the Haven precinct plans that were developed, the 2060 vision implementation plan, the Rocks Rd promenade, and so much more," said Miccio.
"My fear is that things pause and council panders to the negative noisy minority and the ‘shadow groups' that use their influence and clout with councillors and staff to stop projects that don't fit their own self-interests."
He said Nelson needed to realise how much potential it had and back itself to "be the best it possibly can".
Miccio had not ruled out a return to politics.
"Politics is something you never really give up, so who knows what the future holds," he said.
Miccio said he had taken on some new roles and entered a couple of business joint ventures. The primary one was NZIEAS Ltd, which specialised in international trade and consultancy.
"At this stage, with a head office and staff in Auckland that I'm running and clients throughout Asia, America, Middle East and Europe, it was getting increasingly difficult to run this from Nelson."
He said his family would be back each year for part of the summer holidays and many other occasions .
"As well as family and friends in my home town, I have many business interests here which will bring me back quite regularly at least every four to eight weeks, so you will still see me out and about the city."