They are a happy bunch in Eltham.
At least, that's what Alex Ballantyne would like to think.
For the third term in succession, he will be elected to the South Taranaki District Council unopposed. The same goes for his fellow candidate in the Eltham ward, Gordon Lawson. And also for Phil Nixon in the uncontested Tangahoe ward.
Mr Ballantyne, the current deputy mayor, said it was humbling to see no-one had challenged his position. Again.
"Either because people are really apathetic or they're quite happy. But it must mean I haven't done anything terrible otherwise people would have come forward," Mr Ballantyne said.
"The residents here are not apathetic."
Not everyone was happy, however.
Eltham resident Wendy Barry would have liked to have seen a contest and "new blood in place".
"I'm not saying they aren't doing a good job but they've been here forever so it would be nice to have new people," she said.
On the other hand Judith Rodgers, also of Eltham, saw no problems with the uncontested seats. "Both councillors have done a lot for the town and I'm quite happy for the status quo," she said.
Ms Rodgers' sentiment was echoed by Eltham business owner Annette McGregor of Rhubarb Cafe. "They are doing a great job and I have no worries about being uncontested," she said. In the Tangahoe ward, Mr Nixon will replace Peter Johnson, who has been the area's representative since 2005. Mr Johnson was uncontested in 2010.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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