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Candidates Seek To End ARC Corporate Domination

RAM media release 20.8.04

RAM candidates seek end to corporate domination of ARC

In the Auckland Regional Council election, eight candidates across four regions are standing for RAM - Residents Action Movement.

"RAM is a broad, non-party, citizen's coalition aiming to end corporate and bureaucratic domination of the ARC," said RAM spokesperson Grant Morgan.

"RAM will reduce ARC home rates to around 2002 levels, switch transport funds from motorways to buses, trains and ferries, and extend democracy in practical ways like Citizens Assemblies on rates, transport and environment," said Mr Morgan.

RAM's five female and three male candidates are standing in the North Shore, Auckland, Manukau and Franklin-Papakura ARC constituencies.

Here are thumbnail sketches of each candidate (alphabetical order):

* RACHEL ASHER (Auckland ARC) - 34, graduating from a social work degree at the end of the year, student representative, health sector and domestic violence worker, trained chef, peace activist, lives in Grafton.

* JENNY BROOKES (Franklin-Papakura ARC) - 46, qualified horticulturalist, Women's Centre and conservation volunteer, lifetime in Papakura.

* JEREMY ELWOOD (North Shore ARC) - 28, a top NZ stand-up comedian, currently performing at Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2004, also musician, actor and director, performed at benefit fundraisers for Amnesty International, Youth Suicide Awareness Trust and Refugee Centre, lives in Birkenhead.

* ROGER FOWLER (Manukau ARC) - 55, manager of a community learning centre, Queen's Service Medal for three decades of community service, social justice activist, accomplished musician who has composed the "RAM Song", lives in Mangere East.

* ROBYN HUGHES (Manukau ARC) - 50, manager at Middlemore Hospital, former manager of a disability service, longtime community volunteer, lives in Mangere Bridge.

* GRANT MORGAN (Manukau ARC) - 55, spokesperson for RAM, led rates boycott committee which was a regionwide organiser of the Rates Revolt, spent nine years in an ultimately successful campaign to return the state house rents of modest income people to affordable levels, lives in Mangere Bridge.

* VALERIE VUI (Auckland ARC) - 25, youngest ARC candidate in the whole region, final year of law degree, works at Auckland District Law Society, church youth leader and community youth mentor, born in Auckland of Samoan heritage, lives in Western Springs.

* ELAINE WEST (Auckland ARC) - 54, led Rates Revolt march up Queen Street last year against massive rises in ARC home rates, educationalist who developed literacy and parenting programmes, chair/spokesperson of Auckland City Residents & Ratepayers, opponent of the sale of Auckland council homes to property speculators, lives in Ponsonby.

Electronic images of each candidate are available on request. So are photos of RAMbo - a Ram with a Bowtie who is RAM's campaign mascot.

Read our Citizen's Manifesto, a comprehensive plan of action for a RAM-led ARC. (No other ticket in the ARC election has any such detailed manifesto.)

For more information, please contact: Grant Morgan RAM spokesperson gcm@actrix.gen.nz


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