Rachel Reese seeks re-election to Nelson Mayoralty
I can confirm that I will seeking a third term as Mayor for Nelson City in order to finish the job I started 6 years ago. I acknowledge that momentum over the last term has not been as brisk as that of my inaugural term and have been open around past frustrations with Council’s day to day direction of activities in this regard. With recent positive recruitment at the top level we have returned to speed with some good wins and visible headway made on key goals.
Ground work over the last three years is now paying dividends. The major Neale Park and Corder Park pump station upgrades are reaching fruition, the new airport terminal is nearly complete and organisers of hugely successful Nelson events such as Bay Dreams and the Adam Chamber Music Festival are already gearing up for repeat performances. On top of that we’ve succeeded in attracting the upcoming England/NZ match for Saxton Cricket Oval and pitching for the mountain biking Enduro World Series while also helping to secure strong investment for our key industries. Through attracting talent and investment in value-add industries, Nelson now has the highest proportion of research, science and technology employees of any city in the country. This confidence in the region’s capability recently saw Cawthron Institute secure $6M from the Provincial Growth Fund toward building the new National Algae Centre right here.
Less visible by nature is the work that has continued over this term in upgrading the city's essential (largely underground) infrastructure and the ongoing work toward restoring our region's indigenous biodiversity and treasured waterways. And while all this has been going on, we've also been able to demonstrate sound financial management with achievement of the highest credit rating for councils in New Zealand of a Standard and Poor’s AA grade.
But there’s more to do. CBD enhancements are just getting off the ground and we’ve finally secured significant funding and attention from NZTA towards finding a solution to the pressure on Nelson's transport network. It would be a great shame if these key projects could not be pursued.
I believe I have shown a deep commitment to the people and prosperity of Nelson and look forward to working with the new Council Chief Executive in order to deliver the measurable gains we all seek in a third Mayoral term.