Importance of rural sector agreed on

As part of the Oamaru Mail’s election coverage, we are profiling council candidates throughout the district. All candidates were asked two questions —

Q.1 Why are you standing?

Q.2 What issues are you most passionate about in Corriedale, and where would you like to see change?


Age: 41

Occupation: Trained minister and youth worker

Q.1 I love this place. My wife and I believe that there is no other place in New Zealand that we would rather live. It is a great place to meet and connect with people from all walks of life. I also believe that I can make a difference at governance level by being on the council. I have the energy, the drive, enthusiasm, I think strategically, I have governance experience and act with integrity — this will contribute to the elected team.

Q.2 There are many issues the council is focusing on, and rightly so, but we cannot forget the rural sector. It is the backbone of our community and it needs our voice to represent them at governance level. Waitaki District Council can influence and lobby on behalf of our district for rural roading and adequate funding, rural broadband and rural water — I’ll speak up, I’ll ask questions and will fight for it. Decisions for local people should be made by local people for our community.


Age: 53

Occupation: Owner of

Kakanui Tomatoes Limited

Q.1 My wife and I own Kakanui Tomatoes Limited, I am a director of North Otago Growers Co-operative Limited and of Tomatoes NZ. I have current and past governance experience both locally and nationally at scale, as well as experience of successfully running my own business activities for over half my adult life. I wish to run for the Corriedale Ward as it is where I live and where I make my living, I believe that I offer a pragmatic, sensible, business and farming experience to ensure that we finally get the services that we have been paying for.

Q.2 This district will go from $10,500 000 last year to $60,000,000 of debt by 2025-26 and annual rates will increase from $32,268,000 last year to $47,479,000 in 2025-26 — this is mostly due to central government requirements. Corriedale urgently needs the asbestos cement water pipes replaced before they become dangerous, the Kakanui Bridge hasn’t been fit for purpose for decades and will become increasingly dangerous. We need much better drainage throughout Corriedale, and we need safe roads for transport. These are all budgeted for, but as we know things like the Kakanui Bridge get deferred time and time again, and these things need to happen without impacting any adjacent landowners, ratepayers’ rights must be protected.

What Corriedale don’t receive in the next three years we will never receive, it’s the most important local election in living memory — just vote for results.

Vote Callum Grant for Corriedale.


Age: N/A Occupation: Self employed

Q.1 I am standing to ensure there is rural voice with local knowledge, to continue to promote rural concerns and issues. Farming is one of our biggest industries in the Waitaki district, a fact that seems to be overlooked and taken for granted by some of the current legislation that is being passed down the line. This in turn is adding more cost, is restrictive and not necessarily for the benefit of the district.

Q.2 I am passionate about the whole district: living here all my life I have a strong rural allegiance and a strong tie to the Corriedale ward. A well maintained and affordable roading network is vital for the health of the rural area. Identifying areas of concern and having a discussion including the input of local knowledge can be most cost effective. Maintaining safe and efficient roads that enable the delivery of farming supplies, removal of farm produce to be further processed and allow the safe passage of all road users is financially productive. I am against Three Waters in any form. Rural water schemes were built and paid for by the landowners, starting as stock water schemes and have progressed to supplying potable water to houses and dairy sheds. Currently inputs and scheme management are voluntary, ownership is local, administration is done by the district council and it works. Water and roading are essential infra-structure. They are core foundations on which growth and business in the rural sector are built on.


Age: N/A

Occupation: Farmer

Q.1 I am standing as a rural representative.

Q.2 My priorities are: working with elected members to ensure the district plan, in regard to the rural community, is fit for purpose and respecting existing farming practice and does not restrict or effect new development of progress. Preventing the loss of productive land to carbon farming. Having sensible rules for tussock burning. Ensuring appointed contractor improves rural roads. Saying no to Government’s Three Waters takeover. Supporting rural communities. Making our council farmer friendly.