November 4, 2011
Candidates: Tane Woodley for the Greens in Rimutaka
We invited all candidates in Wellington electorates to contact us with their answers to fifteen crowdsourced questions. Answers are restricted to 30 words each, and we publish them exactly as we receive them.
- Who are you and what do you want?
My name is Tane, and I was born and bred in the Hutt. I want a New Zealand that is fair, comfortable and vibrant, living within its environmental limits.
- You have 30 seconds to convince someone to come to Wellington. What’s your pitch?
I’ve got a spare ticket to the Sevens.
- Where do you stand on the issue of opening up government data?
Privacy needs to be protected, identity theft prevented and there are genuine security and commercial considerations. Otherwise, open it up, transparency solves a lot of problems.
- Describe your bicycle, or your favourite bus route?
I’ve got a cheap mountain bike, totally unsuitable for mountains. It’s also terrible for going up Ngaio Gorge to Johnsonville, but I persist because it burns lots of calories.
- When did you last use the library, a community centre, or a council-run sports facility?
About a month ago to the library, though I use their books every night when I read to my kids in bed.
- Would you welcome a central government driven “super-city” amalgamation of local authorities?
Not if it’s imposed. The citizens need to want it enough to do it themselves, not have someone tell them what’s good for them.
- What city inspires your vision for Wellington? How?
It could be London, Paris, Amsterdam or any of dozens of European cities. Dense, low energy housing, with lots of local parks, amenities and shops, linked by excellent public transport.
- Is the concept of democratic representation important to you? How so?
Hell yes! Representatives give a focus for the people’s mandate, and make democracy workable, by turning it from a mob of millions, to a Parliament of 120.
- What achievement for Wellington are you most proud of?
That I can catch the train to work. That’s an hour of reading I get to do every day. I’ll be prouder when the rail system is better.
- What role do you think central government should play in local roading/public transport issues?
Primarily funding (and more of it), and secondarily of coordinating between councils. They also need to stop imposing unnecessary motorways on the public (Kapiti expressway, I’m looking at you!)
- How can we make Wellington more environmentally friendly?
Better town planning. Denser housing and no more greenfields suburban sprawl. Make everything as close and walkable as possible, with better public transport. It’s how the Europeans do it.
- What will you do to ensure diverse representation on government issues?
Retain MMP. It’s already doing a good job of increasing diversity in Parliament, and that trend is continuing. Plus it’s a damn sight fairer than the other systems.
- What’s your personal history of living in Wellington?
Lived here 29 out of my 39 years. I’ve lived in Lower Hutt, Upper Hutt, Kapiti, Porirua and Wellington City. We’re now raising a family, so another 20 to come.
- What policy of your party do you think will have the most impact on Wellington?
$15 minimum wage (since borrowed by Labour). Most wages will also rise, putting money in the hands of those who spend it locally, helping Wellington businesses in turn.
- Do you genuinely believe you have a chance at winning the seat you’re contesting, or is this more of a party campagin?
One day the Greens will stand a candidate in Rimutaka and contest for the electorate vote. That’s not today, so we’re running for the party vote (this time…).
- Bonus: Is there a need to combat regional resources & funding being siphoned away from Wellington to Auckland or Christchurch, and if so, how would you achieve that?
Sometimes we need to trust the government. If funds go elsewhere, it should be because their need is greater. If it’s going to the ‘Holiday Highway’ though, vote accordingly!
Thanks you for mentioning and opposing the Kapiti expressway.
Yes there are pinch points which through traffic experience in long weekends but they can be eased through the building of a local arterial and second bridge across the Waikanae river. Much cheaper and open sooner.
The lower top speed will be safer and greener.
Yeah, my thoughts exactly. A second arterial route for local traffic, and to take the strain off SH1, which is the only road between McKays Crossing and Waikanae. What will effectively be a river of concrete that cuts Paraparaumu and Waikanae in half is not the answer, and certainly not at that cost.
I think better public transport is a huge issue for Wellington, and possibly even more important is a better cycling infrastructure; bike lanes, public bikes, repeal of helmet laws, hopefully all leading to a more accepting culture…Although we may need to flatten all the hills to truly have an inclusive cycling culture. [caveat – I haven’t been to Wellington for a couple of years, so all this may have been fixed by now…]
I live in Melbourne, and although public transport users, and cyclists, complain about the shoddy deal they get, it is far, far better than Wellington (well how Welly was two years ago anyway)
Tane, did I go to school with you at Rata Street?
I agree with your comments on public transport and cycling infrastructure. Public transport is OK during commuter rush periods, but outside of those times is mediocre to poor to unusable. Cycling will always be harder in Wgtn than say Amsterdam, given the hills and wind, but rising petrol prices demand that more cycleways are essential.
And I didn’t go to Rata Street School, but Dyer Street School, on the other side of the tracks. I was at Naenae Intermediate 1983-4 and Naenae College 1985-9 though.
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