Daniels to make election waves

BEACH: Veteran radio DJ James Daniels has announced he is running for the Coastal Ward at the city council.

After 40 years on the airwaves, James Daniels now wants to make waves at the city council table.

The 64-year-old veteran radio DJ will take on David East for the Coastal Ward in October’s local body elections.

It comes a week after medical supplies salesman Kelly Barber announced he would also contest the seat for Labour-aligned The People’s Choice.

Mr Daniels grew up in the area, attending South, Central and North New Brighton schools.

“This community is me. I’ve grown up in Union St, Gresham Tce, Collingwood St, Rae Lane, Brentwood St, Marriotts Rd and still live in Betula Pl, so I know the area, its history, its issues and the fact that we’ve been let down by the city’s governors,” Mr Daniels said.

“The current low point is the state of our ward. There are still too many house and basic infrastructure repairs to be started or completed.”

He is best known for his 40-year broadcasting career – including being one half of ‘James and Ken’ with Ken Ellis in the 1980s and more recently co-hosting The Breeze breakfast show with Hilary Muir.

But he has also held governance roles for 25 years.

Mr Daniels spent almost 20 years on the tribal council for his iwi Ngai Tahu, two terms on the board of Touch New Zealand and a foundation director of More FM.

He is currently on the board of Ngai Tahu Property Ltd, with roles in media and charitable sectors.

“The council needs people with proven, good governance skills because we have some strategic, yet complex, difficult decisions to make,” Mr Daniels said.

“I’ll bring energy, expertise and a fresh perspective to the process . . . this area is where I grew up and where I will grow old.”

Mr Daniels said New Brighton Rd was “embarrassingly broken” and should be only for four-wheel-drives.

The Estuary edge and Southshore are also in need of a lot of work and proposed rates rises are too high, he said.

Incumbent Cr East knows Mr Daniels well – he was a few years ahead of him at Shirley Boys’ High School. “I never thought I’d go into this election without competition and I respect his right to have a go.”

Cr East said they both have long family connections to the area and he wasn’t going to take Mr Daniels’ candidacy lightly.

“I’m not going to pick holes in my opposition, I’m going to let my own track record speak for itself.”