Well-known businessman Phil Mauger is making a bid to oust three-term councillor Glenn Livingstone in the Burwood Ward.
Mr Mauger, is head of Maugers Contracting Ltd, a third-generation family business that had its beginnings in North Beach decades ago.
“It’s time to put my money where my mouth is so to speak and actually do it rather than just sit on the sidelines,” he said of his bid in October’s local body elections.
“I think the council’s crying out for some people with a little bit more business acumen to stop having over-spends on things.”
Lowering rates and progressing earthquake repairs would be his main priorities if he was voted in.
“You can’t just keep going around cranking up people’s rates.
“Rates increases must be held to between 2.5 per cent and 3.5 per cent. The current predicted five per cent increase over the next 10 years means more money coming out of households that are already finding it hard to make ends meet.
“Much of the earthquake rebuild still remains ahead of us. We have not returned to business-as-usual mode. The remaining rebuild has to be affordable for ratepayers, and our rates must stop rising unnecessarily.”
Mr Mauger, who is standing as an independent, said his contracting background would help in decision-making.
“We only have one chance to plan a new future for our red zone land. We are told that $800 million will be spent on this area over the next 30 years. My contracting background will be hugely valuable at the city council table, ensuring money is spent wisely and with a common sense approach to provide a good outcome for generations to come.”
Cr Livingstone was elected in 2010, polling 4848 votes. He held the seat again in 2013 (6862 votes) and in 2016 (4797 votes).
Said Cr Livingstone: “You also need a social and environmental bottom line, so you need a multi-dimensional approach.’’
Cr Livingstone believed the fact he lived in the Burwood Ward, and Mr Mauger didn’t, would also be to his advantage.
Mr Mauger lives in Avonhead.
“If he lives in close proximity, that might be okay, but that’s quite some distance. I think they’ll have a question (voters) over how he is going to relate to them.”
Said Mr Mauger: “I feel I can do equally as good for the people in Burwood by my passion for the area, my roots for the area. Living there wouldn’t make any difference to how well I would work for Burwood.”
Cr Livingstone said his campaign would be business as usual.
“I treat every candidate as if I’m up against Richie McCaw.”
In 2015, Mr Mauger was seriously injured on his way to compete in the Bathurst 12 Hour race in New South Wales when his rental car was rear-ended by a fuel tanker.
He suffered multiple fractures and a collapsed lung and was in a coma for three days.
Mr Mauger is also the father of The Bachelor television star Jordan Mauger.