Waipa’s new and returning councillors pledged their allegiance to the district recently in a swear-in ceremony to officiate four new councillors and ten returning councillors.
It was a new experience for three of the five Cambridge councillors with Mike Pettit, Philip Coles and Roger Gordon taking on the title as councillor for the first time.
“It feels great even if I’m slightly nervous with anticipation,” said Gordon, who along with Pettit and Coles hung up his community board hat for a seat at the council table.
“Absolutely gutted I didn’t make it back onto the community board,” said Coles, who was out-voted for representing council on the Cambridge Community Board, Grahame Webber appointed instead during the Friday swear-in ceremony.
“But I’m over the moon (to be made councillor), it’s pretty special,” he said.
Gordon likened it to a “big learning curve” and Pettit admitted “it will be challenging” looking at the next three years on council – “a step up on the experience with the community board,” said Gordon.
Third-term Mayor Jim Mylchreest felt all 13 councillors had the right attitude to support the growing district in the years to come.
“With all the growth we’ve got going on we need to have positive, ambitious councillors – we don’t want the naysayers saying ‘we don’t want to do anything’ – the district needs to move forward. I’m delighted that everyone of the councillors is really positive.”
As for running for a fourth term in 2022, Mylchreest said, “ask me in two years!”
“I wouldn’t rule it out by any means, a lot of things can happen in three years. We’ll have to see how things shape up. But I love the district and I really enjoy working for the community.”
That afternoon, November 1, the first meetings of the district’s two community boards were held, with Ange Holt voted chair of the Te Awamutu Community Board and Sue Milner voted chair for Cambridge.