With less than a month to the 20 September election, this weekend offers an opportunity to find out more about the political parties’ policies from candidates which most people in Whaingaroa are likely to be voting for.

National Party Conservation Minister is lunching with the Chamber of Commerce from 1pm on Friday 22nd. That evening from 5pm, National’s Taranaki King Country candidate will be at Raglan Club. Then next morning she and her Green, Labour and Mana colleagues will be at the Town Hall from 10.30 on Saturday 23rd, giving 5 minute speeches, then answering your questions.

This weekend is your chance to put your questions and judge by the answers or evasions which party you prefer. The Chamber of Commerce has asked that you email your questions to Dave Currie at:chair@raglanchamber.co.nz for the Minister of Conservation, Housing & Building and Construction. He has responsibility for Karioi and shares in decisions on the fate of the dolphins, as well as being answerable for the cost and quality of housing.

Barbara Kuriger has replaced Shane Ardern as the National candidate for Taranaki King Country. Like Shane, she is a dairy farmer based in the south of the constituency. As it’s the 10th safest National seat, it’s very likely she’ll be elected, but, like all the other candidates, her main emphasis is the party vote, which determines which parties will govern. Raglan Club has offered all the parties an evening to meet their members; an evening with Green candidate, Robert Moore, is arranged for Wednesday 10 September.

The format on Saturday from 10.30am in the Town Hall will be similar to previous elections. However, this year it’s being arranged jointly by the Residents and Ratepayers and Whaingaroa Environmental Defence. It’s also only having the 4 main candidates, limiting them to 5 minute speeches, so there’ll be plenty of time for you to press for full answers to your questions.

J Lawson