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Kerry Hapuku

I am a born and bred Southlander.  I grew up on a sheep farm at Edendale and moved to Invercargill when I was 16. 

I live with my partner, Bob McMurdo, in the idyllic settlement of Coopers Creek on the edge of the New River Estuary on the outskirts of Invercargill.  I have 2 adult children and spend most Saturdays on the sidelines at netball or rugby watching my grandchildren play.  

I have worked at Tiwai for the past 28 years including roles in Procurement, Maintenance Systems and I am currently a Planner.  I have a comprehensive knowledge of systems and processes.

In addition Bob and I directed our own Property Company for 10 years.

I joined the Let’s Go Invercargill group as I share the same values and vision for Invercargill.  These include:

  • Improved levels of governance – where elected members drive the vision for our city as opposed to being driven by staff views.
  • Bring greater finance skills to Council given this is a $200m business.
  • Develop a Council that “enables” community development that supports investment in the city.  If people/companies want to invest in our city then they should be welcomed with open arms and not have roadblocks (in regards to the coed in their way.
  • A new museum built in 3 years – not twice that long in the Long Term Plan.

On a personal level my decision was based on the fact that Nobby Clark and Allan Arnold are the only 2 councillors (out of all the current elected councillors individually contacted) that have supported the residents of Coopers Creek regarding their 2021/2022 60% rental increase (no prior consultation with key stakeholders) and the 2022/2023 43% increase imposed by the Council. 

I am opposed to the 3 Waters reform and I have already completed an online submission against it.  You only have to look at what happened with SIT when the government decided to have 1 national polytechnic (Te Pukenga) which is now over $110 million in debt.  If it’s not broken why fix it?

If elected I will listen and use my skills and experience to focus on the best interests of the ratepayers.  I would like to see more transparency and accountability from the Council.  After reading a Crux article recently I am particularly interested in the use of consultants and what they are costing the ratepayers.

I want to be part of a progressive and cohesive Council that can work together to make sound (fact based) decisions and make Invercargill an attractive and vibrant place to live.  This is currently not the case and we have paid in excesss of $500,000 for 2 external appointees (Jeff Grant and Lindsay McKenzie) to provide guidance and governance to senior staff and elected council members. 

I care about what has happened in our past (history), the present and more importantly our future.I will question the status quo.  I will bring honesty and integrity to the table with a commonsense no-nonsense approach.