It’s official … I’ve been elected to the HB Regional Council!

My final count is 7,256 votes to Rose’s 7,195 … a margin of a mighty 61 votes. You can all lay claim for putting me over the top!

Here’s the statement I just released to the media …

“I am humbled to be chosen by voters in the Hastings constituency as one of their councillors. And I am immensely grateful to the diverse army of supporters who assisted my campaign in so many ways. I will work my butt off to justify the confidence all have placed in me.

As an individual, I have advanced a strong critique of the incumbent regional council, and I am encouraged that so many agreed. Expectations have been lifted and I look forward to the challenge of meeting them.

More imaginative leadership from the regional council can help move Hawke’s Bay from good to great in all its dimensions – economic, environmental and social.

But changing the culture of the HBRC, rebuilding confidence in it, and re-directing its path will require the persistent and collective efforts of at least five councillors, if not all nine. Rest assured I will be one of those pressing most energetically for change.

I congratulate each of the councillors elected to the next term, and look forward to working with them. And I commiserate with those who ran unsuccessfully. Having stood in their shoes three years ago, I fully empathize with their disappointment, especially that of Kevin Rose, who has twisted in the wind with me these past few days.”

I’ll have more to say, and people to thank, when I recuperate!


Join the Conversation


  1. Congratulations Tom. I voted for you because I believe you were the best candidate but also because I would like to see a culture change in the council. Some of the councillors seemed to struggle with the concept of ” representing” the people. They appeared to choke on the representing bit. Once again, congratulations and good luck with your new found career in public service.

  2. Congratulations Tom. I look forward to your input in the regional council gatherings. Hopefully we will be able to watch in real time via live streaming.

  3. Wonderful news, Tom. Congratulations! A well deserved outcome given the commitment you have already demonstrated to this region. Best wishes for the challenges that lie ahead.

  4. Well done, Tom…a lot of people talk the talk and it ends there.. but you are prepared to also walk the walk in the name of your environmental beliefs…Congrats!


  5. Congratulations Tom. While we don’t see eye to eye on every issue, I acknowledge that your priority will be to ensure that the HB environment is protected, which is, after all, what the Regional Council is for.

    Don’t be surprised if you get to radical and transparent if the Govt replace you all with commissioners as per ECAN!!

  6. Fantastic news – congratulations. I look forward to some positive changes, sensible decision-making and minimal rates increases.

  7. Great news! Great advice Don’t split your vote. Looking forward to hearing what really goes on behind those doors from someone behind the doors.

  8. Congratulations Tom. We look forward to seeing a change in focus on the HBRC. Amalgamation discussions would be a great start!

  9. Hi Tom,
    Many congratulations with this victory. You deserve this.
    The next step is to get rid of Andrew Newman. But without a
    golden handshake !!!


    John (Jan) Tinholt.

  10. Wonderful news Tom! Well deserved and finally Hawkes Bay will have the representatives it needs and deserves!

  11. Congratulations Tom, I was in despair when the first results were announced now I am elated and hope for a positive future for the Regional Council.

  12. Feels good already Tom, “you just being there” Our planet is desperate for real friends, not more gatekeepers.”
    Hopefully Ewan McGregor will have more time to recognise,(in some practical tribute) the staunch conservation effort from Bill Whittle, and Jack Nicolas of Puketitiri , in urging the control of deer and opossum to enable the regeneration of the Kaweka Mountains. – The Kawekas, without regeneration were a threat to the flooding of our twin cities .

  13. In my congratulations of Bill Whittle, and Jack Nicolas of Puketitiri concerning Kaweka reforestation,by pest control, I forgot to mention Rob Whittle, (The main activist and a former HBRC member)
    Ewan McGregor, am sure will “get maters moving along” with a recognition ‘High Up in them hills” as a worthy recognition from us “townies” able to lead safer lives, “when the rain comes down”

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