The Hutt News have taken a leaf out of their parent, The Dom Post’s book, and done a fluff piece on newly elected councillor, Lisa Bridson (Independent, Eastern Ward), and her quaint habit of, shock horror, cycling.
For her, it was no Celia Wade-Brown copycat action or publicity stunt. She strongly believes that if more people walked or cycled, there would be less traffic congestion and pollution, people would be healthier and they’d save money.
Right at the end of the article though, they put Councillor Bridson’s ideas in the perspective of new mayor Ray Wallace’s leadership…
In Mayor Ray Wallace, Ms Bridson will have an ally.
He, too, has said he wants to see better pedestrian and cycling facilities, particularly if it makes travel safer.
Time will tell whether Mr Wallace’s plan for an independent review of the council’s operations will free up money to hasten cycling/pedestrian projects.
I do think this is just another example of local government pushing left (new left wing mayors in Wellington, Hutt and Porirua). I wouldn’t be as hasty as some commentators in saying it’s simply a reaction against the government, but I do think that people think that the sorts of issues people vote for at a local level are changing. Concern over water use and public transport have never really been rallying points for the right.