COMMENT: A year of action and progress

Since returning to Parliament at the start of the year, I’ve spent a lot of time talking to locals and knocking on thousands of doors.

I’ve heard about what people want fixed in our community and their views on the policies and issues debated in Wellington.

This year I’ve been working to secure better public transport for Botany, improve safety at local parks, protect Cockle Bay Beach and drafted a law to repeal the Auckland Regional Fuel Tax.

We must increase access to public transport in our community. So many motorists will be frustrated by our congested local roads.

Locals want the Government to move quickly on the proposed Botany to Auckland Airport rapid transit project, which should run along Te Irirangi Drive and connect to the Eastern Busway.

These two projects’ full potential will only be realised if a park and ride facility is established in Botany.

I’ve raised with the Transport Minister a property that could serve as a prime spot for the busway interchange and park and ride. He has instructed officials to look into my proposal.

Also on the subject of transport, I’m still pushing for Auckland Transport to widen and straighten the Chapel Road Bridge in Flat Bush and make it safer.

I’ve also worked with Northpark residents fed up with anti-social activity at Tarnica Park.

We mobilised the community to push the Howick Local Board to commit to installing a light at the park to make it safer. It would help to have more Police on local streets to keep us all safe.

So many people have told me they’re feeling the pinch at the pump because of the Government’s fuel taxes, which have added 25 cents a litre to the cost of fuel in Auckland.

My draft law change would repeal most of that new tax, known as the Auckland Regional Fuel Tax.

Before extracting more money from ratepayers’ pockets, Auckland Council should first try to find savings within its bloated payroll and continually-expanding bureaucracy.

Much has happened this year but there is more to do. I will continue to do everything I can to be the best local MP for Botany that you’ve asked me to be.

Jami-Lee Ross
MP for Botany