Kapiti Observer : November 24th 2011
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This brand new 3 Bdrm home with excellent open-plan living & superb outfloor flow is perfect for those looking for an low maintenance, solid brick home in established beach location! Enjoying lovely sun-drenched deck, convenient internal access garage and all the benefits of buying new (eg dble glazing, efficient heating & superb insulation), whatever the weather this home will meet all your living requirements. Just minutes walk to the beach & tucked away in cul- de-sac, this property is a must see! www.remax.co.nz/84236 or www.open2view.com k254516 Sunday 12:30 - 12:30pm Liam Martin 04 892 0031 027 684 2030 Address: 126b Matatua Road Raumati Beach Price: Buyer Enquiry Over $425,000 Villa Real Estate Ltd - Licensed REAA 2008 MREINZ Selling the Most on the Kapiti Coast Based on Industry Statistics Young don't see voting as 'cool' Rebecca Thomson talks to Electoral Enrolments Centre manager Murray Wicks about enrolling to vote, the Orange Guy and travel. Murray Wicks: ''In election year Orange Guy is extremely busy.'' What does the Electoral Enrolments Centre do? We're a division of New Zealand Post and have a contract with the Ministry of Justice to compile the electoral rolls for parliamentary and local government elections. You started in Christchurch. What lured you to Wellington? I grew up in Christchurch and started work at the Post Office there. I realised that to be pro- vided with a real challenge I would have to go to head office in Wellington. I was in my early 20s then. How did the Enrolment Cen- tre job come about? I was in an area that looked after suburban post offices. In 1984 the Right Honorable [Robert] Muldoon called a snap election and I got pulled into the Enrolment Centre to assist. It was all hands on deck. Rolls closed two days after Muldoon called the election and we were flooded with enrolment forms. You must love the job to have stayed in it this long. I do. It provides huge variety. We're providing a customer ser- vice, there's a communications and marketing element, there are legal requirements so you get to know the statutes, and I have 70 staff. Also there's the IT aspect, and that's of growing importance. How has technology changed the enrolment system? When I started we had a basic computer system. Staff around the country had to input all the data and those reports were printed out as line flows. They even had sprockets down the side. The rolls were then split up and sent to each electorate to be checked. That's all done by com- puter now. So it's easier to track people? Much easier. If you move to Auckland and get your mail re- directed, that information goes into the computer system, which prepares a template letter and enrolment form to be sent to your new address. If you don't respond to that letter after a month, a reminder is sent out. If there's still no response your name goes on to a field list'' and someone from the Electoral Centre will knock on your door. While that is all happening, the computer sys- tem is waiting for information on your old address. If no mail re- direction is received, a Dear Occupier'' letter is sent to that address. Youth enrolment numbers are low this year. Why? There are several factors. They don't see voting as cool; it's some- thing adults do. They're more interested in work, study, leisure and living for the weekend. Also, they don't think their vote will make a difference and some are intimidated by the perceived bureaucracy of the enrolment pro- cess. Many are politically aware, but are using other avenues to express their views. Social media is very big. Are you using social media to capture those voters? Yes. You can enrol via Facebook. The Orange Guy has a Facebook page and about 8000 likes''. How did the Orange Guy come about? It was a combined effort between ourselves and an adver- tising agency. When you're trying to target everyone 18-plus, getting an individual person to appeal to all people is a big challenge. It was too big a challenge, so we went down the animation route. The Orange Guy can morph into a young voter or woman if we need him to. He's been around since 2002. Has the Rugby World Cup diverted people's attention away from enrolling? The World Cup, the Christ- church earthquake, the Pike River mine inquiry, the world financial situation and Rena have all made it hard for us to gain media atten- tion, and the public have a lot interest in those stories. Also, [John] Key announced the election date in February and people have had the sense that November was a long way off, so haven't enrolled yet. Now that the political parties are getting into their campaigns, we've noticed a huge increase in enrolments. The printed roll has closed, but people can still enrol. Do you get asked about who to vote for? We do. We explain to them we are a completely neutral organis- ation, but encourage them to find information and ask about politi- cal parties or referenda. We tell them to discuss it with family, friends, colleagues and then come to their own conclusions and vote. What do you do outside of work? I love to travel. When I was young I would go away with my parents. Subsequently I've trav- elled with my wife and kids. We've been all over New Zealand, except for Waiheke, Stewart and Chatham islands. We have an old road map and mark off the roads we've taken. We'll look back to see where we've been and try go a dif- ferent route. It's covered with black felt markings. What about overseas travel? The most interesting place was China. We took a 30-day tour of China and I was very pleased we did, because Westernisation is moving there so fast. I thoroughly recommend China. What do you like about Wel- lington? I love its compactness. What other capital city in the world can you walk from one end of the CBD to the other in an hour? Also, the weather is unfortunate. I like to do outdoor activities and the weather does frustrate me.
November 21st 2011
November 28th 2011