Jonathan Young: Experienced Energised Trusted.
I don’t get out of bed in the morning because Baxter is barking. I get up because I’ve got things to do and I’m ambitious for the success of our people.
I’ve got plenty of energy and vision for our region and I want to keep doing this work for the benefit of other people and that’s what motivates me.
Experience counts. Sometimes a trusted voice is what people want. Somebody with life experience, somebody they know who’ll get out and do the work for the electorate.
People want to trust that their local MP understands their issues, can advocate for them and be relied on to produce results for the New Plymouth electorate. Politics is a difficult place to operate in. In Parliament, I’ve headed up committees, I’ve worked cross-party. I understand how to get things through for the people of New Zealand in general and New Plymouth in particular.
You can’t be an MP without huge reserves of energy. That energy comes from your passion, and drive, it boosts your commitment to be able to work with people to advocate strongly and to put in the hours necessary.
People need to know that they can trust their local MP. They want to know their MP is reliable, consistent and can be depended upon. There’s a lot of issues that face our communities and I believe that I’ve proven that I bring a trusted voice into those situations.
A good example is the Waitara Lands Bill - contentious for 25 years, bogged down in issues. It had been put forward into Parliament twice before and turned back for a variety of reasons. The New Plymouth District Council asked me to sponsor the bill through Parliament. We did the work around that, but it was contentious again.
Then I had some ideas of how we could change this bill and make it work for everybody and that’s what we did. So I worked with the District Council, with Te Ātiawa, with the two hapū of Waitara who were very much at the centre of this. Then I had to confer with the Green Party, the Maori Party, the Labour Party and work through this solution which was to create a hapū land fund, which had been excluded from the original bill. And we finally got it through, it finally passed and my motivating driver was making sure that the people of Waitara benefited from this piece of legislation and they have through the community fund for the development of the town. And it’s given capacity for the hapū in Waitara to be able to increase their number of land holdings or properties, to somehow recover back that which was lost through confiscation. So this goes way back to the confiscation of the Pekapeka Block. It’s full of history and that’s what I love doing as a Member of Parliament is finding solutions to big gnarly problems.
My top priority now for the New Plymouth electorate is to keep Taranaki working. To create opportunities for people to be employed, and particularly those people in our energy sector to stay employed. Decisions from the Labour led government have curtailed the development and growth of this sector in Taranaki. I believe that the current energy workforce is also going to be our future energy workforce. They have the knowledge and ability to drive our energy transition. But if we keep losing these capable, skilled, trained people overseas because they’r not wanted here, we’re going to be in big trouble. We’re going to have a deficit of skilled people.
New Plymouth is an amazing electorate. It’s really diverse. It’s a place full of great people with great ideas who have enormous aspirations for themselves and their families. So the best thing that I can do is help other people succeed. To be an advocate, to be an ideas person, a supporter, an encourager - My success is measured in your success.