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Time to step up . . . Newly elected Gore District councillors Nick Grant (left) and Richard McPhail will take their place around the oval table at the statutory meeting of the council on October 29. PHOTO: SANDY EGGLESTON

A plumber and former police officer will join the eclectic group of councillors at the Gore District Council when meetings resume.

Nick Grant, who owns a Gore plumbing business, won a Gore ward seat and former Gore police senior sergeant Richard McPhail, who won a council-at-large seat, will be sworn into office on October 29.

Other occupations represented around the table include farmers, business owners, accountants, chief executives, directors and plant operators.

Mr Grant said he had experience as a Gore Main School board of trustees member.

“So I’ve a wee insight into governance and policies and making plans happen so the next step was to try for something higher.

“I like to challenge myself.”

He had spent the first 15 years of his life in Tapanui and then shifted to Gore.

The 39-year-old will be the youngest member of the council.

“[I’m] just a younger generation in there which is important.”

He enjoyed thinking through a problem and finding solutions.

“I like to have all my facts straight and all angles covered.

“I can definitely help with planning and decision making looking at [issues] from different angles.

“You learn a lot of that with plumbing.”

Being a good team player was important to him, he said.

Mr McPhail said he and his wife, Stephanie, had long-standing family ties to Gore.

“I love the Gore community – it’s a special place,” Mr McPhail said.

There were many community groups he was involved in, including the Gore Repertory Society and the Gore and Districts RSA.

“I just think its time to stand up, step up and see if we can help out, use a lot of knowledge from different life experience.”

He was looking forward to hearing about the concerns people had.

“I’d like to hear the problems but also what people perceive is the solution as well.”

In 2016, Mr McPhail resigned from the police after a 30-year career.

“I know a lot about the social issues and problems that face Gore and the greater Southland area.”

Mr McPhail is the region manager of the Ministry for Primary Industries’ M. Bovis programme.