I would like to start by saying it is nice to see that we have a good group of people who have stepped up to run in the byelection.
It is always easy to sit back and criticize our local elected officials, but we need to recognize the personal sacrifices that they go through for our community.
I may not have always agreed with what council has done, but I do respect the commitment they have shown to the Town.
I decided to enter the race to make sure the voters of Smithers had a choice when they go to the polls.
I think that it is important that people have a choice. I have no political experience, but I do have passion and commitment to this town and will always strive to do my best.
I am a small businessman who has operated my company here for 10 years and has seen the ups and downs of our great town. We have many things that the town still needs to work on and I look forward to participating in that work.
Infrastructure is very important to me.
Whether it is sidewalks, water system, paving or parking lots to name a few, we need to make sure that these types of projects are the best bang for our buck.
When I look around town I see things that need to be dealt with, but we need to have the funds to deal with these items. Yes, the town has had grants over the years to help fund some of these projects and they have helped for sure.
But we need to work on improving our tax base in the town of Smithers.
We need some industry in town to help increase the tax revenue we generate to help fund these items.
In the last 20 years, the only industry that I can recall was the reopening of Newpro and the recent conversion to a pellet plant.
This was great for our town to provide some lost jobs, but these were lost jobs not new jobs. We need something new to provide a decent living wage for families here in town.
I also feel that in order to help with our growth we need to really take a look at some of the bylaws that we have and come up with some common sense in how we approach them.
While we all love our town, we are not a large metropolis that has a large tax base.
We need to make sure our bylaws work for as many of our residents and businesses as possible.
I don’t know what the solution is for this, but I sure want to work towards this.
We need to make sure we can secure dependable air transportation as a priority in order to help with looking for economic growth for Smithers.