The following people are running for office in McBride but did not respond by deadline: Gene P Runtz for mayor.
Position sought: McBride Mayor
I have lived in McBride for 12 years; 7 of those years I have spent on Council, proudly serving my community as Councillor and as Mayor. My background is in local government, I have a certificate in Public Administration, a diploma and certificates in Business Administration and Management and over 20 years experience in the field. It would be an honor to be re-elected in this year’s Mayoral Election.
The biggest issues facing Mayor and Council and the community is the sheer volume and variety of work that needs to be done to move projects ahead, on top of regular duties and activities. The Economic Action Plan has already done a great deal of the heavy lifting.
We made huge strides in developing year-round tourism. Recreational tourism activities have exploded, we are developing a tourism strategy, implementing the hotel room tax. I expect there to be continual progress made in this sector.
We need to continue to support initiatives that achieve our economic goals in establishing year-round tourism and bring vehicle traffic in to the downtown core. We need to start looking at how to spur on economic activity in the tourism accommodation industry.
I expect that the housing sector will be the next to explode and Council needs to be ready to take advantage of funding opportunities by examining the cost-benefit of a revitalization tax exemption bylaw, including cost development charges and the possible donation of Village-owned land and work with organizations to develop a housing strategy and move housing initiatives forward.
In order to accomplish this, Council will also need to look at infrastructure to grow the tax base and needs to look at subdivision planning of available lands including whether the water system has the capacity to withstand increases in population and business.
Now that things are settling down on the Village side, the second major issue the Council, as shareholder, needs to address is to find the time on follow through with changing the structure of the community forest corporation, thereby reducing the financial liability of the shareholder; complete the Shareholder – Board contract, which recognizes that the community forest is a public asset and ensure standards set and that the Board can manage the management of the corporation; new Articles of Incorporation and a Terms of Reference for the appointed Council member. The shareholder will also, in my opinion, need to address the make-up of the Board of Directors.
There has been progress made in the community forest. Minutes to meetings are now published and available at the Village office. The Shareholder is at arms-length, which reduces the liability of the shareholder. There have not been any compliance and enforcement issues since the last election, therefore less legal fees and a better reputation. Even though progress has been made, the community forest remains a contentious issue.
There is so much more one can do and I commit to working with the newly-elected council and continue to bring ideas and options forward. Please visit my facebook page or contact me at [email protected].
Position sought: McBride Mayor
I have lived, worked, and played in McBride and the Robson Valley since 1998. As a former principal of McBride Secondary School and District Administrator with School District No. 57 I have demonstrated effective leadership for our community. I have been honoured to serve as a Village Councillor since 2002 where I have developed effective skills and meaningful connections for our community.
Over the years I have been active in community organizations such as the Roundhouse Theatre Society, Model Railway Society, Snofest, Summer Street Festival and the Healthy Communities Committee. I have started and continue to operate several local and innovative businesses.
Municipal politics is challenging, and it requires the support of one’s family. I have the full support of Carol and my daughters as I commit to the work and the responsibilities that lie ahead. Municipal politics is rewarding. I am optimistic and excited to help lead McBride in growth, improvement, and community involvement.
Replacing and updating aging infrastructure, continuing to offer services that make our community an attractive place to live within a reasonable budget, affordable and supportive housing, improving and supporting our K-12 education system and improving and diversifying our economy are some of the issues facing McBride and many small rural communities.
Where McBride differs is how we as a community are able to capitalize on opportunities to address these issues. McBride has recently invested in mountain bike and non-motorized trail development. These are good, affordable, quality of life investments. These amenities and the quality of life McBride has to offer attracts others to visit and to relocate here. These outdoor resource investments combined with our strong winter recreation sector will provide more opportunities for employment in the service sector and this improves our local economy.
These recreation investments provide opportunities for private sector investment to compliment those already made. Investments in accommodation, the service sector and opportunities to support our growing recreation industry will add jobs for our residents. As Mayor, I will promote that McBride is open for business and work together with Council, staff and other community organizations to ensure that the conditions are in place to attract and encourage new private investment in McBride. New investment means new jobs.
Investment in housing will enable our senior residents to stay in our community and age in place. In partnership with non-profits, BC Housing, community members and Council, I will help to move this file forward. In addition to supportive housing, there is a need to increase our affordable housing stock. By addressing affordable and supportive housing we can increase local employment in the construction sector. Residential and commercial building starts are a key indicator of economic growth. I will work diligently to find opportunities to build our community.
I am optimistic, innovative and invested in our community. I will bring these same qualities to the leadership team as Mayor of McBride. I will work diligently to help bring our community together and work toward a shared vision in which we all can benefit.