Election 2013 - Dean Ward
My name is Dean Ward and I am very pleased to have this opportunity to ask for your vote in the upcoming election.
I am very proud to be the husband of Debbie, father of three and proud grandfather of two beautiful girls. I have been living in the
for 31 years. Crowsnest
I sat on the Historical society board for three years; currently I am a member of the Crowsnest Pass Health Foundation. In addition, I have six years experience sitting on council, which makes me very familiar with municipal budgets and all the other duties expected of a Councilor.
We do have challenges: a declining population, the oldest population in
percentage of residents on a fixed income, and one of the lowest
commercial/industrial tax bases in the province
In 2010 this community voted for change, but how much and how fast should have been the question.
Strategic Plan was put together in 2011 by mostly people that do not live here. It has many good recommendations, but it was always Council’s plan and it was never “our plan.” The Mayor tells the media “now that a lot of hard work has been done, they can move on to more sophisticated work” when, where and what he is hoping to do to us sometime later.
My positions moving forward 2013-2017
Taxes : Government’s job should be to minimize costs, not maximize revenues. Many of our residents live on a fixed income that never increases by more than the cost of living. I will work very hard to ensure that all municipal taxes, franchise fees, utility costs, permits, fines etc do not increase by more than the cost of living at the most.
Smaller Government: We cannot afford to have an administration that costs us well in excess of $1 million dollars a year. One out of every five homes pays taxes each year just to finance Council’s “Dream Team”.
Seniors-York Creek Lodge is a valuable asset for this community that is in dire need of up grading. Previous council had passed a motion putting aside $100,000 a year to prepare for that future opportunity. This year six months into the budget process administration realized that they had totally miscalculated the tax base, scrambling council agreed to balance the budget by dropping the $100,000 to the Lodge.
Seniors-Town Rounder is one of the unique services the municipality provides to its seniors. After the last driver retired, his position as only been filled by a temporary employee and this concerns me. I will commit to support and maintain this service if elected.
Frivolous Spending: Our municipal brand/logo, sadly at the same time council cut the $100,000 contribution to the lodge, they approved an expenditure of over $300,000 to hire an expensive consultant to throw together numerous triangles, to build entrance signs, to put up banners and to put this mess on every piece of municipal equipment and stationary. Can anybody explain to me how the logo relates to the
? Crowsnest Pass
Consultants: Will we ever really know how much money we have spent on consultants over the last three years? Now we have another one conducting a Recreation study. Our recreation board could have designed a survey, made it available to our residents and gathered the results at the municipal office?
Peace Officer Program: We were originally told that the project would pay for itself because the municipality anticipated an Automatic Traffic Enforcement program would be put into place. They were wrong. Do we really need two peace officers to enforce bylaws and educate the local residents? We need a full disclosure on what this program is really costing us. As our reputation grows as a speed trap, the revenues will only decrease, but the costs will remain.
Employee Morale: The level of the relationship between the municipal staff and management as sunk to an all time low, so low, that a consultant was brought in to look at the situation. This did not come about over the last two weeks, the next council needs to direct and demand that administration sit down with CUPE and resolve this quickly.
Communications: Newsletters are good until we have our representatives insulting us. Town hall meeting are great until they are used as a tool to attack and embarrass the people that pay the bills. Next council should communicate both professionally and in town hall meeting where council “listens” to the public’s input. Some how in the last year over 2500 residents felt that council was not listening?
Hotels: I will demand that next council not spend $50,000 or any amount to purchase a franchise for a private company, and let’s get the first hotel built before we start fantasizing about a second one.
Housing Affordability: Most elections, we hear candidates speaking about affordable housing. So many of our residents are seniors on a fixed income we need to keep our housing “affordable”. Municipal government cannot control the costs of everything in society; but there are some things they can. To vote to keep tax increases down while at the same time taking substantially more money from our residents in the form of Franchise Fees, Utility bills and every other dollar we can take out of your pocket achieves nothing for the average taxpayer.
On October 21, vote for Dean Ward
Any questions, comments or concerns please contact Dean at 563-4128 or