Port Alberni Mayor Mike Ruttan was given an audience with Canada’s Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, during his visit to Vancouver Island on the B.C. Day long weekend. FACEBOOK PHOTO

EDITORIAL: Alberni needs to build federal relationship

Port Alberni Mayor Mike Ruttan was one of a small group of people who were given an audience with Canada’s Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, during his visit to Vancouver Island on the B.C. Day long weekend.

Trudeau, the federal Liberal leader, answered an invitation from Courtenay-Alberni NDP MP Gord Johns to come to the riding and speak to various leaders.

Ruttan said the group discussed economic development for the region, and noted in a social media post that the Alberni Valley has recently benefited from some federal grants.

While Trudeau was either idolized or criticized for his widely public splash in the ocean on Saturday during a kayaking session, this trip hasn’t been all perfect hair and photo ops.

As one person commented on social media, anytime a small municipal mayor out west can get an audience with the prime minister, that’s a good thing.

The fact that Trudeau came to the west coast at the behest of the NDP MP for the riding is even better.

The political scene is changing both provincially and federally, and Port Alberni is in the enviable position of having an MLA in government for the first time in 12 years, as well as an MP that seems to be getting things done despite sitting in Opposition with the federal NDP.

Let’s hope this is the beginning of a prosperous relationship between Ottawa and Port Alberni.

— Alberni Valley News

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