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LETTER: Municipal gov’t boot camp should start now

Prospective candidates should educate themselves before signing nomination papers

To the Editor,

General Voting Day in B.C. will be Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022. Are you interested in running in the civic election for the City of Port Alberni?

Curious about what mayor and council’s remuneration and benefits are? Visit the City website (www.portalberni.ca) and review the Regular Council Meeting July 12, 2021 (page 24-30 of the agenda) which states effective Jan. 1, 2023, the position of mayor will receive $59,100 and councillors $26,300 plus adjustments for Consumer Price Index equal to B.C. for the years 2022 and 2023.

The city’s current elected representatives come from all walks of life. They are employees, business owners, professionals and retirees who have taken these positions with the support of their employers, family and friends. Their time commitment to their elected position blends with work, family and friends. Yes, you can take vacations.

If you have political ambitions, what should you do? Put yourself on council right now, metaphorically speaking. Poke around the city website, attend council and committee meetings and meet your elected representatives, research, read and learn about collective agreements, leases, regulations (drinking, storm and waste water), local bylaws, study the Community Charter and the Local Government Act, review the Five-Year Financial Plans, reserve funds and the budgeting process, learn the basics of reading balance sheets and income statements and be prepared to use a calculator.

Preparing now, is so that the “training wheels” won’t have to be on for the first full year of your term. You can facilitate that process by putting in much effort over the next six months.

Gerry Walerius,

Port Alberni

Alberni-Clayoquot Regional DistrictBC municipal electionMunicipal GovernmentPort Alberni