A municipal election is one of the most important and locally influential votes a person can cast. Not only does a municipal council make decisions regarding the place in which a voter lives, council also is supposed to represent the community it serves, and is supposedly a community’s collective voice to the outside world. Sitting on municipal council is a task not to be taken lightly. Being an informed citizen is a key responsibility to electing the right choice to move a community forward accordingly.
Neighbours, friends and family rely on candidates running in a municipal election to put their personal interests and agendas aside for the next four years to concentrate on the community, as a whole. It’s a noble quest, to sit on a community’s council, in any role. It takes gusto, spunk and a desire to get the job done — whatever may come a council’s way. A collaborative approach is the best bet to get things accomplished during a council’s term. It’s not a self-promoted Maverick “my way or the highway” kind of thing — and that can be said for provincial and federal politics too.
Unfortunately, there is an “I” in council. But really, it’s supposed to be a cohesive team of hopefully like-minded individuals who will steer the vessel (in this case, the community) and navigate the choppy waters currently and ahead to solid ground with very little in the way of casualties. Own up to mistakes, if council makes some, and try to do better — for the common good. That’s all one can ask. A council should be comprised of a balanced mix of individuals from all walks of life to be successful. That way a community will get more bang for their bucks. Don’t forget, council members are hired guns. Taxpayers should have the upper hand and not be afraid to use it. Council members are employees, after all and should be held accountable for the choices they make and/or reactions or lack of action.
In 2021, it is hoped, councils across Alberta have learned a thing or two about evolving and creating positive and creative change. Stagnant or still water only collects bad for you contaminants. It continues to fester, like a pimple until it pops and that’s not good for anybody. Still or stagnant water also evaporates eventually leaving dusty, dirty remnants. Councils don’t want to be remembered like that, it is assumed. So, councils should strive to be the best council it can be. To learn and grow together. To be a small town Justice League or Avengers assembled. Sure, Spider-man or Iron Man or Captain America or Black Widow are good on their own as a solo mission, as well as Superman or Batman or Wonder Woman — but, as a team — councils, working for the greater good of a community, can kick some butt.
This municipal election it is important to remember to vote, it’s simple and only takes a few minutes of your time — that can make the change(s) you want to see happen locally. There’s really no reason not to be an informed citizen these days. To gather information on local candidates running for municipal office — it’s as easy as flipping through your local newspapers, turning on a local TV or radio station or pressing a button on your phone or computer and voila. Keep up-to-date on what’s happening in your community. Find out who is who and deciding the fate of your home base. Vote. Your voice should be represented by the candidates selected to help govern the community in which you live.
This editorial originated in the Sunny South News