Several years ago, if you had told me I would be running for Mayor of the Town of The Blue Mountains, I would have said “Not a chance. Why would I want to do that?”
However, over the last few years I have come to realize that, if things keep going the way they are, one day I might wake up and find myself not liking the place I have always thought of as my home.
Far too many decisions, from the restructuring of the library to the sanctioning of Councillor Seguin, were being made in secret behind closed doors. People were not being told what was going on and were feeling ignored.
With the support of a small group of people I started the Citizens’ Pages to provide people with information, and the Citizens’ Forum, as a place where people could bring their questions and concerns.
One long-time resident wrote me saying: “At one time, before all these people moved here, we looked at our area very differently. People lived, worked and played here, raised families, kids went to school here, and people were buried here.”… “It's a terrible thing when the locals would find it better to move. A wise person said, might as well keep working, just become a taker, sell out, then die elsewhere.”
Another resident wrote: “We are beginning to feel that the rest of the Town of the Blue Mountains has abandoned the residents who live in the Craigleith and Village area… that the problems we have can be solved by just moving away and letting the tourist businesses take over. After all, we’re just complainers.”
Pretty strong words! Clearly these people are hurting and feel abandoned by the changes overtaking our community.
Over the last few years, I also got to know many passionate and talented people who cared and wanted to contribute to building a better community. It is these people who inspired me, and convinced me to run for Mayor. Some of them are running for Council. With a new Council, and your support and involvement, we can work together to heal our Town, and build a community where all people feel welcome.
None of us want to wake up one morning and find that we no longer like the place we call our home.