Sam Van Schie
Former provincial and federal election Green Party candidate Andy Morel is campaigning once again — this time with his sights on local government.
The 55-year-old has been a resident of Rossland since 1998. He’s a self-employed carpenter/handyman and runs a nordic skiing business called Kootenay Nordic Ventures during the winter months.
He’s has experience on non-profit boards, having served as a director on the Rossland Council for Arts and Culture and as past-present of Black Jack Ski Club.
“I know what it takes to work as part of a cohesive and collaborative team,” Morel says, noting his background in recreational leadership. “There’s a lot of excellent candidates in the running this year, who have a real interest in addressing some of the hot-button issues that previous councils haven’t been able to resolve.”
For instance, Morel says there’s a problem with the Chief Administrative Officer being on long term sick leave and having another person acting in that position.
“There’s been issues with the CAO for as long as I’ve lived here,” he says. “We need to have more consistency from the person in that position.”
Morel also wants to improve communication between council and residents. He suggests that everyone on council should be available to meet casually with residents at least once every couple of months.
“We could call it ‘Beers and Banter’ or ‘Coffee and Communication’ — either way, it’s just a time for Rosslanders to have a drink with us and share what’s on their mind,” he said.
As for community initiatives, he’s strongly in favour of Rossland having a broadband Internet and wants to see the skatepark move ahead.
“There’s been a lot of talk about these things, but nothing has come to fruition,” he said.
Most importantly, Morel wants to keep Rossland affordable for all demographics, including young families, entreprendures, seniors and singles.
“It’s important that they can afford to own homes, find jobs and continue to support the economy here,” he says. “We can’t let our taxes get out of control. Fiscal responsibility is definitely my top priority.”
To learn more about Morel, visit his campaign website andymorel.ca.