Sam Van Schie
Rossland native and retired businessman John Greene is ready to turn his longtime interest in local politics into a first-hand experience.
No stranger to a board table, the former Rossland Hardware owner served two terms as Chamber of Commerce president, was on the museum board and is currently a director of the Rossland Light Opera Players.
He’s also a regular at Red Mountain, where he volunteers as snow host. When asked his age, Greene hints at his vintage by saying he was at Red in December 1947 when the first chair lift started operating (albeit, he was only a few months old at the time). And he’s proud to say he’s skied there every year since 1950.
Now that he’s working less (he still takes on the occasional carpentry job), Greene has his eye on a city council seat.
“There’s some big issues that have to be dealt with in Rossland,” Greene says.
If elected, he would like to repeal the controversial delegation bylaw, which gives the city’s Chief Administrative Officer control over decisions that would usually be made by council.
He would also like to take a serious look at the city’s staffing costs.
“The Fraser Institute has done a study to show that all across British Columbia the cost of municipal staff is increasing way faster than the population,” he says. “That needs to be brought under control.”
Further study into Rossland’s staffing situation could reveal some opportunities for greater efficiencies, Greene suggests.
Another key issue for Greene is addressing the city’s aging infrastructure — which unlike addressing bloat at city hall, is certain to come as a high cost to tax payers.
“There’s no plans in place right now [for infrastructure upgrades],” he says. “We have to do studies to find out what has to be done and the best way to do it. And we have to prepare for a huge tax bill when that comes up.”