Name: Keith Bertrand
Occupation: crane operator for NCSG Crane and Heavy haul
I am running for mayor to give our residents a different choice than what we have had in the past. I am very much involved in the community and would like to represent its future and direction.
I feel the role of the mayor is the voice and face of the community. I feel the mayor is the captain of the team of councillors and is responsible for the success or failure of the team. I think the mayor needs to treat everyone with respect and bring together the governing body to work in unison for future direction of our town.
I feel my business management and accounting diplomas from NAIT are an asset for this position. In addition, my twelve years experience in the Tumbler Ridge Minor Hockey Association board of directors with 5 years as president has been very rewarding and challenging. I also feel my interpersonal communication skills are a strength.
There are no specific issues or decisions that have caused me to join the election.
The three most important issues facing Tumbler Ridge are:
Caribou conservation issue and access to our backcountry.
Our museum funding situation.
Ensuring all of our residents can receive the medical attention they need whether that be for example mental heath services or assisted living for our seniors.
I believe the mayor and councillors can bring together a list of services needed or wanted in their community and lobby the provincial government, northern health and the school district.
The district of Tumbler Ridge is in a very good financial position at present and I would not be in favour of moving taxes either up or down. I am not in favour of cutting any of our services. To the contrary, I would like to see the district build more infrastructure and increase our services. I believe our financial position can support that as well as getting grants for new projects.
I believe the previous government has prepared well for the upcoming legalization by setting in place a few bylaws in regards to public consumption.
I see all business with our district to be very positive. We have a number of non profits that the district and community support. I think our chamber of commerce needs to expand and really be there to support all of our small businesses.
I think we push for economic growth in the most responsible way by collaborating with all parties involved. We live in a global geopark where natural history co exists with industry and we need to sustain this.
The caribou conservation issue is not just a Tumbler Ridge issue however it threatens a big part of the reason a lot of our residents live here. Our backcountry access is second to none and is very important to a majority of our residents. I think we can work with the First Nations and help in any way we can. We just want a voice in the decision making. If it comes down to it, I would like to see penning operations in our district to help revitalize the caribou population.
I think we need to support and shop more locally. It is difficult with all of the online options now but there are more business services and ideas for businesses that our town will support. I think we need to continue to market the love tumbler ridge branding and truly shop local.
If elected I will be very cognizant of our tax base and budgeting procedure. We need to continue to upgrade our roads and water and sewer services which is costly but also we need to continue carrying on our surplus for future endeavours. I believe our previous governments have done an excellent job of preparing for the future and I intend on continuing this strategy.
I did mention as mayor I would like to reinvest back into our community through more infrastructure. I would like to see our district increase our recreational options for our kids. Whether that be through a water park or an indoor soccer field, we need more for our kids to do in town than just run around the community center. I would also like to alleviate the space issues we have with our children’s center and our gym. One of these things needs a new space. I would like to see the district build a new building to house our children’s center with enough capacity that waiting lists will be in the past.
I believe I represent the residents of Tumbler Ridge that are ready for a change in municipal politics. I am 242 proud and love this town. I want to be a part of the future success of my home!