Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Pincher Creek Town Council by-election candidates forum

Candidates Marie Meckelborg and Duane Fillipuzzi
Christian Davis

The two candidates for the vacant Town of Pincher Creek council seat attended a forum hosted by David Green on Monday, January 4.  Candidates Marie Meckelborg and Duane Filipuzzi each made brief speeches, followed by a question and answer period with the small crowd of approximately 20 people in attendance, among them Mayor Don Anderberg.

Filipuzzi spoke first (after a blind draw).  He owns Hedderick Insurance Agencies with his wife Leah.  "I believe in community and community involvement." He spoke of creating new employment opportunities in Pincher Creek, and of the importance of attracting families to live here and providing recreational opportunities for them, and affordable housing,  "Families and recreation, they are key things in our community." Filipuzzi also said there was a need for improved access to all the community offers for seniors and the disabled, including better transportation and affordable home care. He said the use of electric scooters was a positive thing, but seasonal only, and said he would like to investigate the viability of a sustainable community transportation system. Due to his experiences in public works jobs Filipuzzi said "I am aware of the challenges that councils and administrations face on a daily basis and I'm able to deal and work with those situations.  I have a detailed understanding of municipal infrastructure and its maintenance requirements."

"I have proven myself as a leader both as a manger within the Crowsnest Pass, as a supervisor with Alberta Parks, and as a business owner here in Town. I have a bit of a get it done personality."

Filipuzzi said he believes in Pincher Creek and its "exciting future".

Moderator David Green

Marie Meckelborg said she discovered her passion for volunteering while growing up in the Crowsnest Pass. She lived in Lethbridge for over 11 years before moving to Pincher Creek after her son was diagnosed with autism because the "experiences available in smaller settings are quite unique." She is currently the Director of Pincher Creek Children’s World Daycare.

"My background is in Human Services, specifically working with young families as well as working with children diagnosed with autism." 

"As a professional, I am used to working as a team member, where decisions are required to be made jointly, keeping the family's best interests in mind.  I intend to maintain this approach if elected, as decisions made in council will ultimately directly or indirectly affect our whole community."

"I chose Pincher Creek for my family because of the school system here as well as how welcoming the community is."

"Being able to give back to the community is my goal in running for Town Council."  

"While I do not have much experience in municipal affairs... I am a fast learner and believe I have other assets that could prove to be helpful if elected."

"If elected I want to be an advocate, to listen to my fellow community members, to be a strong sounding board, and bring your concerns to council on your behalf regarding issues we as a community face, and work towards keeping a strong and positive relationship between the Town of Pincher Creek and the families and businesses that reside here."

The open forum section of the event (seen almost entire in the third video above) saw the candidates answer questions related to Seniors abuse, taxation, volunteer burnout, more help for not for profits in the community, and traffic/pedestrian safety.

Election information:

Advance Poll Wednesday January 6 at Town Hall, 962 St. John Ave, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm

Election Day Monday January 11:
  • Town Hall Gymnasium, 10:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Vista Village (for residents only) from 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • Whispering Winds (for residents only) from 12:30 pm - 2:30 pm
  • Pincher Creek Hospital (for inpatients only) from 2:45 pm - 3:45 pm
  • Crestview Lodge (for residents only) from 4:00pm - 6:00 pm
Identification must be produced in order to vote. The identification must be one or more of: Government Issued Photo ID showing electors name and current address as required by section 53 of the Local Authorities Election Act.

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