Decision 2013: Meet the County of Stettler Council candidates II

'I believe that the main issue in our division has been roads.' - Lawrence Wilkie

  • Oct. 16, 2013 5:00 p.m.

NAME: Dave Grover.

HOMETOWN: Big Valley/Linda Hall (29 years); County of Stettler (57 years); we raise cattle and grow feed; we chose to raise and educate our family here.

AGE: 57.

FAMILY: Wife Lorraine; four children: Brad, Jolene (Neil), Bobbi-Jo (Mark) and Jamie (Dwayne); blessed with 11 grandchildren.

YEARS IN GOVERNMENT: Nine years on County of Stettler council; after a three-year break, I feel refreshed and eager to return to the table as the Ward 2-Big Valley voice.

YOUR COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Served on various boards and committees; assisted in fundraising endeavours for facilities; enjoyed coaching minor ball and hockey.

YOUR HOBBIES: Watching our grandchildren, play football, ball, hockey, etc.; hunting and fishing; visiting with friends and family.

YOUR GREATEST ATTRIBUTES:

I am open, honest and direct and very approachable. I am open to suggestions on better or innovative ideas. I was born and raised here and am familiar with almost all of the residents, the lay of the land and needs of our people.

MAIN ISSUES IN THE CAMPAIGN AND YOUR SUGGESTIONS TO ADDRESS THEM:

I’d like to see our road-building crew being able to return to rebuilding the amount of road as in the past; our crew has built many miles of road that are still excellent to date.

During my years as chair/co-chair of the ambulance board, I was part of negotiating agreements with the province to retain three ambulances and have paramedics on board every shift. Still, today, we have excellent ambulance service — second to none in the province.

Senior housing is still a top priority to me. During my previous terms on the Senior Housing Authority, we accomplished many upgrades to all of our senior accommodations in Big Valley and Stettler. I would like the chance to continue focusing on keeping our seniors’ lodges/manors a top-quality lifestyle for those who built our area.

***

NAME: Terry Schiffner.

HOMETOWN: Big Valley — Ward 2.

AGE: 65.

FAMILY: Wife Pat. We own a cow-calf operation and a back-grounding feedlot south of Stettler. We have four children and seven grandchildren, including a newborn girl.

YEARS IN GOVERNMENT: Three. I have been privileged to serve as councillor. During my time on council, it has been a huge learning experience. The learning curve was made a lot easier by a reeve and council that were always willing to help, along with a great staff.

YOUR COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT:

— Board of directors for the Clearview Cow-Calf Co-op.

— Stettler Feeders’ Association.

— Former director of the Stettler and District Agricultural Society.

— 4-H leader in the area.

— Served on several committees, including the library board, ag services board, disaster services and the fire commission. While on the fire commission, I helped secure a new fire hall and a more-efficient fire truck for Big Valley.

YOUR HOBBIES: Grandchildren, camping and rodeos.

YOUR GREATEST ATTRIBUTES:

Good listener, like to learn, hard worker and determined.

MAIN ISSUES IN THE CAMPAIGN AND YOUR SUGGESTIONS TO ADDRESS THEM:

We have been working non-stop on the quality of roads and I have been taking every single concern and as a result, roads in the Big Valley area are better maintained than they ever have been. We got Fenn Road paved and are now experimenting with a new hard-surfacing technique on Scollard Road, which we hope will save us a lot of money in the future.

We have been working hard to keep our taxes at a reasonable rate. Although the rate has gone up slightly over the past three years, we’ve used that money to improve roads and services that we provide, including snow-plowing driveways.

***

NAME: John Schofer.

HOMETOWN: Byemoor.

AGE: 57.

FAMILY: Married with a great wife in Carolin, two fine boys, Len and Randy, a great daughter-in-law in Rebecca, and a cute granddaughter, Addison.

YEARS IN GOVERNMENT/ON SCHOOL BOARD: Twelve years on Clearview school board from 1998 to 2010.

YOUR COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: A member of the Sullivan Lake West Agricultural Society for 30 years as past president, organizer and worker. Member of the Byemoor Curling Club for many years as president, worker and volunteer. Volunteer in the community wherever asked.

YOUR HOBBIES: Playing hockey, curling, dirt-biking, snowmobiling, skiing and bird-hunting, collecting and fixing anything with a motor.

YOUR GREATEST ATTRIBUTES:

Hard worker; willing to come to the county council and ask the tough questions and get the best solutions. And willing to represent the area residents with a strong voice.

Willing to speak my mind — if asked to or not. And willing to hold the provincial government accountable.

MAIN ISSUES IN THE CAMPAIGN AND YOUR SUGGESTIONS TO ADDRESS THEM:

Fixing roads and clearing roads of snow as soon as possible.

Making sure our bureaucracy stays the right size.

Stop the spread of irrelevant rules and regulations.

Get a plan in place to stop the spread of the noxious worm wood weed.

Instead of giving money to the town for their grand schemes for believed county use, make sure the county communities’ infrastructure is kept up first.

Find the solutions with help from the voters and other councillors, and get ’er done ASAP.

It is a needed change.

***

NAME: Les Stulberg.

HOMETOWN: Endiang/Byemoor.

AGE: 58.

FAMILY: My wife Rosemary and I have two sons, Travis and Tyler.

YEARS IN GOVERNMENT: Three years on county council, during which time I was chair of the County of Stettler Housing Authority. Spent the last three years as the county member at large on the Subdivision and Development Appeal Board, the Assessment Review Board, Family and Community Support Services board and Stettler Public Library board.

YOUR COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: I’ve been very active and committed to the Byemoor-Endiang community for the past 40 years. I believe my dedication to the community speaks for itself. I’ll be able to achieve even more with a seat on county council.

HOBBIES: Reading, photography, travel, writing, community projects and time with family and friends.

YOUR GREATEST ATTRIBUTES:

I don’t take on roles lightly. I’m very committed to responsibility. I understand the issues and am open-minded to input and new ideas. I’m a team player and work well with others to achieve results. I’ve taken additional training in administrative law and principles of assessment to better serve the county. I’m a good listener and always accessible to hear concerns. I have the communication skills to be a strong voice.

MAIN ISSUES AND YOUR SUGGESTIONS TO ADDRESS THEM:

Road safety is of ultimate importance and hazardous areas need attention. I support improvements to all categories of the road system: from machinery roads to secondary highways. The county is also more than just roads and bridges: it’s people and communities that benefit from enhanced recycling programs, recreation support, seniors’ housing, safe and secure water, fire protection, community support services, libraries, museums, ambulance service, waste management and agricultural services. I would serve ratepayers’ needs by providing the services in the most efficient manner.

***

NAME: Lawrence Wilkie.

HOMETOWN: Byemoor.

AGE: —

FAMILY: I’m married, with three married daughters and six grandchildren.

YEARS IN GOVERNMENT: Nine. I was on county council for six years in the 1980s, and am presently on council since October 2010.

YOUR COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: I have always been active in my community and am currently serving as president of the Endmoor Drop-In Society. I also volunteer with the Byemoor Curling Club and at the Byemoor fall supper.

HOBBIES: Camping, playing cards, fishing, golf, and going to my grandchildren’s sporting events.

YOUR GREATEST ATTRIBUTES:

I am a good listener and I believe in finishing what I start, always to the best of my ability.

MAIN ISSUES AND YOUR SUGGESTIONS TO ADDRESS THEM:

I believe that the main issue in our division has been roads. When I ran three years ago, I was concerned about the condition of the roads and the lack of gravel on them. This was a safety concern for those travelling in the area.

Since I have been on council, the county has been putting more than double the amount of gravel on the roads. We have also initiated a program where heavily travelled roads will receive gravel every two years, while others will get gravel every three years — or as needed.

Among other recent accomplishments, council has implemented a rural recycling program, which makes this resource accessible to all.

I have made it a priority to open up communication and to maintain good relations with all community members and county staff. A good working relationship bodes well for all. If anyone has any questions or concerns, please phone. I can’t help if I don’t know the issues.

When re-elected, I will continue to serve the ratepayers of the Byemoor-Endiang division to the best of my ability. I would like to thank the community for their support.

 

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