The civic election is well underway with just over two weeks left until Ashcroft, Cache Creek, Clinton, TNRD Area E and I residents go to the polls on Oct. 20.
By the number of candidates seeking public office in our region, it seems people are showing more interest in what’s going on around them.
They want to be part of the solution and not part of the problem.
And that is great news indeed.
Too often we pay little or no attention to what’s going on in our council chambers, school district and regional district boardrooms.
That is so sad!
It’s sad because it’s the only real opportunity we have to make an impact on our communities for the benefit of families, friends and neighbours.
We meet our local politicians, who represent us at the municipal levels of government, on the street, at work, and play.
If they’re not our friends, they are acquaintances and we should be talking to them about what’s going on in our communities and neighbourhoods.
We should be offering suggestions and they should be filling us in on how it works.
To have healthy communities, we have to have that rapport.
Politicians need to know how their constituents are doing – their problems, concerns and their willingness to make their communities a better place to live for them, their families, friends and neighbours.
On the other side of the coin, we need realize how these community volunteers are working hard for us to make the community better.
These are the people who look after the infrastructure and the all of the service we tend to take for granted.
So, it’s a two-way street that needs communication going back and forth to be successful.
As residents, we have to play a bigger role in the success of communities by being involved with our politicians.
We should be attending council meetings to watch how they’re spending our hard-earned tax dollars.
We should be educating ourselves on how the system works, so we can give knowledgeable input.
Now, the election campaign is on.
Cache Creek and Ashcroft have already had their All-candidates forums and Clinton is having its forum tonight (Oct. 4).
There are a lot of people running in all of the villages, so there are important issues going on in their communities.
All of our communities, which were built around the same time, have infrastructure issues.
We have all felt the devastating impacts of the wildfires, and the resulting changes in where the water runs off the mountains.
Local businesses have been hammered by road closures during the wildfire season and the resulting mudslides.
People are running for public office because they want to see their communities heal and become whole again.
They want to develop the economy to attract businesses to provide jobs and support families.
Really, it’s a grass roots movement to save communities and make them a better place to live.
We applaud each and every one of you for stepping forward.
Hopefully, we can learn an important lesson: we need to communicate effectively if we want to thrive and survive.