Ron Orr, a long-time Clive and area resident, has been named the Wildrose Party candidate for the Lacombe-Ponoka constituency.
In anticipation of the provincial election, set for May 5th, members of the Lacombe-Ponoka Wildrose Constituency Association recently met and selected Orr as the Wildrose candidate.
Orr, who has a background in carpentry, construction and as a local pastor, said he has always been interested in politics and has sat on the board for the local Wildrose Constituency Association ever since it was conceived.
“I worked hard in the last election to get our candidate elected and this time around, there was a whole bunch of people asking if I’d run,” he said. “I finally decided, you know what, it’s time.”
Orr said the key thing is that a vote for the Wildrose Party is a vote for lower taxes.
“A vote for anyone else is a vote for higher taxes,” he said. “We are definitely concerned about education. Here in our riding in Blackfalds, there has been a promise for years to build a new school and it’s still an empty field.”
Wildrose has a plan to create a series of template schools, in three sizes, where engineering costs will be prepared in advance, saving millions of tax dollars and years of delivery, said Orr.
“Healthcare is an extremely important issue for us,” he said. “We are going to honour the five pillars of the Canadian Health Act. We are going to change some of the delivery method and the funding so it’s based on results.”
Orr also added the Wildrose do not plan to make any cuts in frontline workers in the healthcare sector.
“We need the frontline workers,” he said. “What we will do is deal with the many managers that do nothing but push paper. There is literally millions of dollars to be saved there that should be given to frontline workers and used to hire more nurses and other staff.”
Orr said there is also a need for more long-term beds and care facilities, something the PCs haven’t followed through with.
“Another key issue for us is democratic reform,” he said. “The legislature is broken. There needs to be greater honesty and transparency in what comes out of Edmonton. We are committed to putting into legislation greater levels of transparency.”
In addition, another one of Orr’s main focuses is on rural Alberta.
“The PCs tend to focus all their value on the bigger metropolitan centres,” he added. “We are for, and have been since day one, the protection of landowners rights, the development of small business in rural Alberta and the enhancement of the rural community.”
This will be the first time Orr has been selected by the Wildrose Party as a candidate. Orr also sat on the board for the federal PC Party and currently sits on the board for The Mustard Seed, one of the largest Alberta-based charities.