City businessman Grant Creasey will be seeking the office of mayor of Lacombe this October.
Creasey, a former City councillor, campaigned for the mayor’s seat last term, and came in a close second.
“It was very close,” he said during a recent interview, adding that he knew at that time he would at least consider running again when the next time came around.
These days, he’s excited about the opportunity. “I chatted with a lot of people around town whose opinions I respect,” he said, adding there were of course conversations with family too that helped solidify his stance that it’s time to run again.
“I basically decided early this year that I would run.”
Creasey said it’s not a decision that he takes lightly.
“I am confident that my council experience, honesty and forthright attitude will be welcomed.”
Creasey said he is representing those who are interested in a constructive and positive new direction for the City.
“I want to ensure all City services are delivered in a responsible and sustainable manner. As a long time Lacombe resident, I am proud to make our community my home and have the desire to make it better.
“I want to unite our community by involving the public in the decisions that have a great impact on our lives. I am not interested in encouraging ‘feel good’ decisions. I will be in investing more effort into beneficial decisions that are justifiable – decisions that have been fully investigated, well thought out and properly debated,” he pointed out in a statement.
He also added he believes no election should be about any single issue.
“An election ought to be about choosing quality individuals you are confident will put forth the effort necessary to make informed decisions. Council is no place for complacent individuals content to ‘go with the flow’.”
Meanwhile, Creasey said he has received a lot of feedback regarding a lack of retail shopping opportunity in Lacombe. “Our current regime is of the opinion that businesses will appear on their own. It was thought that by, ‘Growing our community first, business will follow.’
“Unfortunately, this does not work.”
He pointed out the last decade witnessed some of the most explosive development that the province has ever seen.
“Central Alberta overall has grown in leaps and bounds. A tour through our surrounding area quickly shows that Lacombe fell short of the pace. Many of the businesses that people expect in a vibrant community have chosen to locate elsewhere. This is not by chance. This fact is unacceptable and must be addressed.”
Creasey said he believes that Lacombe needs an administration that is engaged in attracting new business to the City.
“It’s certainly a major concern because it ties into the whole financial aspect of the City,” he said.
“It’s the way we generate a good portion of our revenue – through taxes. We have a severe lack of commercial/industrial and retail tax base here in the City. I want to provide an environment where businesses are encouraged to come here, and are treated in an appropriate manner once they are here,” he said, adding he looks forward to working with a progressive council, alongside the newly appointed CAO, to focus on doing just that.
Creasey added that transparency and accessibility are ‘musts’ for municipal governments.
”I will provide planned public access to council as a whole, prior to general meetings.”
He also wants to implement a system of recorded votes for all council decisions.
“Council accountability flows from individual accountability. Council voting procedure is another area in need of improvement. Councillors need to do so on their own accord and stand behind their choices. A simple electronic system would better reflect honest opinion and help curb any pressure to conform.”
As the campaign unfolds, Creasey said he encourages residents to share their views and ask him questions.
He also wants those who feel alienated from local politics to be comfortable in approaching him to discuss the issues.
“I want them to bring forward their ideas so we can better reflect the intent of the people of Lacombe. We’ve had some pretty controversial decisions that in my opinion did not accurately represent the majority the people here in the City,” he said. “So I want to do what I can to change that – keep people involved and let them know that their opinions are valued.”
Ultimately Creasey said he’s honest, approachable and that he enjoys problem solving. “I enjoy talking to people and helping them with issues,” he said, adding it’s important to take people’s ideas to heart.
In the meantime, he’s looking forward to a busy summer of connecting with local residents.
“If face to face isn’t practical for you, please find me on facebook or communicate with me via Instagram and snapchat at creasey4mayor.”