Local residency issue

The writer points out the ridiculousness of our provincial legislation which permits non-residents to run for municipal office

B. Russell’s letter in your Oct. 22 issue is absolutely superb.

The writer points out the ridiculousness of our provincial legislation which permits non-residents to run for municipal office, each or all of them with potentially different agendas.

There are four candidates in for Sidney council and one candidate for mayor who do not live in Sidney.

No matter their particular talents, in my opinion they should use their energies where they live. Otherwise, as Russell so neatly puts it, at the end of the day “non-residents go home to their own communities.”

Mayor Cross and I are in complete disagreement on this. He notes that the absentee candidates he recommends have lease or business interests. Last time I looked, business is well represented by active chambers of commerce and business associations and councils pay careful attention to representations by these organizations. My only organization is the council and it can be a hostage to outside interests if these five candidates succeed.

I wonder how a non-resident council member can deal with an issue affecting Sidney, where he or she does not live. Do they close their eyes and hold their noses and vote? Do they vote when their head and heart really are, potential in conflict with Sidney’s interests?

Are we so disinterested in our local government that non-residents could have a majority position on our council? I would hope this issue is front and centre at the upcoming forum.

This council will be in place for four, not three, years. We will get what we deserve.

Greg Stevens




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