Garry Horton for M.D. council
Garry Horton is one of five candidates for three Ward I seats on M.D. of Lesser Slave River council. Four years ago, he was one of just three, so there wasn’t even an election.
Horton has no problem with the way it’s shaping up in 2017.
“It’ll be the people’s choice!” he says.
The people’s choice – many of them at least – would also be to pave the Old Smith Highway. That’s easier said than done, but Horton says it would be his top priority if elected.
“You should have been on our roads the other day,” he says. “You couldn’t even go up and down the river hill.”
The solution is to pave it, he says, even if it has to be done in “small chunks a year.”
If elected, Horton would be serving his third term on council. He was on council for a three-year term from 2007 to 2010, then off for the next and re-elected (by acclamation) in 2013 for the just-ending four-year term.
“I wasn’t going to run again,” he says.
But his circumstances changed and he finds himself with more time on his hands than he thought he would. He’s no longer farming, having rented out his fields. That leaves him with just a big yard to look after, so when somebody encouraged him to run again, he decided to go for it.
Horton and his late wife Gloria lived in the Moose Portage area since back in the 1960s, farming and running a greenhouse business. He grew up in the nearby sawmill town of Chisholm, as well as Westlock, and worked in Slave Lake before going into farming.
Munir Mughal for M.D. council
The owner of Mary Brown’s Famous Chicken and Taters is running for a position on the M.D. of Lesser Slave River council. Munir Mughal is a resident of the Poplar Lane area, which is in the M.D. just east of Slave Lake. He and his wife also own several businesses in Red Earth Creek.
Asked why he decided to run for council, Mughal says there are things he would like to see done to improve the local economy, and instead of just complaining about it, he thought it was time to actually do something about it.
“A lot of things can be done to help the economy,” he says. “Saving money also.”
On the latter point, Mughal relates an example from another M.D. The service road in front of his place of business in Red Earth Creek, he says, seems to be torn up and fixed almost every year. Doing it right once (paving it in other words) – though expensive – would save money in the long run, he says.
“Same thing here.”
Mughal’s other big beef with the way things are is the relative under-development of the tourism potential of Lesser Slave Lake and its big beach.
“Like Sylvan Lake,” he says. “They’re smaller than us.”
Another thing Mughal would like to see the M.D. invest in is a playground for kids in the Poplar Lane area.
“I see them playing on the road,” he says.
Mughal and his family have been in the Slave Lake area since 2007, when he came here to open the Shell station at Hwy. 2 and Main St. He sold that after five years and went into other businesses, buying a store in Red Earth. Mary Brown’s opened in 2010. He’s since added a Pizza Hut, a sub shop a laundromat and a hunting store in Red Earth.
Before coming to Slave Lake, Mughal ran businesses in Donnelly and High Prairie. Originally from Pakistan, he came to Canada in 1994. He studied at Memorial University in Newfoundland, which is where he met wife Linda. She now manages Mary Brown’s. They have four children.
As for his campaign strategy, Mughal says he wants “to listen to people,” and find out “what are their concerns.”
He plans to do some door-knocking; also participate in the Oct. 5 candidates’ forum in Widewater.
Brian Rosche for M.D. council
‘Experience and common sense,’ is how M.D. council candidate Brian Rosche characterizes himself in his campaign literature. Running for his fifth term on council, Rosche certainly has the experience. As for common sense, that depends on your point of view, but for Rosche, it comes down to a few themes he plugs away at and which are laid out in his campaign blurb.
For example: he’s big on advocating for a lighter burden for property owners, for seniors, for local business. He’s also a relentless advocate for the province to take more responsibility for Lesser Slave River.
On the private property topic, Rosche has been strongly in favour of not forcing owners to give up 10 per cent of their subdivided piece of property for municipal reserve. This is required in provincial law and is onerous and unfair, in his opinion. On big subdivisions, yes. On one-lot subdivisions – give ‘em a break, says Rosche.
Another example of Rosche common sense: “I think it is unfair that senior citizens have to pay capital gains tax and GST on the market value of the property they give to their children.”
When it comes to spending taxpayers’ money, Rosche is typically cautious, asking questions such as, ‘Do we really need it?’ On the other hand, he says he firmly believes money is well spent on maintaining equipment and infrastructure.
On the subject of roads, Rosche says, “I believe the province and industrial users should be paying more to maintain the Old Smith Highway.”
On the planning and development file, Rosche says he doesn’t think it’s fair that owner-operators should have to move out when they were there first. On the other hand, he (and everyone else) doesn’t have an easy solution for such land-use conflicts, which are very well known and have dragged on for years.
On the matter of relations with the Town of Slave Lake, which seem to be entering a difficult period, Rosche is optimistic.
“Calmer heads will prevail,” he says. “I have a lot of faith in us working the Inter-Municipal and Fire Services Agreements out.”
Rosche is 65 years old this year and has served continuously on council since 2004. A resident of the Slave Lake area since 1976, he grew up in northwestern Ontario. He is the general manager of Remote Helicopters in Slave Lake. He and wife Amy live in Widewater.
Charlotte Measor for M.D. council
When it comes to working hard, organizing things and getting things done, Charlotte Measor figures she’s got plenty of experience. Now she’d like to apply that to the job of an M.D. councillor.
board that worked with the city and the province to battle against the ‘condo-izing’ of a mobile home park.
Measor says she also worked over a period of seven years with the City of Edmonton to win bus service for an unserved neighbourhood on the outskirts of the city.
“I’m all about helping people,” she says. “I enjoy sitting on boards. I’m just enthusiastic about discussing things and seeing progress.”
Improvement of roads is something Measor says is a big issue in the M.D. Another thing she’d like to see improved is the ‘curb appeal,’ of properties in M.D. hamlets. Unsightly properties can negatively affect property values, she says. There are bylaws about that sort of thing, “but they aren’t enforced.”
Measor also has experience with the curb appeal issue, having helped beautify a neighbourhood in Edmonton, which she says resulted in improved property values.
Born in Calgary 61 years ago, Measor became an Edmontonian at age 12. She worked at a wide variety of places over her career, starting with the Alberta Government in Vital Statistics, for GWG as a traffic controller, for an accounting firm, for a coal company and in her last 12 years before retirement, for a legal firm. She and husband Doug bought the Canyon Creek property 15 years ago “as a summer vacation place,” with the intention to retire there. They moved there full-time in 2011, and she commuted back and forth to her city job for another five years.
“We love it!” she says. “It’s a beautiful area.”
Four years ago, Measor helped a local group get organized as the Canyon Creek Recreational Association, and she is a member. She’s also a member of the Metis Nation of Alberta. Besides all that, she like fishing, quadding, hunting (“I’m the camp cook.”) and reading.