Another candidate has stepped up to the Resort Municipality of Whistler’s election plate. On Wednesday morning Bill Overing announced that he will run for council in November.
In an e-mail addressed to local press, Overing called for change in municipal hall and questioned decisions made by the current council.
“Whistler is a great community with an incredible heritage, and an even greater future; however, the time has come to get out the corn broom and make a clean sweep of the hall,” said Overing, who has never served on Whistler council before.
“If not, old ideas and bad fiscal choices will be the death of one of the greatest places in Canada, if not the world.”
Overing pointed to council’s support for recent construction projections with ballooning budgets, including the library and the sewage treatment plant, along with council’s decision to go ahead with the controversial Lot 1/9 project.
“After investigating the term ‘sustainability,’ and there were numerous definitions, I determined that nowhere does sustainability in itself constitute a revenue generating business,” wrote Overing.
“In fact, one definition states, ‘Sustainability: The likelihood of a strategy to continue over a period of time, especially after specific funding ends.’ Therefore, would someone please explain to me the revenue producing aspect of the municipally funded Sustainability Centre?”
The council hopeful added that he would like to see the federal and provincial governments do more for the labour shortage, which is connected to the housing shortage.
“With the imminent loss of the Phoenix project, nothing upper government could do, short of financing the project, would change the fact that housing, not labour, is the issue. Maybe if muni hall were to take part of the $125 million loan earmarked for infrastructure expenditures and use it to back the Phoenix project, labour would be less of an issue,” he said.
“If you can’t house them, you can’t keep them.”
Overing, who could not be reached for a phone interview before press time, is the second person not currently at the council table to announce their candidacy. In late June, former councillor Kristi Wells also announced her intention to run.
Also, former councillor Ted Milner has said that he is “heavily considering” running again for the position of council.
Current councillors Ralph Forsyth, Eckhard Zeidler and Bob Lorriman have announced that they will seek re-election. Mayor Ken Melamed also plans to run in the upcoming election.
Councillor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden has not made her plans public yet, while councillors Tim Wake and Gord McKeever have said they will not seek re-election in November.