Whistler election gets four more candidates 

Incumbents Grant Lamont and Ted Milner, and political newcomers Jay Rolston and Jen Ford take to the campaign trail

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By Alison Taylor and Andrew Mitchell

With just a couple of months to go before the municipal election two more people have declared their intention of running for council and two incumbents have joined them.

Councillors Ted Milner and Grant Lamont have both said they will run again.

That leaves Councillor Eckhard Zeidler and Mayor Ken Melamed as the only two members of council still to make public their plans for the future.

Lamont said he had been seriously considering running for mayor in November's election.

"I was this close to doing it," said the one-term council member.

"I still feel I have a few things to learn on council."

He said in the first few months at the council table he felt like Indiana Jones, running through the underground temple with the "big ball" slowly gaining speed. He said they came out of the tunnel safely but the ball then crashed all over the community.

There were increased property taxes, new parking rates, an asphalt plant plaguing residents, a court battle lost, another ongoing.

But there were some heady times too, seeing the Olympics and Paralympics come to town in 2010 and hosting the world.

"We've done a lot of good work," said Lamont, pointing specifically to the municipal organization review nearly complete.

Looking forward he wants to get people coming back to Whistler.

"If we don't do something cohesive ... we're not going to have much of an economy here," said the father of two.

Ted Milner is seeking re-election for a fourth time. He served two consecutive terms from 1996 to 2002 and then again on the most recent council.

He said there's some unfinished business he'd like to settle and, after getting the blessing of his family members, he decided to run again.

Among that unfinished business is an asphalt plant that he said needs to move, transit service and bus depot costs that have to be studied and justified and provincial funding that has to be negotiated.

"We're on course to do some really good things," he said. "And I'd like to finish it up."

Reflecting on his most recent term Milner takes credit for fighting the location of the asphalt plant at the Cheakamus Crossing neighbourhood.

"I stood up to get the legal action initiated," he said, referring to the ongoing legal battle with the plant's operator. The case will be going to a judge in November immediately after the election.

Milner also fought to have the pay parking structure sent back to the drawing board. That kick-started more public consultation and a new pay parking fee schedule. Though there will still be pay parking, the fees are reduced from the initial proposal.

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