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Election Edition: Candidates final word

Mayoral candidates debate October 8Mayoral candidates debate October 8, 2014. The winner will be Pelham's Mayor for 2014-2018

Every candidate was asked why residents should vote for them in the upcoming election. Below are the results.

Mayoral candidates:

“The people of Pelham want to be heard. They are tired of the lip service the town now provides. The town  is not hearing what our citizens want or need. You can provide all the committees you want, but in the end if no one is listening, what is the point to it all. We need to get back to common sense government, spend our money wisely, and start actually listening to our citizens. I cannot and will not promise the world to get your vote. However, I will promise I will listen, and you the voters will voters will be heard.”
Mark Bay
“From new roads, sidewalks and trails, to new playgrounds and improved parks, to renewed Downtowns and improved community events, I have provided the leadership with Council to achieve significant improvements for Pelham. With a positive attitude, I work to build the community up and make it better while demonstrating fiscal responsibility (below inflation tax increases), and openness and accountability. I will continue to work together with the community to develop a multi-purpose community centre (contingent on funding and tax-payer affordability), to facilitate a new medical centre and a retirement home, to enhance Town infrastructure, and to maintain our friendly, small-town feel as we grow.”
Dave Augusytn

“I grew up on a dairy farm in North Pelham, and  graduated from the University of Waterloo with a Master’s Degree in Rhetoric and Communication Design. Disillusioned by the current administration, I hope to bring a fresh political approach to our local government and the community as a whole. My platform is anchored on transparency and practical growth through long-term planning in order to optimize spending and reduce waste.”

Zachery Junkin

Regional candidates:
“Jim Inman is the only Fonthill resident running for Regional Council from Pelham. It’s time for change! The Regional Chair needs to be elected by the people to ensure accountability in a general election, rather than appointed by Council. Economic growth and new jobs are Jim’s priorities along with a region-wide transportation system to lead the way to new prosperity and unity of purpose for all Niagara residents. Your vote can make a difference.”
Jim Inman
“At the start of this campaign, I wrote several media articles to highlight the accomplishments of this term of Niagara Regional Council. That was followed by progressive ads highlighting several areas of leadership. I have conducted a thorough door-to-door delivery of a brochure and will end the campaign with a mailed postcard. My recycled signs are placed at strategic open locations; not on public road allowances. Honesty, dedication and integrity have followed my career from education into government. I have a record of proven leadership and am proud to say that I am in, of and for this wonderful community of Pelham.”
Brian Baty
“Pelham needs someone who is not afraid to call people out for supporting parochial interests and hold them accountable for raising taxes and  overspending.  Someone who has respect for tax dollars. Someone who isn’t afraid to Lead by example. Pelham needs to be part of a strategy to help retain our youth, so that they may have the opportunity, to raise their families in vibrant, active community.  Today that is not the situation.  There are not enough jobs and even less in the future if Niagara does not alter the course.  I ask for your support October 27th to alter the course.  To bring much needed change in approach and attitude to Regional Council.  Pelham needs change. Pelham deserves leadership for a change.”
Anthony Annunziata
Ward One candidates:
“I love politics and want to make a difference for the people of Pelham.I have lived in ward one for many years and am familiar with and understand the issues facing the residents. I have the time and passion to work for and with the residents to address their concerns and to get results.I have proven that I am responsive to the residents and work diligently on their behalf. I too am a taxpayer and am ever vigilant in watching over how our tax dollars are spent. This is an exciting time for Pelham and my experience on council will be an asset in moving the town forward over the coming years. Results are the measuring stick for performance and I believe that I have gotten  results for the people in the past and hope to in the future.”
Jim Lane
“As a Councillor, I have been responsive to residents with issues, meeting with them in their homes or at the location of their concern, and getting back to them with answers and, often, immediate solutions. Effective in initiating decisions and being constructive at Council.  I would like to accomplish completing the Fenwick revitalization project, and preserve library services in the village, in Maple Acre Library as a heritage site.
I would be honoured to have an opportunity to continue to represent Ward 1 on Council in the Town of Pelham.  I have the vision, enthusiasm, and drive to continue to keep Pelham as one of the greatest places to live anywhere in Canada.”
Richard Rybiak
“If you are happy with the direction this Town is taking — development at any cost– and if you are happy being treated like a nobody, that your concerns and ideas are of no interest to Council, then you shouldn’t vote for me.
If elected, I will reduce careless spending, I will bring common sense back to council and I will always make myself accessible to the people of Ward 1. May the winds of change blow long and hard on the 27th.”
Marvin Junkin
Ward Two candidates:
“I’m not afraid to speak my mind or to take stands on tough issues. I am self-employed and have been involved in many local community organizations. I have lived in Ward 2 for most of my life. I feel that I bring both common sense and practical experience to the table which I will use when making decisions on Council. I will work to ensure that the people of Pelham are treated with respect and that they are represented in meetings, both individually and as a whole.”
Justin O’Donnell
“I work, play and live life in Pelham. Further, as a tax payer, I am dedicated to Pelham’s progress and been a contributor, both at the Council table and prior, through business involvement, committee and volunteer work and contributions to social responsibility.
I look forward to continue addressing the issues and working hard to reach the goals that are in the best interest of the development of the community and the future of Pelham”
Catherine King
“I truly believe living in the Ward where you are a councillor is an important aspect of our municipal government. There are some decisions made by council that affect the entire town, but there are some that are very localized, and for those decisions the Ward system works. I also offer sound judgement and solid experience. I’m in favour of a new recreation centre but not at any cost. It will have to be fiscally responsible and a strong business case will need to be made. That’s how I’d handle the big decisions facing our community – making sure they are fiscally responsible, right for the future of the town, and follow a solid business plan.”
Larry Frost
“I have been a resident of Pelham and a dentist/businessman for 42 years. I am passionate about the community and have served on many boards and committees over the years. My term on Council has given me insight into the needs of the Town and its citizens. I am hard working, honest and dedicated to carrying out my role as Councillor in the best possible way. I work hard to be prepared and to understand the issues at hand. I understand that Council needs to work as a team together with Town Staff and the community volunteers. Together we can help Pelham reach its full potential of being the most Vibrant, Caring and Creative Community in Niagara. A vote for me will ensure that this vision will be achieved.”
Gary Accursi
Ward Three candidates:
“It is a very exciting time to be living in Pelham. With the development of the expansion of the urban boundary areas, not only will a well planned and attractive community be established to complement our already beautiful town, but also, many employment opportunities will open up. Our friendly, small town feel will be preserved as we attract new residents of all ages. I have had the honour and privilege of playing a part in establishing that plan and can be instrumental in ensuring that the development reaches its full potential. The experience I have gained from my past involvement on council and the energy and excitement I feel about this project will act as a catalyst to help our community move positively into the future.”
John Durley
“This is my first election campaign and I have been impressed that most of the Ward 3 residents that I spoke to are looking for change in the 2014 election. They are not satisfied with the status quo, and want a council that is transparent, communicates with them, and is fiscally responsible. The East Fonthill subdivision development and the Community Complex is the top issue that all citizens want rationally and  efficiently developed with fiscal control. This project needs to be well presented to the community and receive support from citizens, businesses, and the developers before tendering construction. I strongly support all these issues and will be accountable to the citizens for them when elected as your Councillor.”
William Heska
“I am very proud of the work I have been a part of in my three terms of council, and there is a lot more work to do. I want to finish that work. I want to see what we’ve started be completed, and the projects we’ve completed flourish. As a current councillor I have the experience needed to help guide the town into the future, the leadership skills to build great working relationships with my colleagues, town staff and residents, and the commitment to see it through. I have contributed to Pelham’s new Official Plan and a Secondary Plan for the East Fonthill area;  kept Pelham’s fiscal challenges under control while being able to build our community  to position Pelham as a place people want to come, either to live or visit.”
Peter Papp
“I am running in this election to provide a clear and unequivocal alternative to imminent developments that threaten to forever change the essential character of our Town. This past June the official “Downtown Master Plan for Fenwick Fonthill” which outlines the extent to which new development along our Hwy. 20 corridor will simply repeat mistakes of the past like the presentation of the Shoppers Drug Mart loading dock to our main street, and more recently the LCBO ‘penitentiary’ fiasco. This sort of development is entirely inappropriate if we are going to maintain a “small town feel,” threatening not only our visual streetscapes, but also our property values.”
Wally Braun
School candidates:
“I am running because everyone talks about how important the education of our children is and then year after year yet they take more money out of the classroom.
Hire teachers properly, give them the resources they need and get out of their way. We are an average  board offering average opportunities for our students.
Other boards and jurisdictions do a much better job at helping more kids reach their potential. Be it through sports academies or alternative schools there are methods out there to allow more of our kids to maximize their potential. I believe the money is already available. It just has to be spent more wisely.”
John Picillo
“I am running to be your trustee because we need the trustee with the background and experience to support your family should  issues or concerns arise. We need the trustee who will use our education dollars wisely, in the best interests of all of our students.  We need the trustee who can build relationships based on trust and respect and foster open and honest dialogue. We need the trustee who will work on your behalf to represent the best interests of the Pelham community at the board table. I am running to be your trustee because I believe that we must provide all of our children with the best possible educational opportunities to enable them to reach their goals and make their dreams come true.”
Dale Robinson
“I am running because I am concerned about how our Catholic and religious education is progressing in this province.  In Welland, there are two elementary schools.  Both schools are performing poorly and are ranked at the bottom of the list of schools with a rating of 4.5 and 4.4. The only secondary school is also struggling on a provincial level with a rating of 5.4. It is time for a more dedicated School Trustee.”
Wafik Abadir

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