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“We need to get the incumbents out”

Town Council Ward 3 candidate Enzo Della Marca. JOHN SWART PHOTO

Finances, respecting the values of Pelham, top Enzo Della Marca’s platform

BY JOHN SWART
VOICE Correspondent

“Every concern of the people, no matter how small, needs to be respected,” states Ward 3 council candidate Vince “Enzo” Della Marca.

Della Marca feels the same about Pelham.

“We have to respect the family values and the atmosphere we have here. We are treating Pelham as every other town, losing our uniqueness. Development is good, but not the cookie-cutter style. We don’t have to be the same as everywhere else. Let’s do it our way.”

He continues, “As a transplant, I can imagine the heartbreak of those that have lived here for years. Residents and citizens need representation, and they haven’t gotten that. That’s why so many candidates have come out,” says Della Marca. “We need to get citizens involved, then things can only get better.”

Della Marca, originally from Niagara Falls, has lived in Pelham for three years.

“I married a Fenwick girl, JoAnne Koudys.”

Della Marca has had years of community involvement in Niagara Falls, which began two decades ago after his unsuccessful run for Niagara Falls Council.

“I lost, but I had got involved. This gave me the road, the route, and the drive to try and make a difference. It led to so many good things.”

Della Marca has been appointed to the Advisory Board of the Niagara Falls City Council Recreational Committee for four terms. (He’s still serving there, until this election.) He has a provincial license to coach soccer, which he has done in Niagara Falls and St. Catharines, and has served two terms on the soccer executive in Niagara Falls.

The list goes on. Committees, parades, Gale Centre seat sales, but Della Marca suggests we don’t need to hear everything on the list.

“What I’m most proud of,” he says, “is being the founder of Recreational Sports for Underprivileged Kids. I started it in Niagara Falls for kids aged six to twelve who couldn’t afford recreational sports. It was free, paid for by donations and myself out-of-pocket, and I did it for five years. We had guest coaches for hockey, soccer, volleyball, and the effects still linger on today.”

Della Marca believes that the current council has let Pelham residents down.

“We have no money because our councillors got lazy. A bunch of councillors followed the Mayor around like lost puppies. We don’t need that. We need them to stand up, show common sense. Full disclosure and honesty are a given. We need to get the incumbents out, plain and simple.”

Strong leadership, working together on everything, and setting a good example are keys attributes which Della Marca believes he would bring to Pelham Council. He cites his committee work in Niagara Falls.

“The first thought around the table was ‘How will this improve things for the people of Niagara Falls?’ I’ll bring this mentality to Pelham. ‘How will this benefit Pelham?’ “

Transparency is important for Della Marca, who would support an independent audit of the Town’s books.

“Absolutely. You can’t go wrong with transparency. Everything on the up-and-up. Banned the Voice? Come on, what the heck is that? Any communication is great. Secrets and closed door meetings are not good.”

When asked about platform specifics, he continued, “Until you know the facts, you can’t decide what’s best for Pelham. You need to be on the inside. Open the books, put your nose into it. Roads need fixing, seniors’ items need attention, trails need investment and clean-up, but first we have to get the finances in order.”

“We need to be able to see what we need to do. Problem- solving, developing new policies, risk management, delegating resources to the best of our ability,” all things that Della Marca has encountered in business.

He has spent 28 years with Roman Cheese, a successful Niagara Falls business, rising from cheese maker to Plant Manager.

He has dealt with government regulations through continuous interaction with CIFA, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, and says, “You have their guidelines, and you make it work. Your circumstances don’t matter, you have to work together to move ahead.”

Della Marca believes strongly in moving ahead, always striving for better, admitting to mistakes, and using the support of those around him.

As well as wanting to convey a sense of openness, respect for family values, and common sense to voters, Della Marca has definite opinions on specific issues to share.

When asked if he favoured rescinding the non-disclosure agreements that many former Pelham Town employees have signed, he was unequivocal.

“Those are very dangerous waters—just like the corporate world. You can’t do that to these people. I don’t agree.”

Regarding the sale of the old arena before the election he states, “Do everything after. Stop any spending, don’t do anything until after. We will have new people.”

The location of Summerfest?

“It’s such a great happening, people are so happy about it. If it gets bigger, it may have to move to be safer and accommodate more people. We can look at where when the time comes. We’ll need to discuss it.”

When asked about Airbnbs/home hotels, Della Marca was measured.

“Every city has this dilemma. [We] really have to look at where to go with this. It will divide Pelham. If seniors want to make some money for a spare room, that’s okay. I don’t think so to unoccupied homes. No commercial aspects involved at this time. Let’s see what benefits the citizens of Pelham. Let’s try some areas, evaluate it, put a limit on it.”

A key factor in Della Marca’s decision to run is his concern for seniors’ issues, including housing.

“Pelham must be more senior-friendly. We need to improve everything that impacts on their quality of life. We need to listen to them and respect their voice and opinions. They have so much to say, they’ve been there, they know more than us, and nobody is listening to them. They are being ignored.”

Della Marca favours improving Pelham’s public transit.

“We need to work with our neighbouring communities for the benefit of all. We have an international student living with us. Student transportation is tough for her and others. Summer jobs, getting around, we can help. Let’s talk.”

Bottom line? Della Marca wants voters to know he shares their family values. He has some experience, and lots of passion and common sense, which he believes is what Pelham needs now. He looks forward to the challenge, helping to change the community for the better, and hopes he will be one of your representatives.

 

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