Former councillor runs again in Morinville
By: Viola Pruss
| Posted: Wednesday, Sep 18, 2013 06:00 am
Morinville council needs to work proactively with residents to be more successful, says council candidate Joseph Trapani.
Trapani, 55, has lived in the community for 17 years. He and is wife, now deceased two years, have raised two children, 22-year-old Christopher and Jessica, 23. He was first elected to council in 2007 and lost a mayoral bid against incumbent Lloyd Bertschi in the 2010 election by 71 votes. Ready to regain his former seat, Trapani says it’s time that council became more accessible to residents.
“Basically have an open council where we don’t want to hide anything from people that elect us,” he says. “That is a big problem right now. You have a meeting before a meeting, that’s not a good way to work with the public.”
Trapani says there are many issues council needs to explore in the coming years: the placement of photo radar stations, the need for a new or renovated recreation facility, more volunteer opportunities for youth, the development of local businesses and maintaining a responsible budget and staffing numbers at town hall.
While he is not an opponent of photo radar stations, Trapani says they should be placed in areas where they are appropriate, such as school zones – instead of areas where speed zones suddenly double.
On the item of recreational facilities, Trapani says the town can choose between building a new multiplex facility or repairing the old arena. If the arena is only “patched up”, he says the town will only deal with more problems a few years down the road.
Another issue he deems high in priority is raising the number of youth volunteers in the community.
“I volunteer in this community and so does my son. The question to everybody is how come your kids do not volunteer, or do more of a work experience,” he says. “We have lots of places where they can go to.”
Following projections that Morinville’s population could grow to 10,000 in the next four years, he says council needs to address the upgrading of local infrastructures and other issues more proactively, rather than waiting things out as it’s done in the past.
He added that he cannot promise to lower taxes. Instead, town council can avoid the doubling of programs and put money where it belongs: into community services, schools and senior foundations.
“Anybody that tells you that they want to lower the taxes or keep them the same, as far as I am concerned they are lying to you,” he says. “The bottom line of all of this is that no matter what the amount is that we pay for taxes I like to see the services to match the taxes we pay.”
Trapani served in the armed forces for 22 years, after which he spent 10 years working as town manager for several municipalities. He says he is a strong candidate because he is not a “yes-man” and believes in progress made possible by working ahead.