Attracting new business and labour for economic growth and diversification

September 22, 2017

Recently, I announced my intention to run for Edson Town Council. In my announcement, I made it clear that a huge focus of my platform is to attract new business and labour to stimulate growth and diversify the economy.

Is has become evident in recent years that local residents want more services and better infrastructure from their town, while at the same time no one wants a tax increase to pay for such things. In order to increase the revenue collected by the town without a mill rate increase, the town needs to grow in residential, commercial, and industrial properties; in other words the population needs to grow, and regional businesses need to believe that Edson is best suited for their development.

I will encourage Town Council to take number of actions. First, we need to actively market Edson within Alberta as the best location to relocate their business, plant, or headquarters. Many places in Alberta are already marketing their municipality in trade publications, conventions, and trade shows. I also view the industrial development of lands just outside the town boundary as an indicator of poor policy. We need strategies to attract businesses into Edson, not just outside our boundaries.

Secondly, I want to encourage cooperation and team work between the Town and private businesses. Very often business owners and their staff are directly in tune with the immediate needs of the community and have plenty of ideas on how to improve. We can no longer view private businesses as something that needs additional regulation, but rather a collaborator and stakeholder in our community improvement goals.

Lastly I believe we need better cooperation with the Yellowhead County. The County should also be viewed as a partner to provide joint services, especially for emergency services, but also a partner in facilities and capital expenditures.

In the coming weeks, I plan on talking about my four other campaign promises that includes adding parks, trails, and green initiatives throughout the community; expanding arts, recreation, and event facilities; developing goals and strategies for a proactive long-term growth plan; and enhancing senior and youth services.