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Mike Allen running for Ward 1

Last Updated Sep 19, 2017 at 9:35 am MDT

Currently in the race for Mayor of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo there is laywer Don Scott, Councillor Al Vinni, Steamfitter Anthony Needham and realtor Allan Grandison.

Former MLA, Mike Allen told MyMcMurray that while politics is in his blood and running for municipal government is always in the back of his mind, he will not be offering for mayor this fall.

Allen noted that a major factor keeping him from running for Mayor was his business, Campbell’s Music that needs his full time at the moment.

Instead, Allen will once again be running for a Ward 1 council seat.

He previously sat on council from 2007 to 2012.

“After a great amount of encouragement from friends and even strangers on the street and after sitting on the sideline for the last two and a half years I thought it might be time to get involved again,” said Allen. 

Allen’s platform focuses on strengthening council’s relationship with administration, downtown revitalization, bill 21 and 8.

“There’s no big, long, official platform. My platform is too strengthen governance with the RMWB council to help develop a strong administration.”

In terms of the downtown revitalization, Allen believes putting it into the hands of the private sector and developing the area for commercial businesses, like hotels or restaurants.

“Council’s role is to designate land use and what is acceptable use for an area,” said Allen. “It’s been a parking lot for far too long and that has a severe impact on all of the small local businesses in the area.”   

Given his experience at both municipal and provincial government levels, Allen feels he could be a valuable council member.

“These [next] four years is going to be a challenging time, without a doubt. We are still trying to make headway with the rebuilding since the wildfire and our taxation and how we manage the budget is also going to be a significant challenge,” said Allen.” I’ve never said governments need to operate like a business, but they need to operate with sound business practice and I hope I could provide some input there.” 

Residents of the RMWB will vote for their next municipal government on October 16.