By Katie TowerStaff Reporter (Sackville Tribune Post - Wednesday, April 21, 2004)
Cameron Bales will be vying for a seat on Sackville town council in the upcoming elections next month.
Bales said he believes the most effective way to make changes is at the municipal level.
“I really do believe that municipal politics is where you have the most effect,” he said, “where the smallest number of people actually have the most effect on what happens to people in their everyday lives.”
“A small number of people right here in the municipality can make a decision or influence the council and actually get something done .”
Within the provincial and federal levels of government, Bales said, it’s more difficult to “get enough people together to get something done” because they are dealing with party politics.
Bales said he was recently asked by a current councillor, who is stepping down from municipal politics in May, if he would consider running.
Although he said he feels the current council seems like they’re on the right path, he does have concerns over the lack of representation from a younger demographic.
“At around 35, I’m a very different demographic from the people that are on council now,” he said.
He noted that he likely has different concerns than some of the current councillors, some of whom are retired.
“I have a young daughter and I’m concerned about making sure it’s a good community for her to grow up in as well as for us to live in.”
Some of the younger residents may be able to relate more to someone closer to their age, he said.
“Even if it’s easier for people my age to talk to me than it is for them to talk to the rest of the council, I think that’s important.”
If elected, Bales said he would like to pursue a ban on cosmetic pesticides and herbicides, something he has been surprised to learn has a lot of local support.
“So I’d be very interested to see what they (pesticide committee) are up to and I’d be one of those people who would be on side for banning those kind of lawn chemicals.”
The fact is, he explained, is that when those chemicals are used in a neighbourhood, they can have a direct impact on all nearby residents.
“People can argue that maybe they’re not that horrible, but they are that horrible when they’re that close to your kids and pets.”
The pedway is another project Bales said he would like to learn more about.
“I’m afraid it’s going to be expensive, but it’s something I’m excited by,” he said, noting that having a landmark in town could make Sackville more of a tourist destination.
“I know that finding an iconic image that defines Sackville is difficult. But I think the imagined design (of the pedway) really could scream Sackville like nothing else in Sackville does. And it’ll certainly be cooler than having a giant apple or a giant fish or even a giant duck.”
Bales, who works for Tantramar Interactive and has been a Sackville resident for 15 years, has a degree in education, as well as a physics and engineering degree from Mount Allison University.