Editorial: Voting is the best complaint or buy-in

Edmonton city council is wrapping up its first term since the Alberta government extended municipal election cycles, granting local politicians four years to serve instead of three.

For some, the longer stint was time well-spent as council collectively moved the city forward as an increasingly livable and cosmopolitan community. Its progressive agenda saw a burgeoning network of bike lanes and LRT routes, the downtown returning to relevance, mature neighbourhoods revitalized with infill housing and streets made safer with reduced speed limits around schools and playgrounds.

For others, however, council members long overstayed their welcome well before the fourth year by pushing that same agenda: costly and disruptive LRT lines and cycling lanes, needlessly lowered speed limits to bloat the revenue of photo radar and skinny houses that ruin the character of old neighbourhoods. Let’s not forget rising taxes and frustrating delays that plagued major infrastructure projects.

Edmontonians who find themselves in either camp, or perhaps have a foot on both sides, should make sure to cast a vote Monday. If you can’t make it, advance voting continues Friday between 1 and 7 p.m. at six locations.

Forget that voting is a historically hard-won democratic right and a civic duty. Think of it as a referendum on the state of Edmonton.

Unhappy that nothing’s been done with a pesky pothole? Want to show appreciation for finally getting a protected bike lane downtown and want more of the same? Voting is the way to go.

For those unhappy with council’s performance, a vote against an incumbent may be suitable comeuppance for the past term or a chance to help usher in a newcomer whose platform more closely aligns with your perspective of the way things ought to be.

While at the polls, let’s not forget to vote for a candidate running for one of the city’s school boards. While …read more

Source:: Edmonton Journal

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