AMHERST POINT – Don Smith wants to provide a new voice for change on Cumberland municipal council.
Smith is one of four people running for election in Cumberland District 1. He’s facing incumbent councillor and Deputy Warden Gerald Read, former school board member Marilyn Thompson and real estate agent Edie Helm.
Key to change, Smith said, is creating better relationships with the county’s municipal partners.
“We need to have better relationships with the other municipalities, their mayors and CAOs,” Smith said. “There are only about 37,000 people in Cumberland County and we should get along better than we do.”
A former financial officer at the All Saints Hospital in Springhill, the 55-year-old Amherst Point resident said working together as a team will benefit the entire county. He said the county’s five municipalities should look at ways of sharing more services. This, he said, would lead to better service for all residents and lower taxes.
He also wants to see the county adopt more of a buy local attitude when it comes to making purchases and wants to see more transparency on council in its dealings with the community it serves as well as the media.
The county, he added, also has to do more to support its community groups by letting them know what funding is available.
“The population needs to know what the county can offer them. There are community groups out there who have never received funding because they didn’t know there was any available to them,” he said.
Smith also wants the county to have better relationships with the provincial and federal governments and he is supportive of the concept of a hospice facility in Cumberland County.
He would also like to see the county enter into a dialog with the town about extending water services to additional areas in the county, while he also wants to see the county and town work together to address the safety issue near the entrance to the Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre.