Veteran Beiseker councillor seeking re-election Oct. 18
By: Dawn Smith
| Posted: Tuesday, Oct 19, 2010 06:00 am
After about 20 years on council, Beiseker councillor Ray Courtman, 63, is seeking re-election, Oct. 18.
“I just really love the village and would like to see it develop in some kind of fashion that pleases most people,” said Courtman. “I love its proximity to larger centres, but it has a quiet country atmosphere.”
Courtman has been an active member of council during the past terms, serving on the Kneehill Water Commission, volunteering for Stage East, Big Country Youth Justice and the Drumheller and District Solid Waste Management Association.
He is also on the Association of Alberta Airport Managers, a Calgary Stampede Committee chairman and volunteers one day a week as a teacher at the aerospace museum in Calgary.
Courtman says there is still much to do in Beiseker, especially concerning water issues in the village.
“The Province has shafted everyone in this area, and we need to keep fighting for what is rightfully ours,” said Courtman. “I am the perfect person to do that.”
A former teacher and administrator, Courtman spends his free time running a niche market photography and publication business. As a pilot, he flies as much a possible and is very active in aeronautics.
If elected, Courtman would continue to work on Beiseker’s drainage problems.
“Beiseker is built in kind of a hollow, so getting the water out of town is kind of a challenge,” said Courtman.
“Significant progress has been made, but there is more to be done.”
He would also work to improve the streets in town.
Courtman said he would like to see slow, steady growth continue in Beiseker.
“If you get growth too fast, you get some of the problems that you see elsewhere in the province, where communities are now playing catch up,” said Courtman.
Recent accomplishments include the purchase of the Beiseker Airport, for $1, from the Province.
“One of my platform items is to develop that airport to its full potential,” said Courtman. “We are hoping we can attract the occasional recreational pilot, with that comes a lot of opportunity for the businesses in town.”
Courtman said Beiseker’s tax rates are lower than the provincial average for communities of its size.
He hopes to keep those rates as low as possible. In fact, Courtman said he is working on a resolution to take to the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association next year to help people on a fixed income. He would like to see their homes assessed at a lower rate until they are sold.
“We have to provide all the municipal amenities, but I will continue to ensure we get the biggest bang for the tax buck,” said Courtman.