Patrick Wilson is seeking a second term on Cochrane town council to see through some projects and take a more in-depth look at how Cochrane manages growth.
"There's a lot of projects on the go right now that I just think need to be executed corrected and brought to their conclusion. I think one more term would give me that."
Of the many major town capital projects underway, one particularly close to his heart is road infrastructure. That and managing growth were the two major issues that made him seek office in 2017.
He believes the improvements to our transportation network were achieved without leaning too heavily upon taxpayers. He says off-site levies have been applied and extensive consultation with the provincial government has bared fruit.
"It probably took three years to finally gain traction and get approvals on what we needed, but with enough sweat equity we got there, and I'm proud of where we got on the traffic front. I think it's now about executing those projects.
He says he'd like to press for a few upgrades to achieve what he aspired towards in 2017.
Wilson wants to take an in-depth look at how the town manages growth. He's not just counting houses, he's looking at the long-term cost of bringing on new developments.
"I think when we grow, what we haven't done correctly in the past is evaluate 30 years on. What are our liabilities for these new subdivisions we're bringing on, and what is the net present value of the taxes that we're going to collect in those 30 years? I think if you weigh all those things, you're going to find most of the communities we've approved leave us in a long-term liability."
He believes new residents should be a net benefit to Cochrane, not a net liability.
"You shouldn't be growing if it makes your community poorer. If the current residents are at a disadvantage with each new resident, then you're doing it wrong."
In his first term, he attempted to be fiscally prudent. He says he will continue to keep an eye on taxes and town expenditures.
He's a strong advocate for personal rights and freedoms and that was consistently reflected in how he voted during his first term.
He takes issue with how the Alberta government left many small businesses in the wake of its pandemic measures.
"The lockdowns, destruction of our small business community, the province picking wins and losers between businesses, where there are the giant conglomerates like Walmart that triple profits and our small-town businesses get floored and closed. I don't think anything gets my empathy harder. It drives me nuts when the free market doesn't make decisions on business success, but arbitrary government decisions do."
"It has caused me a lot of anxiety just thinking about where we are. I know I have little control over those things, but what we do control at the town level, I try to make sure we're mindful of the small businesses in our community all the time."
He says he knows of upwards of 25 small businesses that haven't survived.
Election day is Oct. 18, and four advance polls will be held, the first on Oct. 9 in the gymnasium of the Spray Lake Sawmills Family Sports Centre from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.