The County of Paintearth’s development officer has thrown his name into the ring to be the UCP candidate for the Drumheller-Stettler riding.
“I’ve been involved with the conservative side of politics most of my life,” said Todd Pawsey. “I’ve had 26 years of working for a municipal district (MD)or a county in the area of community services. So I look at it as an extension of that work, by taking it to a higher level.”
“Being a farm kid, we have a very different lifestyle out here in rural Alberta, and we have a very large riding. The more I talk to people, the more I hear how under-represented we’ve been in the recent past, and I think there’s a large appetite for change.”
The 50 year old grew up in Edgerton, and has two children; a 27 year-old daughter and a 23 year-old son.
Pawsey also holds a four-year degree from the University of Lethbridge in sports, recreation and public administration. After spending 16 years with MD of Bonnyville, he has spent the last 10 years working for the County of Paintearth,
“I look at Provost, near where I grew up and they have been shuttled out of one riding, and now are in the absolute corner of another riding. They want to know there is some representation happening, and that they can count on someone to have their backs.”
The next MLA for Drumheller-Stettler will have an even larger area of east-central Alberta to represent now that Provost was added to the constituency.
The original riding boundaries were established in 2004, and were last updated in 2010. Prior to 2004, the area was represented between Drumheller-Chinook and Lacombe-Stettler.
“In comparison to my other candidates, none of them have municipal experience in terms of looking after public funds. Looking after public and community engagement and things like that.
“Going forward, I have ideas on governance because we have to do things better. My three points in my campaign are: ideas, in-touch and integrity.
“The ideas being we need people in government that can bring ideas out of the box to how we do things in Alberta. We can’t solve today’s problems with the same level of thinking that created them. I know that’s kinda cliche, but so is Einstein’s theory of insanity.
“The part with (being) in-touch, the other two candidates are farmers and ranchers, so they may not have the same ties to the municipalities. We have roughly 27 municipalities in this riding. When you don’t pay attention to all of them it creates a disconnect, since they largely rely on things that happen at a provincial level.
“That leads into my integrity part, that I’ve worked for 26 years in the public system where we are under scrutiny for everything from the public spending of taxpayer dollars, to the processes for contracts. Everything is open and above board, so I’ve had 26 years in training in how public life is to be run.”
The Drumheller-Stettler UCP Constituency Association will vote for their new board during their meeting on May 17. Party members are invited to attend from 7 -8:30 p.m. at the Hanna Community Centre. (503 5 Ave West, Hanna, AB)
Once the new board has been nominated, the process and timeline for the candidate nominations will be decided.
MLA Rick Strankman is seeking the nomination, having served the area as the Wildrose representative since 2012, prior to the merger with the PC’s last summer.
Pollockville’s Nate Horner has also announced his intentions to run for the local nomination for the United Conservative Party.