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Here is your District 2 Elmsdale/Belnan Candidate profile:

Name: Stephen King

Community:  Elmsdale

District: District 2 – Elmsdale/Belnan

About Me:

My family and I have lived in the Elmsdale and Belnan areas for the past 40 years. My wife Karen retired as manager of the Elmsdale Branch Library after 25 years of service. Our children, Matthew, Adam, and Susan grew up in Elmsdale and each has their own family now. We are blessed with 6 beautiful grandchildren with a 7th due in December. I am a graduate of the NS Agricultural College, University of Guelph and have completed programs in Policy Development, Strategic Management and Contract Law at Dalhousie University.

I am retired after serving 30 years as the department head of Parks and Natural Services and Environment HRM and 5 years with Provincial Lands and Forests. I have been involved with many community organizations and activities over the years including past president of the Enfield- Elmsdale Lions Club, past President of Elmsdale and District Rec.Assoc., Vice -Chair of the East Hants Bowling Society, Board of Directors of the EHDCC, etc.  I have coached minor ball, soccer, and been a beaver and cub leader. I assist with the Elmsdale Beautification Society and help out at the Elmsdale Community Garden.

Why I Am Running for Council:

I want East Hants to be the best it can be, a strong, vibrant, healthy and sustainable community-an excellent place to live, work and play along with a strong business and service community.

There have been many positives for District 2 and East Hants overall over the past 4 years and I would like to continue on behalf of District 2 and as part of the Council team contributing to this positive momentum. I believe my experience (4 decades as a local resident, 30 years senior level municipal government experience and the past 4 years on Council); engaged approach (many calls, meetings, messages with residents, business owners, community groups, etc.) and effectively bringing matters on behalf of all of these folks to Council and/or staff for review, action resolution, etc. have been very helpful serving residents and the Municipality.

Thirty years of senior level municipal government experience has taught me much about how local government works, I have seen a lot and learned a lot along the way. I am very community minded and focused and believe this is also a strong asset to bring to the Council team. I also want to help ensure a good balance between new growth and existing neighbourhoods, protection of our natural assets and excellent climate for business. 

 What are my ideas to help build East Hants:

As a council team member, I am part of the executive level oversight on policy, overall governance, strategic direction, and budget approval. As part of this team with strong staff support, I want to ensure our programs and services are the right ones, cost and operationally effective and responsive to taxpayers. Over the past 4 years Council has kept the local tax burden relatively flat. I plan to continue to closely monitor water rates and wastewater fees. I have visited all of our plants, read the background reports and attended the NSUARB Water Rate Hearings a few years ago to help me understand the cost drivers.       

I want to ensure that our plans, policies, and bylaws provide for such things as good growth, balance between new development and existing neighbourhoods, protection of our valuable natural areas and quality community living. This includes the provision of parkland, trails, and open space. In the big picture examples include the recent opening of the East Hants Aquatic Centre and splash park and in District 2 several new and/or upgraded parks and playgrounds (ie, Elmsdale Veterans Memorial Park, upgrades to Elmwood Park, new play structures at Royal Oaks Park and a new off leash dog park in Elmsdale thanks to the efforts of the Off Leash East Hants Society) all over the past 2-3 years.     

My vision includes seeing MEH continuing to work with other levels of government on infrastructure and road improvement funding including improving traffic flow on Highway 2 and Highway 214. Also, sidewalk restoration and expansion where possible and a future 10’ wide active transportation trail linking communities throughout the corridor and continuing to investigate a second entrance for Elmwood. 

Continued support for doctor recruitment; community volunteers, affordable housing, small business, etc. and including keeping the commercial tax rate competitive and flat as possible as Council has done over the past 4 years.       

Norval Edward Mitchell
Community: Elmsdale
District: District 2 – Elmsdale/Belnan

About me:

I grew up in Inglewood, just outside of Bridgetown in the valley. After graduation, I attended the Agricultural College in Bible Hill (1 year), went to Vocational School in Middleton (2 years – Electrical Construction Wiring) and 3 years at NS Teachers College, majoring in Physical Education. I graduated with both a Phys. Ed and a General License.

I began my teaching career at Elmsdale Elementary in 1973 where I taught for 32 years. I also taught 1 year at Ashburn Elementary in Ashburn, Virginia after retiring from Elmsdale in 2005- 2006. They were fun years and I had great students. I joined the Elmsdale Fire Dept. in 1978 and have continued to volunteer for over 40 years. Presently I am one of two Safety Officers.

I am also a member of the Board of Directors at the East Hants Sportsplex. I enjoy meeting people and look forward to seeing former students and their families. I played many sports – soccer, softball, and track and field and coached girl’s softball (Tri-country Cougars). I enjoy gardening, golfing, hunting, and fishing and travelling. I enjoy being a pretend farmer and take the opportunity whenever I can.

I am running for council because people have said they have not seen their councillor and I will be more visible. Councillors should be available to the residents and out in their districts listening to their concerns.

Ideas/plans:

Living in a subdivision has its own challenges. Many have only one way in and out which becomes a safety concern when there is an emergency. Looking for possible solutions to find a second way in and out is needed.

The climate is changing and many wells are going dry. Can water be extended to Belnan to fix this issue and possibly add fire hydrants for better protection?

Traffic lights, as the population continues to grow, should help with traffic flow especially at subdivisions along Hwy 2 and Hwy 214.
Taxes are an area that have home owners feeling the stress as home values climb.

Can we have affordable housing for those on lower incomes?

Those  are some areas I would like to pursue going forward to make people’s life more enjoyable.

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