When we all awake On January 1st 2008 in glorious Maple Ridge it will be day one of the year in which the tax payers of Maple Ridge go to the polls (well at least 30% of them) to elect a new Mayor and Council.
Is it, one wonders, too early to begin reflecting on incumbents' performance? What kind of a three-years have we had? Good, bad, so-so? Where have we gained or lost? Does anyone really care?
With a population closing in on 75,000 we can no longer consider ourselves a small community. Does this prevent us from behaving like one? That is a question for the community, not for the politicians.
When it comes to elections the community asks itself who will be the best person to run this District for me? The question may better serve us all if it were slightly re-phrased; who will be the best person to this District for us? It is interesting that the community is content to allow 30% of its number to elect our leaders and to decide the future for us.
If we were able to see who went to the polls three years ago we would probably find that it was largely the same people who went to the polls in the previous election and the ones previous to that.
People who vote never change their demographic; they are all over 50 and have lived in this community for over a decade or were born here.
I'd like to hear from the other 70% in the next election and more important I like to hear from the new comers to Maple Ridge and from the young people. I'd like to see a council of young fresh faces, eager to lead us into the future. People with imagination, vision and a wider understanding of where in the world this small part of the world is headed. In short I'd like to see a clean sweep of our politicians and a nice fresh slate of dedicated citizens, willing to take on the challenges of the next term.
Is it not perhaps time that the Maple Ridge Club opened its doors to everyone?