I am writing in response to the letter by Jim Bertram in the October 10 issue of the NG Times.
First, I am always surprised and disappointed when political candidates resort to personal attacks. Mr. Betram could have opted to lay out his platform and ideas in a clear and straightforward fashion in order to offer his vision for North Grenville. Instead, he chose to use these pages to attack his fellow mayoralty candidate, Nancy Peckford.
For the record, Nancy Peckford is not a tax and spend candidate. She has consistently said that she will live within the existing budget and in fact, will review the 2% increase set out by the previous Council to see if it can be reduced. She has never promised a pool or a splash pad, and has said right from the start that we can only pursue amenities that we can afford. She has suggested we need to examine the feasibility of a pool and other recreational facilities for people of all ages in the community before rushing into it – a responsible position, in my view. This is a need that has been expressed by many residents and I would hope that our new mayor would at least examine the possibility of these ideas. Isn’t that part of the job of the mayor, to listen to residents and consider our ideas?
There is no doubt that Nancy Peckford does have connections with politicians of all political stripes and flavours. Mr. Bertram seems to feel that’s a bad thing. The fact that she can call on some people she already knows professionally from her not for profit work is an asset to our community, and could prove to be extremely helpful in securing funds for municipal projects. Ms. Peckford already has a proven track record of raising money from all levels of government and the private sector. That’s a good thing – we will need all the help we can get to build the community we all need in North Grenville.
Mr. Bertram suggests that anyone who thinks these proven abilities are an asset is ”gullible and uninformed”. I am neither. I have seen many elections and many candidates and I am generally quite able to separate the fluff from the substance, thank-you very much. (Plus I’m not sure insulting the voters is a good strategy for Mr. Bertram.) Having looked at the candidates’ platforms and track records, nothing in Nancy Peckford’s statements or past experience scares me. On the contrary, I believe we are fortunate to have a candidate of her calibre step forward and run for office. I have complete confidence that she will offer the same kind of leadership in office as she has offered as a national advocate, community activist, and candidate. And that, if elected, she will serve our community very well as Mayor of North Grenville.