Red Arrow
Tuesday October 18th, 2011  
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   Volume 81 - Issue 42 Website:www.passherald.ca   email: news@passherald.ca   $1.00   
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Quote of the Week
"The facts are that the world is changing and we have to change with it or get left behind."
- Mayor Bruce Decoux  
   
   

 

New Girl In TownThere has been a certain degree of speculation as to why I have yet to voice my personal opinions on the decisions of Crowsnest Pass Municipal Council.
Attempting to shorten a somewhat lengthy diatribe, I will put things simply - that is not my job.
My job is to report Council’s decisions and discussions accurately, objectively and truthfully.
It is my job to give you the facts so that you can form your own opinion, not to spoon-feed an opinion to you.
It is my experience that the overwhelming majority of people living in this valley are intelligent men and women with strong beliefs, opinions and priorities.
These are the kind of people who don’t need or want me to tell them what to think, but simply to provide them information so as to allow them to think for themselves.
While most people recognize not only that this is, in fact, my job, but that I also recognize that and strongly adhere to it, there are some who say that this will only be true until Council does something that directly impacts myself or those I work for.
For example, there are people who expect me to criticize Council’s every move in the event that municipal advertising is sent out for tender between the two local newspapers, or if it is cut all together.
Let me dispel these ignorant assumptions on my character by telling you a little bit about myself.
Firstly, I believe that it is Council’s obligation to be financially responsible to the people who vote for them.
These seven individuals have been recognized by taxpayers as intelligent men of integrity and experience, having been entrusted with the responsibility of running our community.
Every week, they attempt to do what is best for the taxpayers - a group to which they, too, belong - including making difficult decisions and undertaking controversial changes.
This is a difficult task, and one which I respect any Councillor for taking on, regardless of whether I agree with their individual political views.
There have, in fact, been decisions made by this Council that I have been critical of but I recognize that these intelligent, capable men are making these decisions in the best interest of the community, based on the priorities and desires which have been communicated to them by the public throughout their campaigns and their time in office.
When it comes to municipal advertising, I agree with the majority of Council that more content should be provided online, in order to allow those who do not have a newspaper subscription and those who gather the bulk of their information online to stay informed about what is happening in their community.
 

At the same time, I (as well as Council) also recognize that there are a great number of people who do not have access to this content, or are simply not that tech-savvy.
But, as we have all heard so many times and are all too aware of, times they are a-changing, and this is a direction in which we will have to move eventually, like it or not.
I support Council in moving toward communicating information through online resources and getting information out through every available resource, especially as society changes and we become more familiar with and reliant on this technology.
If moving to a system where the majority of information is provided online and only regulatory advertisements and notices of development are placed in print media is one which Council thinks is in the best interest of their electors and one which will shave dollars off the budget, all we can do is deal with it.
That being said, I think the issue of municipal advertising is one which has been inflated and gained far more public attention than neccessary.
I have lived and worked in several communities, and I have to say that Crowsnest Pass is the first one where the issue of municipal advertising has entered the public spotlight to this degree.
I think most people are content to allow their governing administration to determine the information that should be provided to the public, are happy to have that information made available to them through print media, and are more than willing to allot a small percentage of their tax dollars to providing that service.
I think one of the main reasons this has garnered such controversy in this community is because of the individual agendas of former politicians with personal issues with local media.
But whatever the case, rest assured that my personal thoughts and politics will never bias my reporting.
I would be doing an enormous disservice to the incredible mentors and teachers who have guided me on my path within this profession, to my peers and colleagues, to my readers and to myself.
It is not my role to tell you what to think, but to provide a portal to information that will allow you to do that for yourself.
Furthermore, I encourage anyone who questions my motives, integrity, or capabilities to speak directly to me, instead of making assumptions and casting aspersions on someone they have never even bothered to speak to.

Love, Kimberley

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