Another resident of the Border City has tossed their hat into the electoral ring.
Michael Diachuk, who previously served as the director of the Lloydminster Public School Division for eight years until moving on in 2014, has announced his intentions to run for a council seat in the upcoming municipal election.
Speaking to 106.1 The Goat last week, Diachuk said that moving slowly in retirement was not for him. Since leaving the LPSD, Diachuk has set up a consulting business, and taught at Lakeland College. The latest move to run in the municipal election will be the first time he has sought public office, and he said he had a lot of offer in the area of leadership.
“You have a choice,” said Diachuk.
“When you see something that you think can be done better, and don’t like it, then you can sit back and complain, and continue to be part of the problem. Or, you can stand up, and get involved, and become part of the solution. That’s, for me, the motivation.”
Diachuk also said he wanted to see promotion of all the assets the city has to offer, after having had experience on the Lloydminster Economic Development Corporation and the Lloydminster Regional Health Foundation. Two assets in particular were the agricultural industry in the community, and the educational infrastructure.
“We don’t celebrate the fact that we’re one of the few communities in Western Canada where your child can start in kindergarten, go all the way through high school, and then go to college here in Lakeland and get a career,” said Diachuk.
He also cited experience in dealing with both provincial governments as an asset, after handling the matter as the director of the LPSD.
As for issues arising from the last four years, Diachuk said the city needed to move forward.
“I think there is a question of trust right now with city council, words like ‘transparency’ ‘accountability’ those things are being tossed around by a lot of candidates, and in talking to people that signed my nomination, they’re pretty harsh,” said Diachuk.
“There’s a sense that something should have been done about some of the activities that have now long since transpired. When you as a community are still living in the past about decisions that have already come and gone, I think you need to get un-stuck, as a community.”
He indicated that moving forward would mean talking about the future, with a vision, and discussed the issue of accountability.
“There is a real simple four step process around accountability,” said Diachuk.
“You see the problem, find it, who owns it, own it, find a solution and do it. To some degree, I’m not sure sometimes whose problem is whose.”
Diachuk indicated he would want council to be firm on their decisions, citing previous experience with decision-making with LPSD, and giving the example of the Lloydminster Utility Corporation and the deal with EPCOR, which was placed on hold.
“Once the decisions were made, the board (of LPSD) owned them,” said Diachuk.
“I think some of the decisions that were made that are being questioned and challenged, I don’t see council saying ‘look, we made a decision about this and are moving forward’ instead it’s kind of sidestepping.”
Campaign-wise, Diachuk said he had been getting in contact with people he previously connected with as the campaign manager for Colleen Young , who currently serves as the Saskatchewan-side MLA for the Lloydminster area. He also indicated he would not be setting up a webpage.
A full list of confirmed candidates in the municipal election will be issued on September 22, with nominations closing on September 21.