by Colin Smith
Stephen Dafoe hopes to continue working for Morinville residents as a member of Morinville Town Council.
The two-term Councillor filed nomination papers Friday, Aug. 13 for the October 18 municipal election, seeking a third term.
His campaign slogan, as it was in the last go-round is, “Dafoe Works For You.”
“Although the role of councillor requires a collaborative work relationship with the mayor, council and administration, I do not work for the mayor, council or administration,” he said in announcing his candidacy. “I work for you. That has been my focus and will continue to be my focus over the next four years.”
Dafoe, 59, has been a resident of Morinville for 15 years with his wife Bonnie and is the father of three adult children. He is a local businessman whose activities include the publication of Morinville Online.
In announcing his candidacy, Dafoe stated that he is pleased to have had the opportunity to bring the input and concerns of Morinville residents to council and is proud of his record of “closing the loop” with residents he has worked with.
During his recent term, Dafoe has served as Morinville council’s representative to the Roseridge Landfill Commission and as the commission chair (4 years), and for the past several months served as chair of the newly formed Edmonton Metropolitan Regional Board’s Solid Waste Collaborative. In his role as councillor, Dafoe previously represented Morinville on the 55-member Northern Lights Library System board, where he served as vice-chair and chair.
He was also one of three members of the Intermunicipal Collaborative Framework negotiating group whose work resulted in Sturgeon County’s annual contribution to a recreational cost-sharing agreement triple the previous amount.
Dafoe said he was happy to see the support of many residents who expressed their desire to see him run for mayor but said he feels he can be a stronger advocate in a councillor’s chair.
“For eight years I have been a person unafraid to ask the tough questions or make the uncomfortable statements,” Dafoe said. “Leadership is not bestowed with the title of mayor. It comes from within and from around you. Every member elected to Council has the opportunity and must take the opportunity to be the leader the community needs. I have tried to do just that.”
Restoration of a sense of community in Morinville is one of his primary aims, Dafoe stated earlier.
“I’d like to ensure we restore the sense of community that drew people here in the first place,” he said. “As the town grows that becomes a more significant challenge and risk.”
He noted that another major challenge the next council will face include figuring out how to do as much as possible with less funding from the federal and provincial governments, which will require examination of sharing resources regionally to reduce costs and increase efficiencies.
A more focused approach to strategic planning is also needed, he believes.
Dafoe promises to be 100 per cent committed to his role on the Council, communicate effectively and often with residents, and bring common sense to debate and decision-making by making decisions based on information, objectivity and what is in the best interests of the community as a whole.