Tag Archives: regional municipality of wood buffalo

Today’s The Day: Fort McMurray Rocks The Vote!

(I fully rip apart all sense of impartiality today and endorse certain candidates, read on for the exciting, biased details!)

Your community. Your vote. RMWB Election 2010 If you’ve been living under a rock (or, to be fair, out at a work-camp) then you may not have seen all the signs and know that today is Election Day here in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo. And that’s ok, because there’s still time for you to get out and rock the vote. (voting info here)

Today is the day when residents of our region can make their voices heard and elect a mayor and council that they think will be the best representatives for our region. I’ve got my fingers crossed that this will be the best council elected in recent memory.

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Watch Mayoral Candidates Debate the Last Two Questions

Here are the last two questions of the evening. Isn’t technology wonderful?

How do you ensure the citizens the best value for their tax dollars?

What is the question you expected this evening, but wasn’t asked?

First Impressions from the RMWB Mayoral Debate

The Three Debaters, Nebesny, Vyboh and Blake

The Three Debaters: Nebesny, Vyboh and Blake

Here are a few things I take away from tonight’s mayoral debate.

  1. While the theatre had a lot of bums in seats, a large majority of those folks were heavily invested in either the candidates on stage, or were involved in council campaigns themselves. Thanks to @colleentatum for putting that bug in my ear.
  2. Joe Nebesny, while not the most qualified candidate to run North America’s largest municipality (by square kilometers), was a character and received a lot of laughs + goodwill tonight from the audience. He is passionate about the community and sees a lot of good here (he also sees a lot that needs to be prioritized and tackled speedily).
  3. John Vyboh is not a big fan of the oil sands industry – or at least he thinks they need to be more involved in the community. If I were able to question him about that, I would ask him to take a look at who raised the majority of last year’s United Way funds (hint: it rhymes with “employees of the oil sands industry”). He also mentioned how proud he was of the Syncrude Sport & Wellness Centre and the Suncor Community Leisure Centre. At odds?
  4. Melissa Blake not only kept her calm, dignified presence, but she also stole the show ending with a standing ovation from a large portion of the crowd.
  5. If push comes to shove, I am not entirely convinced that Nebesny would in fact not vote for himself come election day – based on how often he seemed to vocally support Blake’s comments… it was quite funny, and telling.
  6. I will shortly be posting two videos of the very last two questions asked of all three candidates – enjoy!
Audience Milling During Halftime Break

Audience milling during halftime break

Melissa Blake being interviewed after the debate

Melissa Blake being interviewed after the debate

Candidates – Deadline is Sept 24th for Better Know A Candidate

I think I made a mistake – yes, I know. A mistake, but please don’t tell my wife, she thinks I’m perfect. (And if you believe that, I have an oil sands lease I’d like to offer you…)

So what is this mistake? I forgot to include a deadline for the Better Know A Candidate submissions.

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Election 2010 Candidates – submit your Better Know A Candidate profile now

Your community. Your vote. RMWB Election 2010

With Labour Day upon us, there are 35 days until Election 2010 – October 18th will be the day that the municipal elections for the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo will be taking place.

As noted in late August, I thought it would be a good idea to host a Better Know Your Candidate – RMWB-style here on my oil sands.

Well, candidates can now start submitting their info – as the form is ready and waiting to be filled out.

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Better Know a Candidate: RMWB-style

Your community. Your vote. RMWB Election 2010

Let’s get one thing straight. Voter turnout for municipal elections here in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo has a not-so-good history. 2007 turnout was bad. So bad that I’m about to quantify how “bad” bad actually is. So put on your helmets ladies and gentlemen, because I’m about to blow your respective minds.

Bad is less than 10%. Continue reading

Unwrapping the Research: What will the future for Fort McMurray hold?

With all the hoopla in the news about our national census (short form, long form, who has the right to ask you if you have a cracked bathroom tile etc.), you can be forgiven if thoughts towards our local regional profile and census have fallen by the way side.

Granted, we have had our own issues regarding the all mighty census – in fact, as of this post, the latest Regional Profile available to residents is the 2002-2004 profile. (Hopefully these issues are behind us and an updated profile will be released to us residents shortly…)

But putting the municipal census aside, Fort McMurray and the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo (RMWB) seem to have caught the attention of a lot of folks. A lot.

Not only have we become a household name (ok, “oil sands”, “tar sands”, and “dirty oil” are becoming household words…) but apparently a healthy amount of researchers have been coming up here to gather data – data to better understand who we are and what makes the region tick. And gather they have.

City-Region Studies Centre Logo

property of the CRSC

Coming up this fall, we will have the opportunity to find out what these researchers have discovered.

A division of the University of Alberta, the City-Region Studies Centre (CRSC) is presenting Unwrap the Research: What now for Fort McMurray and Wood Buffalo.

The  conference will be hosted at multiple venues (Downtown, the Sawridge, and the Suncor Community Leisure Centre) from October 22 to 24, 2010. It seems to be a great opportunity to take a look at what has been found, ask questions and provide feedback on the findings.

(A draft of the the three-day program is available, though it is obviously subject to change.)

From the conference page:

The first of its kind, this conference is structured to facilitate dialogue and learning opportunities
a) among researchers from multiple disciplines; and
b) between researchers and local residents.

Unwrap the Research offers a unique opportunity for social researchers and local residents to share and learn from research conducted in Fort McMurray and the oil sands region of Alberta. These and other topics will be covered:

  • Education in a Resource Economy
  • Childhood Well-being
  • Work and Gender
  • Mobile Workers
  • Francophone Newcomers
  • Immigrants/TFWs in the Service Sector
  • Comprehensive Bibliography of the Region
  • Demographics and Census
  • Urban Planning and Space
  • Recreational Land Use
  • Health and Substance Use
  • Social Meanings of Environment
  • Aboriginal – Industry Relations
  • Visual Images of Community

Looks to be a pretty interesting conference if you ask me – seems to be a great event to truly find out about what makes this place tick. I plan to attend… will you?