As no stranger to working with the Town of Creston, Bill Hutchinson wants to be a part of future plans and goals as well.
Born and raised in northern Ontario, he moved to Creston in 1980. He has a background in engineering and administration. A total of 26 years of his work life was spent with the Town of Creston – three years as works superintendent and 23 years as chief administrative officer (CAO).
During that time, Hutchinson served under four different mayors and numerous councils.
“We had a very dedicated staff, and we got a lot of work done together,” said Hutchinson. “I formed some great relationships.”
He retired in 2006 and went on to run in two mayoral elections. In 2018, he was defeated by current Mayor Ron Toyota by 58 votes.
“I took it as a learning experience,” said Hutchinson. “It encouraged me to throw my hat in the ring again this time. It’s a chance to get caught up and familiar with the town’s processes. This is also a way to give back to the community that has been so great to me.”
Hutchinson hopes that the skills he developed as CAO for the town could be further utilized in a position as councillor.
“I know how the operation should be run and what the deficiencies and positive aspects of the job are,” he said. “None of the current council members have been in the position I was previously within the organization. So, it would give me the opportunity to question what goes on at the administrative level.”
If elected, Hutchinson said he might decide to run for mayor again after a year as councillor.
For him, one of his highest priorities is decaying infrastructure and roads in need of repairs.
“When I was CAO, we had four streets repaired every year from the utility level all the way up to the surface,” he said. “It would happen over a two to three year period as an ongoing repair program. And we found that once the streets were repaired, residents took more pride in their houses and fixed those up too, which generated additional taxes through assessment. That helped pay for the infrastructure repairs.”
He also thinks that high taxes in Creston need to be addressed.
“I have some really good ideas that I could bring to the table at budget time that could help to solve the problem, beginning with changes to the revenue structure,” said Hutchinson.
As for why residents should vote for him, Hutchinson said that he is a familiar face that lives right in Creston.
“One of the biggest problems with our existing council is that the mayor and a few councillors don’t live in town,” he said. “It’s easy to raise taxes when you don’t foot the bill.”
To ask Hutchinson any further questions, contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
He will be running against candidates Norm Eisler, Keith Goforth, Keith Baldwin, and Nora Maddocks. There are two open councillor positions to be filled.
General voting day will take place on Sept. 18 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Upper Rotacrest Hall, located at 239 19 Avenue.
To find out if you are currently registered and eligible to vote, or for further information, please email email@example.com, phone 250-428-2214, visit creston.ca, or visit Town Hall at 238 10 Ave North.