As the impending UCP election for the Livingstone-Macleod riding draws near, candidate Thomas Schneider stopped by High River to discuss politics with residents at Carlson's on Macleod.
Schneider says each town and area is unique, but what he's heard from locals so far has reverberated across the riding.
"The reoccurring theme is great concern over taxation and over the Alberta economy and budget, these are themes that are universal throughout the riding. Each area has it's own unique issues locally but, that is the overwhelming theme with people's concerns, nine out of of ten times it's economy, taxes and fiscal concerns they have for the province."
Schneider says that the UCP needs someone who prioritizes local communities.
"What we want is a strong grassroots candidate and somebody who reaches out to the community and the people and represents their interests first and foremost. I think that's very important for High River, there's a strong sense of identity and a tight community in High River. When you have that, you want it protected, respected and cherished and I think I'm the candidate that can do that."
With a large riding that encompasses several different trade exports, Schneider says the ideal candidate will need to be aware of multiple communities industrial integrity.
"If we are talking about certain sectors that are vital to Alberta itself, agriculture is obviously concerned. Pipeline and oil workers are also concerned about what is going on right now, there's lots of people living in this riding working up North. So there is a lot of concern over what's going on right now in terms of pipelines and getting products to market, whether it's agricultural product as well as bitumen and petroleum product."
With those concerns in mind, Schneider says he's the man for the job.
"What will set me apart from other UCP candidates is passion, drive, and ability to communicate. Specific to the riding there a few issues that are going on right now, one of them would be with Castle Park, Porcupine Hills and public land use. I'm very much dedicated to getting that back open, for the off road enthusiasts. I think Albertan's and especially those in the Livingstone-Macleod are great stewards of the land and I think we can manage without spending tax payer dollars. I think fundamentally it's that drive and honesty to represent people from the bottom up."
There is no set date for the Livingstone-Macleod election day, but it's expected to happen from mid to late November.
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