“There’s not a lot of accountability it seems when money is being spent or things are being bought, and I figured I can’t complain about something if I wasn’t willing to try to make a difference,” he said.
MacDonald, who is the store operator of Mark’s Work Wearhouse, said it’s not so much a matter of transparency at City Hall, but rather some spending priorities that have been questionable. He said, for example, the FairShare funding the city receives in lieu of industrial property taxes should be directed to core infrastructure such as repairing city streets. He added the controversial decision to fund the Dawson Creek Rage hockey team should have been made by the citizens of Dawson Creek.
“If the community did feel it needed to give money to an organization, then we should make that decision as a community,” he said. “There has to be someway in this electronic age that we could take some kind of poll to find out if we wanted to do that.”
MacDonald said he believes there isn’t enough being done to plan for the future. He said, for example, with the current boom in economic activity, city council should be focussed on putting money in reserves for the future for when that activity slows down. He added the city needs to invest in core infrastructure such as roads, sidewalks and sewers to accommodate the anticipated growth of the city, and he said he is not opposed to investing in facilities such as the municipal library or the airport if it is in the best interest of the community in the long-term.
“There’s a lot of things we need to look at as a community for long-term growth,” he said. “A lot of what I’m going to be talking about will be looking at what we can do for the future, and it will be centred around being open, transparent and involving members of the community as much as they would like to be involved so the right decisions can be made for all of us.”
He added he believes his business management experience will be an asset when it comes to managing the city’s finances.
MacDonald has lived in Dawson Creek for three years with his wife and three children, and he said he loves the community and is planning to stay for “the long-haul,” and would like to try to make a positive difference while they are here.
Check back with Mile 0 City all this week for more profiles of local candidates.