“Responsible government, which includes accessible and open communication to the taxpayers of South Dundas, is the basis of my platform,” said Leslie Disheau, who filed nomination papers for the deputy mayor’s seat in South Dundas May 15, at the South Dundas Municipal Centre.
This will be Disheau’s first run at a municipal council seat, and her focus is on more than just South Dundas.
That’s why she is choosing to take a run at the position of deputy mayor.
“Deputy mayor sits on county council and my focus includes this next tier of government,” said Disheau.
“I want to have a seat where positive action and decisions can be made for not just South Dundas, but all of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry. I see the big picture and how all parts interplay and add up to the sum. You can’t think that we are an island and operate on this premise.”
“My 10 years of actively volunteering and being engaged with public education and the Upper Canada District School Board has taught me to be at the front of the train,” says Disheau. “I am a person who wants to participate and be part of the team in the engine car, not the caboose.”
“I have 44 years of life experiences and education behind me. Not much different than anyone else who has sat at our municipal council table,” said Disheau when asked why she chose to take aim at one of the two top seats in her first foray into municipal politics. “We are common sense local people with a passion and love of our community who have decided to take on the tough job of serving the public.”
“I have no problem asking the difficult challenging questions and being prepared to debate the issues in fairness and respect to all parties,” adds Disheau. “I expect and encourage open communication because I don’t know everything and can only learn by having all sides sitting at the table discussing the issues.”
“The needs I value are those of my community, and my community is all of South Dundas, not just one section or interest group.”
Disheau is a lifelong resident of South Dundas. She is university educated, and an active community volunteer.
She has long had every intention of running for school board trustee at some point, but the industrial wind turbine project near Brinston, which she actively opposed, changed the aim of her course to municipal council.
“It was a very difficult decision because my whole focus over the years has been on public education. But, like anything in life, ‘shift happens’, so take the ride and see where the adventure will lead you.”
When the South Branch Wind Opposition Group was dissolved in October 2013, Disheau announced publicly that she would run for a seat on South Dundas municipal council, but did not say which one.
Disheau’s nomination means that the deputy mayor’s seat is, so far, the only seat setting up to be officially contested in the 2014 South Dundas municipal election. This is likely to change before nominations close.
She and incumbent deputy mayor Jim Locke have both filed nomination papers for the deputy mayor’s position.
South Dundas councillor Evonne Delegarde has filed her nomination for mayor. Incumbent South Dundas mayor Steven Byvelds, has yet to make public his election intentions.
Incumbent South Dundas councillors Archie Mellan and Jim Graham are both seeking re-election as councillors, as is former South Dundas councillor Bill Ewing. All nominations are subject to change until the nomination deadline in September.