News Views: Quiet around Maple Ridge MP

Councillors need to speak up more to represent their district

Maple Ridge council seems to abandon its electorate in the presence of senior politicians.

Conservative MP Randy Kamp (Pitt Meadows-Maple Ridge-Mission) was at council recently, to address Fisheries Act, medical marijuana and cellphone towers.

Good that council invited him, but it should be more than just Coun. Cheryl Ashlie who speaks when the MP reports on what he’s done.

Recently, only Ashlie asked Kamp questions about a federal housing policy, and asked for some follow-up information.

Only Ashlie ask questions about changes to the Fisheries Act and said habitat protection should remain in it.

She did so respectfully and politely.

Coun. Judy Dueck was brave enough to disagree with Kamp when he told council it should create its own bylaw for cell tower locations.

But the others, mostly as timid and quiet as church mice, said little.

If they support the MP, they should say so.

If they don’t, they should also speak up.

Other points could have been raised: what about the MP doing some pro-active work with CP Rail and laying the groundwork for more track time for West Coast Express?

Kamp got a free pass on that, as he did on the impact of federal tough-on-crime laws will have Fraser Regional Correctional Centre.

Will there be any federal assistance to help with that?

Questions don’t have to be confrontational or political, but council needs to show that it represents local interests when dealing with senior government, not sit on its collective hands.

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