February 28, 2015 - 8:29 AM
WEST KELOWNA - It seems candidates in elections everywhere are spending ever more to get elected, which makes West Kelowna councillor Rosalind Neis’ 2014 campaign war chest that much more impressive.
There was nothing in it.
Neis’ campaign contribution disclosure form, released Monday by Elections B.C., is full of zeroes — no corporate or developer money, no individual donations, but also nothing spent on lawn signs, brochures or Internet advertising.
“I’ve never been a believer in taking people’s hard earned money for a campaign although the experts say the one who spends the most wins,” says Neis, who credits her previous two terms on council with giving her an edge in name recognition and familiarity.
As a comparison, first-term Coun. Rusty Ensign spent almost $10,000 on his campaign, but still couldn’t out-poll Neis, who relied on the same venues everyone else did to get her message out.
“It was really just a couple of forums and people emailing asking questions,” says Neis. “The print media always puts out a candidate bio and asks you some questions. I basically did what everyone else did aside from the signage and posters."
While Neis comes off a bit blasé about the whole thing, she does admit to enjoying during the 2014 election the fruits of her first two terms on council.
“I was quite pleased people supported me based on my past record and how I performed,” she says. “It was heart-warming to know people believed in me because they know how hard I work for the people.”
Neis says she wasn’t even planning to run but decided to throw her hat in to support would-be mayor Stephen Johnston, who ironically, lost to incumbent Doug Findlater (they both spent about the same amount during the election).
She’s not sure if Johnston will run again, nor will she commit herself to the next municipal election in 2018.
“Four years is along time and plans change,” says Neis. “I sure would like to see a lot of young people get involved, although I know its very hard to break in when you’re not well know. I’m very passionate about that. If there’s a lot lot of young people stepping up, then I will happily step aside.”
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015