September 04, 2014 - 2:57 PM
PENTICTON - From the steps of City Hall, Coun. John Vassilaki announced he will run for mayor in the upcoming municipal election and work to restore power back to the hands of city council.
Recent issues, including the city’s lawsuit against the Penticton Hospitality Association, have cost taxpayers thousands of dollars.
“And no one has been held accountable for these mistakes,” Vassilaki said.
The answers council has been giving just lead to more questions being asked. The city is not, in it’s current state, heading in a direction where transparency and accountability are prominent issues, he said.
“I’m unhappy with what’s happening at city hall — I’m not unhappy necessarily with one individual,” he said.
But city staff do make decisions from time-to-time that council should be making, he said.
“Now we are restricted as to what we can and cannot do with city managers, or what we can bring forward and that’s what I want to get rid of,” he said. “The power has to come back to city council and cannot stay in the hands of unelected officials.”
“I want to put us on the right path, in the right direction, to say what needs to be said when it needs saying.”
He has a 5-point-plan that will be made available later on in the campaign, to make city hall more transparent and accountable.
He encouraged residents to share their ideas of how to improve the city, and said he will always make himself available to talk to the public. One change he already has in mind include appointing one deputy mayor, instead of using the current model of rotating through councillors.
Vassilaki, a local businessman, and 4-term councillor, moved to Penticton from Greece with his family when he was nine-years-old and has lived here ever since.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014