KAMLOOPS - Pierre Filisetti wants a more liveable Kamloops, a Kamloops residents can be proud of and the rest of the world won’t look down on, and he wants to help create that from the head of the council table.
Filisetti says he decided to run for mayor at the last minute when he realized incumbent Peter Milobar did not appear to have a ‘credible challenger’ to run against.
“There is no bloody chance that (Milobar) deserves to be acclaimed,” he says. “Acclamation is reserved for people with passion.”
He says with big issues like Ajax, a performing arts centre, cycling networks and other liveability items to tackle the city needs a council that is ready to move forward and ‘join the realities of the 21st century.’
“Kamloops has a bad reputation as an industry town,” Filisetti says. “I see Ajax as a bad fit for my vision of Kamloops. (The mine) will bring more negativity to the overall negative projection of what Kamloops is seen as. I want a city we can sell to the world.”
The landscape contractor has lived in Kamloops for more than 20 years and says people need to be more mindful of the choices they make as well.
“I do care what happens outside my front door, in my city,” he says. “As a mayor I have the responsibility to be mindful, and to remind citizens to be mindful.”
The 55-year-old says the last three mayors brought nothing but talk when it comes to economy over the last 15 years and he believes he can make a difference locally. He admits he is not a politician, ‘but then who is?’
“I’ve been running a small business for many years. I understand business concepts and I’m a keen observer,” he says.
Filisetti admits filing last minute may be a bit of an issue and he is just beginning to realize how much time campaigning can take.
“I realize I should have a manager, and I’m preparing a bit of a platform,” he says. “There will be no signs, I find them to be tasteless, a nuisance and I see them as littering. I will (put myself out there) in person and with media, but no Facebook or Twitter.”
“I want to do what’s best for Kamloops. New blood in council is very important, but we don’t want change for the sake of change,” he notes. “I only want to make sure people know Peter Milobar doesn’t deserve to be acclaimed, he has a lot of work to do to make this into a modern city. I think he’s a good guy… but I also think he does not have any passion (and) isn’t aware of certain issues.”
Filisetti is running against Milobar, Ben James and Dallas Paisley, another last minute entry.
Nomination papers had to be filed by Friday afternoon and candidates will be officially declared on Oct. 20. On Nov. 15 Kamloops will elect one mayor, eight councillors and five school trustees.
To contact a reporter for this story, email Jennifer Stahn at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250-819-3723. To contact an editor, email email@example.com or call 250-718-2724.