Philip Massier – councillor for Red Deer County Division 1 – is seeking re-election this fall and is hoping to put a spotlight on agriculture as he hopes to continue to progress on council.
“I certainly enjoy representing the community out here and we have seen progress in Red Deer County,” he said. “I feel I am really starting to be effective and I feel in my third term I will continue to progress in the work I am doing.
“The first term is about learning and understanding how municipal government differs from small business; in the second term, you start to see your wants and wishes come to fruition; and in the third term, I am hoping to groom new councillors on working with administration to make changes or to continue with the good work.”
For Massier, it is important the County continues to improve infrastructure.
“I would certainly like see QEII and Highway 42 development improved and/or replaced with a new interchange,” he said. “We are full at the County office, so we may need to consider moving in the short-term. We also need to consider new public works that we may not have had before.”
Massier hopes he will be able to be a voice for agriculture on council, something he feels is underrepresented in society.
“The biggest issue facing Red Deer County is becoming a spokesperson for agriculture,” he said. “We have problems promoting agriculture at the next levels and we are losing awareness of how important agriculture is. Our development is happening and we have good planning and good development staff — that will continue, but I really feel agriculture needs a strong voice and maybe Red Deer County could be that strong voice.”
He added he feels the first steps to creating this voice are already taking place.
“Our development is happening and we have good planning and good development staff — that will continue, but I really feel agriculture needs a strong voice and maybe Red Deer County could be that strong voice,” he said. “We are doing our Enterprising Ag Tour; we hosted the Provincial Ag Service Board Tour; we are trying to promote agriculture and I think the next generation will help us use newer technology like social media to say all the good things about agriculture.”
A third term for Massier would represent an opportunity to continue the solid relationships that have been forged on council, he said.
“The mayor has the experience to work with all of us,” he explained. “He has an open mind and works with all of us as individuals and considers our concerns. We strive for consensus but we are willing to differ on our understandings and move on with the good things. Council has been working well in the last few years.”
Massier initially came into office when County reserves were around $30 million. Solid policy, according to Massier, has allowed the County to continue their development and infrastructure projects without a significant financial hit.
“I think we have a strong fiscal policy, we used our reserves well and we will continue to spend money on development to get ahead on some of our infrastructure projects,” he said.
While promoting agriculture is a priority for Massier, he recognizes agricultural importance needs to be consistent with other community needs.
“Environment, agriculture and development work together,” he said. “There is no one better than the other and I think they all have to work together for the success of the whole.”
Massier hopes Red Deer County appreciates the work he has done and hopes to continue that work in a third term.
“I work hard for their interests out here in Division 1 and represent the whole County at the provincial level. I think I have the experience and ability to continue to represent the people of Red Deer County,” he said.