EDITORIAL: Council a true public service

No one goes into civic politics to make their fortune

Another municipal election has come and gone, washing away those who lost the public trust and ushering in fresh new faces and ideas.

Unlike provincial and federal politics, serving in local government is one of the few truly “public service” jobs left in politics.

The wages for those who sit on the councils of small towns and cities all over B.C. are compensatory, at best. Nobody goes into civic politics to make a fortune.

That’s what keeps politics at this level refreshingly honest. The people who go into local politics generally do so because of a love for where they live and a protective duty for their community, not to grab and hold onto power for selfish reasons.

But not all who run for election become the elected. There are also the also-rans. Those parents and grandparents, community volunteers and local business leaders, who decided to put their lives on hold to appeal to a bolder vision for their town.

Most of them are just like us.

They pay their taxes, scrape by on a modest income, and split time between work and packing their kids in the car to rush off for extracurricular activities.

Part of the attraction of municipal politics is that you can often look at a person running for council and say, “there, but for the grace of a regular sleeping routine, go I.”

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