Elections

Mayoral candidate focused on jobs

Don Dunster - Lauren Benn
Don Dunster
— image credit: Lauren Benn

ONE CANDIDATE for Terrace mayor wants to see more manufacturing jobs come here.

Don Dunster said more trades jobs here would give young people incentive to stay, and that the city should support innovative wood-based manufacturing.

He’s not happy  with current mayor Dave Pernarowski or mayoral hopeful Bruce Martindale.

“He’s too quick to make public statements that don’t come through,” said Dunster of Pernarowski. “There have been many announcements made about new businesses opening up... sawmill, pellets...none of these things have come to pass.”

Dunster said he didn’t support Martindale’s requests to provide city money to My Mountain Co-op’s campaign to buy the Shames Mountain ski facility.

“And then there’s Mr. McBike,” he said of Martindale who owns a business of the same name. “I was very disappointed to hear him batting around ‘Oh we can give them $200,000, then $90,000.’”

Dunster believes the Terrace Economic Development Authority is too focused on making Terrace a service centre instead of concentrating on manufacturing which would bring more jobs. “We already are a service centre,” he said. “Why not worry about our forestry a little bit?”

Dunster said there’s  a case to be made for a CN freight yard which he believes would give incentive to manufacturing as it would lower shipping costs. Dunster said there are regional manufacturers, some of which are based in Prince George, that are overrun with work and could be enticed to open a shop here.

Dunster moved to Terrace 37 years ago.

“For the first 15 years, I was quite involved in community events,” he said. “Hospital board, health council, Terrace and district community service board, Paces Day Care board, recreation commission – I’m an accountant by trade.”

Dunster’s community involvement slowed as he struggled with alcoholism. “I haven’t had a drink in 10 years,” he said. “I’m not ashamed of it, I’m proud of where I am today.”

“I don’t think you should hold people to mistakes they’ve made 10 to 16 years ago,” he said. “We need to work to help solve these problems. What we need is jobs, and the prospect of jobs.”

 

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