City should operate as a business, Koester says

Tyler
Tyler Clarke
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A more businesslike City of Prince Albert would benefit taxpayers, Ward 8 candidate David Koester said, highlighting his underlying campaign message.

 

David Koester is seen in the city’s downtown core this week. Koester is running against incumbent Ted Zurakowski for the Ward 8 council position. 

A more businesslike City of Prince Albert would benefit taxpayers, Ward 8 candidate David Koester said, highlighting his underlying campaign message.

 “What I’m bringing to (the city) is a professional businesslike approach,” he said. “We don’t have a business plan, I feel.”

The businesslike approach is linked to many of Koester’s campaign points, including the need for true budgets when it comes to civic facilities, many of which don’t currently factor in water costs.

“If you’re going to run something, to do a true cost in the budget for the total operation, make them accountable to the taxpayer,” he said.

“You can’t run a business unless you know what your costs are … Let’s not treat our citizens like they’re wearing blinders or they don’t understand what we’re doing.”

Another point of contention with the current incarnation of city council is their over-devotion of time to matters of little significance, Koester said.

The city needs to get better policies in place to mitigate all these little things that don’t warrant time in council chambers, he said.

“It’s no different than having a condominium — you can’t hang signs on your balcony. It’s rules and regulations,” he said.

“If it’s going to council on all these little things all the time, administration isn’t doing their job … That’s council’s fault. The manager has to follow the direction of council.”

Aging infrastructure is a concern within Ward 8, which runs south of 19th Street West southward, between 10th Avenue West and Central Avenue.

What I’m bringing to (the city) is a professional businesslike approach. We don’t have a business plan, I feel. David Koester, Ward 8 candidate

Citing infrastructure reserve dollars spent elsewhere, including roadwork at three intersections this year, the city is not adequately planning for the replacement of the city’s aging infrastructure.

“If money’s set aside for something, that’s what it’s set aside for. You can’t keep robbing Peter to pay for Paul, and back and forth — that’s a lose-lose.”

Koester is a lifelong resident of Prince Albert and is a resident of Ward 8. He’s been involved in the real estate business in various capacities since 1974, as well as serving on various boards and committees within the city and province.

This is Koester’s first time running for a spot on city council. He’s running now, he explained, because he finally has enough time to devote to the position.

So far, he’s talked to about 700 people at their doorsteps and deposited about 1,100 fliers into mailboxes.

“I’m telling people at the door that you will get an answer — you may not like it, but I won’t sidestep that,” he said.

Ted Zurakowski, who is running for re-election, currently serves Ward 8.

“I can do a better job than what he’s doing — I firmly believe that,” Koester said.

“Council has to work together, and work for the city. It’s the taxpayer that pays the ultimate price.” 

Organizations: Prince Albert

Geographic location: Prince Albert, 10th Avenue West, Central Avenue

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