Lora Petro hopes to bring fresh blood to council

 

Lora Petro is hoping to bring a team approach to council if elected as a councillor in the Oct. 27 municipal election.

Lora Petro is hoping to bring a team approach to council if elected as a councillor in the Oct. 27 municipal election.

By Ron Giofu

 

Lora Petro is hoping to bring fresh blood to town council and that is one of the reasons she is running for a councillor’s position in the Oct. 27 municipal election.

“I decided to run to give back to the community seeing the trouble we are facing,” said Petro.

Petro said she was a member of the AAM Volunteer Ambulance Service and was on its executive committee until the 2009, when the service was dissolved. Petro, now a nurse practitioner, also has experience on the emergency management committee at Leamington Hospital and has also served as an emergency room nurse.

“Nurses are known for analytical thinking, critical thinking and collaboration,” she said. “Right now, our council is divided. We need to have a unified front to get out of this.”

Petro said the division on the current council is “a huge problem,” and that people both in Amherstburg and around Essex County know there is a 4-3 split amongst the current council members.

“There is always going to be debate. There are always going to be people that don’t agree,” said Petro. “Unless council can come across as a team approach, we won’t move forward.”

Petro said the town’s financial situation is another priority.

“On everyone’s agenda is fiscal responsibility and a reduction strategy,” she said.

Ideas she has to be more fiscally responsible include looking at cost comparisons between the town’s current municipal police force or possibly bringing in the OPP. Petro also believes in a restructuring of the municipality and its staff and also wants the town to consider the way it funds non-profit groups and whether the municipality needs to “back off” from funding such organizations.

“The main thing is fiscal responsibility and transparency of government,” said Petro, adding that is not happening or is perceived as not happening.

“We need to change that.”

Being more accountable to the constituents is another thing Petro would like to see over the next four years.

“The community can’t think things are happening behind closed doors that are detrimental,” she said. “There has to be a feeling the community is heard. I don’t think that is happening.”

Better promotion of the town needs to occur, Petro continued, noting the town’s designation as “Safest Community in Canada” for three straight years should be marketed further as to bring in more residents. She said living in Amherstburg used to carry a “status symbol” but “we’ve lost that.”

“We need to start bringing people in and we need to start promoting Bob-Lo,” she added.

Preserving historical buildings is another item of importance for Petro. She said she finds it sad the Echo building is slated to fall and eventually be replaced with another building.

“We have such a significant history in Canada,”

Petro said she has been encouraged by friends and family to run, stating she first began to think about a council run late last year.

“I think we need fresh blood in the town,” she said.

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