This is an opportunity for ordinary people to be heard.
We asked six people to be our citizen commentators during the campaign. Each chose an issue they believe in passionately. You'll hear from them between now and the week of the election, and we encourage you to react by adding your comments.
Ryan Hunt, 36, was born and raised in Brandon, and has been a police officer for nine years — all of it in the Westman area. He has a wife and two sons.
September 30, 2011
Well its getting close, only four days to the election and by all accounts we are hearing that the advanced polls are doing well. Like I normally do, I struck up a conversation the other day with a guy from Brandon. I haven't been on the No. 1 Highway east of Brandon for a long time but he was saying that it has been under construction for a good part of the summer. I commend the government for keeping repairs going forward from place to place but I still feel that problem areas have not been tended nearly enough. Have they even been identified?
We bought a new vehicle lately and we were driving it home on the first day that we had it. We were about 10 miles north of Boissevain when I noticed the first squeaks coming from the passenger side sliding door (ya ya we got a van, haha). So I pulled over and stopped to get out and close the door tighter, thinking maybe that was the problem. It seemed to work for the first mile or two until it started squeaking again and my only conclusion was that I should slow down and drive Highway 10 a bit slower so the vehicle stays in one piece.
Sad that I'm saying that about a brand new vehicle, even sadder is the road that I'm forced to expose it to. It would be safe to say that the longevity of a vehicle sort of depends on the condition of the highway that it's driven on.
There has been a real absence of infrastructure discussion in this election both by the politicians and the public. I find it sad to discover the publics indifference to the topic but understand that we Canadians are now, and always have been, a passive society. I hope that in the years to come, regardless of who is elected, that the issues of road conditions and city and rural infrastructure can be re visited. I'm sure that it's not a hard concept to understand: It takes a lot of money to keep our roads and communities in fine tune.
There will be surprises that maybe mother nature will throw our way, or maybe just the financial times we are in, but maintenance and upkeep is constant. Every homeowner knows that there will always be something to fix and when the list is done we head back to the start of the list to maintain again. The political players in Manitoba will have to save for the rainy days (no pun intended) so that in the end when the conditions get as bad as they are now, something, anything, will happen and the roads will be fixed where they need to be.
Have a great weekend.