Two-time St. Albert city councillor Sheena Hughes has declared she is running for re-election on Oct. 18.
Hughes was first elected to council in 2013, and elected for a second time in 2017. Unlike her other council counterparts, Hughes did not declare whether she would run again until the Sept. 20 deadline.
“I love the job,” Hughes said. “It’s just about the commitment. It’s four years, and it’s not a decision I take lightly."
What ultimately prompted her to run again were some “major decisions” city council will be faced with right after the election, Hughes said. These include the city’s proposed municipal energy corporation (MEC), and solar farm project.
“I would like to offer my services to the public to do a thorough investigation and make sure these decisions are being made on their behalf,” Hughes said. “These are financial decisions that will be long-standing and carry large implications.”
Looking back on her term, Hughes said the city’s students-ride-free program, as well as the role she played in halting the previously proposed municipal utility corporation (MUC), were aspects she was particularly proud of.
“In both terms I’ve shown I’m willing to stand up for what I believe in, even if I’m the only person taking that position,” Hughes said. “The financials on the MUC did not justify moving forward.”
If elected this term, Hughes said she would carry forward that same spirit.
“I will make sure the critical thinking that needs to happen has been brought forward and … that we do the proper due diligence,” Hughes said. “We owe that to residents.”
Additionally, Hughes said she wants to see more transparency and open communication at the municipal level, without needing “the public to repeatedly ask” for transparency to happen.
“I would like to see a council that discloses things like financial documents to the public at a much greater level than has been done,” Hughes said. “Having an ability to have proper dialogue with people needs to be improved.”
Maintaining St. Albert’s community living standards is another aspect Hughes said she wants to work toward if re-elected.
“St. Albert is awesome just like it is,” Hughes said. “We don’t need to make drastic changes to improve St. Albert, we’re already there.
“My vision is to maintain the standard of living so that residents are proud to live here, and that they can afford to do so,” Hughes said.