A lifelong Sturgeon County resident is running for county council this fall to reign in the county’s transportation budget.
Jonathan Kilbourn, 35, declared his candidacy Aug. 16 to run for Division 5 councillor in the 2021 Sturgeon County municipal election.
Born and raised in Sturgeon County, Kilbourn is a gas utility operator with the Town of Redwater and is married with five kids. He is also a coach with the Gibbons Minor Soccer Association.
“The most important part of being a councillor is remembering who pays your wages,” he said — specifically, taxpayers.
Kilbourn said he would advocate for county residents and ensure every penny was well spent if elected to council.
While the current council had done much to improve snow removal, fire protection, and community programs, Kilbourn criticized council’s vast transportation budget. Despite spending over $45 million a year on roads and bridges, Kilbourn said he and his neighbours still saw plugged culverts, flooded fields, and ditches full of gravel everywhere.
“The county has gotten complacent with tax dollars,” he said, particularly when it came to roads.
“For the past two terms, I just don’t feel anything is being rectified.”
Kilbourn said the county relied too heavily on contractors and should provide more of its services through in-house staff. He also called on administration to cut back on in-office staff in favour of front-line workers.
Kilbourn said he had experience with how budgets and policies worked during his six years with the Town of Redwater, and would bring a set of fresh, young eyes to council if elected.
Kilbourn was the first declared candidate in the Div. 5 council race. Incumbent Coun. Patrick Tighe has yet to declare his intentions for the election.
Visit sturgeoncounty.ca for details on the election.