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BILL MANNERS

Let's get back to the basics of good governance in Nanaimo

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Communication

Communication is the cornerstone of human civilization. Without communication, there is no co-operation. And without co-operation, you can't have most of the things we take for granted in our modern lives. And without communication and co-operation, you certainly can't build and run a city like Nanaimo.

Nanaimo City Hall and the council that will be elected on October 20 will need to get back to the basics of communication and co-operation.

Quite often when a resident sends a council member an email, the only response they might get back is an auto-reply stating that the council member is unavailable, if that member is away. And after the councillor returns, there is still no response. In that case, there is no communication between the resident and the council member. It leads to a lot of frustration on behalf of the residents.

I want to be a councillor who responds and engages in communication with those who take the time to contact me. It doesn't matter if it's only a couple of words, a paragraph, or a detailed message.

Recently I attended a candidate training session at the Regional District of Nanaimo. The most common word used at that session, after the word, "I," was "LISTEN."

Back when I was in Toastmasters International, one of their themes was, "Better Listening - Better Thinking - Better Speaking."

As a councillor, I pledge to LISTEN to residents, city staff, experts, and other council members. I will THINK about the message they are trying to convey. And then I will SPEAK (make my response as meaningful and clear as possible).

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