Final rally planned before voting day
ELECTION NOTEBOOK: Thoughts on Marineland, Ludzik and politicians
One final rally before the Oct. 22 vote is being planned by the Niagara Falls Voters Political Action Committee.
The group, which originated on Facebook and has about 500 members, has held several rallies this year at which candidates and voters were able to mix and mingle informally.
For voters, it will be the last chance to meet the municipal candidates as a group before election day.
Organizers hope to increase voter turnout over recent elections, where it has hovered in the 40 per cent range.
The rally will be held Monday, Oct. 15, at 6:30 p.m. at the Delphi Hall 1 on Portage Road near the train tracks.
Ludzik has opted out
A reminder to Niagara Falls voters — although Steve Ludzik’s name will appear on the ballot as a city council candidate, he is not running.
The former National Hockey League player and fundraiser for Parkinson’s disease research registered to run, but on the advice of his doctor has removed himself from the race. That was after the deadline to withdraw, though, so his name will still be on the ballot.
He has said that even if elected, he will not serve.
Shooting from the lip
On the CKTB radio mayoral debate earlier this week, challenger Kim Craitor drew laughs when asked how he would handle the perceived problem of Niagara having too many politicians.
“Uh, you shoot them all,” he joked.
“Can you erase that? I apologize. I’m frustrated, there are too many of us.”
During the same debate, challenger Dinah Mansour broke with popular opinion over the issue of keeping marine animals in captivity.
Host Matt Holmes asked Craitor and Mansour what they would do with Marineland if the decision was theirs to make, following the death earlier this year of founder John Holer.
So far, operators of the famed Niagara Falls attraction haven’t said whether they plan to continue operating the park in Holer’s absence or if they are looking at selling it.
“I would never, in a million years if I had the opportunity, close down Marineland but I would make it better,” said Mansour.
“An all-year-round attraction place … it’s about people who truly care about those species.”
She would “re-create Marineland, but in a different way … even for myself, I just love to go and walk and have my time and look at all the attractions and the animals. It’s a passion of mine.”
Barring that, she would use it to open a neighbourhood of small houses of 450 to 600 square feet, as an affordable community with stores and services.
Municipal election day is Monday, Oct. 22.