Allan Yergens is a first-time candidate for Estevan city council, but he brings plenty of political experience to the table.
Yergens spent nearly 40 years on the RM of Cambria’s council, first as a councillor and then as the reeve. He held the reeve position up until his retirement in 2012.
“I always liked it, and I thought I would give this a shot here,” said Yergens, who says he has always taken an interest in politics.
Yergens relocated to Estevan a few years ago, and has continued to be interested in politics. He is satisfied with the work that city council has done in the last four years, but there are areas where he sees room for improvement.
“There’s some that think they could have done a little better in the tendering, and the taxes are getting high,” said Yergens. “The ratepayers are getting burdened down with high taxes.”
He has heard people complaining that they won’t water their grass during the summer months.
“Now we have a good supply of water. Some of the best any city would like to have, so maybe we can get the water rates down a little bit.”
He would like to see more progress on the new regional nursing home for Estevan. The committee that fundraised for the building has had the 20 per cent necessary for the project to proceed since 2015, but they have yet to receive the green light from the provincial government.
“We built a bypass in Regina pretty easily, and we put up a football stadium in Regina, so there has to be some sort of a method in being that we got that money to get that nursing home started,” said Yergens.
He would also like to see improved roads going towards Boundary Dam and Rafferty Dam, which he views as excellent tourism facilities.
“The city doesn’t get any revenue from it, but it is an asset to the city if somebody comes in and wants to look around for recreation,” said Yergens.
The city has some new buildings, with the new fire hall for the Estevan Fire Rescue Service and the expansion underway for the Estevan Police Service’s building. Streets are in good shape, too, he said.
When he was on rural council, Yergens said if there was a tender for road grading or culverts, council was hands-on with the project. With the city, there’s a department manager looking after it.
“Sometimes I see the city working, and I always think it could be done a little better on the tendering,” said Yergens.
And he believes that there are contractors in the Estevan area who are better equipped to do the job than what the city does in-house.