Art Stirling: CK Election & Sports Interview

Below are the Chatham-Kent Election and Sports interview responses for South Kent, Blenheim council candidate Art Stirling. Remember to vote October 22.

Name: Art Stirling

Hometown and Ward: Blenheim, South Kent (Ward 2)

What’s your sports/recreation background?

Parent, Fan

What are your thoughts, or what value do you place in sports and recreation for the citizens of Chatham-Kent overall, and/or when showcasing Chatham-Kent to newcomers?

Modern and diverse sports facilities situated as appropriate across Chatham-Kent are key to providing athletic choices for our youth, students and serious adult athletes. For many of us, as citizens, these amenities are key for keeping our young people engaged and wanting to stay or return to Chatham-Kent, and for keeping people of all ages healthy and active. A broad range of such facilities and programs certainly are expected and desired by newcomers. This includes trails and bike routes. It is also important to note that many of these amenities are also provided by the private sector, such as gymnastics, karate and other martial arts, fitness clubs, etc. All are necessary and government has no place competing with local small businesses.

One of the hot topics leading up to the election, and over the past decade has been a new twin pad arena for Chatham-Kent. Where do you stand on this? What thoughts do you have?

I support the idea conceptually but before I could throw my full support behind it, many questions about how it may happen remains. Chatham-Kent and its taxpayers cannot afford to build it alone. It will require significant senior level government involvement, as well as community and corporate donations and sponsorships. I believe Council has made a good decision to examine the idea, determining key details and feasibility. Chatham-Kent should be prepared as much as possible should infrastructure funding programs be introduced by the federal and provincial governments. That is how these facilities were built in neighbouring communities.

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