Saturday, October 11, 2008


For immediate release
Date: October 11, 2008

LANGFORD - Steven Hurdle, nicknamed the "Langford Watchdog" by a local
media outlet for his efforts at bringing the events of Langford
Council and committee meetings to residents through the "Inside
Langford" news blog, is running for election as a Langford city
councilor in the November 15th municipal election. He first moved to
Langford 19 years ago, and both lives and works in the community.

"I believe there's an appetite for more community consultation, and
for a renewed commitment to democratic accountability in our
community," said Hurdle. "I have time and again witnessed people
leaving Langford's Council Chambers feeling that they were heard, but
not truly listened to. Residents should not feel like decisions are
made before they arrive, and without regard to their input."

Hurdle first came to prominence in local media when he organised and
led a petition campaign against Langford Council's plans to borrow
millions of dollars on behalf of local developers to help finance the
Spencer Road Interchange, a plan that Langford Council did not submit
to a referendum or other form of direct public approval (normally a
requirement for loans at the local government level). Ultimately,
nearly 2300 people signed the petition over a 30 day period,
representing more than 10% of eligible voters, and more than the
number of people who voted for several of the sitting members of
Langford Council. Hurdle opposes circumventing the public approval
process for loans that Langford taxpayers are underwriting, believing
that to do so means government is not being accountable to its

With regard to the rapid changes that have been witnessed in many of
Langford's neighbourhoods, Hurdle supports the rights of Langford's
neighbourhoods to determine their future. Langford councillors in the
past have indicated that they're "not afraid to make hard decisions,"
as Lillian Szpak for one put it, in changing the zoning and character
of Langford's neighbourhoods over concern and opposition from local
residents. Hurdle, in contrast, feels that the neighbourhoods belong
to the people that live there, not City Hall.

Since he became visible in local media due to his community
involvement, Hurdle has been routinely asked by Langford residents to
run for Langford Council. "There is a strong desire for something new
at the Council table," Hurdle noted. "Virtually every day for the
last nine months someone has asked me to run. People have told me
that they believe it's time for a new spirit of listening to the
community, and I agree. Too many people leave City Hall not believing
that spirit is there, and too many more still choose not to get
involved with their civic government because they are no longer
convinced it makes any difference to the decisions that are made.
While there is much debate about whether Langford Council is on the
right or the wrong course, it's important to remember that it's not
good enough to merely try to do the right thing; one must also do
things the right way and recognise that the ends don't justify the

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Steven Hurdle
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