More than 20 people braved the cold winter temperatures to attend a town hall meeting held by MLA Joe Anglin last Thursday.
Anglin said later about 28 people attended the meeting held at the Rimbey Legion Hall.
“We discussed every topic under the sun and I was pleased to hear the concerns and chat with the people,” he said.
Anglin, the former Wildrose candidate is now running as an Independent. Though he is pleased with his decision, he said the door is always open for change.
“I never closed the door,” he said. “You should never close any door.”
While he is not happy with the inner workings of the Wildrose Party, he remains loyal to the basic concepts of the Party.
“I did a lot to help build that party. I went to 91 communities and held 261 town hall meetings. I would not have gone (crossed the floor)”, he said.
Anglin said he understands why Albertans are confused and angry about Danielle Smith crossing the floor and taking several other MLAs with her.
“Albertans have a sense of fairness; a great sense of fairness and they feel totally betrayed,” he said.
The dissention in the party had begun long before the MLAs and leader Danielle Smith crossed over to the PCs, he said.
“There was a virus destroying it from the inside and these issues have not gone away. Can it be saved? Anything can be saved, but the people responsible for the destruction of the party are still there.”
Being an Independent has allowed him to stay true to his principles, he said.
“I have done that and I’m proud of that,” he said.
Anglin is especially proud of the fact the ‘transparency in the billing act’ was passed in the legislature.
“I was the first Independent to have a bill passed in 91 years,” he said. “It is a bill that will help people understand where all these extra costs are coming from on their utility bills. “It was rewarding to be able to do something constructive versus just being the critic.”
Anglin doesn’t expect Albertans will see changes to their bills for about a year so the process can be completed.
Anglin had kudos for Premier Jim Prentice and the PCs, but admitted to being worried about cuts which may see the proposed senior’s lodge put on hold.
“We’ve not broken ground yet and any project that is not started could be cut or delayed,” he noted. “There are no sacred cows,” he added.
He is pleased that Hwy. 53 through Rimbey has been paved and gives credit to the RCMP for stating the original highway had become dangerous, thereby expediting the paving process.
Anglin plans to hold more meetings in communities throughout the Rimbey-Rocky Mountain House-Sundre riding to meet with residents and discuss relevant issues.
“The landscape has changed considerably,” he said.