After 45 years in journalism, including 18 years at Kamloops This Week, Dale Bass has decided to retire.
Her next step? Running for a seat on Kamloops council in the Oct. 20 civic election.
Bass has decided to seek a spot at the horseshoe at city hall because, after years of asking questions, she feels it is time she should help answer them.
“I’ve spent several years criticizing council,” the 63-year-old Bass said. “I feel if you criticize, you should get involved and try to fix what you are criticizing.”
Bass said there are specific issues to discuss during the campaign, such as transit service in all areas of the city, controlling spending, working on a fair tax system and creating improvements to help development.
But she said there is also an overriding larger issue.
“Simply put, it is a belief in public service that goes beyond council meetings and public hearing,” Bass said. “It’s about being a public servant of the people of Kamloops. It means still asking those hard questions as a servant of the taxpayer. That might mean challenging those answering the questions to ensure the public is truly being served.”
Bass has long been an advocate of a ward system (in which councillors are elected to represent certain areas of the city) and said it makes more sense as Kamloops’ population closes in on the 100,000 mark.
“That doesn’t mean it needs to happen now, but the conversation needs to be kept alive.”
Bass pointed to snow removal — always a hot topic among residents in winter — as a an example of an issue that would benefit from a ward system.
“It’s those little things that bother people,” she said. “It’s being at the bus stop and not being able to get over the snowbank and onto the bus. It’s the potholes you go over every day on your way to work. The big issues will be looked at — taxes, development — but it’s the little things that bother people. And it’s why a ward system would work. People would not have to navigate the bureaucracy of city hall. They could call their ward councillor and tell them what the problem is.”
Bass has an extensive history of involvement in community groups. She is president of the Kamloops Child Development Centre and has been chair of the Kamloops-Thompson school district’s parent advisory council, member of the school district’s superintendent’s task force on gender-achievement gaps, president of the Kamloops Therapeutic Riding Association, president of Family Tree Family Resource Centre and president of Kamloops Society for Community Living (now called Inclusion Kamloops).
Bass is married to husband Alan and has two grown sons living in Kamloops. She lives in Dallas and can be contacted by phone at 250-572-4620 and by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Bass can also be found online at votedalebass.com and on Facebook by searching “Vote Dale Bass.”