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No stranger to council table

Greg Vandermeulen
Ronn Smith knows what life around the council table is like. He was a councillor for seven years.

Ronn Smith knows what life around the council table is like. He was a councillor for seven years.

Ronn Smith, one of four candidates in the by-election for the R.M. of Rhineland's Ward 5, is no stranger to the position.

Smith won a 1999 by-election for that seat, and sat as councillor through 2006 when he stepped down to take a run at the Emerson PC nomination.

He is a founding board member of the Rhineland Area Foodbank and is a director with the rural water co-op.

A grain farmer located between Altona and Rosenfeld, Smith was born and raised here.

He and his wife Loretta are in their 20th year of marriage, and have three children; Nathen 15, Madison 13 and Cassidy 10.

Smith said others inspired him to run for the council seat. "I had strong support from family and the public," he said. "It's always good to give the voters a choice."

Smith said he's always enjoyed problem solving in a collective group and hopes to win the job.

"I found it very rewarding and gratifying," he said of his past experience on council.

Smith said Ward 5 is unique in that it includes larger populations of non-farmers such as Rosenfeld and the Village of Altona.

That brings unique issues such as sewer management, and water quality issues, that have been downloaded to municipalities from the provincial government.

Smith said roads and drainage are also issues that affect the more rural parts of the municipality.

He said he hopes people will elect him based on his history. "They can see how I operated in the past," he said. "Actions speak louder than words."

Smith said he just wants voters to have a choice, and if they've seen qualities in him they like, he hopes they'll cast their votes for him.

"I would just encourage voters to come out and exercise their democracy in voting," he said.

Smith also thanked the other three candidates for putting their names forward. "It's great to see the interest at the grassroots level."