In their own words: Getting to know the candidates

This week’s question is: 
What is your vision of Nakusp now and in the future?

  • Nov. 2, 2013 7:00 a.m.

Ulli Mueller, Councillor Candidate

My vision of Nakusp in the future includes the following:


– improved access to the Valley via larger ferries in the short term and a fixed link in the long term leads to increased population, number of visitors and freight access for industry;

– longer runway @ airport for increased air access.


– an abundance of clean, affordable drinking water;

– services are expanded to residences north of the Kuskanax;

– “green” sewage treatment and recycling of wastewater;

–  stable water levels in the reservoir and access via a permanent ramp.


– downtown remains the commercial and retail focus, maintaining our quaint and historic small-town charm and character.

– an extensive trail and parks network within Nakusp and adjacent RDCK encourages eco-tourism

– an industrial park east of Box Lake provides land to consolidate new and existing industrial uses.


-a Hot Springs Resort & Spa & Swimming Pool, (partnered with Village) located in town will attract visitors from around the world; creating many jobs and training opportunities.

-A world class golf course compliments the Hot Springs Development.


-We have many young families enrolling children in excellent daycare & schools, accessing post secondary education and apprenticeship programs;

-full range of health care and elder care including a group of physicians providing “cradle to grave” care in a clinic and in our local hospital.

-a wide range of housing options is available.


Tom Zeleznik, Councillor Candidate

My vision of Nakusp now is that we remain a vibrant rural community by preserving the things that have worked well in this area, such as small business, tourism, recreation, the arts, history and community spirit.

We continue to pursue the need of doctors to this area and alternatives that may work for this community. We continue to look for ways to increase a variety of industries and to establish an Industrial park to help create jobs for our families.

My vision of Nakusp in the future is a community that is thriving in all aspects.

Through public and private sector profit sharing the community has expanded facilities such as the Nakusp Hot Springs, allowing a supply of water to be piped to the north end of Nakusp, as well as into the community, for a swimming pool or recreation area.

A bridge has been built across the Arrow Lakes allowing people and industry uninterrupted travel to and from Nakusp.

An industrial park has been established that gives permanence to businesses.

Tourism, recreation and the Arts have become a major attraction since it is convenient to travel through this area. School enrollment continues to increase with families moving in for job opportunities and the availability of doctors and health care.

I believe that creating a new vision for Nakusp can only happen when the community and its people come together to work toward common goals.


Len Heppner, Councillor Candidate

My vison at the moment  o f Nakusp is   that we are facing some tough challenges with a down turn in the logging in  Nakusp. A lot of  our young  families have had to  leave to look for  jobs elsewhere. While there will always be some logging  we can’t solely depend on logging as we once did  in the past.

As  part of our  economic strategy for  the future we need to diversify and market Nakusp as a  destiantion for  tourists  world wide to enjoy the beauty of the surrounding areas and to enjoy all the recreatiional opportunitys that Nakusp has to offer  such as fishing and boating on the Arrow lakes as well as hiking and golfing and sking and snowmobiling and the hotsprings.

Hans Suhr, Mayoral Candidate

I believe Nakusp is a fantastic community to live in. Of all the locations available, this is where our families have chosen to call home. Living in a small town highlights the importance of a close-knit community and the many multi-generational families that are here can attest to the value of this attribute.

I see Nakusp thriving as a close-knit community that respects and welcomes the diversities that come with growing.

As we turn the page from a resource-dependant town and begin to explore sustainable economic opportunities, our community will rise to the challenge.

Along the pathway of this growth, it is my hope that Nakusp will retain all of its charm and beauty that it is world-famous for.

Furthermore, I believe in the great potential possible when our community comes together in a unified voice to move forward to create a vibrant and sustainable community: A community that exemplifies a welcoming and respectful spirit, one that encourages a balanced demographic growth and social diversity, and a sustainable economic structure.

We can only achieve such goals by working together as a community, to ensure that each and every person is respected and valued, regardless of our background, education or socio-economic status.

Karen Hamling, Mayoral Candidate

Nakusp has gone through a rough patch the past four years with the decline in the forestry industry and  economic downturn;  a global issue and not  unique to our community.  Council has worked hard  preparing Nakusp for the future by applying for, and receiving, over $6 million dollars in gas tax and stimulus funding to upgrade our community complex, water and sewer system, providing an emergency services building; and putting mechanisms in place to move towards a healthy future.

The Chamber and  Development Board hosted a series of community meetings  gathering  information to move toward a brighter future.   I am impressed with the community input and support.

We live here because we appreciate clean air and water and the lifestyle.

My vision for Nakusp is that we never lose sight of these values. It is important that we are open to new ideas and work towards bringing clean industry and development into this area. We need to continue to work together on the discussion of growth and management of our community  to keep Nakusp the best place on earth to live.

I believe that Nakusp can grow and once again provide jobs for our young people and their families.   I support the efforts of the Chamber and Development Board.  Your mayor and council have ensured that we have been at these meetings and part of the process providing support  and working towards a positive outcome. As your Mayor, I will continue to support the movement towards a prosperous Nakusp.