Murray Parrott seeking Neepawa's top job


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By Eoin Devereux

Neepawa Banner & Press

A current Neepawa town councillor is looking to shift seats this October, as Murray Parrott has confirmed he will be running for mayor. Parrott now joins incumbent Adrian de Groot on the ballot for the upcoming municipal election, which is scheduled for Oct. 24. De Groot confirmed his intentions to seek re-election back in May. As for Parrott, he noted that several citizens have approached him as of late, asking about his intentions and indicating their hope that he would run for the top position. 

Along with serving as a councillor and public works chairperson for the Town of Neepawa, Parrott is also the chair of the Neepawa and District Medical Committee (NADCO); which has been the driving force behind the operation and expansion of the Beautiful Plains Medical Clinic. Prior volunteer positions also include serving on the board of directors for Prairie Mountain Health and as a marriage commissioner. Parrott said that this wide array of experience, along with his business background, would be beneficial to the job.

“My varied background of everything from RCMP to farming, teaching and building, has put me in a unique position to be able to see this community from MANY angles. This has given me a strong understanding of the important ties and common strengths between rural and urban lifestyles. What our community needs are strong co-operative leadership.  We need a council that is willing to listen first and be logical about their response.  I want to lead that council with integrity and passion.”

Long-term vision

In an interview with the Banner & Press, Parrott stated that he felt as though this will be a very significant election, that will have long-term ramifications on the community. 

“Over the course of the next four years, I would encourage the council to plan for the next 20 years. Currently, we have a very strong CAO [Colleen Synchyshyn] who is looking forward and always planning for the future.  Along with her staff, I will take the time to confer with citizens and council for their opinions and suggestions,” noted Parrott. “As mayor and with the council, we should be focused on maintaining a long-term sustainable community environment, culturally, economically and socially. This includes infrastructure, job opportunities, as well as planning activities that invite participation based on citizen interest.”

Parrott added that as mayor, he would be responding to the needs of the town staff and citizens of the community at large and above all listen.

“It has been my experience, that by being willing to listen first, others are more willing to share freely and to listen more closely to what words I may have to say,” Parrott said. “I find that there are many ideas that people willingly share, concerning the multitude of issues that occur when people live together in a community.  Be it the regional hospital, future of our cemetery, conditions of our streets and sewer lines.  Even to the expansion of housing with the inclusion of assisted living for seniors. Each issue affects everyone, just some more personally than others. The task will then be to move forward with suggestions and solutions that affect as many people as possible in a positive way.”

Parrott conceded the discussion with the Banner & Press by noting that ultimately, his goal is to ensure that we have the necessary foundations in place to provide opportunities for growth in and for our community. 

“This is exactly what I believe in. I am running for the position of mayor to help bring this goal to fruition.”