The Heroes Among Us

It will be an honour this coming Sunday at 9:30 AM to attend the unveiling ceremony of the Firefighters Memorial Monument at the main Fire Hall on Enterprise Way during ceremonies to observe the 10th anniversary of the 9-11 terrorist attacks in New York.

It also gives us an opportunity to acknowledge all the first responders in our community, including our police and paramedics, who put their lives on the line to protect us every day.

I’m sure many of us will also be sharing stories of our memories of September 11, 2001.

That morning, like many of you, I was at home getting ready for work - a meeting at City Hall.

It took me a few minutes to fully comprehend what I was hearing on the radio. What I saw on the TV made me numb. I just couldn't understand why or who would mastermind such an event.

Then my phone rang. It was a constituent who was upset because they received a parking ticket the day before from a city bylaw officer and wanted to discuss the issue.

In the moment it seemed so trivial but it was a reminder that despite the magnitude of the events that day, life was already moving on and the everyday challenges we face would once again occupy our thoughts and help bring back a sense of normalcy.

Still, I doubt few if any of us recall the events of September 11, 2001 without thinking of the men and women who put their lives on the line that day to carry out their duty under impossible circumstances.

What we saw then and as we experienced in 2003 when the Okanagan Mountain Park fires threatened our community, their courage, compassion and determination during times of crisis helps us to find our strength and resiliency when our community faces adversity. Thank you to all of you for continuing to live by your motto of “Tradition of Service”.

A Couple of Reminders

As the cooler weather approaches the condition of your furnace and the energy efficiency of your home may be on your minds.

I just wanted to remind people that the federal government extended the popular ecoENERGY Retrofit – Homes program from June 6, 2011, to March 31, 2012 to help homeowners make their homes more energy-efficient and reduce the burden of high energy costs.

If you are thinking of taking advantage of the rebates available for energy efficient upgrades, you should register as soon as possible at the following address and follow the requirements to qualify for your energy rebate: http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/residential/personal/retrofit-homes/retrofit-qualify-grant.cfm or call 1 800 O-Canada (1-800-622-6232).

Last but not least, don’t forget that this year’s Okanagan Volunteer Opportunities Fair will be held on Saturday, September 10th, 10 am to 3 pm, at the Parkinson Recreation Centre, 1800 Parkinson Way. It’s a geat way to get involved in the community and to give back.

If you need more information please go to www.kcr.ca or contact Dawn Wilkinson, Coordinator Community Information & Volunteer Centre Kelowna Community Resources at 250.763.8008 ext. 24 or at [email protected].

Hope to see you there.

As always, if you have any questions or comments on matters relating to the federal government, don’t hesitate to contact me at [email protected] . If you wish to meet in person, please call my office and arrange a meeting with Linda at 470-5075.

Ron Cannan is the Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country

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About the Author

The Honourable Ron Cannan was first elected as Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country in January, 2006. He was subsequently elected in the 2008 and 2011 federal elections. He is a member of the Conservative Caucus.

On September 13th, 2012 Ron was summoned to be a member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and will provide advice to the Government as a member of the Priorities and Planning Sub-Committee on Government Administration.

Ron successfully uses his experience and knowledge as a long-time Kelowna City Councillor and regional government representative to be an effective and enthusiastic champion for his riding and his constituents.

His greatest satisfaction comes from helping local organizations and citizens obtain the support they require from Ottawa. 

He is also dedicated to doing what it takes to ensure that the growing and vibrant communities in his riding continue to thrive and prosper.

He is proud of the partnership and cooperation between federal, provincial and municipal governments which have resulted in significant infrastructure projects including upgrades to Highway 97, expansion of the Kelowna International Airport, a new horticulture strategy for fruit growers, obtaining a full service passport office for Kelowna and addressing critical economic issues such as labour skills shortages.

He works closely with the local Chambers of Commerce and once a year arranges meetings for the Chamber with Cabinet Ministers and senior policy staff in Ottawa to move forward important local issues such as crime prevention and labour skills shortages.

He is also an ardent champion for important community initiatives including homelessness, mental health, women’s resources, and support of arts and culture.

On Parliament Hill, Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee on International Trade since 2006 supporting initiatives which will broaden the economic opportunities for local businesses and businesses Canada-wide.

In previous parliamentary sessions Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee for Government Operations and Estimates, Veteran’s Affairs, Human Resources and Social Development, the Scrutiny of Regulations Committee, and the Standing Committee for Fisheries and Oceans.

Ron is also involved in a variety of inter-parliamentary organizations: he is Vice Chair of the Canada-US Inter-Parliamentary Group, and a member of the Canada-Taiwan Friendship group.

As Chair of the Conservative Wine Caucus, Ron works with his colleagues across the country to promote the wine regions of Canada.  Ron tabled Motion 218(formerly Motion 601) which supports direct to consumer purchasing of Canadian wine. His motion became Bill C-311, sponsored by MP Dan Albas, seconded by Ron, which was passed into law on June 28th, 2012.

Prior to entering politics, Ron developed a diverse business background as a small business owner and had several years experience in marketing and sales management working with corporations including Coca-Cola, Costco and Corus Entertainment.

Very active in his community, Ron has been a Director for both the Central Okanagan Regional District and the Central Okanagan Hospital Board. Ron also served on the Okanagan University College Access to Training Advisory Board, the Glenmore Elementary School Parents Advisory Council, and the Kelowna Christian School Fund Raising Committee. He was co-founder of the Okanagan Volunteer Festival. Currently Ron is a member of the Sunrise Rotary Club of Kelowna and, along with his wife Cindy, was the honorary Chair of the 2012 Canadian Cancer Society Daffodil Ball.

Ron lives a family-oriented and active lifestyle with his wife Cindy. He is the proud father of three daughters and grandfather to three grandsons. His hobbies include music and sports.

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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