Candidates plan ‘meet and greet’ on Nov. 16

A group of Langley Townshjp council candidates are organizing a "meet and greet" event, so that potential voters can meet as many candidates as possible.

A group of Langley Township council candidates are organizing a “meet and greet” event, so that potential voters can meet as many candidates as possible. The event will take place on Wednesday, Nov. 16 at Langley Events Centre, from 7 to 9 p.m.

Candidate Sonya Paterson and several others came up with the idea.

Her initial concern was that candidates would not be able to make opening remarks at a candidates meeting being organized by Greater Langley Chamber of Commerce. That has now been changed, and candidates will get one minute to  introduce themselves and give background.

At the chamber meeting, they will be asked to vote on a hypothetical question before council, and each candidate will get at least two one-minute opportunities to explain their positions. Four candidates will be able to respond after each “vote.” The chamber meeting takes place at the Events Centre on Wednesday, Nov. 9 from 6:30 to 9 p.m.

A similar format is planned for a meeting of City candidates the previous Wednesday. That meeting is at Kwantlen Polytechnic University, and runs from 7 to 9 p.m.

“After reading the e-mail from the chamber of commerce regarding its all-candidates meeting, I was left with some reservations regarding the format,” said Paterson. “There was little opportunity for the numerous new candidates who have committed to running to give the audience an idea of who they are and why they are running.

“The concern is directly related to the challenge of motivating citizens to vote. I believe we should try to do all we can to help our citizens become familiar with the candidates,” she said.

At the Nov. 16 event, there will be an introduction speech by each participating candidate, followed by an informal meet and greet. The cost of booking the room is being divided by those who agree to participate.

There are 27 candidates running for the eight councillor positions in Langley Township, and three candidates for mayor.