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Former councillor Alex Munter to run for mayor
Last updated Feb 13 2006 08:34 AM EST
CBC News

Alex Munter officially announced that he is running for mayor of Ottawa in the upcoming municipal election, putting an end to months of speculation.

Alex Munter launches mayoral campaign.

Alex Munter launches mayoral campaign.

The former city councillor made the announcement Monday in a news conference at a high-tech company located in the heart of his old riding of Kanata.

When Munter left electoral politics three years ago, he made it clear that he had no intentions of running against Mayor Bob Chiarelli, who will be making a bid for a third term in the upcoming race.

Munter says he's had a change of heart because of what he calls increasing dismay over the "lack of leadership" he saw at Ottawa City Hall.

"I never thought I would run against Bob Chiarelli in this election, but we cannot afford another three years of stagnation," said Munter.

Munter criticized what he calls "endless and chaotic" budget debates, rock-bottom morale among city employees, and confusion over recycling, pesticide policy, and the property tax system.

He also targeted Chiarelli's most ambitious project, the North-South light rail line.

"Why the rush to get binding contracts signed just before the election?" said Munter. "Is this project really about city building, or is it just about political legacy building?"

David Small, who helped Jackie Holtzman win two mayoral campaigns back in the 1990s, will be Munter's campaign manager.

Terry Kilrea, who lost to Chiarelli in the last election, has also declared his candidacy, as has Don Rivington, who ran for city council and lost in the last election.

The municipal election is scheduled for Nov. 13.

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