Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Mr. Open Pitbelly's Campaign: Environmental Disaster to Boost B.C. Economy

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Mr. Open Pitbelly's Campaign: Environmental Disaster to Boost B.C. Economy

Article excerpt

Mr. Open Pitbelly aims to be mayor of Kamloops

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KAMLOOPS, B.C. - The latest mayoral candidate in Kamloops, B.C., has announced his bid for the job by strapping a model of an open-pit mine to his stomach.

Mr. Open Pitbelly stood on the steps of city hall and outlined a plan to boost job creation in the city through environmental disaster.

Pitbelly told a crowd that included Coun. Tina Lange and another potential challenger, Denis Walsh, that he will campaign on the "three P's of prosperity" -- ponds, as in tailings ponds, pits and pollution.

Speaking as though he himself were the controversial Ajax mine proposed for the area, Pitbelly said a tailings-pond failure would bring economic spinoffs to Kamloops.

"When it lets go, it'll whoosh down Peterson Creek and through the city and to the river -- and then into Kamloops Lake," Pitbelly said.

"And think of the urban renewal that will create. There will be all sorts of researchers and lawyers and grief counsellors and soil specialists -- all kinds of people. That will create very diverse kinds of jobs."

Pitbelly said he is also hoping to provide a long-term solution to some of the city's parking problems by turning the Ajax pit into a parkade once it is no longer used for mineral extraction.

"This parkade is forever," Pitbelly said while placing model cars into the mine model on his stomach to illustrate the plan.

The latest mayoral hopeful to enter the ring against Mayor Peter Milobar is actually Elaine Sedgman.

She said her campaign is legitimate and that she intends to have her character on the ballot for the Nov. 15 civic election.

"Mr. Pitbelly is serious about running," Sedgman said.

Sedgman said she was inspired by performance artist Vincent Trasov, adding he ran as Mr. Peanut in the 1974 Vancouver mayoral race. That campaign mostly involved tap dancing.

"His thing was more art and about art," Sedgman said. …

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