Niagara-on-the-Lake Lord Mayor Patrick Darte announces he is seeking re-election.
A lot of good things have been accomplished during the past few years in Canada’s “friendliest town” but Niagara-on-the-Lake’s Lord Mayor, Pat Darte, announced this week he’d like at least four more years to build on those achievements.
Introduced by his campaign manager, Joe Pillitteri, in front of a crowd of family and supporters, Darte said he has been recently reflecting on his first term as Lord Mayor and believes the Town is moving in the right direction. “We are expanding to meet demands while retaining the unique elements of Niagara-on-the-Lake,” he said. He stated that over a half a billion dollars of new construction has taken place and gave examples of new wineries, craft breweries, additional retail space as well as new housing development.
The Town also purchased two large buildings and the properties upon which they sit that were previously owned by public sector agencies – the former Niagara District Secondary School building and the former Niagara-on-the-Lake hospital. Seven properties have also received a heritage designation.
Pillitteri said in his opening remarks that he feels it’s important to; “recognize and respect all parts of living in Niagara-on-the-Lake including growth and industry.” He said Darte embraces that philosophy and that is why he has decided to manage the incumbent’s campaign.
Darte foreshadowed what his campaign tone will look like by repeating the word “positive” several times in his remarks and saying Niagara-on-the-Lake is like a family and needs to remain that way.
Pillitteri said Darte is one of the most generous people he knows, always stepping up to support local charitable events. He cited an example of when his family held a fundraiser to support those affected by the tragedy in Humboldt, Saskatchewan. Pillitteri said Darte was the first person to call him and say; ‘What can I do?” He also added that Darte would do that kind of thing 15 years ago before he ran for anything.
“His heart and his intentions are what I like to see in a Mayor,” concluded Pillitteri.
Darte’s main opponent, current Councillor Betty Disero, has been in campaign mode for several months, often taking the opposite side of Darte on several issues. Disero was recently accused of violating the Town’s code of conduct by fellow Councillor Martin Mazza. Mazza said he overheard Disero discussing an issue that she had declared a conflict on earlier that evening.