Volume 91, Issue 12

Wednesday, September 17, 1997



Freedom in a democratic race

By Brendan Howe
Gazette Staff

Former two-time University Students' Council presidential candidate Freedom Schell announced yesterday that he will be running for Mayor of London.

At approximately 2:30 p.m., Schell nominated himself at City Hall to run against two other candidates. Incumbent Mayor Dianne Haskett and founder of the London-Middlesex Taxpayers' Coalition Jim Montag are the only other candidates presently nominated for the position.

The 31 year-old Schell ran for USC president in 1994 and 1995 but said this time he hopes the outcome of his race will be different. In 1994 he finished seventh out of nine USC candidates and in 1995 he finished eighth out of 10.

"I think my chances are very good. I've had years of related political experience," Schell said. Involvement with various community groups and Western's social science student council as well as an unsuccessful presidential campaign for the Fanshawe Student Union are among his experience, he added.

Schell said part of his platform has definite appeal for students. This includes changing the existing bylaw that only allows four tenants living in a rented house to five. He also said that right now there is a 24-hour limit on noise pollution in London and he wants to change zoning so certain areas of the city would be able to function a little louder.

"I think certain partying practices should be allowed in some areas," Schell said. "It would be within reasonable limits."

Montag said he is running on a platform of more accountability for London City Council and more accountability for the university. The 67- year-old candidate ran for mayor in 1991 and came in third out of 8.

"I'm concerned with value for your money. You're not getting as good an education as you should be," Montag said, addressing students.

He said that unlike the city council, the university's books are not open so people can not see where their tuition is going.

Current Deputy Mayor Grant Hopcroft is expected to join the mayoral race, Schell said.

"If he joins the race the vote could get split between him and Dianne and I could come up the middle," Schell said.

Schell never graduated from Western and is presently running his own business.

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Copyright The Gazette 1997