Clarifying comments

Dear Editor,

I would like to clarify my comments in my speech during the County of Stettler’s public hearing on Buffalo Lake planning on Aug. 12, 2020.

At the council meeting when the public hearing was planned; (I believe after first reading of IDP amendments) many “uncivilized” comments were made, by county standards, not mine. 

Several comments were directed towards me, without actually naming me, regarding the length of time given to speakers, open minds and speaking a second time and even laughing about muting people if they spoke too long. 

I used one ‘direct quote’ that a councillor made from that meeting, in my speech. 

Since this comment was made in context as it came up regarding me in relation to this exact meeting. 

My question is, how is it civil for the councillor to make this statement but uncivil for me to quote him in context? 

Or is it the council’s opinion that the general public should be held to a higher standard than councillors during council meetings?

I do agree the start of the speech was quite snarky. 

In fact my wife and I discussed it prior to the speech. I asked her if it was too much and would it upset the council. 

She responded, how could it upset them if it’s a direct quote. It was my intent to return the tone in the same fashion as it was expressed to me. 

I believe by only using quotes I accomplished this quite precisely. Anyone that is upset about being quoted should take a look in the mirror.

Other much more derogatory comments were made directly about me by one councillor that I am aware of, in a semi-private setting. This took place after the Paradise Shores public hearing. 

I didn’t confront or demand an apology from the councillor when he provided a vulgar name-calling describing me to his friends/family. 

I believe, in private settings, I have zero right to expect such. I also realize my sense of humour is not for everyone and I can be crass at times. 

However, when just complaints are made publicly in council, in my opinion completely unjustified, then I should be able to speak up for myself. 

I am happy to discuss if council wishes. 


Justin Stevens

County of Stettler resident

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