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Likely wouldn't be here without OI, says Olds resident

Resident weighs in during public hearing regarding turning Olds Institute assets, including O-NET, into a municipally-controlled corporation

OLDS — A resident told town councillors he and his wife would likely not be living in Olds, had it not been for Olds Institute (OI), which has had O-NET under its wing.

Nathaniel Wielenga made that point during a July 26 public hearing on the town’s plan to turn the assets of OI into a municipally controlled corporation (MCC).

Among other entities, OI has overseen Olds Fibre Ltd. (OFL), a for-profit business that owns O-NET, a community-owned firm that provides high-speed internet as well as phone and TV service.

Wielenga said he and his wife moved to Olds from Calgary about three-and-a-half years ago.

“When we chose to move to Olds away from Calgary, it was away from family, it was a small town,” he said.

“There was not a lot here, but there was the Olds Institute. And I strongly believe that without the Olds Institute, we would not be here.

“I’m a software developer. My wife is a physician. I’d like to think that we contribute to the community in our own way. I’d like to think we’re wanted here. I don't think we would be here without the Olds Institute.”

As they did with most other speakers, councillors accepted Wielenga’s statement without comment or questions.