Alex Atamanenko is retiring as local MP after nine years in office.

Atamanenko bids farewell to constituents

In anticipation of the federal election, MP Alex Atamanenko and his staff in Castlegar and Oliver are closing both constituency offices.

In anticipation of the federal election on Oct. 19, BC Southern Interior MP Alex Atamanenko and his staff in Castlegar and Oliver are closing up both constituency offices.

House of Commons regulations require MP offices be vacated by election day. Wednesday is the final day for drop-in services at both constituency locations, to give staff time to sort, pack and move.

“It has been an honour to serve the constituents of BC Southern Interior over the past nine years,” Atamanenko said. “My staff and I have enjoyed dealing with constituents on a daily basis, as we have endeavoured to assist them with matters concerning the federal government.”

Atamanenko said he and his staff are also grateful to people in federal departments such as Service Canada for their professionalism and assistance.

“Thanks to the federal offices we have dealt with, we have been able to provide constituents with information and assist them with problem solving.”

Working for an opposition MP in such a huge riding can have its challenges, but it can also be a rewarding experience., according to Lilly Zekanovic, who has been Atamanenko’s Oliver constituency assistant since 2009.

She has travelled to Princeton each month to offer support and referral services there. “It has been a great pleasure to make a difference in people’s lives,” she says. “I gain personal satisfaction in knowing we have done our best under the circumstances.”

Atamanenko’s Castlegar constituency assistant, Gail Hunnisett, agrees.

“In spite of the challenges of recent years, working with the people of the West Kootenay-Boundary-Similkameen has been immensely satisfying for me,” she says.

“Whether simply providing information, helping individuals to navigate the intricacies of various federal agencies or liaising with other levels of government to retain and improve services in our BC Southern Interior communities, it has been my pleasure to assist constituents.”

“If I can help a person feel better or more informed at the end the day, I’ve done my job,” says Castlegar constituency assistant Margaret Tessman. “Sometimes that just involves listening, sometimes I can make a phone call and sometimes a referral is necessary. Alex has led by example, in that he has taken everyone’s concerns seriously, and has expected his staff to do the same.”

Just Posted

Leafs add 2 players at KIJHL trade deadline

Nelson also traded defenceman Tyson Soobotin to Castlegar

VIDEO: Kootenay drug users fight stigma with video series

The multi-part series from ANKORS is meant to align with the goals of the Nelson Fentanyl Task Force

Nelson police warn of counterfeit money in city

The department says it has received multiple reports of fake Canadian and U.S. cash

Nelson library asks city for 2 per cent funding increase

The increase would cover inflation, increased use, stagnant provincial funding, and a negotiated wage increase

Trail cannabis shop gets green light from province

The Higher Path hopes to open doors in next couple of weeks

VIDEO: Monday Roundup

The Star’s weekly news roundup

B.C. city’s computer system suffered malware attack last year

No personal data was compromised when City of Cranbrook was hit by ransomware last spring.

Letters on way to all homeowners in B.C. speculation tax communities

Property owners have to register to avoid vacant-home tax

New orca calf in Salish Sea ‘healthy and active’

Birth cause for celebration but things still dire genetically, expert says

Good Samaritan rescues cat found in heaps of garbage at B.C. landfill

The cat was abandoned and left to die at the Foothills Boulevard Regional Landfill, the BC SPCA says

East Kootenay town pitches $80m multi-purpose community centre

City of Fernie vies for slice of cost-sharing pie to integrate recreation facilities into new centre

Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna home to Canada’s most expensive rentals: report

According to PadMapper, units in larger B.C. cities cost $1,300 to more than $3,000

B.C. home sales drop 25% in 2018

The B.C. Real Estate Association points to the federal government’s mortage stress test

Canada asks China for clemency for B.C. man sentenced to death, Freeland says

Robert Lloyd Schellenberg was sentenced to 15 years, but after new trial, was sentenced to die

Most Read