Fighting Crime & Community Safety
Crime has been an ongoing issue for years in our city. We have seen failed attempts with short term solutions that continues to put our community at risk. We continue to see businesses facing continuous break and enters, wondering where to turn and who can help. I have heard from residents that they fear going downtown or to areas of the City at nigjt. As Mayor I will work with RCMP, Businesses, and seeking public input following these principles:
-Socio-economic development and inclusion
-Cooperation and partnerships
-Sustainability and accountability
This is a very hard task for municipalities to do alone and some say impossible with the way governments are structured. I think there is always a way to reach milestones that benefit our community when leadership is achieved in collaboration with community partners.
Local Economy & Pandemic Recovery
We need to build plans highlighting our community but also creating opportunities for people to move here, build families and invest locally. This is why if elected Mayor I will focus on the 5 objectives below in achieving economic growth and recovery from the Pandemic.
1. Retaining businesses and providing resources to help them expand;
2. Securing new investment;
3. Preparing residents for new careers connecting them to businesses in need of skilled workers;
4. Developing economic resilience;
5. Facilitating relationships among stakeholders
This work can only be done in collaboration with regional and provincial partners, Chamber of Commerce, DVA, and around the table at Council.
Active Living Centre/Kin Racetrack Park
I am happy to see this going to the public as a referendum for voters to decide a directional position on the financial impact. I am in support of the new facility if everything adds up financially, it benefits the City of Vernon residents and has the ability to provide services needed. I have two concerns with the project which are the taxation to residents and the decision to not include a housing option.
The unfortunate reality is the current pool and recreation facility is at its life span and major investments will need to be made if the Active Living Center wasn't to happen. My hope is to listen to residents and make a decision if elected based off that. The cultural center is also in the works and has faced bumps along the way since 2018 so I want to avoid those when it comes to the process of the Active Living Center considering there is no support from surrounding communities
Collecting taxes and fees is a fundamental way for cities to generate public revenues that make it possible to finance investments in recreation, infrastructure, and the provision of services for citizens and businesses. Municipal taxation directly impacts the pockets of our residents more so than provincial and federal taxation which is not known by most.
This is why as a Mayor, I will provide leadership and work towards making sure that we are doing our best as a Council to minimize the impact of taxation on residents/businesses. This at times will create difficult conversations, require questions to be asked and engage in public feedback on the yearly budgets. People are hurting financially from the last two years. We must not create further harm by over taxing or creating new taxes rather instead find ways to provide relieve, lifting people and businesses up to reach their very best potential.
Housing/Affordability is the number one issue I'm hearing in conversations. What we need to do as leaders is to find ways to create opportunities for investment in housing within our neighbourhoods and remove red tape. We need to start looking at Smart Growth Principles, we need to look at density opportunities within the core, we need to provide attainable housing, and we need to focus on housing for the lower to middle class.
The Mayor needs to be providing leadership on housing, working respectfully with regional partners, the province and federal governments and making sure our City has the capacity to process development requests. We can't put barriers up for ourselves as leaders by getting into arguments with the province or our fellow council members because the only person hurting from that leadership style are the residents.