What does Adam stand for and how will he support your family and community in Ward 13?
2017 is a crucial election year! Every election, you will hear that it is a crucial election for whatever reason however, 2017 will be THE crucial election which will determine how your City Council moves on very crucial policies that will affect everyone for years to come. Issues such as the City Charter, transportation, Victoria Park Option (CalgaryNext), 2026 Winter Olympics to name a few.
More than ever, we need someone who will work and speak for you, your family and your community. City Council has become more about taking funding from the residents without accountability for their decisions. We need someone who will not only speak up for the communities in the Ward, but will listen to and speak with the residents of the Ward to better represent their views on City Council.
Below are some of the things I stand for and will work for on your behalf.
City Charter The City will get the Provincial City Charter; along with that new powers to raise revenue through service fees, taxes, etc.
The City Charter can be a good thing for Calgary, but....more than ever, we will need City Councillors who will ask the tough questions about how the money will be used. We will also need to ensure the City is held accountable for the proper spending of any of those funds going forward.
Taxes & Tax Room If you don't know where you're going....any road will get you there! Small business taxes are too high and it's severely affecting how they are able to grow. The City budget needs to be looked at closer to find more efficient ways to deliver services, determine what is a need and what is a want. Stop playing games with property taxes and tax room from the province. The tax room, when it happens, belongs to the people....PERIOD!
Fiscally Conservative Almost every candidate who runs will say they are fiscally conservative, but they don't reflect that during budget deliberations or when tax dollars are being spent on projects. I have never heard ANY of the current City Council ever ask, "What is the return on investment (ROI) if we spend city tax dollars on investments?" An example of that would be Victoria Park Option (CalgaryNext). How would any money invested from the City be paid back with interest?
Victoria Park Option (Calgary Next) Using public money for any option for CalgaryNext, should ONLY be considered if there is an agreement on how the City would be repaid with interest. The City should never be using public money to offset the costs and pump up the profits of any Corporation, if the profits won't benefit the City in an ongoing manner. 2026 Olympic Bid Another example is the Olympic Bid. It is a great idea, but the cost of security itself would be more than what Calgary spent for the entire 1988 Olympics. How does the City pay for that and turn a profit so residents aren't in debt by the end of the games? Excerpt from Calgary Herald 21 June 2016: "The $829 million that the Calgary Games cost would not cover security now. Vancouver spent $890 million on security. The total cost of the 2010 Games was $7.7 billion." The cost have risen significantly since 2010, so we need ask ourselves: What is the ROI from the cost of the games? How do we get that money back and in what timeframe?
Open access to your City Councilor
One of my first commitments I will keep once elected is to establish, at a minimum, quarterly conversations between myself and the citizens of the Ward. It is vital that we are able to sit around the table to discuss what your priorities and concerns are, so I can then go back to administration and try to provide answers, guidance or rectify situations that are important to you. These conversations will be in addition to any town halls or other special meetings that might be needed if matters of concern require them.
Firmly on side with Community Associations The City has forgotten or doesn't remember the value of Community Associations and the important role they play in the day to day lives of their residents. Each Community Association acts as the first line of communication to many of the City departments and is expected to provide information to the residents on the City's behalf. For this, the Community Association get $0 for their efforts. In many cases, in Ward 13, the community has no facilities because the developers weren't required by the City, at the time, to help provide it for the residents. Residents Associations are created who have no mandate for partnerships with the Community Association to help provide advocacy and support to the residents and the City offers no solutions or support.
The City needs to ensure the livelihood of the Community Association so they can be better equipped to assist residents get support from the City. I would ask that a very small nominal amount of $2 from each property tax per year be provided to the Community Association to help them fund their programs and maintain their facilities.
Secondary Suites I am not in favour of a blanket policy of allowing secondary suites in existing communities. In some cases, overcrowding and parking issues can occur and that can become a safety issue. All new communities, should be developed in a way that would allow for secondary suites. That means enough room for additional vehicles for parking and more green spaces to accommodate having more people within those communities.
Dog Parks and Green Spaces Over the past couple of years, I have constantly been asking about dog parks for Ward 13. We had been working with Dream Developers who are developing Providence but the parcel of land that was being considered is no longer viable, therefore the search continues. I would ask developers of ANY new community development what they intend to do about dog parks within their plans. With regards to green spaces. The City always says that green spaces are important, but they are quick to side with developers to remove golf courses for high density development and green spaces a secondary consideration. We need to ensure that any large green space, such as golf courses maintain more green spaces than currently is being planned.
Campaign Financing I believe that if one is running for public office that they should be prepared to pay for their election themselves. As such, I am financing my own campaign and am not and will not accept financial donations from anyone. It is my pleasure to serve my community and City and I am willing to fund my campaign to do so.
This means that my allegiance is to those I am elected to serve once I am in office. I do want and appreciate your support by putting up a yard sign, participate in going door to door and more importantly.....voting on 16 October!
Municipal government is the truest form of democracy when it is free from political party influence. This is where the average citizen should be able to run for office to participate in the conversation on how we move forward together in a common sense approach that will benefit the community.
There are many more issues associated within each community of Ward 13. As we move through the journey together after the election, it is my belief that through effective leadership, clear communications between the two of us and some good old fashion action on my part; we can start to make some meaningful changes.
Thank you for your openness during the campaign. I look forward to working with you over the next four years.
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