British Columbia

Here are the 8 people running to be Surrey mayor

Here are the candidates running to be mayor of B.C.'s second largest city.

CBC's On the Coast has been speaking to each candidate in the lead up to the election

Top row, from left: Pauline Greaves, John Wolanski, Rajesh Jayaprakash and Imtiaz Popat. Bottom row: Doug McCallum, Franç​ois Nantel, Bruce Hayne and Tom Gill. (City of Surrey)

It's a crowded ballot in Surrey, B.C., with over 48 candidates running to represent the province's second-largest city by population. 

There are 8 people vying to be Surrey's next mayor. CBC's On The Coast is speaking to each candidate at their favourite local landmarks leading up to the election and we'll update this story as we air the segments. 

The municipal election takes place on Oct. 20. 

1) Tom Gill

Candidate Tom Gill in front of the Newton Athletic Park. (Jeremy Allingham/CBC)
  • Party: Surrey First
  • Experience: Current city councillor, a founding director of the Surrey Homelessness and Housing Society, a director of the Healthcare Benefit Trust, and former chief financial officer for Coast Mental Health, the largest, non-profit mental health agency in British Columbia. 
  • Platform: Gill says he wants to "constantly work toward responsible growth and development in the creation of a fiscally sound and socially progressive city."
  • Priority: "My entire platform is based on youth and young families … What's most important is that we are able to develop some policy that addresses issues such as density and allows us to facilitate some additional supply in this community."
  • Favourite local landmark: Newton Athletic Park. "I moved to Surrey back in 1986 and lived and breathed in Newton for 10 years. This park was one of the first amenities I used."

2) Pauline Greaves

Pauline Greaves is running for mayor with Proudly Surrey. (Jeremy Allingham/CBC)
  • Party: Proudly Surrey
  • Experience: Currently teaching at the post-secondary level and serves on the City of Surrey's diversity advisory committee.
  • Platform: Greaves says her "focus is on restructuring our city's relationship with other levels of government. We want to bring more local control and oversight to our transit system, police force and school staffing policies, and reshape how Surrey conducts its own affairs."
  • Priority: "We have even more problems than Vancouver when it comes to affordable homes … We will be working and have to work with the province to make sure we get longer term homes."
  • Local landmark connected to her issue: Greaves picked a modular housing unit at 105 Avenue. "Housing is a major crisis in Surrey. It covers a major span, from lack of homes for … the vulnerable population and also for affordable housing. We are not able to find affordable housing or enough rental units."

3) Bruce Hayne

Bruce Hayne, in front of Surrey's Civic Hotel. (Jeremy Allingham/CBC)
  • Party: Integrity Now
  • Experience: Current city councillor, former owner of a marketing and advertising business.
  • Platform: Hayne says he "wants to restore to Surrey as a government that is fair, transparent and collaborative and will ensure a balance to growth and livability."
  • Priority: "There's a general feeling that infrastructure is not keeping up with the pace of development and the pace of growth .… Nobody should see their quality of life decrease because we're a growing community … What we need to ensure is that our hospitals, our schools, our roads, our transit system keeps pace with that so that people aren't waiting eight hours in an emergency room."
  • Favourite local landmark: Civic Hotel. "This is such a vibrant area. It's a growing and evolving area and I think this really exemplifies where Surrey is going in the next decade and the possibilities that come with it."     

4) Rajesh Jayaprakash

Rajesh Jayaprakash is a mayoral candidate with People First Surrey. (People First Surrey)
  • Party: People First
  • Experience: Currently a technologist who works as a software architect for a telecommunications company. 
  • Platform: Jayaprakash says he has a "practical plan to cancel LRT and expand SkyTrain." The candidate has promised to counter crime using technology. He has also proposed "an e-vote platform to improve people participation in city governance."
  • Priority: "There is a fundamental change we're trying to bring in here. There is a sort of money involved in politics which people don't really see. That's impacting the decisions politicians are making in ways we don't know. We're trying to bring a fundamental change in the system by bringing transparency to money in politics."
  • Favourite local landmark: Surrey City Centre Library. "The library has always been a passionate part of me ... [and] a place I work with closely."

5) Doug McCallum

Doug McCallum, who served as Surrey's mayor from 1996 to 2005, at Crescent Beach Park. (Jeremy Allingham/CBC)
  • Party: Safe Surrey Coalition
  • Experience: Former mayor of Surrey from 1996 to 2005.
  • Platform: McCallum wants to scrap plans for the street-level light rail transit in favour of SkyTrain along the Fraser Highway to Langley complemented by rapid bus lines. He is proposing the creation of a local police force in Surrey. He has also promised to "pause development and create smart development guidelines."
  • Priority: "I had so many people in Surrey, hundreds of people, over the last couple of years say to me, 'Doug, listen, just get in there and get our city turned around.' People in Surrey feel like our city is sliding in so many ways. They want somebody with experience to get in."
  • Favourite local landmark: Crescent Beach Park. "I've lived down here for about 50 years … Crescent Beach is a favourite spot where I've enjoyed being a youngster down here and swimming in the ocean. I still go paddleboarding and kayaking."

6) Franç​ois Nantel

François Nantel is an independent candidate for mayor of Surrey. (François Nantel)
  • Party: Independent
  • Nantel ran unsuccessfully for New Westminster council in the 2011 election.
  • Platform: No LRT. "I drive all day long. I'm a driver … They want to basically put the rail right down the middle, which is going to create a lot of issues with traffic, gridlock, and accidents. I'm not sure where the word light comes from. It's certainly not light on price."
  • Priority: Surrey should build a suspended monorail, like the one used in Japan. "When I heard about this, I got to bring this new option to the table. Win or lose, I hope somebody steals [this idea] because this is so much better. For the same amount of money, we could go a lot further."
  • Local landmark connected to his issue: Civic Hotel. "The LRT would start from here."

7) Imtiaz Popat

Imtiaz Popat is running for mayor of Surrey as part of the Progressive Sustainable party. (Jeremy Allingham/CBC)
  • Party: Progressive Sustainable
  • Experience: Currently a community radio and television host, mental health counsellor.
  • Platform: Popat says he hopes his experience as a counsellor will "help him understand critical issues facing diverse communities in Surrey such as mental health, addictions, as well issues around gang violence in order to advocate for more inclusive programs and service that are offered by the city."
  • Priority: "I want to shake things up. I want the voters to shake things up and not vote slates .… [to] make sure there is a mixed council and it's not controlled by one slate. That will make the council more responsible and able to listen to people and work with community."
  • Favourite local landmark: Brownsville Bar Beach. "There used to be even ferry service between here and New Westminster … this is great that we've got this beach. What I want to see is something similar to the other side of the Patullo [Bridge] when they built the new Patullo where you have access to the waterfront like you have in New Westminster."

8) John Wolanski

John Wolanski is an independent candidate for mayor of Surrey. (Rosemary Wallace)
  • Party: Independent
  • Experience: Currently a freelancer, Wolanski ran unsuccessfully for council in 2011.
  • Platform: Wolanski says "there are a lot of people struggling in our city, just to survive. The working man, the small businessman need help and policies to address this must be implemented."
  • Priority: "This election is really focused on affordable housing, transit, and crime as well. The underlying issue right now is democratic reform."
  • Favourite local landmark: the main strip in Cloverdale. "I look at Cloverdale and ... we have a mix of the new and old. We also have mom-and-pops and little businesses that actually survived ... They're not a corporate face. They're our neighbours."​

With files from On The Coast