Mayoral candidate David Lapp, on the challenges facing Calgary
'We have been misdirected, divided, and distracted from what matters'
Editor's Note: As part of our coverage for the Oct. 16 civic election, CBC Calgary has offered each candidate for the office of mayor the opportunity to write up to 700 words on our website, outlining what they believe to be the greatest challenges facing our city, and what they would do about those challenges if elected. These articles are run as submitted – edited only to meet CBC Journalistic Standards and Practices. This article is part of that series. The CBC's primary goal through our election coverage is to provide citizens with the information they need to make an informed decision on polling day.
A NEW GENERATION
Calgary is at a crossroads.
It has a clear choice that it must make.
Do we simply continue on down the same old track, with the same old ideas, with the same old failed career politicians?
OR, do we choose a new face, a new voice, and a new path?
This is a generational election.
Change, or more of the same.
That, and that alone, is the choice.
For many in this city, the consensus is clear. City Hall is broken, and is in desperate need of new blood. And it's not that they're bad people, or haven't tried. It's more that they've come to have the wrong priorities.
We have been misdirected, divided, and distracted from what matters.
Calgary has 150,000 people living in poverty. Our unemployment rate is close to 15%, the same as Detroit's. Working in the shelter system, I've seen the thousands of people living in the streets. I'm born and raised in Calgary, and like many of you, I've seen this city change. Violent crime is rising faster in Calgary than in any other major Canadian city. Clearly, we've got problems.
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We cannot afford to be politically correct anymore.
This election is a referendum on Nenshi.
It's time for a new mayor.
That's been clear for a while, but now we need to take action by following through with our votes, and get a new guy in office.
Many people in this city are discussing what the Ballot Box Question will be.
Well, here it is:
"Are you and your family better off now than you were 7 years ago?"
Well, we all know the answer to that question - a resounding "No".
Layoffs in this city are in the tens of thousands. Utility bills are skyrocketing. Businesses are closing everywhere. Parents wondering how they will feed young mouths.
Calgary is better than this. City Council votes to give your taxes an increase and right away gives themselves pay raises. City Hall is getting in the way, especially for business. There are far too many Mickey Mouse bylaws and fees and regulations that get in the way of businesses thriving. Makes me sick.
We need to fight to get our economy back. We must lead the way forward to a new idea where Calgary is the top international business centre. The head, not the tail. We need to have a positive business climate that will allow opportunities to blossom.
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We want our taxes lower, and we just want our jobs back. We want to see safe communities again. Strong family values. And what about finally getting the snow cleared from the roads?
It's time for bold leadership.
I intend to be that man.
I'm not afraid to say it.
Make me your next Mayor.
That's right. Make me your next Mayor. I don't say it out of self-importance or vanity. I know I'm little on the surface. I am what I am only by the grace of God. I didn't go to Harvard or became a high-priced lawyer. I work in social services. I'm not the leader of a major political party or the head of a powerful lobby group. I'm a severely normal guy from the Northeast. I pay my bills and taxes, like all of you.
And I think that's what this city needs - a normal, down-to- earth, common sense guy. The Harvard approach clearly hasn't worked. Time for the regular guys to take a crack at it. What do we have to lose? We have no other options left.
I only want to be Mayor because it needs to be done. That's right. Someone's gotta do it - why not me?
There is a movement in this city. A group of people that is ready to step forward and seize the opportunities that lie ahead. A new generation that demands better. A people of initiative. A people of new flame.
I am the leader of that movement.
And I intend to lead boldly.
It's a new day!
On October 16, vote to make me your next Mayor of Calgary.
May God bless Calgary, and God bless you.