Edmonton Votes 2017: Voters in southeast Ward 12 look to build trust with council

Ward 12 is located in southeast Edmonton and has about 55,000 eligible voters.

Five candidates are vying for the councillor position for Ward 12

(Rick Bremness/CBC)

Ward 12 is a diverse ward that includes part of Mill Woods, plus new developments such as Summerside and The Orchards. The Mill Woods area has a strong and historic south Asian population and about 10 per cent of residents in Ward 12 are Punjabi speakers.

The incumbent,  Coun. Moe Banga, won the seat in a byelection in 2016, after former councillor Amarjeet Sohi left city council to pursue federal politics.

Uber an issue in 2016 byelection

The byelection showed the regulation of Uber in Edmonton is a major issue for residents of the ward.

Naz Kaur ran for council during that byelection, and grew up in Ward 12. She said that while few candidates are talking about it, it's still an issue on the minds of many people, particularly those who say they lost money because of the introduction of Uber into the city due to the devaluation of the value of taxi plates.

"I would say that, even though it may not be a ballot issue, there is a deep sense of distrust in particular communities around that," she added. "I think it's disheartened the community completely."

Kaur said the winning candidate will have to talk about how they will support workers in Edmonton, and build authentic relationships to re-establish trust between council and the citizens of Ward 12.

2016 municipal census statistics

  • Population: 92,332
  • Eligible voters: 55,112
  • Owns home: 61.9%
  • Rents home: 14.8%
  • Lived in home five years or more: 29%
  • Mainly drives to work: 79%
  • Takes transit to work: 9.8%
  • Main language other than English: Punjabi (10.2%)
  • Income under $30,000: 3.2%
  • Income $60,000 to $100,000: 15.6%
  • Children in preschool: 5.2%
  • Children from kindergarten to Grade 6: 5.9%

Interesting statistic: Ward 12 has the highest percentage of people in the city who are Punjabi speakers (10.2%).

Neighbourhoods: Larkspur, Maple, Tamarack, Wild Rose, Silver Berry, Minchau, Weinlos, Bisset, Pollard Meadows, Daly Grove, Laurel, Aster, Crawford Plains, Charlesworth, Ellerslie, Walker, Summerside, The Orchards at Ellerslie

Five candidates: Moe Banga (incumbent), Nigel Logan, Mike Russnak, Jo-Anne Wright, Walter Youb

From left: Mike Russnak, Mohinder Banga, Nigel Logan, Jo-Anne Wright, Walter Youb (Ward map: City of Edmonton; candidate photos supplied)

CBC Edmonton's candidate survey responses:

Moe Banga, 62, has lived in Edmonton for 35 years

Family: married, three children

Credentials: city councillor, Ward 12. Engineering graduate. Police officer for 24 years

Top three issues: A new recreation centre for Ward 12. Affordable and convenient access to public infrastructure for seniors. Crime and safety issues.

City's biggest challenge: Becoming a hub for innovation and growth. Edmonton needs a more diversified economy.

Nigel Logan, 33, has lived in Edmonton for 15 years

Family: single, no children. 

Credentials:  IT/digital marketing manager; former constituency manager for an Edmonton MLA; BTech technology management, computer engineering technology diploma

Top issues: promote better communication between ward councillor and residents; focus on long-term planning when expanding city; build community recreation centre and library for the Summerside/Ellerslie area

City's biggest challenge: managing growth in sustainable, affordable housing.

Mike Russnak, 35, has lived in Edmonton 30 years

Family: single

Credentials: Ten years as a building products distribution branch manager, currently campaigning full-time; management diploma from MacEwan University

Top issues: bring accountability back to city hall; evaluate plans for affordable housing and the resulting changes to these communities; improve police resources to curb property crimes

City's biggest challenge: curb imprudent spending on city projects

Jo-Anne Wright, 54, has lived in Edmonton her entire life

Family: married with three children

Credentials:  Constituency manager; bachelor of human resources and labour relations from Athabasca University; personal financial planning diploma (from the institution known at the time as the Institute of Canadian Bankers)

Top issues: invest in infrastructure, especially suitable transit; expand the city's vision for affordable housing; build stronger communities by making connections for residents

City's biggest challenge: realize our potential on the global stage while remaining true to our community-focused identity

Walter Youb, 35,  has lived in Edmonton his enitre life

Family: married with one child

Credentials: Project management and logistics; B.Comm. in international business

Top issues: improve urban planning by putting processes in place to analyze the full project before it is approved; work on public safety; promote job development and economic growth

City's biggest challenge: urban planning

Ward issues:

With files from the CBC's Natasha Riebe