Waterloo Region Votes: Cambridge mayoral candidates on why they're running

CBC K-W sent surveys to the candidates for mayor in Cambridge. These are their responses to our questions.
Five people are running for mayor in Cambridge: Randy Carter, Kathryn McGarry, Colin Tucker, Ben Tucci and incumbent Doug Craig. (Carmen Ponciano/ CBC)

We asked the candidates for mayor in Cambridge to answer a survey where they all were presented with the same questions.

Here are their responses. Candidates were told they had a 300 word limit for answers. Some answers have been edited for length.

There are five people running for mayor in Cambridge, including Randy Carter, incumbent Doug CraigKathryn McGarry, Colin Tucker and Ben Tucci.


Randy Carter

Facebook page

1. What is the number one issue you think Cambridge is facing and how would you address it?

The number one issue Cambridge is facing is the homeless population and the safe injection sites that are to be put in place.

I do not agree with the safe injection sites because it will bring more homelessness and not give them proper mental health treatment that they need. I want to relocate The Bridges homeless shelter to a more suitable location where the homeless population won't interfere with our downtown core. I've witnessed many stores close their doors because business has decreased due to homeless individuals hanging around shops and leaving their garbage and needles.

Residents of Cambridge are afraid to walk downtown (Galt especially) because of break-ins, theft and drug related problems. This needs to end. I want the people of Cambridge to feel safe again.

2. What issue is not being dealt with by the current council that you would tackle if elected?

An issue that has not been dealt with by the current council is the panhandling that has taken over various busy intersections. I think it is a distraction to drivers who have to focus on driving instead of people running across lanes for money. I have witnessed these panhandlers almost get hit by vehicles for carelessness.

3. What do you anticipate will be the most difficult issue to address over the next four years?

The most difficult issue to address over the next four years is the lack of low income housing we have in Cambridge and our transportation system.

We have limited housing for families that are in need. I would like to provide more housing and shortening the waitlist.

As for transportation, I would like to propose a plan to have a GO train system that has various schedules that will provide many routes and times for Cambridge residents. I would like to branch this GO train system as far as Toronto and surrounding areas for an easier work commute.

4. How would you co-ordinate and communicate with the Ontario government about the needs of residents in Cambridge?

I would like to meet with the parties of the Ontario government in person and discuss the needs and changes that need to be done for Cambridge.

The best way to put the facts out on the table is to take a walk downtown with me and see for themselves all of the resources Cambridge is begging for.

5. What do people need to know about you?

I am advocating for the hard working men and woman of Cambridge. I am a husband, a father, a grandfather and a handyman of all trades.

I tend to put others first and to make sure they are happy. I am running for mayor because I want to change Cambridge for the better and will listen to the wants and needs of the people of Cambridge.

> Return to top


Doug Craig

Website

1. What is the number one issue you think Cambridge is facing and how would you address it?

The number one social issue in Cambridge at this moment is the opioid crisis. It is a medical and social crisis that immediately affects the community at large.

This is a multi-pronged issue, which makes it very difficult to deal with- and yet we must deal with it, with strength, conviction and, yes, compassion.

Let me be clear: No matter how hard we might try, no matter what we might be able to accomplish in Cambridge, this city and this region cannot bring a sudden end to the drug-addiction problem.

That's why I am proposing a, Safe City plan to address the problem. First, there needs to be a regional summit of mayors, MPPs, MPs and the regional chair to discuss, investigate and bring to the table the necessary social funding and supports  from all levels of government to solve the problem.

We need more outreach workers to help the homeless eliminate "tent camps." We need to hire more police to reassure the public of safety in our downtowns and neighbourhoods with better response times. We need to assist the Bridges in finding a new home and we need to continue to ban safe injection sites in our downtowns.

Also, we need more affordable/supportive housing, and more funding for mental health and drug rehabilitation facilities.

Finally, we must put in place programmes such as the "Icelandic Model" and financially strengthen our neighbourhood associations which are the key to helping our youth steer clear of opioids in the future.

In conclusion, we cannot bring an end to the homelessness problem addiction problems alone as a municipality. What we can do and this is my pledge to the citizens of Cambridge is to make our city a safer, better and healthier place.

2. What issue is not being dealt with by the current council that you would tackle if elected?

Council is dealing with all current issues, but the hospital is one that, although not directly under the authority of the City of Cambridge, it is one we are attached to in past donations and public commitments.

Our hospital is the last to be rebuilt in the region and it has been a tortuous waiting game until finally in 2014 a contract was signed with a projected completion date of 2019 for all three phases. Yet, here we are again going through a series of missed completion dates.

The builder has failed on [more than] seven projected completion dates this year to hand over the finished 250,000 sq. ft. wing of the patient care wing, which is the second phase of the project with the unlikely completion this year.

This is becoming a serious situation as the health of the Cambridge community is more and more impacted because of staff affected by sub-optimal conditions (e.g. emergency working as a split department) and planned service expansion slowed or deferred because the new space is not available.  Also, the general public has been compromised by the lack of parking space, the cramped conditions in the old wing and the general confusion of navigating the space.

As a result of this continuing troublesome situation, I have with the full knowledge of the hospital administrator, Patrick Gaskin, approached the Minister of Health about this situation and asked for her involvement in getting our hospital opened and the whole project back on track.

Also, and along with our new MPP Belinda Karahalios, we will work together to push this over the finish line.

3. What do you anticipate will be the most difficult issue to address over the next four years?

The most difficult issue over the next four years will be two fold. First, it will be finalizing a route for the LRT through Preston and second it will be getting a commitment of GO train to Cambridge.

First, let me discuss the LRT. Through a series of public and private meetings with residents, a number of contentious issues regarding the LRT have been solved with one remaining issue which is the bottleneck at King and Eagle. This will be challenging, but doable and it is going to take the spirit of compromise to make it work. Discussions on the finalization of the route won't be determined until the arrival of the new regional council in the fall.

The other aspect of this whole discussion surrounding the LRT in Preston is the possible date of construction. Again, this appears not to be in the foreseeable future and in my opinion not for at least a decade. However, residents deserve an answer and as soon as a route has been finalized, I will be requesting a possible start date for future construction so that the Preston community can be informed.

Second, is the lack of GO service to Cambridge. For the last decade, it has been the provincial government that has ignored Cambridge and decided to run a GO transit route to Kitchener-Waterloo. Cambridge needs to have rail service to Toronto and the fastest and most direct route from the region of Waterloo is the undeveloped route from Cambridge to Union Station. It will be 45 minutes faster than the northern K-W Cambridge.

The issue here is political will and I hope with this new government at Queen's Park and with our new MPP that we will have a good chance of seeing GO realized in our community.

4. How would you co-ordinate and communicate with the Ontario government about the needs of residents in Cambridge?

The co-ordination and communication with the Ontario Government is done in a number of ways.

First, it is about establishing and enriching a relationship with our new MPP's Belinda Karahalios and Amy Fee.

Second, it is through my membership with the Large Urban Mayors' Caucus that the important issues regarding cities is discussed at meetings and resolutions are directly communicated to the sitting government about concerns. Also, regional council at the bequest of member municipalities has also directly linked relative issues in the region by requesting the Ontario government for positions on upcoming legislation or requested clarification on current policies.

Finally, the Association of Municipalities of Ontario is the fourth conduit that is used to direct concerns through this organization directly to the Government. As an example, at AMO this year in August, I had four sit down discussions with various ministers regarding concerns about Cambridge. These ranged from the financing of cities to empowering youth to transportation and finally an important meeting with the Minister of Health regarding the continual delays in our hospital construction.  All of these important meetings were arranged by AMO.

These four channels have been the lifeline that has connected me and council to the various ministers at Queen's Park in order to improve the quality of life in Cambridge.

5. What do people need to know about you?

This is what I hope the people of Cambridge either know about me already — or what I would like them to know about me: First, I am passionate about my city. I love the fact, that at the core, we are a hardworking community with strong industrial roots that remind us of who we are and where we came from.

I am proud to represent this city because there is a depth of care and concern for others that our city exhibits and which is unmatched by other communities. It is a community that fights for what we believe in. We are positive and we are good team players, but believe me we are not passive. We can be critical when criticism is warranted, but we are never, ever complacent. But above all, beyond all else, there is this: We have strength, an inner resolve that pushes us forward. We have a compassion that always, inevitably, shows itself when there are needs to be met, when fellow citizens in need reach out in hope of a helping hand.

In all, this is my city and I believe strongly that my attributes strengthen and reflect the positive outcomes that people have come to expect from their mayor.

> Return to top


Kathryn McGarry

​Website

1. What is the number one issue you think Cambridge is facing and how would you address it?

The lack of affordable housing in Cambridge is one of our biggest challenges. The lack of forward planning has contributed to long waiting lists for seniors and young families.

Those without adequate housing, or are precariously housed, are unable to access services and supports such as mental health, home care or child care services. It can lead to having difficulty finding and holding a job. Poverty is one of the root causes of mental health and addiction, and cannot be adequately addressed without a roof overhead. Children in our community are at risk when they are inadequately housed.

Providing more affordable housing options for our community will reduce costs in the long run to our health care, policing, and social services and improve the social determinants of health and outcomes for our community.

Affordable and flexible housing options; eg. co-housing and secondary suites programs are critical to address poverty and homelessness. As mayor, I would work as a team with council and staff to encourage use of these programs. New tools such as the recent inclusionary zoning legislation passed by the Ontario government should be utilized so that more affordable units are planned for and built.

Residential developers should have their approval process streamlined so their projects can be built more quickly. By improving relationships and working more collaboratively with the Region of Waterloo, there should be a long term plan to increase affordable housing units as a top priority in Cambridge.

Sustainable funding is essential from other levels of government to support affordable housing investments, including accessible units. Involving and communicating with the public and council members in these decisions ensures that social return on these investments made in more affordable housing, is supported.  

2. What issue is not being dealt with by the current council that you would tackle if elected?

Many Cambridge residents have told me that they don't feel their taxes are being spent on the priorities they feel are important.

For example, some say the tax monies spent on the new pedestrian bridge should have been spent on other priorities such as affordable housing or improved infrastructure.

Cambridge citizens want a more open, transparent, consultative and accountable budget process that would better engage our community and have their priorities heard by their elected council members. Many want a more fiscally responsible municipal government that leverages our tax dollars and encourages partnerships that supports our local economy to create and maintain a more diverse, sustainable economy that attracts investment and creates jobs.

Partnerships that could help build the sports facilities and more cycling infrastructure that increases tourism opportunities that can enrich the quality of life for Cambridge residents, for example, should be encouraged by mayor and council, not discouraged.

People have told me they feel some recent decisions have put the cart before the horse, with decisions made behind closed doors, with little meaningful consultation with the public or council members ahead of a decision, leaving people feeling disengaged and disappointed. Some recent examples include: the site of the civic administration building, the multiplex, the site of the Bridges shelter and pedestrian bridge.

Authentic civic engagement, regular ward townhalls, increased involvement from our multicultural community and improved, ongoing communication between our community and mayor, council, staff and the Region of Waterloo, will achieve more consensus and a more positive and inclusive decision-making process. As mayor, this is my commitment to building better public process. This is the collaborative, positive, experienced leadership style I have developed over 30 years to get things done for Cambridge.

3. What do you anticipate will be the most difficult issue to address over the next four years?

Our city is experiencing the consequences of a growing, complex, global opioid epidemic. People are frightened: I hear it in their voices when they talk about it.

Some have lost a friend or family member. Some have experienced crime that results from drug addiction. People are dying in unprecedented numbers in private homes and in our streets.

This crisis, the increasing numbers of homeless people living at or around the Bridges shelter and encamped in the city's green spaces, is overwhelming our social services, health care, harm reduction, police and EMS sectors. Downtown Galt business owners and residents in particular, are concerned about safety and often divided on possible solutions.  

As a nurse and past member of the Waterloo Region Crime Prevention Council I am knowledgeable and experienced in this complex issue. As mayor, I would commit that council and staff work closely together with all sectors, and all levels of governments to continue finding solutions, request additional funding and resources and find ways to decrease police calls for mental health assistance.

The needs of our businesses and community should be considered in making balanced decisions. Ongoing communication with the public is essential.

Currently, the Ontario government has paused any openings of safe injection sites. The Cambridge Shelter Corporation is considering moving the Bridges shelter out of the downtown core, to better meet the needs of this population.

As mayor, I would support the Bridges moving to a site out of the downtown cores and residential areas with wrap around services nearby. Cambridge has put an interim bylaw in place preventing any SIS centers in the downtown core. Until the policy and funding directions are made clear, the city should better support the service providers (eg. mental health counselling) and consider tax relief as some have requested.

4. How would you co-ordinate and communicate with the Ontario government about the needs of residents in Cambridge?

During 30 years as a continuous volunteer in many different sectors in Cambridge and the region of Waterloo, I developed many positive, productive and collaborative working relationships with Cambridge, regional and provincial politicians and staff. Having a strong interest in politics, I found opportunities to advocate for Cambridge's needs.

For example, in December 2010, I arranged a meeting between Ontario's Minister of Infrastructure and the CEO and board chair of Cambridge Memorial Hospital to review proposed plans for the long awaited expansion. That meeting was critical in having the expansion funding approved in 2011.

I was elected to represent the Cambridge riding as Member for Provincial Parliament from 2014-2018. Appointed as a Minister of the Crown in 2016 for Natural Resources and Forestry, followed by Transportation, I have a deep understanding of the complex systems of the Ontario government as a former Member of Ontario's executive council and developed good working relationships with ministry bureaucrats. I worked closely with Cambridge and Region of Waterloo politicians to advocate for and deliver millions of dollars of investment for health care, social services, new schools, businesses that expanded and created jobs, small business initiatives, transportation projects, expansion of GO service, etc.

The new provincial government has changed, reduced or paused funding in some sectors (eg. social assistance rate increase) and has changed some policy directions (eg. cancellation of cap and trade system), creating some uncertainty for municipalities. My experience will help navigate through these issues as mayor and member of regional council. Establishing ongoing regular meetings with the MPs and MPPs from Cambridge and Kitchener South-Hespeler will assist them to communicate the needs of Cambridge to the ministers of the federal and Ontario governments. Collaborating with Waterloo region and federal politicians, I will work with them to identify and leverage funding.

5. What do people need to know about you?

I moved to Cambridge with my husband 30 years ago to raise our family. Four of our children have graduated from Southwood Secondary School and our youngest is entering Grade 10.

As a nurse for over 30 years, I have always cared for Cambridge residents: as a community nurse, a critical care nurse (CMH), and a care co-ordinator in home and community care (CCAC).  

As a volunteer [I contributed] to many boards, task forces and committees in social services, cultural, environmental, health care, crime prevention and planning related sectors in Cambridge and the region.

I have learned to lead by consensus with a passion for solutions oriented results. Noting a lack of palliative care services, I was a founding member of Hospice of Waterloo Region (1993). As a past president of Heritage Cambridge, I was a frequent delegate at Cambridge council and led a team to restore the historic Sheave Tower in Blair (2000).

During my tenure as an MPP, I pushed through two pieces of legislation, modernizing aggregate resources and conservation authorities (I worked closely with the GRCA) and secured funding to study a new option to connect Cambridge to the GO train network through Guelph.

When the public raised concerns about the Franklin Boulevard bridge design for a cycling and pedestrian route, I brought all parties together with MTO to successfully tweak the design. My private member's bill The Lung Health Action Plan was passed and a lung health strategy for Ontario will be developed to help people affected by lung disease.

I was honoured to receive the YWCA Women of Distinction Award in 2009 and the Bernice Adam's Special Trustee Award in 2011.

In responding to much urging by residents, I am excited to use my experience and positive leadership skills to continue to serve our community.

> Return to top


Colin Tucker

Website

1. What is the number one issue you think Cambridge is facing and how would you address it?

At the moment, the location of our homeless shelter, the huge drug problem and the safe injection site seems to be on a lot of people's mind.

I would work with the experts in our community to find the most appropriate location for this building so that it doesn't affect any businesses in a negative way. I would speak to the person in charge of the Bridges first to get as much background as possible on this issue. If a committee has already been established, then I would begin to work with those people.

Since the local churches were providing assistance to our most needy residents prior to the opening of Bridges, I would value their input as well. Our local social planning council would also be a great resource.

I think this social issue should have been addressed way before now, because it appears to have gotten out of hand. These addicts need counselling and treatment more than anything. SIS will not fix anything.  

Local health care providers need to be involved because they should have important information regarding the connection between the shelter and the safe injection site. At this time, the Minister of Health for our provincial government has ordered a halt to the opening of any new, temporary facilities to prevent drug overdoses. The PC government has the SIS sites under review and will announce their decision about what to do at the end of September.

2. What issue is not being dealt with by the current council that you would tackle if elected?

A decision about the Sportsplex's location and what this new facility will involve, i.e. swimming pool size and number of ice rinks etc. - has taken far too long.

This issue is very important to our taxpayers because of its cost! i.e. $80 million-plus.

The people of Cambridge were not given the opportunity to have input at the beginning, which delayed things quite a bit. After many residents complained about the process, the task force resulted and then the Cambridge Centre Mall owners got involved.  

Time is money and poor leadership can also be expensive for the taxpayers.

I might also try and sort out the rapid transit issue so the public is very clear on where we are at with that and what we can expect to happen over the next couple of years.

I also might want to do more work on the rail service from Cambridge to Toronto. More people are moving into the Cambridge area who work daily in Toronto. Highway 401 seems to be at its max and so another means of transportation to Toronto is necessary.

3. What do you anticipate will be the most difficult issue to address over the next four years?

Homelessness, drug addiction, mental illness, and affordable housing are all on the increase that appear to be interrelated.  

Much time and effort is necessary to prepare Cambridge for this growth and to keep everyone in Cambridge safe. We need to take back our streets, downtown cores, parks and pathways.

4. How would you co-ordinate and communicate with the Ontario government about the needs of residents in Cambridge?

Our mayor needs to find out what the people of Cambridge need before the ideas are passed on to the MPP for Cambridge to take to the government.

The mayor can find out what the people of Cambridge want through:

  • Working closely with the councillors, i.e. councillors might hold monthly town hall meetings in their wards allowing those with suggestions and concerns to voice their opinions.
  • Establishing task forces, i.e. in the case of the Sportsplex, which are made up of private citizens, city employees, councillors and experts.
  • Allowing delegations to speak at council meetings.
  • Collaborating with city managers.
  • Speaking with other mayors.

5. What do people need to know about you?  

My family comes first and foremost this includes their safety and wellbeing. I am a very giving person and I am very happy when my friends do well in life and don't mind helping a friend in need. People who know me can attest to this.

I am very passionate when it comes to people and how the people of Cambridge feel. I want to bring back the power to the people of Cambridge so they all have say of what goes on in their city.

I have owned my own business in Cambridge for 14 years and have to talked to many residents of Cambridge on a daily basis. This has given me great communication skills. I love to listen and give honest answers. I make deals and sign contracts almost on a daily basis whether it be a handshake or signature.

My handshake is my word. Owning my own business has also made me very creative, persuasive and a decision maker/problem solver. Owning my own business and working at Toyota Motor Manufacturing for 16 years has also given me great leadership skills as well.

I'm a very hard worker and don't mind working long hours as I work 60-70 hours per week including weekends. To learn more about me please visit my website at votetucker.com.

> Return to top


Ben Tucci

​Website

1. What is the number one issue you think Cambridge is facing and how would you address it?

SIS/substance abuse: A divide has been caused in the community due to the failure of government to proactively and effectively deal with the situation.  

The first step is to have a complete, unbiased understanding of who we are trying to help. Unless we understand this, we will not adequately address how to help or the impact on our community.

This applies not only to SIS/SCS but to the talk of moving and expanding the shelter, too. I am open to moving it and all suggestions but unless we understand the who and from where, if we build it bigger they shall come and capacity exceeded in no time.

One of my first tasks will be to call for an emergency meeting with the shelter executive/board, healthcare professionals, social agencies and police.

While public health is tied to the province and regional government, there is no excuse for government or bureaucracy (LHIN) to impose on our city in complete absence of discussion and notification.  

This speaks of partisan politics and to the lack of relationship which we need to rebuild or nurture new, with our partners at the region, at the province and by extension, the federal government. I do not carry political baggage which allows me a blank canvas from which to work from.

Once we understand the demographics, we move to working with stakeholders including assistance from the province, to complete a review and implementation of the required wraparound services including addiction and mental health outreach programs and housing gaps.

If these two steps are done effectively, a decision can be made if an SIS is even required. Perhaps it isn't. If the collective effectively, a stand alone SIS will not be required but rather, part of the wrap around service and care. I do not support SIS in absence of the above.

2. What issue is not being dealt with by the current council that you would tackle if elected?

Fiscal constraint and lack of focus on affordability for the taxpayers that fund our operations.

I hope that along with a team of newly elected and re-elected councillors, I get the opportunity to put my 40 years in finance supporting and restructuring businesses to work.

I am a strong believer in the triple bottom line philosophy: Environmental, social and fiscal. The anticipated result of every motion that comes before council should have clearly defined rationale. Why are we considering it? What is the expected result? How does it measure up against the core belief in the triple bottom line?

In doing so we would ask ourselves: Can we afford it (the financial analysis) and equally as important, can we afford not to move ahead (social and environmental)?

To support this, I refer to various surveys of CEOs when asked what they look for in seeking a city or region to do business in. While the cost of doing business including taxes ranks high, it's not the most important determining factor.

The highest-ranking responses revolve around safety, mobility (roads and infrastructure), accessibility to quality education, quality health care, access to sports, leisure and recreational programs/facilities, all captured in the quality of life for them, their families,  their employees and their families.

Given the issues with substance abuse, growing homelessness and high tax rates, we may be failing the test.

Without a sound financial plan, everything else we attempt to do is destined to fail or not have the support of a community that sees no value to the expenditures. We then spin our wheels trying to please everyone and experiencing delays in moving ahead, which costs more in the long run.

I refer to the finance section on my website at electbentucci.com for a preliminary list of nine recommendations.

3. What do you anticipate will be the most difficult issue to address over the next four years?

Refer to question #1. That coupled with homelessness and the general lack of affordable housing will be challenging but is not insurmountable. It will take some time.

While the most challenging, when combined with what I have outlined above and my intent to drive for the immediate formation of new community driven advisory groups for:

  • Business. 
  • Developers and builders.
  • Landlords and tenants.
  • Social agencies etc., we will have the expertise at the table to find solutions.

The expertise will include the region, our elected MPs and elected MPPs. It does not mean throwing money or concessions at any interest group. It does mean an accounting of what is getting in the way, "the red tape" of new private sector investment.

In my view the multiplex ought to have been built by now and at much less expense than is going to be the case once the decision is made on location and to move ahead with funding. Each day, month and year that has gone by has added millions to the expense. This is unfair to the taxpayers and to the user groups forced to travel outside our City to find and use suitable facilities. 

Having said this, the delay allows us to rethink site and size. To consider whether building pools and ice rinks in the same building makes any sense or, better to leverage the private sector and "the Y" relationships to accommodate both but in different locations. In addition, the pause allows us an opportunity to consider the addition of a conference center at a 401 interchange (Townline and Pinebush?).

While there are several "multiplexes" in and around our region, there is an absence of large conference space. If built here, Cambridge becomes a leader in the region and elsewhere in that space.

4. How would you co-ordinate and communicate with the Ontario government about the needs of residents in Cambridge?

A reset is required in the relationship between City Hall and all levels of government.

Cambridge is the second largest contributor to the region coffers and we will work to ensure that we are recognized as such at all levels. The formation of the above referenced advisory groups will allow seats at the table for MPS and MPPS representing our city and given I bring no political baggage to the table, the relationship starts anew with trust, absence of partisan politics and, meaningful discourse.  

We will also leverage relationships with business, Chambers of Commerce and other stakeholders to advance our cause in their own dealings with other levels of government and in their business travels.

I look forward to suggestions from the public as to what they feel would be of benefit to coordination and communication with not only the provincial government but the federal government as well.

While the MPS and MPPS are our eyes and ears at Queen's Park and Parliament Hill and back, I will look for their endorsement to establishing a clear line of communication into the premier and prime minister's offices.

5. What do people need to know about you?

I am thrilled that with the support of my family and many Cambridge residents who have reached out to me. This is a dream come true for me and 20 years in the making.

If elected, I will focus my time and energy on stabilizing our city and elevating our profile in the region, in Ontario, in Canada and abroad.

​The time has come for a person with my skill sets to lead a team of councillors and staff to address the issues and deliver a more affordable community. I have honed the required financial, negotiating and consensus building skills over 40 years in business, 17 of those years also as a Cambridge city councillor (Ward 4) before my job took me away to Toronto for the last 3.5 years, my roles in the Chamber of Commerce in Cambridge and Ontario, the Association Of Municipalities of Ontario and my extensive volunteer co-chair and chair of workplace United Way campaign efforts over many years. I believe all of this has prepared me to be mayor.  

The team of councillors I hope to lead will know that in my view there is no place in municipal politics for party politics given our constituents are supporters of all parties. I will also remind them that we are elected by the people for the people.

I want to lead a city that is a leader and a strong contributor to the existing two-tier system of regional government but with a renewed sense of partnership, enhancing the profile and stature the city deserves. Failing which we would consider other options.

I want to lead a city that is always open to the public and that is proactive in addressing issues knowing reactive actions are typically ineffective and costlier than early intervention.

> Return to top