Candidate running for Councillor


Administration & Governance

1

 

Canadian Home Builders Association:
The only employee of Lethbridge City Council is the City Manager. Should a vacancy occur, what are the skills you will look for in a candidate, what recruitment process would you advocate for, and how will you ensure a transparent recruitment process?

Answer

Qualities: Hard working, Practical, Excellent Financial Skills, Strong and Inspiring Leadership, Excellent Communicator, Open and Approachable, Innovative, and a strong Team Builder. Recruitment Process: Utilize a respected, national recruitment agency. Transparency: Create and follow a process that is publicized to our community before it is undertaken, and then referenced when the process is complete.


2

 

Aerris Managing Solutions:
The revised Municipal Government Act (MGA) is requiring that all municipal councils have a Code of Conduct that represents a commitment by each member to conduct themselves in a certain way. What would you include in the City of Lethbridge Code of Conduct for your council?

Answer

As Chair of our Open and Effective Government committee, I have a draft of a new Code of Conduct Policy ready to bring before Council. It includes the standard legal and ethical guidelines, but will also cover items such as Social Media, Gifting, how Council will(should) work together, how Council interacts with members of the Public, and possible sanctions that may be imposed for breaches of the policy. While not part of the Code of Conduct, there should also be references to diversity and inclusivity training for all of Council.


3

 

Aerris Managing Solutions:
As a member of Lethbridge City Council, what does “accountability” look like and what initiatives would you undertake to achieve accountability?

Answer

Absolute accountability rests with the voters every four years. It is my hope that voters will look at a candidates record: How and why they voted on issues, their attendance at Council and committee meetings, their interactions with the public, their willingness to learn and research, their knowledge about issues affecting our community, etc. During the term, accountability is much the same; a Councillor must always be prepared to justify everything they do, be available to the public for dialogue, and to represent our community to the best of their ability. All Councillors should be easily available and able to answer any questions the public has of them.


4

 

Aerris Managing Solutions:
The Municipal Government Act (MGA) outlines the role of council but reality is often more complicated than legislation. Explain how you see your role as an elected official in relation to the operations of the City?

Answer

Council's main role is one of Governance and Oversight. The legislation covers broad topics such as promoting the welfare or interests of the municipality, and developing and evaluating policies and programs. While any group of citizens could accomplish this, the role of an Elected Official is to bring the values they were elected on into the process. Communicating and interacting with our residents, listening to all viewpoints, and bringing all of our community's diverse voices to the table are paramount. Good information gathering and strong debate are also key parts of the job.


5

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
We should continue investing in expansion of City of Lethbridge public transit services and ensure that public tax dollars are not being used to subsidize private companies or ride-sharing platforms. Please choose from: Strongly disagree, Somewhat disagree, Neither agree nor disagree, Somewhat agree, Strongly agree.

Answer

Strongly agree


6

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
What is your position on Public-Private Partnerships (P3s) and the function they serve in the future growth of the City of Lethbridge? Please choose: Mostly Oppose P3s or Mostly Support P3s.

Answer

Mostly Oppose P3s


7

 

Group Questions:
Would you vote in favour of making councillors a full time position for the 2021 Lethbridge municipal election?

Answer

Yes


8

 

Group Questions:
Would you vote in favour of creating an electoral ward system for the 2021 Lethbridge municipal election?

Answer

No


Arts & Culture

9

 

Allied Arts Council:
What are your top three priorities for the arts in the City of Lethbridge and how should these activities be funded?

Answer

1. Continue the work towards a Performing Arts Centre. Funded through accessing Federal and Provincial funding as available, and Private/Corporate Donations. 2. Creation of a Arts and Culture Grant. Council funds or denies funding to arts groups as they approach Council with requests. Building a yearly or multi-year grant fund would allow for a more transparent competition, with the most qualified applicants being successful. Funding could be achieved within current City budgets, combined with corporate funds and existing Fed/Prov funding. 3. Continue promoting local artist through festivals and events. Utilize and expand existing budgets.


10

 

Allied Arts Council:
What do you believe is City of Lethbridge's role in arts investment?

Answer

The main role is one of partnership and collaboration. Providing a variety of quality facilities, working with stakeholders and funders to ensure successful artistic ventures, and ensuring accessibility to all our residents is key. A strong, diverse, and vibrant arts culture is an economic driver for a city. Not only does tourism and the associated business sector flourish, but many corporations look to locate in areas with a thriving arts culture. Providing arts and recreation for our residents to create a healthy and active lifestyle for all should be one of our goals. Public art investment creates an attractive community, and helps define a sense of place for residents and visitors.


11

 

Lethbridge Public Library:
What do you see as the role of the public library in our community and how would you support it?

Answer

Not unlike City Halls, Public Libraries are often the faces and gathering places of a community. Our libraries do an amazing job of being open, inclusive, and welcoming to every member of our community. No longer merely a place of books and reference materials, our libraries are an integral part of life and connections in Lethbridge. Our library is the information and referral source of community, health, social and government services and programs, and assists many of our residents on a daily basis. They create and provide excellent programs and volunteer opportunities throughout of city. I have always supported our local library through stable, predictable funding.


12

 

Allied Arts Council:
Do you support the public art initiatives being undertaken by the City of Lethbridge?

Answer

Yes. Public art investment creates an attractive community, and helps define a sense of place for residents and visitors. Public art creates and demonstrates a sense of civic pride, and allows areas of interaction (and debate!) for our residents and visitors.


13

 

Allied Arts Council:
Lethbridge City Council has demonstrated its commitment to building a Performing Arts Centre in its recent Capital Improvement Program. Will you advocate for the completion of this project?

Answer

Yes. Again, this is an economic AND a cultural investment in our community. Our current facilities are outdated, small, and at capacity. Quality productions are bypassing our city for other venues, and building this facility will allow for many more entertainment opportunities for our residents and visitors. I was the driving force behind Council's commitment to this facility, and I would like to see it continue to move forward.


Economic Development

14

 

Downtown Lethbridge Business Revitalization Zone:
What are the top three priorities for the development of downtown Lethbridge and how should these developments be funded?

Answer

1. Increased Downtown Residential Spaces. People living and working downtown are key drivers for a vibrant and active downtown. Funded through tax deferral incentives and grants. 2. Renewal and Upgrades to Infrastructure, including Broadband Connectivity. This is key to a prosperous and smart city, and should be funded through existing maintenance funding, as well as the Capital Improvement Plan. 3. Increased activity. Events and festivals will bring more people into the downtown, creating a safe, vibrant and welcoming environment. Public and Private investment will be necessary.


15

 

Chamber of Commerce:
What are your top three priorities for economic development in Lethbridge and how should these be funded?

Answer

1. Diversification of the economy. By providing excellent opportunities for businesses to move to Lethbridge in a variety of sectors is key. Supporting innovative ventures like TecConnect, continued municipal/Provincial/Federal investment in our industrial parks, and ensuring quality commercial space will be important. 2. Support our Destination Management Plan. Tourism can be an effective economic driver. Funded through combining our current tourism funds under one entity. 3. Airport enhancement. A better functioning/serviced airport will provide a multitude of opportunities/ benefits. Working with our colleagues in the County (who own and operate the airport) will be key.


16

 

Canadian Home Builders Association:
Can you identify any areas of Lethbridge where you see increased density as an effective tool to support lifestyle choices, a growing economy, and a healthy environment?

Answer

The downtown core. As the 'Heart of Our City', more people living, working and playing downtown should be a priority. Many of our older neighbourhoods are ripe for densification. Infill developments should be focused on densification to better utilize existing infrastructure, and to re-energize our neighbourhoods as they age and redevelop. The new Crossings Development on the westside is an excellent example of greater density and a variety of housing options can work well together.


17

 

Chamber of Commerce:
What specific message do you have for the business community of Lethbridge?

Answer

Council has actively worked to ensure Lethbridge is 'business friendly', and has included strongly worded statements in our strategic plan such as: 1. Encourage private investment and promote a corporate culture that does the same. 2. Enrich the city as an exciting and active place to live, visit and do business. 3. Consider ways to streamline city processes and make them more business-friendly 4. Increase our engagement and consultation with the business community 5. Actively encourage a cooperative approach in the community for tourism initiatives 6. Lead the development of a tourism strategy


18

 

Canadian Home Builders Association:
Recognizing that private enterprises and the City of Lethbridge co-exist in the acquisition and sale of land for commercial and residential activity, what role do you see the City playing in land development?

Answer

Status Quo. Lethbridge Land (RELD) has a fairly small share of residential land development, but uses the return on investment to fund things like Parks, Habitat for Humanity, and Social Housing. This allows us to keep tax-supported costs for these projects to a minimum. In City owned developments, there is also a greater opportunity for smaller, independent home builders to access lots. Our main focus is in industrial land development, which requires large up-front investment, with a relatively longer term return on investment, but is necessary to the stable growth of our business sector.


19

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
As a municipal leader, what should the City’s role be when the decisions of other levels of government affect citizens of Lethbridge?

Answer

Advocacy, first and foremost. Maintaining strong communication with other orders of government is key in ensuring our voice is heard and respected. We also play a key role in keeping our residents informed when decisions that affect them are being made.


20

 

Chamber of Commerce:
What do you feel are the greatest opportunities and challenges for business in Lethbridge?

Answer

Three opportunities spring to mind: 1. LOCATION. Our location near Calgary and along the corridors connecting BC, Saskatchewan, and Montana make for an excellent home base for manufacturing and export. As the CANAMEX highway gets closer to a reality, this will be an even larger boon. 2. POPULATION. As we reach 100k population, there will be many more businesses willing to locate to our community. 3. CO-LOCATION. As larger enterprises like Cavendish Farms move to our community, there will be excellent opportunities for ancillary and complimentary businesses. Bureaucracy and red tape have often been cited as challenges, Council has worked to reduce this, and will continue to do so.


Environment

21

 

Environment Lethbridge:
What are your top three environmental priorities for Lethbridge and how should these be funded?

Answer

1. Follow through with our Waste Diversion strategy for Residential and Institutional/Commercial/Industrial Sectors. Funded through a mix of penalties and fees contained within our Waste and Recycling Utility. 2. Ensure that City facilities and operations are leaders in environmental initiatives and best practices. Funded through our Capital Plan, and maximizing on grants from other orders of government. 3. Education and communication to our residents regarding environmental and conservation best practices. Funded through our commitment to Environment Lethbridge and other community organizations, as well as through our current and ongoing corporate communication strategy.


22

 

Environment Lethbridge:
Lethbridge's Municipal Development Plan states that minimizing the urban footprint and enhancing public space are important parts of a sustainable built environment. What measures would you take to achieve these goals?

Answer

1. Increase our density targets for new and infill developments, and consider offering incentives for greater density. 2. Continue enhancing streets as quality public spaces. 6th street downtown ( where the farmers market and other events are held) and our upcoming improvements to 3rd Ave are excellent examples of this. 3. Galt Gardens Master Plan and the Heart of Our City Master plan also have some beautiful concepts on enhancing public space. These need to be worked towards.


23

 

No Drilling Lethbridge:
In 2014, Goldenkey Oil Inc. proposed a project to drill for oil and gas within Lethbridge city limits. If such a project was proposed during your term on council, what would be your position?

Answer

My position remains unchanged: I oppose drilling within city limits.


24

 

Environment Lethbridge:
On council, what would you propose to better manage our water?

Answer

Council has adopted a strategy of increased water rates to actively encourage conservation, and we promote many conservation techniques, including: Low Flush Toilets and Low Flow Showerheads Reduce/replace dripping taps and pipes Limit showers to 3-4 minutes Reuse Rainwater with rain barrels for your garden, lawn, and birds! Planting native, drought resistant species. Use of xeriscaping We also rely heavily on our partners in Environment Lethbridge and the Oldman Watershed Council to lead in the education of our residents and the promotion of water conservation.


25

 

Environment Lethbridge:
Giving that City Council has adopted waste reduction targets, what strategies would be most effective to meet waste diversion targets?

Answer

The strategies I support are clearly outlined in Council's Waste Diversion strategies. They include Voluntary (through education), Economic, and Regulatory options. the full reports can be found here: http://www.lethbridge.ca/living-here/Waste-Recycling/Documents/ICI%20Waste%20Diversion%20Strategy.pdf#search=waste%20diversion and http://www.lethbridge.ca/living-here/Waste-Recycling/Documents/Residential%20Waste%20Diversion%20Strategy%20-%20Final%20w%20Appendices.pdf#search=waste%20diversion


26

 

Environment Lethbridge:
How should the City of Lethbridge support renewable energy projects (solar, wind, etc)? Please choose from: These projects should not be allowed within city limits, These projects should be allowed within the city with the entire cost borne by the home owner, The City of Lethbridge should provide incentives for home owners to develop renewable energy projects, Renewable energy initiatives should be a requirement in all new Lethbridge development.

Answer

Renewable energy initiatives should be a requirement in all new Lethbridge development


Social & Equity

27

 

Arches:
To what extent do you believe harm reduction strategies (such as needle distribution, supervised consumption services, naloxone kit distribution, etc.) are an effective intervention for people who use drugs?

Answer

These are all parts of an effective strategy. Safe injection sites (SIS) have been shown to help connect at risk users with health care resources to help deal with withdrawal and detox, thereby protecting and decreasing drug users. Supervised consumption sites also keep public areas more clean and free of needles, and help stop the spread of accidental exposure and disease. Providing clean needles and monitoring the use of illicit substances significantly reduces overdose and infection which keeps your community healthier and it frees up EMS services, saving tax dollars.


28

 

Arches:
What support services is our community missing in order to best support people who use drugs, people who engage in sex work, or people who are homeless?

Answer

Drug use: Safe injection site (coming). Intox and Detox Centre. Sex Workers: Supportive Counselling . Drop in Centres and Support Groups. Homeless: We have great programs in place now (HomeBase, YouthHub), but more affordable, supportive housing is needed.


29

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
The City of Lethbridge should formally commit to dedicate space for eligible child care services in city-owned, or city-leased buildings and facilities, including community centres, libraries, and other municipal buildings. Please choose from: Strongly disagree, Somewhat disagree, Neither agree nor disagree, Somewhat agree, or Strongly agree.

Answer

Somewhat agree


30

 

Coalition of Indigenous Voices & OUTreach Southern Alberta:
What is the City’s role in addressing issues of systemic racism and discrimination?

Answer

Our work with CMARD and our adoption of the Reconciliation Plan is achieving great strides forward in this area. Council has formally signed on to and supports CMARD as well as our Reconciliation Plan, and have taken education and training exercises with several groups traditionally discriminated against. I am proud of the work being done; It is leadership such as this that helps us educate ourselves and our community, and work to eliminate racism and discrimination in all forms.


31

 

OUTreach Southern Alberta:
Do you consider yourself an ally to the LGBTQ+ community, what does that mean to you, and how would it be reflected in your actions as councillor?

Answer

As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, I am proud of this Council and the work we have done. This Council has made great progress with the LGBTQ+ community, and needs to continue that work. Pride Flag raising at City Hall, our LGBT and Transgender crosswalks, and Financial support of Pride events are all good steps we have taken. As a Councillor, I pledge to be open to all and will strive for better understanding of ALL our residents needs, beliefs, and desires. I will support marginalized groups to ensure that they feel safe, secure, and part of our whole community. While we have good policy on inclusiveness, we need to ensure that we take actions to stand alongside 'good policy'.


32

 

Coalition of Indigenous Voices:
As an elected official, what steps will you take to build in processes of decolonization, indigenization, and reconciliation into the City of Lethbridge?

Answer

Our commitment to Lethbridge's Reconciliation Plan is firm, and I am proud of the work done by our community to create such a thoughtful response to the TRC. We need to ensure that we implement the plan (The calls to action and the direct municipal responses), and not let forward momentum fade. There is not enough space to list everything here, but I recommend everyone read the full plan here: http://www.lethbridge.ca/City-Government/Documents/Reconciliation%20Lethbridge%20-%20Implementation%20Plan%20(FINAL).pdf


33

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
Most of our public services and facilities have a user fee but the City subsidizes the cost of the facility or service. What is your position on the subsidization of public services and facilities? Please choose from: Users should not pay at all so that everyone can access the service, Small user fees should be charged but I would consider waiving them for low income people, students, or seniors, A user fee should be charged to all users, The City should not be subsidizing someone’s hobbies or recreation, Private companies should be providing these services and facilities with market forces setting fees.

Answer

Small user fees should be charged but I would consider waiving them for low income people, students, or seniors


34

 

Coalition of Indigenous Voices:
As an elected official, how would you enhance relationships with Indigenous peoples within the City of Lethbridge and with neighboring nations that border the city?

Answer

This Council has begun the process. We are working with the Lethbridge Indigenous Sharing Network and Opokaa'sin, among others in our community to better understand the needs of Indigenous Peoples within our city, and supporting their initiatives where possible. We have also begun a process of working with our Blackfoot neighbours, and have committed to continue meeting and working together. Raising the Blackfoot Confederacy and Reconciliation flags in front of City Hall was a major step forward in recognizing the challenges and opportunities ahead.