Who do you support for Mayor?
- I am not endorsing any candidates for Mayor, but to me the front runners are McKenney and Sutcliffe.
Do you support the “Strong Mayor” idea from the Province?
In the past four years, property taxes have increased about three per cent each year. Do you have a target for future tax increases?
- Around the same – approx. 3% yearly. It’s a good balance to recognize rising costs (construction inflation, collective bargaining agreements with staff, ability to maintain and improve city services) versus keeping taxes affordable and predictable for residents.
What can the City prioritize to address climate change?
- First, the City should be looking at all of our operations and assets and showing leadership in adopting best practices for lower emissions. For example, we’re already converting our bus fleet to electric vehicles, and we should do the same with very other vehicle in our fleet, from firetrucks to garbage trucks. Our buildings should be powered by renewable energy, and built (or retrofitted) to be zero-emission buildings. I voted for two important initiatives to support this: a grant program to retrofit existing homes to be more energy-efficient; and more stringent buildings standards for new buildings (known as High Performance Development Standards (HPDS)).
- Second, the City needs to invest more in transit and active transportation (cycling, pedestrians, etc.) so that residents will start shifting from vehicles to other modes of transportation.
- Third, solid policy and action to encourage residents to divert more waste away from the landfill and into green bins and recycling.
Do you support “fare-free transit”?
- I do not support eliminating fares. Transit fares should remain about the same for regular adult users, but we should target fare reductions for specific groups, for example: youth under 18, seniors, and targeted fare discounts for low-income earners and discounting fares on weekends when there is extra capacity on the buses. Based on studies from other cities, most transit riders say that more reliability and better frequency of service is more important to them than a discounted ride. I suspect that’s true for most Stittsville residents as well.
Do you support cuts to the police service?
No. In Stittsville, residents want more police visibility in the community, with a particular focus on addressing car thefts, speeding, and after-hours safety in parks and public spaces.
In the most recent budget, we found a balance between some councillors who wanted to cut the police budget, and others (included me) who see a need to hire more officers. We can’t accept the status quo of policing, nor can we just say we’re going to stop funding the police. Neither of those are sensible approaches.
Ottawa Police are stretched too thin for a city our size. The 2% increase we approved in 2022 represented an $11-million increase for hiring new officers. We also shifted $2.1-million towards a new response system for lower-risk calls, including mental health and addiction crises.