For Chilliwack City Council
Through my work as Council liaison on both CEPCO and the Downtown Chilliwack Business Improvement Association, I have focused my energy on creating a downtown for people to live, play and shop.
My job is to help set the stage for success which includes attracting and retaining the right businesses, providing infrastructure such as parking and accessibility for all and finally ensuring that all people feel safe.
As we see more densification in the downtown core, it is so important to provide a walkable downtown with all amenities.
Chilliwack is a city under constant change, and it is important that we plan for this so that we remain a community and not another big city with no identity.
The neighbourhood plans that we developed for Sardis, South Vedder and Yarrow will help to provide a road map for that growth to ensure that the needs of all residents are met.
Affordability must not come at the sacrifice of healthy livability so finding the balance is critical. Every development that comes before me must answer two simple questions; “Is it the right thing for the neighbourhood?” and “does it make Chilliwack a better place?”
ROADS AND TRANSPORTATION
As Chair of the Transportation Advisory Committee, I have directed a lot of focus towards traffic management, transportation options and transit.
Effective traffic management is about keeping vehicles moving which means roundabouts (Lickman, Vedder, Vedder Mountain), road widening, and safe turn lanes.
Transportation looks at vehicle alternatives such as cycling and how we can safely integrate them into our city roadways as well as pedestrian trails and walkways that can connect our neighbourhoods.
The recently completed Active Transportation Plan will provide the framework moving forward. The need for transit in Chilliwack is growing, and we will continue to work towards a dependable and consistent system that is user-friendly.
The majority of criminal activity can be traced back to mental health issues and/or drug addiction which while not a city responsibility, we do have to deal with the consequences.
I will continue to ensure we utilize our city resources as effectively and strategically as possible while continuing to advocate for the province to step up and provide the resources we need.
STRONG FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT
Chilliwack has continued to have the lowest taxes in the lower mainland for both residential and commercial over the past four years. Increases for those four years averaged 3% with over half of those increases being utilized towards public safety servicing levels.
As always, Chilliwack practices the pay-as-you-go philosophy with respect to capital expenditures which ensures not a penny of your tax dollars is spent on interest. The tax and spend policies of the two other levels of government have resulted in billions of dollars in interest being paid out every year.
It was only because of this strong fiscal management that Chilliwack had absolutely no cash flow issues during Covid while many other municipalities struggled.