Priorities As Mayor Of Vancouver
As mayor, I will fight to make Vancouver city government more transparent, inclusive and user-friendly. Vancouver is a $1.4 billion entity that needs to be managed in a better way. For too long we have been kept in the dark about our city’s finances and decision-making and I pledge to get Vancouver on solid financial footing. The first step is to call for a full review of the city’s books and use my CPA expertise to separate waste from opportunity. To make your tax dollars go further, I will implement global best practices to this city. I will make sure your voice gets heard in City Hall by setting up regular town hall meetings in your communities and genuinely listening to your concerns. I will also make it easier to report problems like potholes and broken street lights and I will hold managers accountable for repairs.
We are at a crossroads. On the world stage Vancouver is recognized as one of the most livable cities, but for whom? The shortage of attainable housing is our biggest barrier to prosperity, growth and fairness. It is causing severe lifestyle challenges and damaging our city’s competitiveness. It is creating an economic divide between its citizens, pitting neighbour against neighbour, rather than bringing us together to find solutions.
As mayor, my single biggest priority is attainable housing for Vancouverites to rent and buy. Breaking the building permit logjam at City Hall with well-designed efficiencies and introducing more creative zoning by-laws will give our children better opportunities to live close to home. By investing in livable, walkable communities surrounding key public transportation hubs, we can reduce the number of cars on our streets and strengthen our neighbourhoods. Neighbourhoods have always been a vital part of Vancouver. They help build a sense of community and must be supported at City Hall.
I will be the most business-friendly mayor in the history of Vancouver because only a prosperous, growing economy keeps our city alive. We have a top-notch, highly- educated workforce but not enough of the right kind of jobs to keep them here. Too often I hear of businesses large and small leaving Vancouver – or not starting up in Vancouver to begin with – because operating costs are too high or they cannot keep skilled workers. That must change and it starts at City Hall.
Mobility is critical to the evolution of our world-class city. Vancouver’s population has grown by roughly 45,000 people over the last 10 years and continues to grow. Our transportation network needs to keep pace with that growth. I will work toward alleviating congestion while maintaining a healthy balance between transit and auto, walking and cycling. All are key to improving efficiency and quality of life. I will remain skeptical of easy answers to improve Vancouver’s gridlock. I will work effectively with other levels of government to develop multiple approaches to mobility. At this level I will push for examining “mobility as a service” throughout the Lower Mainland.
As mayor, I will better utilize and coordinate the city’s resources in dealing with mental health and homelessness issues. I recognize families are in need of more support. I will push all forms of government for more affordable childcare and better family support services. In order to address root causes of crime and addiction, I will support better education and employment opportunities, particularly for our youth. I believe neighborhood policing can build trust and a sense of safety but it’s important to identify the specific needs of each neighborhood, and get involved before crimes occur.