Today I am announcing my candidacy for re-election to the Vancouver City Council. Since I was first elected in 2010, I have worked to prioritize spending on essential services, build a stronger and more united city, and support efforts to grow and improve our community. I look forward to the opportunity to serve our city for another term.
When I joined the council, our economy was still reeling from the effects of the Great Recession. I worked diligently to manage city expenses, prioritize essential services, and ask hard questions about how and where Vancouver spends its taxpayers’ dollars. I worked with citizens and council to restore the operation of Fire Station 6, while also bringing costs into line and ensuring value for our citizens.
Looking ahead, we must carefully plan how we use our assets to continue meeting the changing needs of our community. I am proud to report that we have built two new fire stations to serve our citizens more strategically, and we are also in a position to maintain current public safety staffing without having to rely on grants from the federal government.
In Vancouver today, employment opportunities are increasing and the trajectory of the local economy is again headed in an upward direction. There are many additional positive signs of growth. The Columbia Waterfront project is a huge success, and represents an unprecedented investment in Downtown Vancouver. In many respects, this project, along with other recently announced downtown construction projects, will complete the revitalization of the Vancouver City Center.
At the same time, positive signs of growth are occurring in other Vancouver neighborhoods. We are seeing strong new development along the 192nd Avenue corridor, and organizations like Banfield Pet Hospital are choosing East Vancouver to locate their national headquarters. Throughout the city we see growth and development, single family and multi-family housing construction, as well as increased affordable housing.
I am pleased by and proud of these bright spots. I also plan to continue to work to improve all areas of the city, on an equal basis. We must responsibly work together to improve our community.
I also believe that our community can sustain and leverage our Parks and Recreation Department to increase our connectivity and livability throughout the entire city. An example of this is my initiative to make the Apple Pass a reality. The Apple Pass provides free bus passes to middle and high school youth. The pass also provides free access to recreation centers for the youth in the Vancouver and Evergreen School Districts.
Simply, we all have an equal share in the community, regardless of where we live in Vancouver. That is why my objective is “ONE COMMUNITY, SAFE AND PROSPEROUS.” This is my pledge to all the citizens of Vancouver.
I am pleased to have earned the early endorsement of the International Association of Fire Fighters 452 and the Vancouver Police Guild, among many other individuals throughout our community.