I have served the City as a member of council for the past 27 years, sitting on the Finance, Community Services, Economic Development & Tourism committees. I have also served on outside boards such as Parks Board, Spruce Lodge & Festival Hydro. I am retired after working 47 years, primarily in the accounting / financial field. I have lived in Stratford for most of my life,having been born and raised here. I am married ( Gwen ) & we have two grown children, Lee Ann ( Jeff ), and Andy and they each have two children, all here in Stratford. We love our City.
Each Candidate was asked to send a bio, photo and to respond to the ten questions below with a limit of 75 words per answer. We have identified any truncated content with “...” Please feel free to reach out to each candidate for more information.
1. Over the last five years, how have you contributed to the City of Stratford (volunteering, boards, etc.)?
I have sat on the board of Festival Hydro Inc. & Ryzhome as well as Spruce Lodge Home for the Aged, and City Council
2. What do you believe your unique contribution will be to council (strengths)?
My experience ( 27 years on Council ), my strong Financial background, willingness to listen and make and accept changes as required and my understanding of the process etc
3. What would you like to see achieved over the next four years (be specific)?
Over the next term of council, I hope we have a good start on the Community Hub and the Cooper site, most specifically a permanent home the Seniors association. I would also hope that we kind find a way to increase our social housing inventory / affordable housing stock. We also need to put as much of our financial resources into roads as we can afford, and we need to increase our industrial lands to attract more business.
4. What committees do you see yourself sitting on and what experience qualifies you for that committee?
I hope to be on Finance & Labour Relations and Community Services as I have been in the past. I have a strong financial background and I have always been involved with our parksand recreation programs.
5. What means of transportation are you using in the city, and/or in and out of town and what improvements do you recommend?
We usually use our vehicle in and around town, the bus on occasion and walk. Out of town trips are usually via car, sometimes bus & rail. I would like to see bus and rail travel options increased / improved.
6. Describe what you believe the Cooper Site should look like in 10 years?
In ten years the cooper site should consist of a full fledged community hub with multiple uses & users, additional University Facilities, a new YMCA with pool and possibly a new Library.
7. What are your objectives with respect to housing and how do you expect to accomplish them?
I think I answered this under part 3 except on how to accomplish. This will take a blot of time and negotiation with the senior levels of government for funding.
8. If elected, what three steps would you take to put our city on a firmer financial footing?
First of all, I will say that our financial footing is actually very strong. I will look at things long and when it comes to any need for borrowing, and work to keep our repayments at a sustainable level.
We are currently repaying our debt at approx. 6M yearly.
9. How will the new provincial legislation with respect to conflict of interest on municipal councils, coming into effect January 2019, hinder your effectiveness on council?
I personally don't feel the new rules will have a negative impact on councils ability to carry on its business.
10. How will you encourage youth engagement, retention, re-attraction and skills development?
Increase activities for youth ie; at the youth center, involve school councils more and maybe there would be some interest in a youth council that meets and reports monthly or quarterly to Council.