Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce at Matsqui Centennial Auditorium

1. Thank you for coming to listen to your civic candidates for the office of Mayor, School Board and City Council. With your votes, a new council and school board, we will make a difference in city hall.

2. I would like to acknowledge the service of the outgoing school board, council, and mayor. Civic service is a great challenge: to referee and balance the needs of the many, with the demands of the few. Our new council and Mayor, will renew that balance: Human values in policing. Close Sumas Center for public safety. Build the new hospital and overpass. Restore friendly relations with senior governments, and reduce debt.

3. Many of you view Public Healthcare, Education, Public Safety and Infrastructure are our priorities. I consider this mayoralty election a referendum on this. Do you want more of the same old council, blaming the victims of federal downloading, then slipping you a 6% tax increase? End an era. Raise revenues. Freeze taxes. Close Sumas Center; Build the new hospital and Mt. Lehman overpass.

4. I have watched this council ask the CSC to clean up their act for decades? Having worked for the feds myself over two decades, I know they will not listen. Not until they are ordered out of town, by you. Similarly, the Abbotsford Police have been training too long on US style policing. This is British Columbia. I would like to keep the peace and quiet on our city streets. We favour Canadian and British common law, not the mean streets of the failed US drug-war. Dutch and European models of vice-management, which respect human values are what we prefer. Vote to ban US cross-training and re-emphasize European ideals. The time has come. Give the Police Board direction.

5. Healthcare and Education transfers are being held back. But the federal strip mining of BC's tax revenue. Vote a new council and school board, to ensure health, education and full employment are held to high standards and best practices.

6. The Abbotsford Airport, West-Jet and Conair form the nucleus for our aviation-related industries. Workers highlighted for me the importance of improving access to and from the airport along Mount Lehman road. Traffic and transit must flow freely.

7. Overpasses from Mount Lehman Road, through McCallum Road, are in desperate need of being doubled up, because they are strangling our growing city. As these are a mix of federal, provincial, and civic highways, we will have to work together with senior governments to fulfill your mandate.

8. A performance audit of all managers, departments, major contracts, and city services, combined with surveys of customer satisfaction and focus groups will drive a renewed focus on customer service at city hall.

Vote a New council and School Board to be your servant for the future. Common sense and balance are required.

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