The Public Record is interviewing all candidates running in the 2022 Hamilton municipal election. In each race, the candidates are asked the same questions in our podcast interview.
The questions give candidates the opportunity to articulate their platform while asking them to explain how they will make decisions during the four years they hope to sit on City Council.
The questions they will be answering are listed below.
The Ward 10 Questions
1. Who is [NAME]?
2. Why are you running?
3. Do you live in Ward 10, Yes or No?
3a. Does it matter if one lives in the community one seeks to represent?
4. How have you contributed to your community and our city?
5. What are two of your priorities for Ward 10 and two of your priorities for Hamilton as a whole?
6. What are three skills you will bring to elected office that makes you the best choice to represent Ward 10 on Hamilton City Council?
The following preamble leads to questions regarding honesty and transparency.
Let’s presume you are elected.
During your first few weeks, you will be briefed regarding what City Hall refers to as “Confidential Matters”.
We do not know what “confidential matters” are presently being withheld from the citizens of Hamilton.
All four councillors first elected in 2018 initially voted to support the Cootes Paradise cover-up, before three of the new councillors began voting against the continuing cover-up.
The Municipal Act prohibits members of Council from releasing information the majority of Council declares “confidential”.
7. What principles and advice will help you determine what information should be confidential and what information should be made public?
The Red Hill Inquiry will issue its report early in the next term of Council.
The revelations regarding how City Hall ignored problems on the expressway and the toxic culture at City Hall which silenced good people are shocking.
8. How do you plan to review and consider the final Inquiry report when the Honourable Justice Herman J. Wilton-Siegel releases the Commission’s findings and recommendations?
9. The construction of the B-Line LRT will begin during this term of Council. It will be the largest construction project in Hamilton’s recent history. How do you plan to respond to construction challenges and opportunities?
Before we turn to land-use planning, let’s have a lighter question.
10. What is something interesting or unique within Ward 10 that you believe the rest of Hamilton should know about?
City Council decides land-use planning and zoning. It decides where housing and businesses are located, and the type of housing and businesses which are permitted in locations.
Ward 10 has and will continue to experience significant population growth.
During the past two decades, this has primarily been north of the QEW and single detached homes in the eastern portions of Stoney Creek / Winona.
The Fruitland-Winona Secondary Plan, approved a decade ago, will see further growth. Additionally, low density large lot commercial sites along Highway 8 and Barton Street are being converted to mid-rise residential, often by order of the Ontario Land Tribunal which recently approved 11-storeys on Highway 8. Growth is coming, your job as councillor is to manage it to achieve optimal outcomes within the constraints of Ontario’s defacto planning law, the Provincial Policy Statement.
There are three questions on this topic.
11. Development in Stoney Creek has been done without much thought to transit and without adding transit service. The result is growing traffic issues. What is your overall transportation management vision for Ward 10, please explain how you will achieve the vision.
12. The City of Hamilton is updating its outdated city-wide residential zoning bylaws. The primary effect of this in Ward 10 is the updating of local regulations regarding Secondary Dwelling Units. – Ontario’s defacto planning law permits SDUs as of right. As Ward Councillor, at times you will have to balance the requirements of the PPS with local opposition to planning proposals. What is your planning philosophy and how will you handle contentious files which we know will be approved by the Ontario Land Tribunal if City Council decides to oppose them?
13. The conversion of large commercial lots to mixed-use residential is occurring across Hamilton. Already, there are applications on Highway 8 near Millen Road and near Dewitt Road. The City is finishing sewage upgrades along Dewitt Road which are fifty percent development charge funded – this means the City must approve new development in this area. Presently, there is no City planning policy specific to commercial to mixed-use redevelopment. What is your vision for this type of redevelopment and how will you achieve that vision?
14. Road safety is a significant issue across Hamilton, including in Ward 10. What is your overall plan to address road safety, please provide three detailed specifics of your plan, and how will you respond to opposition to changes?
Turning to governance and expertise. Let’s use the idea that it takes 10,000 hours to master a skill or trade and apply it to being a municipal councillor. One person cannot be an expert in all matters which come before Council for decision.
15. How will you gain the necessary learning to be able to make informed decisions – what reading do you do, what professional development will you look for, and what types of people will you seek advice from?
16. What are two changes you will propose to improve City services?
17. What are two changes you will propose to improve quality of life in Hamilton?
18. It’s 2026, The Public Record is writing a review of the four-year Council term that is just ending. What three words do you hope we will use to describe your term on Council, and what three words do you hope will describe Council as a whole?
19. Thank you, that’s the end of the prepared questions you were sent in advance. Do you have closing remarks you wish to share?