Monthly Archives: October 2013

Please, Just Go Vote

With only a few days left until the election, the message I want to get out to people is simply this: please go vote.

In the 2010 Edmonton election, voter turn out was 33.4%. It was not very good, though an improvement over prior elections.

Turn out at Edmonton municipal elections lags way behind the provincial and federal elections, where the most recent elections saw voter turn out at around 54%.  Even at that, Canada ranks 14th out of 17 peer countries internationally.

For federal elections, the lowest turn out is among young people, people with less education or those …

Read the rest

Death and Property Taxes

As this election enters its final days, there is a lot of talk about municipal property taxes.  As certain as death, nobody likes taxes.  Promising to freeze or limit them is, superficially, a popular position to take as people head to the polls.

The city has an annual operating budget for services and programs which by law must be balanced.  After taking into account other revenue sources (licenses, fines, grants, etc.), the vast majority of the revenue side of the City’s budget is made up of property taxes.  That amount is divided by total assessed property values from the year …

Read the rest

Country Club Footbridge Issue

*Note:  The ‘back ground’ section of this blog is copied from a blog I wrote in August.

I am against the city permanently expropriating the through-road through the Edmonton County Club, period.

Rather than reacting without what I felt was the necessary background information, I have spent the past week gathering as much information as I could about this issue.  The city held private discussions on the construction access to the new proposed footbridge. The city reviewed the option of using the ECC road or the Woodward Crescent Road.  They have not said publicly why the project cannot be built …

Read the rest

Newcomers – Building A Life In Edmonton

I participated in the Ward 5 Forum on Monday night with the other Ward 5 candidates for city council.  It was great to meet the other candidates in person, and talk with constituents and respond to their questions.  One thing that really struck me as I listened to the stories of each of the candidates, is that almost half of us began our lives in Canada as immigrants.

My family arrived in Edmonton from South Africa in 1974 when I was 7 years old.

We left a troubled country.  It was a huge change for us: starting a new career …

Read the rest

We Need A Better Funding Deal With The Province

The province of Alberta’s Municipal Government Act  (MGA) is the principal piece of legislation governing the provincial relationship with municipalities – the cities, towns and villages of our province.  It sets out the framework for municipal governance, planning and development, and assessment and taxation.   In 2012, the provincial government announced a three year process for review of the MGA, which was last substantially reviewed and revised in 1995.  I believe this is one of the most important issues facing our city as many of our issues in Edmonton, when drilled down, are due to lack of funding. 

This round of …

Read the rest

Campaign Contributions

I committed to releasing the list of my campaign contributors one week before the election.  Here is the latest list as of Oct. 5, 2013

$100 – $500

Mr James Kent Lee

TransAmerica Investments

Rehana Chatur P.C.

Shelly Bobroff

Joseph Doz 1994 P.C.

Liden Financial & Estate Planners Inc

Mr John B Mitchell

Sherrick Management Limited

Alberta and NWT Building and Construction Trades Council

Belay Benefits Inc

Reg Greenslade

Volvo of Edmonton

Mr Joe Yurkovich

Amalgamated Transit Union

Henry & Jane Bereznicki

Ross Haffie

Terry Whittingham

Sorrell Financial

Oshry & Company

Robert V Lloyd P.C

Marvin Horwitz

River City Metalworks

Read the rest