Candidate Forum notes for Ward 1 #YQRvotes

As promised at the end of my closing statement, here are my notes from tonight. I hope you enjoy the transparency.

They are not very edited, so they may not make good sense. I reserve the right to fix mistakes you point out 😉

Good evening ladies and gentlemen,

I’m John Klein, and I want you to allow me to begin making positive changes in our community, as your Councillor. People in this crowd are among the most politically engaged in the city, so you’ll recognize the key issues in this election, and what matters most for the continued success of Regina. We can have:
Reliable water and sewer systems, affordable houses and apartments, effective trash removal and our new recycling program, faster and more comprehensive street repair and upgrading, and ensuring public spaces for recreation, learning, sports, gardening, and building community spirit.

I’ve been working on improving Regina in small ways for some time, and am able to help in big ways too. I’ve taken time off work, and in the evening as you have tonight, to participate in our city’s new Official Community Plan through the Design Regina process. We have the opportunity to choose a long term vision that makes Regina a more cohesive community, one with infrastructure that lasts. We can have effective and convenient transit so people can get to work and school and elsewhere in reasonable amounts of time with or without a car as our city grows.

We need more people participating in governing the city. I don’t want council meetings that are stiff and unwelcoming to citizens with real concerns, and creative ideas to share. Democracy can’t be run on a script, and it can’t be run without open government and sufficient information for the people to make the decisions. When City Hall does something, and no one you know understands why, or agrees with it, that’s a failure in democracy. I want to be a part of improving that communication, and make City Hall more welcoming and even more effective.

I work at the University of Regina, in computer support. I also co-founded a car sharing co-operative in Regina to improve our transportation options. I’m a husband, pet owner, gardener, a volunteer, and I hope to say soon that I’ll be your Councillor. I’ll do my best to make our community proud of my further efforts at improving our city.

Plans regarding noise pollution of traffic on Ring Road?
Noise snare for modified vehicles that are intentionally over loud.
If a noise reducing wall, perhaps trees would serve the role.
Walls must not prevent pedestrian movement.

Conflict of interest for development:
Open information so people can decide.

Food security
Make gardening more socially acceptable. I find it odd that the city of agribusiness does not allow people to keep a pair of chickens as pets, but multiple barking dogs are fine.
I am a community gardener. I want grocery stores to be walkable distances

private investment is at 9% for the stadium. We were promised the majority would not be taxpayer funded.
I want a stadium, but it may have to be an upgraded Taylor Field, with estimates from 6m to 110m to make that happen.

Personal values?
I’m active online, and will visit doorsteps over the next four years. Design Regina is ongoing and I’ll meet people there too.
I’ll be gardening in the community, on the bus, on my bike, and at events.

Recycling, and transit are solutions to these problems. They are big city problems, so we need to act like a big city and solve these as they are elsewhere. Composting would remove 40% of waste from our landfill stream. Express bus routes up broad and Albert.

Arts, promotion of it?
Sound stage in our ward may be headed for some tough times. Regina ingenuity is required to mend that situation.
Libraries.

Work with others?
Man of reason, I’m a problem solver.

Food in neighbourhoods

Green grass?
Dandelions never killed anyone, but cancer has.

Volunteering?

Bylaw allow three to four hens, no roosters.
New York has them. Vancouver. Prepare Regina for growth. Slippery slope? Not really.

partisan? Not really, I think muni politics should look for the best solutions, no matter which party favors them.

UofR
Heritage building. College Ave Campus.
Rams play at Taylor Field. Cougar hockey at our centralized rinks.
UofR wants to reach out. Hosted Design Regina forums.
Bursary for First Nation students and the FNUniv. There is the Baker scholarship already, which I was reminded about by a kind city employee via Twitter when talking about this earlier.

Snow removal improvement.

Improved community spaces, maintain Wascana and our parks, and community gardens, and heritage buildings. I want to ensure community associations are well funded, so volunteers have ample opportunity to help their neighbors and maintain a high quality of life.

City pension situation needs solving, it can’t be kicked down the line before more money is put into it. People were promised a retirement situation they are being cheated out of by management that didn’t work. That sort of management must change, as may expectations, simultaneously. There’s no magic solution, but people must work together and be willing to negotiate.

Property safety, we need to address social problems head on, listening to those affected, and hear what they want done. We can’t legislate everything, especially areas that are hard to enforce, or have little benefit to the big picture.

Business plan for housing?
OCP Design Regina
Town halls.
Transportation Master Plan (community investment)
Rental housing incentives are required to make it about as profitable for developers to construct rental housing as it is for condos.

-How can transit be improved?
Express routes up Broad, Albert and Victoria at a minimum. Only 4% take the bus, and I use the bus and it doesn’t yet measure up to other cities. I will fix that. Para transit strands people, missing 2000 rides a month.

Increase density of population, and services in most neighbourhoods to make neighbourhoods walkable and livable. Where can residents of Whitmore Park near the University walk to get groceries? Where can we have an indoor gathering if not at a school or church? How many schools have closed with no apparent plan to school kids in walkable, complete communities?

Thank-you to the organizers of this forum. It’s excellent that we have the opportunity to gather like this and share all of our ideas. As Conrad also wrote into his speech, Although we may not all agree on the best way to run our City, I’m pleased that we have a democracy in which to shape the changes. Thank-you to everyone who attended, and please tell your friends what you heard here tonight, because your opinions are the most valuable here, and I’d be pleased to represent them after October 24th, on Council.

See me after if you’d like to talk, or grab a pamphlet of mine at the back table.

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About John Klein

My full time blog is at AbandonedStuff.com My personal site devoted to my Regina politics work is at JohnKlein.ca