The following questionnaire was sent to all New Westminster candidates for mayor and council a little over a week ago. A separate questionnaire was sent to trustees (their responses are also being published this week). Questions were selected based primarily on comments from readers of Tenth to the Fraser collected via Twitter and Facebook, with a few of my own questions added in. Responses are published in the order they were received. Spelling/grammar are not corrected and candidates’ responses are published unedited.
1. First, let’s hear a little about you:
What’s your name? – David Noshad
- How long have you lived in New Westminster? – for the better part of last 15 years
- What do you love most about our city? – people of New Westminster…the friendliest people in the lower mainland
- What do you think most needs improvement? – economy, transportation and environmental considerations
- What is the civic issue that is the most personally meaningful to you? – economy, jobs and affordable housing
2. What are the top three initiatives you believe would improve economic development?
- Small business incubation and support
- Attracting more big companies to New West
- Funding marketing campaigns to draw shoppers and tourists to New West
3. How would you like to see city council improve engagement with younger citizens?
Inviting their representatives to the committees, regular meeting with them and participating in their events…in general, listening to them. I believe younger citizens don’t have many options in New Westminster at the moment and they need more attention by city council.
4. What should New Westminster do to improve access to recreational programming and indoor public spaces in neighbourhoods that lack amenities like rec centres and libraries such as the West End, Connaught Heights and Sapperton?
If elected i will ask for funding from provincial and federal government to support building new facilities in New Westminster. I believe these are very important components in social well-being of people of New West. Another option is to help with transportation to other facilities…
5. Which approach best describes your philosophy towards City budgeting and spending?
New West should spend within its means. Borrowing money to fund community projects should only occur after a public consultation process to get a mandate from citizens to do so.
6. Which of the following most closely reflects your views on taxation?
I understand that city needs a source of revenue but we need to increase city’s revenue (generate capital) to have more income for people of New West…we need to encourage our businesses to improve and pay a reasonable tax…otherwise increasing tax (especially property taxes) is not sustainable. It could cause an economic catastrophe or public unrest…
7. Beyond voting, serving on City committees and appearing at council meetings, what do you think citizens can do to become more involved in civic life?
Be aware of environmental and social issues around them and try to report/ or fix those problems.
8. What should be done about truck traffic through our city?
we need to hire a consulting firm for scientific analysis of situation and then to establish a comprehensive plan for that…
9. What should be done to improve our recreation facilities? Specifically, what would you like to see done with Canada Games Pool, which is in need of repair/upgrades?
I will hire a consulting firm to have a full scientific analysis of our facilities and give us an estimate. Personally I am more in to improving Canada games pool or even building/adding to it. I strongly believe younger citizens of New Westminster need more attention…they don’t have enough options at the moment. It is very important and it will help our social well-being.
10. Let’s conclude with some ‘blue sky’ thinking. What is one big-idea project or improvement that you would propose for New Westminster if cost was no object?
- ‘Dream-come-true’ grant: a grant for everyone who has a business plan that can improve New West’s economy– to help small- &medium businesses to grow..
- A comprehensive transportation plan for New Westminster that will consider all socio-environmental aspects of it.