1. There are two types of people in the world: people who like simple pop-culture “what type of cheese are you” quizzes that they can then share on Facebook, and people who don’t. Sadly, I don’t have a quiz for you but this is close enough: are you an order muppet or a chaos muppet? Which muppet are you?
Mary: I’m sure I’m an order muppet but likely a chaos muppet….when I’m not an order muppet 🙂
2. When was the last time you visited City Hall? What changes would you propose to make City Hall more welcoming? When was the last time you attended a City Council meeting? What changes would you propose to make City Council meetings more welcoming? Sorry, I guess that was kind of four questions.
I visit City Hall a few times a week – Council meetings, committee meetings and one-on-one meetings with residents. I don’t find it particularly welcoming and know that most people feel uncomfortable coming and speaking to Council. We could do more to help the public understand the process when they arrive and also change some procedures that are old fashioned and not easily-understood.
3. Buy Low Foods recently shut its store in Uptown, leaving a hole in the market for grocery stores. What will you do to ensure that there is proper competition among grocery stores and a Save-On Foods opens in that location, restoring the competitive marketplace that the Competition Bureau foisted upon us in 2014?
The City is somewhat restricted in dictating to landlords whom they rent their spaces to. BUT, we can do much more to make sure New Westminster is a favoured location for local and regional businesses. Increasing the business profile of New West has been included in our Economic Development Strategy.
4. New Westminster has a number of advisory committees, task forces, and working groups. Upon being elected, which one would you like to chair the most and why? No need to restrict yourself to an existing one either, if you feel strongly that a new one needs to be formed (that you’d obviously chair) feel free to answer that!
I would like to stay on the Arts Commission as I’m really committed to seeing the Arts Strategy completed. I am also really interested in some form of a Tenants Advisory Committee or task force as earlier suggested by Patrick Johnstone. We should also be discussing the best way to form a Women’s Advisory Committee. Having just advocating for two new committees I would really like for the City of have an in-depth look at how many committees we currently have and how to make them more efficient and effective.
5. What is your favourite neighbourhood, and why is it Brow of the Hill?
HA – sorry while I do love the eclectic nature of the Brow – my heart belongs to the Moody Park neighbourhood. Being able to walk to City amenities, enjoy the parks, hang out with friends at the playground and enjoy the dog park makes this an amazing neighbourhood for my family.
6. The process leading up to and including the public hearing for the temporary modular housing in Queensborough was… challenging, to say the least. This question is only for the non-incumbent candidates: on the final motion to amend the OCP and rezone the property to allow the temporary modular housing, how would you have voted? Please note that you may describe why you would have voted a particular way, but you must say whether you would have voted in favour of or against the motion on the table.
Yes, I voted to support this project.
7. Who would be on your sasquatch hunting team?
Sasquatch?? I suppose I’d take my son – that would be his thing!
8. How do you propose engaging with renters, new immigrants, and youth?
We need to work harder to go and meet our community where they are instead of expecting them to come to us. There seems to be a lot of barriers for people feeling included and having a good understanding of the barriers would be a good place to start.
9. With absolutely no apologies to Chris Campbell, what would your entrance music be? Please note that if you dare pick We Built This City by Starship you are hereby banned from ever running for public office ever again.
My entrance music changes day to day and hour by hour. These days it’s Respect by Aretha Franklin.
Thank you Mary!