Candidate Survey Results

Candidate running for Councillor


1

 

Downtown Lethbridge Business Revitilization Zone:
What is your position on Revitalization of downtown Lethbridge?

Answer

A vibrant downtown area is vital to the identity and psyche of a community. A city experiencing economic malaise of its central core is unable to attract those that are key to its turnaround. It becomes a Catch-22 of significant impact...unless a wide variety of stakeholders can work cooperatively for positive change. A safe, welcoming and vibrant downtown also contributes to an age-friendly community as defined by the World Health Organization and the Public Health Agency of Canada.


2

 

Greensence/SAGE/KLEW:
Human activities are contributing to global warming and climate change. Please choose from:
Agree
Disagree
It's complicated

Answer

Agree

Comment

No comment.


3

 

Greensence/SAGE/KLEW:
The Environment Lethbridge Council have requested a seed grant of $120,000/year from City Council. Would you support the City providing seed money for the Environment Lethbridge Council? Please choose:
Agree
Disagree
It's complicated

Answer

Agree

Comment

I would support seed money for this group. The amount provided by Council would be reached by discussion/negotiation.


4

 

Greensence/SAGE/KLEW:
Do you support expanding the City's waste management plan to include curbside recycling? Please choose
Agree
Disagree
It's complicated

Answer

It's complicated

Comment

As with most decisions made by Council, all sides of an issue must be weighed prior to a decision being made. For most people, curbside recycling is the preferred method. But, according to the survey conducted by the City earlier this year, fewer people are in favor if the have to pay...and even fewer still want curbside recycling if they have to pay more. Now that the City has built the regional recycling centres, it may be more prudent - for now - to determine usage patterns of these centres prior to expending more capital for a curbside program. However, an affordable curbside program should be a goal of the waste management plan.


5

 

Greensence/SAGE/KLEW:
Some cities, like Medicine Hat offer incentives to utility consumers to improve their homes and reduce utility use. Are you in favour of implementing a similar incentive program in Lethbridge to encourage residents, businesses, and the City itself to reduce their carbon footprint? Please choose:
Yes
No

Answer

Yes

Comment

It seems like a program worth investigating. The Medicine Hat program for appliances is perpetual, the other components are time limited. This is only necessary due to the Federal Government's decision to stop funding the ecoEnergy Retrofit -Homes program. The Federal ecoEnergy for Industry program continues to have some assistance options.


6

 

Greensence/SAGE/KLEW:
In 2012, Lethbridge City Council adopted a non-binding resolution opposing the use of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in drilling for oil and gas within municipal limits. Would you actively seek to enforce this resolution? Please choose:
Full Ban
Non binding resolution
No position
Support fracking

Answer

Full Ban

Comment

Given the fact that much of North Lethbridge and some of the Westside is built over old coal mines, fracking within City limits presents an imminent danger to residents. I would seek a ban on fracking within City limits.


7

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
What is your position on Public-Private Partnerships (P3s) and the function they serve in the future growth of the City of Lethbridge? Please choose:
Oppose P3s
No opinion
Support P3s

Answer

No Opinion

Comment

P3s can be of benefit when a project needs to be developed without full funding available. However the long-term costs will be a lot greater than traditional forms of building. I have stated "No Opinion" because each proposed P3 must be evaluated separately - it may be necessary to move ahead using P3.


8

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
Is the contracting out of public services necessary to the operations of the City of Lethbridge? Please choose:
Yes
No
Unsure

Answer

Yes

Comment

It makes sense for the City to contract some services. Snow removal is one case: the City does not have to maintain all of the equipment nor hire staff for an intermittent seasonal task.


9

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
Buy-local or Made-in-Canada purchasing policies should be supported even if they result in higher costs. Please choose:
Strongly disagree
Somewhat disagree
Neither agree nor disagree
Somewhat agree
Strongly agree

Answer

Somewhat agree

Comment

As Lethbridge is home to manufacturing, food processing and service sectors, the "extra" cost to buy local is offset by the employment of our residents, continued viability of the employers and net gain of tax revenue by having the people and businesses continuing to be located in Lethbridge. The difficult decision will be when local/Canadian made purchases become significantly higher that imports,


10

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
Closure of Federal Government service offices and reductions in Provincial funding to post-secondary education have implications to the community of Lethbridge in terms of service loss and job loss. What is your position on these closures and reductions and, as a municipal leader, what should the City’s role be when the decisions of other levels of government affect citizens of Lethbridge?

Answer

No one in a responsible position in our community should be in favor of drastic reduction of services (by any level of government) or the reduction of funding to our post-secondary institutions. As a municipal leader, it would be my obligation (along with my colleagues') to engage the different levels of government in a clear dialogue about the effects of their decisions on our community. As a current member of Team Lethbridge, I also see how the on-going maintenance of positive relationships with Provincial government officials can be helpful in these situations.


11

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
Most of our public services and facilities have a user fee but the City subsidizes the cost of the facility or service. What is your position on the subsidization of public services and facilities? Please choose from:
Users should not pay at all so that everyone can access the service.
Small user fees should be charged but I would consider waiving them for low income people, students, and seniors.
A user fee should be charged to all users.
The City should not be subsidizing someone’s hobbies or recreation.

Answer

A user fee should be charged to all users.

Comment

In most cases, user fees are necessary for operational stability. Reduced fees - or no fees - for different groups (seniors, low income, students) need to be determined as a part of the larger departmental budget. Hypothetically, if the previously mentioned groups are the majority of riders of our transit system and the transit system operates at a 50% cost-recovery, those groups are already being subsidized 50%. If we were to reduce the fee further, the department would have to look at other means to achieve the cost recovery objective - increase advertising revenue, fewer buses/routes, higher operational efficiencies, etc.


12

 

Lethbridge & District Labour Council:
The City of Lethbridge should endorse an expanded Canada Pension Plan strategy and implement a Living Wage policy.Please choose from:
Strongly disagree.
Somewhat disagree
Neither agree nor disagree
Somewhat agree
Strongly agree

Answer

Somewhat agree

Comment

The City of Lethbridge can only advocate for an expanded Canada Pension Plan strategy as, of course, the plan is federal. A Living Wage policy would create additional pressures and questions for Council: How will this impact HR within the City's labor force? Will such a policy be sustainable under the current tax system? Would taxes need to be increased? Could this mean reduction of staff if this policy creates a deficit? This question requires much investigation and discussion in order to be answered adequately.


13

 

Play Local:
Which of these approaches do you favour and explain why you favour this approach in the comment section.Please select:
Building infrastructure and facilities to meet current needs in order to keep taxes low
Investing additional funds to accommodate future growth

Answer

Building infrastructure and facilities to meet current needs in order to keep taxes low

Comment

Constructing facilities to meet current needs is the most prudent way to go. However, if these facilities are designed to accommodate future expansion and flexible usage, thenm it will be easier to achieve future growth.


14

 

Play Local:
These three projects may come up in the next community improvement plan process:
  • Performing Arts Centre
  • Developing the Exhibition Park
  • Completion of the final phase of the Crossings Ice Complex.
  • If you could only fund one of these projects which would you choose? Please explain your choice in the comment section.

Answer

Crossings Ice Complex

Comment

From a purely practical and immediate perspective, The Crossings complex would be the highest priority. Our ice time capacity during the prime periods when it is feasible for kids to participate is full. It should not be necessary for our children to travel to a "home game" a half-hour away, A fully developed Crossings complex would be beneficial to the whole community. This is not meant to minimize the importance of the other projects to the well-being of our community.


15

 

Play Local:
During the last phase of the 2013 CIP, only the aquatic portion of the leisure centre was approved. What would be your commitment to having the final phase (the fieldhouse portion of the centre) completed?

Answer

I would follow the recommended priorities of the 2013 Master Plan.


16

 

Play Local:
The Recreation and Culture Master Plan report commissioned by the City of Lethbridge found that Lethbridge has inadequate recreation facilities. Why do you think that this situation developed and what would you do to rectify this?

Answer

I can't speculate on why or why not the facilities situation is at present point. I would follow the short, medium and long term priorities as laid out in the 2013 Master Plan.


17

 

Sik-Ooh-Kotoki Friendship Society:
Many Lethbridge residents with First Nations' Status face considerable difficulty when accessing services in the City of Lethbridge. As Status holders, they are referred to support on reserve. On reserve, they are referred to services in the city as they are residents of Lethbridge. As an elected official, how would you propose to remediate these gaps in service and accessibility issues?

Answer

Having worked on and off-reserve with status holders. I am aware of the difficulties encountered. It may be necessary to develop joint service protocols with, minimally, the Blood Tribe First Nation and, probably, the Province of Alberta.. I believe I would be an ideal Councillor to work on this initiative for two reasons: 1) When employed by Kainai Children's Services Corporation, I was Chair of the Joint Protocols Committee with Sun Country (now Southwest Alberta) Child and Family Services Authority. This grouop worked on a wide range of service and jurisdiction issues; 2) When I left KCSC I was granted the Blackfoot name Aakaoko'si (Protector of Children) which would give me extra incentive to make sure there are positive outcomes for all residents of Lethbridge.


18

 

Group:
On council, would you actively support the following?
Ward system for electing councillors? Please choose:
Yes
No
Unsure

Answer

Yes


19

 

Group:
On council, would you actively support the following?
Councillor become a full-time position? Please choose:
Yes
No
Unsure

Answer

Unsure


20

 

Group:
The City of Lethbridge is a signatory to the Canadian Coalition of Municipalities against Racism and Discrimination. In addition to this, do you support the allocation of additional financial resources to create local initiatives that foster the city's commitment to inclusion? In the comment box please elaborate on your answer. Please choose:
Yes
No
Unsure

Answer

Yes

Comment

I have previously mentioned the Age-Friendly community concept. One of the principles of an Age-Friendly community is inclusion. In my 30 years of experience in Human Services I have worked in, developed and implemented inclusion projects/programs in the Child and Family Services, Disabilities, Mental Health and Seniors sectors.


21

 

Group:
Do you support a bylaw that ensures all buildings serving the public (existing, renovated and new) are physically accessible? Please elaborate on your answer in the comment section. Please choose:
Yes
No
Unsure

Answer

Yes

Comment

Physical access to services, supports, shopping , entertainment and recreation would ensure that all citizens have equal access to public spaces and buildings.


22

 

Group:
The following are some of the issues you may be asked to address on City Council. Please choose no more than your top 5 priorities.
  • Affordable and plentiful family recreational and leisure opportunities
  • Bikeable city
  • Frequent and accessible public transportation
  • Vibrant downtown
  • Available low-income housing
  • Community gardens
  • Residential waste reduction
  • Reduced administration costs at City Hall
  • Promotion of Lethbridge as a “City of Choice” for skilled workers
  • Low residential taxes
  • Reduced business licensing costs
  • No Herbicide city policy
  • Municipal Food policy
  • City operated curbside recycling
  • A third bridge to the West
  • Airport enhancement
  • Other (please explain in comment box below)

Answer

Affordable and plentiful family recreational and leisure opportunities, Frequent and accessible public transportation, Promotion of Lethbridge as a “City of Choice” for skilled workers, Bikeable city, Municipal Food policy

Comment

No comment.



Candidate Details

Hi! I`m Rob Miyashiro, your candidate for Lethbridge City Council.

For the past 30 years my job every day has been focused on improving lives…not in an intangible, unclear way, but in a very real and substantial manner. I have developed and implemented successful programs and services in the Children’s Services, Disabilities, Employment and Senior sectors. I worked with the people of Southwestern Alberta to build their vision for children and families, and developed an adolescent treatment centre for Kainaiwa Childrens Services on the Blood Tribe First Nation. When I left Kainaiwa Children’s Services I was given the Blackfoot name Aakaoko’si (Protector of Children), in honor of my years of service to children and families.