Thank you!

Just a short and belated note to say many thanks to the voters in Peninsula South Downtown for your support and trust.   It is a great honour to have been chosen to represent the district.  I will fight to renew council, restore trust in government, address transit, tax and business issues, reform community council.  We will fix council, grow sustainably, and spend smarter! I also want to thank my wife and family, my amazing, dedicated and hard working campaign read more

Students & District 7

HRM is home to tens of thousands of university & college students.  Starting this municipal election, students who’ve lived in Nova Scotia for three months or more can vote, even if you went away to work during the summer. The universities and colleges in Halifax are huge economic and social forces, making the city better in ways beyond counting.  Your voice counts and needs to be heard. STUDENTS ARE HALIFAX’S FUTURE Students need to feel that they are recognized as read more

Spend Smarter

Over the last decade the spending decisions of HRM Council have cause many to raise an eyebrow. A lack of vision and a decade of poor leadership has resulted in the many high profile mis-managed projects we’ve seen. Halifax needs to spend smarter on appropriate, affordable projects while maintaining our existing assets and services at a high standard. Spending smarter means identifying community objectives and developing affordable projects that meet the community’s needs. Halifax should live within our means. Some read more

Grow Sustainably

Since amalgamation a lot of our energy and city budget has been used to plan and subsidize unsustainable suburban sprawl. The costs of sprawl are driving up taxes and consuming resources further reducing our ability to provide basic services like transit. Halifax’s downtown is one of the largest contributors to HRM revenues, representing 18% of the property taxes raised by the municipality, yet the majority of spending by the municipality is concentrated outside of peninsular Halifax. The HRM needs to read more

Fix Council

One of the biggest criticisms I hear about the Halifax Regional Municipality is that we must have better government. Every person I meet brings up this issue and it means a lot to people that their government is transparent, actively encourages their participation and follows its own rules. It’s time to elect people who will have better ideas for Halifax. Some of the steps that should be taken to fix government include: Establish a Municipal Ombudsperson’s Office that reports directly read more

Election Day

I’ve never been more excited about the campaign, and I feel very excited about our prospects on Saturday. While nine months of work by hundreds of people is coming to a conclusion we need to keep our nose to the grindstone for one more day! Election Day: In person voting takes place on Saturday, October 20, 2012 (paper ballots only) from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. There are three polling places, at Gorsebrook JHS, Le Marchant St Thomas, and Citadel High. You should read more

What you should expect from your councillor

While out campaigning, I’ve let  you know what I stand for and how I approach problem solving. I think you should have clear expectations of me if I am elected to represent you to regional council. As councillor, I will focus on three areas to improve the representation you receive:  communicating with residents, representing the district to HRM, and representing our community to city staff. This election comes at a critical time in Halifax’s development. We can’t afford to continue with the status read more

Waye Mason – district wide support

Dear friends, The feedback is in and it is clear Waye Mason is the candidate to beat in District 7! He is the only candidate with the district wide support required to beat an entrenched incumbent. Here are just a few of the tweets that followed last night’s forum: Meredith Bessey ‏@MeredithBessey @WayeMason has my vote! #hfxpoli #votehrm #d7debate Sarah B. MacDonald ‏@smackdonna After the District 7 debate, I spoke briefly with @WayeMason about affordable housing. He has an excellent platform: J.D. Hutton ‏@JD_Hutton #D7Debate was great! read more

A sensible approach to neighbourhood planning

One of the biggest concerns residents have is how new homes and renovations are often out of character with the current look and feel of the neighbourhood.  It doesn’t have to be that way.  Our bylaws have been improved and can be made better still, to protect our residential neighbourhoods. We have a great example of planning through a participatory design process, known as HRM by Design.  Right now, that process is being used to  introduce pedestrian-scale design principals in read more

Taxes and fairness in HRM

Taxes are a huge issue in Halifax this election.  Assessments are rising at a rate that far surpasses increase in income, driving sometimes huge tax increases for residents and businesses. Taxes must fairly reflect the cost of services delivered in each tax area, our business tax rates must be competitive, and tax rates must drop as property assessments increase reflecting the rise in income. First of all, we need to more directly connect the cost of service delivery to the read more