Ward 2 – Innes – Candidate Questionnaire Responses

Ecology Ottawa asked all candidates in the 2014 municipal election a series of questions on important environmental issues.

Complete Streets:

Many Ottawa streets are dangerous for cyclists and pedestrians and too many neighbourhoods lack affordable and convenient public transportation options. Badly designed streets discourage active and healthy lifestyles and limit transportation choices. In 2013, City Council adopted a Complete Streets policy that will put more emphasis on designing streets for all ages, abilities and users (pedestrians, cyclists, and transit users, as well as cars).

Candidate

*indicates incumbent

If elected, will you commit to prioritizing pedestrian, cycling and affordable public transit infrastructure over automobile infrastructure in meeting the future growth in travel demand in the urban area? If elected, will you work to ensure that all new roads and road renewal projects integrate Complete Streets principles? The City’s new transportation master plan increases funding for cycling infrastructure but delays many investments for over 15 years. If elected, will you work to increase the overall level of investment and accelerate the pace of implementation?
Laura Dudas  YES – I am committed to smart planning that will not only include complete streets, but will be complete communities, where public transit, cycling routes, roads, pedestrian uses, businesses, residences, parks and recreational facilities complement each other and increase the quality of life for residents. We also need to plan our neighbourhoods to meet the needs of our seniors – a demographic population in our city that will double over the next 20 years. YES NO – I am committed to bringing the Light Rail Transit system to the east end. A massive project of this nature would require that the city take another look at its plans for future cycling and road networks in the area to ensure they support and compliment the LRT. We need to invest taxpayer dollars wisely to ensure that we are making the correct decisions the first time.
Chris Fraser  YES  YES  NO
Eldon Holder  YES  YES  YES
Chantal Lecours
Jody Mitic YES – I do support the prioritizing of pedestrian, cycling and public transit, but Ottawa will continue to grow regardless and if we don’t invest in highway infrastructure, we will continue to experience gridlock traffic jams during peak hours, further irritating our local commuters.  NO – I support the principles of Ecology Ottawa’s Complete Streets campaign, but I do not wish to commit myself to ensuring the principles on all new roads. I will be proactive in regards to the principles when reviewing new road projects. YES
Andrew Modray  YES – Once all core services are fully maximized and operating at peak capacity, then I will look to secondary issues such as bike paths and pedestrian traffic. I am a realist and we still rely heavily on the automobile, I on the other hand, prefer to walk or take the bus when possible but I am not going to by a hypocrite and claim that I do not use our car. we are a family with one car and several bus passes. NO – I cannot fully commit to the Complete Street program until I am made aware of what streets, in what locations of Ottawa and how it will be received by residents without hindering automobile and bus traffic too greatly. NO – I cannot commit to a 15 year or less plan because that is even a too far in the future time frame for me to plan for. If the current plan calls for a 15-year time frame I would hope there would be some sort of annual or biannual evaluation plan in place to address the efficacy of such a plan.
Fred Sherwin  NO – We need to better prioritize investments in pedestrian, cycling and public transit but not at the detriment of our transportation infrastructure. We still need to properly maintain our roads some of which are in a dire state of disrepair. One is not mutually exclusive of the other. Which is why I support the Complete Streets initiative. YES – When and where possible YES
François Trépanier  YES  YES – I support the concept of street design incorporating all users in the design such as protected bicycle lanes where the road speed is above 60km/h. It is imperative that all users, regardless of age and mode of transportation be included in the street design process. YES
Teresa Whitmore  YES – I strongly support the deployment of a variety of public transit measures including the continued the development of rail throughout Ottawa, bus prioritization lanes and service measures, bike lanes and path linkages and making the city easier to walk. Whatever model need our citizens have we need to ensure transportation is effective and moving in a sustainable direction. YES – We need to systemically encourage sustainable development principles. With our new communities it is easiest to implement and should work with the development industry to make the best communities possible.  YES – We need to have the appropriate balance of infrastructure funding and realizing different communities need priority funding for their particular needs, I support an increased funding for sustainable transportation capital projects and making the most effective use of that increased funding.

Climate Change:

About 75 percent of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions come from activities that occur in cities, and municipalities have direct or indirect control over about half of these emissions. In 2014 the City of Ottawa adopted a new Air Quality and Climate Change Management Plan.

Candidate

 *indicates incumbent

Do you agree that human-induced climate change is an urgent issue and all levels of government have a role to play in helping to reduce community greenhouse gas emissions? If elected, will you push for the full implementation of the City of Ottawa’s Air Quality and Climate Change Management Plan, including items identified in the plan for the 2015 budget? The Air Quality and Climate Change Management Plan establishes the modest goal of reducing Ottawa’s greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent per capita by 2024, but leaves open a lot of space for new initiatives to emerge in the coming years. If elected, will you push for actions aimed at surpassing the current goal?
Laura Dudas  YES YES – The Plan is a good start and it sets goals that are realistic and achievable.It also leaves much of the decision-making to the next Term of Council, which I believe is appropriate in that the new Council can then take responsibly for setting the course for the next four years and holding staff accountable for achieving the established objectives. YES – Council will have to weigh priorities in the coming years to determine whether the actions required to increase the goal are financially responsible working within the city`s budget.
Chris Fraser  NO NO  NO
Eldon Holder  YES  YES  YES
Chantal Lecours
Jody Mitic YES NO – I have not read the plan and until I do so, do not wish to commit myself to any plans within it.  YES
Andrew Modray YES – We will always need to monitor our production of GHG’s because we as human beings can always reduce the ‘footprint’ we leave on this Earth. Governments need to introduce programs and policy that make us reduce our production of GHG’s without us even realizing it. We need our economic and environmental behaviour changed so subtly that we are not aware of the benefits we are doing for the environment, yet we are being ‘Green.’ NO- Careful examination of these needs to be done by myself before making such a commitment.  NO – Careful examination of these needs to be done by myself before making such a commitment.
Fred Sherwin YES – I support the Air Quality and Climate Change Management Plan.  YES YES – Yes, so long as it is economically feasible.
François Trépanier   YES YES – Air Quality and Climate Change Management is about greenhouse gas emission, which is affected by how we heat and cool our homes and buildings, including the production of electricity and transportation.  It is important that a city the size of Ottawa has and observe an air quality plan and includes any associated costs in its budget. YES – The only way we will achieve the 20% goal is by aiming higher than 20%.  To achieve this we need to develop partnerships with residents and enterprises alike and maximize the use of current tools available to help surpass this goal.
Teresa Whitmore YES – While the other two levels have the most direct impact on the ability to legislate changes to the climate change frameworks the city can be exemplar as one of the G8 capitals. We needs to lead in sustainability initiatives and be a showcase of leadership as a nation and a city. YES – I will continue to support appropriate measures to implement clean air within the municipal mandate. YES – As we realize the changing situation with our global environmental conditions further changes and a ‘living document’ approach will be necessary to contribute to the minimization of our collective footprint and asset the potential damage from climate change on our municipality.

Clean Water and Healthy Watersheds:

Every time it rains, a cocktail of contaminants (including bacteria, chemicals, fuels and heavy metals) washes off our streets and runs straight into our rivers and streams via the underground storm-sewer system. Ecology Ottawa wants the City of Ottawa to follow-through on its commitment to develop a Water Environment Strategy that improves stormwater management, invests in green infrastructure, reduces flooding, protects our streams, and makes it safer to swim and fish in our rivers.

Candidate

*indicates incumbent

The City of Ottawa is developing a Water Environment Strategy that will provide a framework for action to promote clean drinking water, reduce the toxins going into our rivers, and protect communities and streams from flooding associated with severe weather. If elected, will you support the development of a strong strategy and prioritize the investments necessary to realize the strategy’s goals? The April 2014 Ontario Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) instructs planning authorities to promote green infrastructure measures (such as parklands, stormwater systems, wetlands, street trees, urban forests, natural channels, permeable surfaces, and green roofs) in order to reduce costs, protect ecosystems and adapt to extreme weather events. If elected, will you prioritize green infrastructure in addressing the City of Ottawa’s water management needs?   The production of clean water for public consumption has been falling over the past decade in Ottawa (ie., we are using less water). Between 2004 and 2013, the amount of clean water produced and used inside Ottawa fell from over 125,000 million litres to about 100,000 million litres (not including private wells). If elected will you commit to continuing this trend by prioritizing water conservation measures that reduce usage by 3 percent per year?
Laura Dudas YES – I support the City`s continued efforts through the Ottawa River Action Plan to reduce the amount of sewage and storm water that is spilled into the Ottawa River. As a resident living in the Eastern Sub-Watershed area, I have witnessed the degradation of waterways leading into the Ottawa River and I agree that we need to have a strategy in place to prevent more damage from happening. YES – Green infrastructure should be an essential part of the city planning process and, if done properly, can be cost efficient while improving the quality of life for residents. YES – I support the continued promotion of water conservation by the city to further reduce the unnecessary use of water, but also as a means of better managing taxpayer dollars by deferring the cost of expanding the City`s water infrastructure as a resulted of the reduce usage.
Chris Fraser  YES  YES  YES
Eldon Holder  YES  YES  YES
Chantal Lecours
Jody Mitic  YES  YES  YES – I commit to prioritizing water conservation measures that reduce usage, but do not wish to put a number on it. If elected, I will only be one vote in a room of 24 votes and do not wish to promise something that may be beyond my means as a single Councillor.
Andrew Modray  YES – I have worked on Clean Water strategies in the past, at the national level and think it is every City’s first priority to ensure another Walkerton never occurs. Clean water and sewage disposal is a core service of local government. As City Councillor it would be my priority that all residents have safe and clean water to drink and bathe with and would ensure that pollutants to Ottawa’s water system faces the stiffest penalties and regulations when it comes to affecting the water table. YES – I will prioritize Green infrastructure to the extent that it is economically feasible within the City’s budget. Careful examination of my platform shows how fiscal responsibility needs to be at the top of the next Council’s agenda. We cannot keep spending money without careful examination of where the funding is coming from. Allocation of money is key to my plan of expenditure review and only after that is completed can we dedicate money to ‘Green’ projects. YES – Careful examination of how and where we reduced our consumption of water because the public consumption of water has several implications. Is the reduction solely within human consumption? Does this reduction occur within the industrial sector as well? If we keep reducing at a rate such as 3% annually when will we achieve the point of no reduction? What would that consumption be?
Fred Sherwin  YES – I have read the Water Environment Strategy and I support its goals.  YES  YES
François Trépanier  YES  YES  YES – I already practice several water conservation methods.
Teresa Whitmore  YES – Supporting the Water Environment Strategy is part of aggressively solving our storm water management issues as a city that are plaguing our main waterways. My past experience being involved with conservation boards has informed me of the importance of the maintenance of our waterways and natural habitat.  YES – I support the long-term planning of sustainable development in our legislative framework. Our PPS informs our Official Plan (OP) that direct ours local environmental policy framework. We have numerous statements and policy sections allocated to sustainable measures that we can enhance and development but we also need to support operational changes such as better LEEDS standards with our buildings and proper zoning and development review to ensure our collective long-term benefit.  YES – While i support water conservation and appropriate use of our resources that stretch our infrastructure capacity as we grow that affects our capital budget we must be realistic with our usage and budgeting. Our water rate budget is growing 5%+ in the foreseeable future to help address our water and storm sewer needs.

Healthy Urban Trees:

Candidate

*indicates incumbent

 The Emerald Ash Borer infestation is killing millions of trees across Ottawa, including about 25 percent of the trees in the urban area. In response, organizations and individuals, including the City of Ottawa, are coming together to set the collective goal of planting a million trees in our nation’s capital as part of our contribution to Canada’s 150 birthday celebration in 2017. If elected, will you support and prioritize investments towards this goal?  The City of Ottawa has announced its intention to develop a new Forest Management Strategy. If elected, will you support the development of a strong strategy and the investments necessary to realize the strategy’s goals? 
Laura Dudas  YES – As the president of my community association, I have been involved in co-organizing a multi-phased community tree planting project in partnership with Ecology Ottawa and the City of Ottawa that will see the replanting of areas of the Blackburn Hamlet community hardest hit by the Emerald Ash Borer.I strongly support the city`s involvement in helping communities replace the trees that were lost to this invasive insect, while at the same time planting trees for our future.  YES – The city needs to have a long-term Forest Management Plan that will outline how we will invest and maintain our forests in the years to come.
Chris Fraser  YES  YES
Eldon Holder  YES  YES
Chantal Lecours
Jody Mitic  YES  YES – I would like to see more trees in our urban areas and the diversity of low-growth to be expanded in all areas of the City.
Andrew Modray  YES – Being a home owner who has fallen victim to the Ash Borer I am very much in favour of anything to replace the trees in this city that have succumbed to this plague. As well, come 2017 I want to show the world that our city is first class and able to put on a fantastic show for the whole world to view, enjoy and comment about positively.  YES – Again my focus is on achieving fiscal stability first within the City’s tight budgetary guidelines. Once all our core services are fully funded and operating at maximum capacity, then I as a Councillor will look to secondary and tertiary services.
Fred Sherwin  YES – Absolutely  YES – I will support the development of a strong strategy and the investments necessary to realize the strategy’s goals to a point and within the current budget structure.
François Trépanier  YES – I will also commit to plant trees in my Ward.  YES – I support setting goals to achieve the strategy’s goals.  Further, I believe in the protection of current green space, the creation of additional green space and the creation of additional allotment gardens in Innes Ward.
Teresa Whitmore  YES – We have a drastic problem with the Emerald Ash Borer that are drastically affecting our tree inventory public and private. I believe we need support for private residents to help with the preventative spraying to ensure the limitation of this horrible locus on our local environment. The burden of the financial requirements and scarcity of personnel has caused the growth rate to increase. I will pursue a city supported comprehensive framework to limit and ultimately maintain our environment.  YES – I support a new Forest Management Strategy that has strategically manages our forestry issues that have significant budgetary needs to adequately solved. The new strategy will need to be targeted and we at council need to adequately support those identified areas at budget time.

Proposed Oil Pipeline Threatens Ottawa Water and Communities:

TransCanada wants to move more than a million barrels a day of tar sands oil through the City of Ottawa and across the World Heritage Rideau River on its way to export terminals in eastern Canada. The proposed “Energy East” pipeline puts communities and waterways in danger all along the pipeline route.

Candidate

*indicates incumbent

Do you think the City of Ottawa should conduct a thorough and independent assessment of the risks and costs that the proposed Energy East pipeline poses to the health of Ottawa’s communities and water?  Would you oppose the Energy East Pipeline if it was demonstrated that it threatened the health of Ottawa’s water, climate and communities? Should the City of Ottawa intervene in the National Energy Board review of the proposed Energy East pipeline in order to ensure that the interests of the people of Ottawa are well represented? 
Laura Dudas  YES – I support the city conducting an assessment of the proposed pipeline. As a municipality, we must ensure that decisions made are for the betterment of the community and won`t negatively impact our residents, our economy, or our environment.  YES  YES – The city should be involved so that it can effectively represent the needs of its residents.
Chris Fraser  YES  YES  YES
Eldon Holder  YES  YES – Absolutely, we have a moral and environmental responsibility to protect our ecosystem along with the families that live in them.  YES
Chantal Lecours
Jody Mitic  YES  YES  NO – I don’t think that the City of Ottawa should proactively interfere in the NEB’s review. But I do think that residents should express their views to their Federal representatives on this topic
Andrew Modray  YES – A full, detailed and unbiased analysis of this pipeline must occur before any construction has begun but delays need not occur in terms of environmental friendliness or any ‘Green’ agenda the City may be involved in. We have to remember the business of this City cannot take a back seat to the Green lobby.  YES – If it was demonstrated that it threatened the health of Ottawa’s water, climate and communities.  YES – It must be made known to the NEB what concerns, objections and aspects the city favors concerning this Energy East pipeline.
Fred Sherwin  YES  YES  YES
François Trépanier  YES  YES  YES
Teresa Whitmore  YES – We need to ensure our communities are safe in any implementation of a major project. Through our infrastructure and planning departments that are informed by provincial authorities we will address any safeguards needed to ensure the safety and sustainability of any operations.  YES – All levels of government will aggressively pursue environmental standards that will not threaten the health of the environment of Ottawa. I will oppose any initiative that will threaten the safety of Ottawa.  YES – We should ensure as a municipality we actively present our views and concerns to the other levels of governments.

Categories: Campaign

Author:Ecology Ottawa

Volunteer driven local group dedicated to making Ottawa the green capital of Canada

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  1. Election Reports | Ecology Ottawa - October 3, 2014

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