Candidate Q&A – Unlimited Funds

Below are their answers to the fifth and final question in full (original spelling and all).

Q. If you had unlimited funds, what one project would you like to see happen in Fort St. John? Be creative!

Mayoral Candidates

Mike Murray

A. I'd like to see us do something with our natural gas rather than ship it away. We have an abundance of resources that we could be using to manufacture value added products. If we had unlimited funds, I would build an industrial complex that had a long life and extracted more value from the products we have right in our own backyard. Just as an example, there is a very strong tie between the supply of natural gas and the manufacturing of plastics. We could have both.

Lori Ackerman

A. I would like to see all the roads redone with sidewalks; utilities below ground; new street lighting that works with less energy demand and walking trails that links the neighbours together. OK – it’s not totally creative. There are nice to have’s and there are need to have’s.

Don Irwin

A. With unlimited funds I would upgrade our entire infrastructure – pave or re-pave all roads, enlarge and replace older sewer systems, and renew water systems by replacing older piping, valves, pumps etc.
All of these upgrades would enable the city to grow, to handle large rain and snow falls, and decrease operating costs. It would beautify our city by removing dirt and dust from the streets enhancing the value of our homes and businesses. It would reduce city maintenance and operating costs.

Councillor Candidates

Dan Davies

A. If only free money were true!  I would eliminate taxation (Assuming these funds were coming from some "great power").  I would  update our infrastructure, especially sewer and water pipes, all roads would be paved with sidewalks on both sides.  Snow removal would be done at each snowfall with enough equipment to have the city done on the same day, including driveways cleared.  We would have a detox, rehab centre and transitional housing, affordable and seniors housing and an arts community with the freedom to provide a service to the residence as they saw fit. Free sports and recreation for all kids, free public transit 24/7 and a giant mall for my wife.  Fort St. John would be even a better paradise than it is!

Brandon Joice

A. The project I am interested in is the implementation of CNG as a fuel source for all vehicles in Fort St John.
CNG – Compressed Natural Gas is a tried and tested alternative fuel. Not only is it cleaner, both for the vehicle and the environment it is also much more efficient, as well as safer. The only requirement is space for a cylinder for storage, but as you can see, the benefits far outweigh the cost.

CNG is widely used in Asia and Europe as a response to rising fuel prices and economic concerns, and I believe Fort St John should follow a similar route. This region is home to some of the largest reserves of natural gas in the world, it’s time for us to capitalize on that. Many people in this community express the desire to make Fort St. John the energy capital of BC, and I believe that this is an environmentally and economically brilliant idea.

Tamara Wilkinson

A. If I had unlimited funds I would love to build a huge multiplex! Yes I know we have the Pomeroy Sports Centre, but this would include so much more.  It would have indoor tennis, basketball, volleyball and racquetball courts.  There would be a huge play area with climbers for the kids.  It would also have a regulation sized pool for our swim club as well as for the people who enjoy lap swimming and water aerobics.  When we are stuck in winter for 6 months of the year what would be better then enjoying all of our favourite summertime activities in a warm well lit facility.

Gord Klassen

A. If I had unlimited funds, why would I stop at just one project?!  Assuming we could take care of the practical needs first, like affordable housing, seniors housing and care, emergency services, arts and culture, downtown revitalization, etc, etc, etc., I would really love to see the construction of a full scale, versatile indoor field house, which would bring many sports and activities all under one roof, including tennis courts, basketball courts, volleyball courts, squash and racquetball courts, running tracks, a pool, health club, physiotherapy, art space, childcare, meeting rooms, eating places, etc.  With our focus on physical health, and our relatively long winters, it seems that a vast, versatile, and accessible indoor field house would be an excellent addition to our community and would, in fact, become a true center of activity and a meeting place where relationships would grow and real community would take place!  Just a thought.

Larry Evans

A. I would like to see the old hospital used to it’s capacity, possibly as a civic centre that would include library, seniors centre, arts council, etc.

Byron Stewart

A. The one project that we need to be looking at now is OUR  airport.  With “unlimited funds” the cost of a full upgrade of the infrastructure would not be an issue and we could negotiate the incorporation of the land and the responsibility for the services.  We could then renegotiate the current contracts in place with a plan of having more flights to Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver at more affordable prices for all residents, company CEO’s and prospective skilled employees with family ties to southern communities.  The current expenses involved in either flying in or out of our community is a factor in a family’s decision-making to move to Fort St. John and make our community their new home.  Our City Council needs to be looking seriously at this project.  Unlimited funds would definitely make everything much easier to work toward.

Bruce Christensen

A. If we had unlimited funds, I would like to have all the infrastructure brought up to todays standards. All the roads would be paved with sidewalks and bicycle path's. More green spaces for our residents to use to keep healthy. I would like to be able to offer more training of all sorts so our young people would not have to leave to be trained therefore planting the seed for them to move. I would like to see more tourism opportunities here so that the 200,000 plus vehicles who pass by the city each year would stop and "stay another day" therefore bringing millions to our economy. Possibly a partnership with the regional district to create a interpretive/dining experience at the lookout.

Trevor Bolin

A. If we had unlimited funds I would look to continue the paved walking trail from frozen john (the NW corner of it now) along the creek out to Charlie Lake, which would offer something for everyone.

Sarah Palmer

A. In a world that is largely centered around economics and the bottom line, I’d like to see a project that focuses on social development and well-being.  Although our quality of life is directly influenced by our ability to make a good living and thrive economically, the feeling of unity and heart in a city is created by our socialization and the ties that bind us to our neighbors and the community at large. That being said, if given unlimited funds I’d like to see a program that would give grants to encourage participation in programs that foster self confidence and solidarity amongst children and teens, strengthening the community ties and in turn, preventing the development of antisocial, destructive or deviant behavior. Theoretically, these grants would be available to families with school age children allocated for registration in extracurricular activates such as sports, music lessons, and art programs. These grants would be available by application and would require documentation of registration to prevent the misuse of grant money. Also, indirectly, these grants would carry a large portion of the operating cost of these extracurricular programs by increasing the number of participants, and the ability of the public to pay for the services provided.

Dan Pope

A. I would love to see a fully funded Boys and Girls club where there would be all manner of activities offered by trained individuals who  demonstrate outstanding leadership qualities.  This facility would be engaging for every child of every age in the city and would ensure that these young people have a safe, fun environment that will help them to become well-rounded community citizens.

Carol Kube

A. Make Fort St John family orientated;  for example, affordable senior housing that the handy dart frequents, affordable housing for adults, boys and girls clubs which include a drop in center, designed for at risk youth by younger members of our community, centralized local disaster/emergency program accessible 24 hours per day, expanded busing, affordable daycare with expanded hours and safer streets.

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About Erica Fisher 4010 Articles

Erica is a reporter for Moose FM and energeticcity.ca in Fort St. John, B.C. She grew up in Victoria, B.C. and received her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism from Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec.