Langley City councillor runs just once more

Current Langley City Councillor Dave Hall has announced another run in this autumn’s municipal elections.

Hall says this will be his final term on council.

He is running on a platform of more responsible spending.

“There needs to be greater scrutiny of re-bricking projects, $9,000 wayfinding stick street signs, $30,000 for six downtown benches and $95,000 curb bulges at one pedestrian crossing on Fraser Highway,” he said.

The City has received $55 million in tax revenue from the Cascades Casino which has allowed the City to be debt free, fund capital projects and provide community grants for several groups.

But Hall said the City must assume that casino revenues will continue to decline as they have started to do since the advent of online gaming and the opening of casinos in neighbouring communities.

Hall, who has lived in the City for 32 years, has served 19 years on the City Advisory Planning Committee, 16 years on Parks, Recreation and Environment committes, and the past six years as a City councillor. He also served nine years on the Langley School Board (three as board chair).

“The City can’t afford to continue spending this Capital on projects more driven by regional or provincial promotion than local need or on projects that are more cosmetic than functional,” he said.

Hall said he would want to see a council that’s more receptive to other ideas, such as ones he’s suggested to reduce tax increases.

“It took four years to bring around both staff and council to the establishment of an Operating Reserve from surpluses generated from over-taxation,” Hall said. “This year the City was able to reduce overestimated expense budgets and that should have resulted in many thousands of dollars in reductions.”

He noted that the Township population continues to grow at a fast pace but the City’s numbers are stative and the population continues to age.

The City is only four square miles in size so it must be creative in its land use, building more diverse housing to attract young families, and offering incentives to redevelop existing housing stock which often sits on large lots.

Another priority for Hall would be public safety and the public perceptions about downtown not being safe.

“It’s not simply hiring more police,” he said. “The City already has one of the highest police to population ratios in the Lower Mainland. It’s about deployment of these with an effective street presence, it’s about effective use of regional integrated teams, and it’s about the province addressing issues of poverty, addiction, and mental illness.”

He wants residents to be better served by the transportation system and a better City transportation plan because gridlock keeps getting worse.

His other priority is making the community more sustainable, looking after ecologically senstive areas, acquiring parkland and cycling/pedestrian enhancements.

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