Rick Green 20 Q for Langley Township mayor (expanded only)

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1. Should a new OCP allow increased density in Brookswood and Fernridge?

A NEW OCP should only be allowed after a NEW Community Based Planning Model is created through collaboration with the community. The Community must play a very active role in this process. 

 

2. Should Township council act to slow down development of Willoughby?

Once again, like Brookswood above, a NEW Community Based Planning Model must be adopted after collaboration with the community. We have to take a step back and take a deep breath and move forward cautiously listening to the community which has been absent up to now.

 

3. Does the Township do enough to help ensure there are enough schools in developing areas?

Schools are an important part of the infrastructure necessary to service our ever increasing population. The new rules that have just been laid down by the Province, specifically the School Board must come up with 50% of the funding and now the Province has rejected our 5 year Capital Plan with no funds available this year make our situation untenable. We have two Senior Cabinet Ministers elected by our community and we get this kind of message? We must meet with them to find solutions to this problem. It is Provincially based.

 

4. Would you vote in favour of a tax increase?

We must establish a more intensive budgeting process looking at a variety of issues such as the ongoing substantial Operating Subsidy of the Langley Events Center and more. At the most a very minimum tax increase would be accepted ONLY after a comprehensive budgeting review looking into ALL aspects of Township spending and current priorities.

 

5. Would you support tolling ALL Metro Vancouver bridges to fund transit?

Yes I would support a minimum toll on all bridges within the region sharing the cost with all residents going forward. This is something I agreed with when on the Mayors Translink Council. Township residents are unfairly penalized by tolls on the Golden Ears and Port Mann. Live North of the river and you have West Coast Express and no tolls into the region to the West. Live on the South side of the Fraser and you get penalized and unfairly treated. 

 

6. Would you support road pricing to fund transit?

No, there should be no additional costs to residents of the Township of Langley UNTIL we receive an adequate service by Translink. Currently we are not receiving anything close to what we are submitting in tax dollars. (property and gas taxes)

 

7. Would you support increasing property taxes to fund transit?

No, property taxes are an unfair source of taxation for transit. It should be based on the user formula but as I said above only after adequate service is provided and available to our residents. Suggesting that we are going into a 10 yr. or 20 yr. plan to receive the service we have been paying for years is unfair and unacceptable.

 

8. Should a tree protection bylaw be applied to the entire Township?

We have to be very careful when we impose a by-law of this nature. Does this include agricultural land? Would it negatively affect a private property owners ability to use his land for an agricultural use. I believe a public process should be established to hear from residents, urban and rural. Community, ALL communities should be represented for input into this issue. 

 

9. Should developers be required to provide more low-income housing in the Township?

There is no question that there is a need and every municipality should do it’s share. I believe a decision such as this can only come after serious due diligence is undertaken. What are best practices, what funds are available for partnership? 

 

10. Should the Township create more bike lanes and public cycling infrastructure?

While this is a trendy improvement we cannot get ahead of it’s need and use. Great idea if it is used over time and at that time should be expanded. What financial resources are available from Translink and other senior governments. 

 

11. Do you support the construction of high rise developments in Willoughby?

This consideration must be broached through a NEW Community Based Planning Model that is developed through Community Collaboration. It is essential the community plays an integral part in that decision. 

 

12. Should the Township open sales of municipal lands to public scrutiny in advance?

One of the issues I ran on in 2008 was the non-transparency of the Township property portfolio. On my initiative it is now available for the public to view through the Township Real Estate Division. Yes, the process to sell municipal lands (IF they should be sold) should be open to public scrutiny, BUT they should be a part of a process to enhance that public asset value. 

 

13. Should the Township commit to building the Aldergrove rec centre and pool regardless of land sales?

Yes and it will take a change in priorities to do so. When we have just spent over $22,000,000 over 4 ½ years in Operational Subsidy for the Langley Events Center we have a serious problem in the Township. With strong financial controls I believe that expenditure can be handled. 

 

14. Should the Township ensure that roads, sidewalks, and crosswalks are in place prior to the completion of new developments?

There must be a review of our Development Cost Charge Funds and the legislation allowing us to do so. There also has to be a full review on the potential for CACs (Community Amenity Contributions). Through both of these reviews I believe we can do a much better job in preparing the necessary infrastructure going forward.

 

15. Is the Township doing enough to protect agricultural land?

No, it is very clear that they have little respect for ALR land. One just has to look at the Wall Development of 69 Townhouses in the middle of prime farm land to understand their position in ALR protection. 

 

16. Does the Township need more parks?

There is a significant inventory of parks and land dedicated for parks. The answer to that question will be different in Willoughby than possibly another community. The other question is are we talking passive or active parks and for what use? I was instrumental in the move to initiate the Noel Booth Park in Brookswood from what was being planned as a fill site.

 

17. Does the Township need more sports and recreation facilities?

For the most part we probably have some of the finest facilities in the lower mainland however there will be an increase in need as our population grows. The old Aldergrove complex should be rezoned, sold and developed into high rise development (approved in the Core Aldergrove Community Plan) The funding from that could be utilized for the NEW Aldergrove Pool, Ice and recreation facility.  

 

18. Should more firefighters be hired, even if it means a tax increase?

We should move immediately to make the Township compliant with WCB / Worksafe BC rules of four man crews. That will require some funding however I believe we can find that funding out of our existing budget.

 

19. Should more RCMP officers be hired, even if it means a tax increase?

We must explore the use of Community Police Officers which is a significantly lower cost where needed.

 

20. Do you believe Langley Township and City should be amalgamated into one municipality?

Yes, however the discussion is moot point because a referendum would have to be agreed to by the City Council and passed and likewise the same in the Township. I think it is safe to say that won’t happen so why debate it?

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