Track Record

"I've been a very active City Councillor, and I believe this is exactly the approach we need from our next Mayor" 

 

Setting the Direction of City Hall

 

What does it mean to be "active" as a City Councillor? For me, it means bringing ideas forward rather than relying on City Staff to set direction. In the last six years, I've worked to identify gaps and deficiencies in City Hall operations, and I've proposed solutions that have been adopted by my Council colleagues and implemented by City Staff. This involves bringing forward formal "motions" and asking Council as a whole to formally direct City Staff to pursue specific initiatives. In six years I've led 25 motions instructing City Staff to do the following:

Improve City Hall Accountability to Council and the Public

  • Bring forward options for a Whistleblower Policy 
  • Conduct an Official Inquiry into allegations of workplace harassment within the Municipal Enforcement Division (MED) 
  • Establish an annual budget for third-party operational reviews 
  • Improve property owners' access to their property assessment details 

Make Better Spending Decisions  

  • De-link senior managers' raises from union raises, which are negotiated by senior management 
  • Amend the general (community) plan to discourage expensive street-scaping projects in non-priority areas of downtown 
  • Divide budget deliberations into two or more separate sessions, to allow Council the time it needs to scrutinize expenditures thoroughly
  • Add key performance indicators back into the budget document 
  • Overhaul the City's budget policies 
  • Improve transparency by publishing annual list of all contracts awarded
  • Do a better job of evaluating benefits to the local economy when scoring proposals and tenders 
  • Develop and articulate clear rules for the various Request for Proposal (RFP) evaluation categories, such as "relevant past experience" 
  • Providing debriefing sessions for unsuccessful RFP bidders to help them understand how to improve their proposals in the future
  • Investigate additional options for improving local procurement (this led to the development of a new local procurement policy)

Revitalization the Downtown

  • Establish a Homelessness Employment Program, to clarify the intent of a budget proposal I made previously 
  • Adopt a "Downtown Vision" document 
  • Begin tracking and reporting economic and social indicators in the downtown 
  • Improve the Development Incentive Program by adding the option of an up-front grant rather than a tax abatement 
  • Instruct MED to report NWT Liquor Act infractions to the RCMP
  • Instruct MED to report criminal activity to RCMP, and to track these incidents

Make Improvements to the Quality of Life of Residents

  • Investigate gasoline price fixing
  • Conduct a needs assessment for dog parks
  • Add a sidewalk to Borden Drive 
  • Fast track negotiations with GNWT on making improvements to Highway 4 from Niven Gate to Explorer Hotel 
  • Improve driver identification requirements in taxis

 

Community Involvement

 

I’ve been passionate about Yellowknife from a young age, and as an entrepreneur I’ve always been a fan of jumping in with both feet, so for me this has resulted in many years of active community involvement – in starting or joining initiatives that I believe can make a difference and which are beneficial to our community. Highlights of my volunteer work include:

  • My company hosted its first annual golf tournament in 2018, raising $26,000 for the Yellowknife Association for Community Living
  • Founding President, The Long John Jamboree Society – 2011-2013
  • Director of Fundraising, The Long John Jamboree Society – 2013-2015
  • Member, Yellowknife Airport Economic Advisory Committee – 2017-Present
  • Co-Founder, Yellowknife (Trash) Pick up Artists – 2007-2012 
  • Committee Member, City of Yellowknife Downtown Enhancement Committee – 2007-2009
  • Committee Member, Smart Growth Development Committee – 2009
  • Chairperson, City of Yellowknife, Litter-Free Yellowknife Sub-Committee – 2009
  • Committee Member, Polishing the Gem Committee (Anti-litter) – 2008

 

Engaging with Residents

 

Councillors should work hard to engage with residents — not just in the lead-up to an election, but year round. This is why I created a blog when I was first elected to Council in 2012, and have continued to use it since then to give readers a more in-depth understanding of complex City Hall issues than what they might learn from local media outlets. Through my blog I've explored issues ranging from bike lanes to economic development, to property assessment and taxes, and beyond. My blog is also a very important tool for allowing the public to hold me to account for my positions on issues. City Hall does not dedicate resources to telling Yellowknifers how councillors voted or what they stand for, so Councillors have a choice between either flying under the radar or displaying their positions for everyone to see. I've always chosen the latter course. 

Here are some of by blog posts from the last six years:

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