Castanet News has distributed a questionnaire to each candidate running for local council in the South Okanagan.
All candidates have been given the same questions, and answers have been edited for clarity and brevity when needed. Responses will be published daily in the weeks ahead. An interactive database of Okanagan candidates, including previous questionnaire stories, is available here and is being updated daily.
Election day is Oct. 15.
Summerland candidate: Doug Loepp
Why would you make an effective Summerland councillor?
I pride myself on community service. I have spent my time as vice-president of Crime Stoppers of the Central Okanagan and president of Okanagan Kids Care Fund, among others. I am an effective communicator and decision maker who is no stranger to committee meetings.
In your view, what is the number one issue facing the city today, and how would you deal with it knowing City Hall only has so much power?
The biggest issue is taxation. We have to encourage sustainable growth so that we can keep taxes in check. We have to promote Summerland as an attractive place to work, live and play to draw people to our community.
How would you make Summerland more affordable?
By promoting sustainable growth, we can keep taxes in check. We should also encourage developers to build small-home communities as opposed to luxury homes. This would allow first-time home buyers to get into the market and provide more affordable housing options.
What is one example of a time you agreed with Summerland council over the past term, and one where you disagreed?
I agreed with the council when, in 2020, they determined that keeping the tax rate the same was beneficial.
I disagreed with the council when they held a closed meeting to discuss an item related to the proposed solar and storage project. That meeting should have been open to the public.
If you had $1 million to spend on anything in Summerland, how would you spend it?
I would use that money to properly repair roads. There are a lot of areas where patchwork has created uneven roadways and others where roadwork is a definite necessity.
Picture Summerland 20 years from now. What are the key aspects that are making it thrive?
I can see a community that is proud. Where residents are happy. Thanks to sustainable growth, our infrastructure easily handles the demand, our local businesses are thriving and residents love supporting the vast array of local businesses that call our community home.