West Kelowna  

Civic election: John Martin running for West Kelowna city council

Get to know John Martin

Castanet News has distributed a questionnaire to city council candidates in both Kelowna and West Kelowna to help voters get to know those putting their names forward. Between the two cities, 45 people are running for city councillor.

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. Election day is Oct. 15.


West Kelowna candiate: John S Martin

Why would you make an effective city councillor?

Over the last four years I have attended almost every city council meeting. For me, dedication and being well informed on city matters is key to voting in new councillors. I believe my interest and participation in all city affairs provides me with pulse on the city and will translate into sound and effective decisions. I am also a digger, never accepting the rose presented, but investigating the entire stem for thorns that can create problems. Decisions made by council must strive to be visionary — our future generations depend on good counsel.

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?

Public safety is the number one issue for the city today. This branches out into many areas under the control of city council. From lack of affordable or attainable housing, increased number of break-ins and theft, limited amount of sidewalks and bike lanes, sporadic street lighting on our roads, to the continuation of boil water notices. All issues that need our attention.

It could be decades before a second bridge is built across Okanagan Lake. How do you deal with West Kelowna's transportation bottleneck in the meantime?

I believe there are a number of effective measures that can be implemented to help the situation. Traffic light syncing can provide increased traffic flow on our major provincial road. As with many city bridges, providing an alternating third lane will help with traffic flow. Better and more reliable public transportation can reduce car usage. Providing safe storage areas for bicycles helps eliminate the possibility of damage and theft.

Do you think West Kelowna is growing too fast?

I don’t believe it is growing too fast, I believe it is growing without well-informed and responsible thought. When developing you must look at what is there now, what development is being proposed, and what will be there in the future. Past, present and future should mesh harmoniously together to provide a safe, functioning, attractive and efficient community.

How would you make West Kelowna more affordable?

Supply and demand is a hard thing for any city to control. West Kelowna is a desirable place to live so housing demand is high. We can counter the supply issue by enticing developers to provide smaller and denser development projects. Perpetual affordability to single-family dwellings is the objective for most families, so let’s give them a starting point.

If you had $1 million to spend on anything in the city, how would you spend it?

With the economy they way it is and prices high for everything, from food to housing and daily living, many families are stretched to a breaking point. Daily meals are being threatened and children are going without proper nutrition. The food bank has been the only option for many. I would give the $1 million dollars to buy and provide food for families in this challenging time.

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