My speech at the Sidney Community Assoc. All Candidates Forum (October 2nd)

I’m Peter Wainwright. I’ve lived in Sidney over 30 years and served on council for 19 years.

We live in a modern democracy. People expect to have a voice and a meaningful opportunity to participate in decisions; not a council that gives only the minimum opportunity required by law. This council has gained a reputation of not listening and being disrespectful to people, including authorizing the largest borrowing in Sidney’s history without the consent of the voters and approving a major development on the old fire hall land just weeks before the election. I am committed to changing this.

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We need to restore public trust in Sidney council.

Developments have been approved in our downtown that people believe aren’t consistent with our community vision or our OCP. This is troubling. There shouldn’t be any controversy about whether a development that’s already been approved is consistent with our OCP or not. We need to fix this. We need to clarify the vision in our OCP so there is clear guidance for future developments and for future councils. I am committed to seeing this happen through a process with meaningful public engagement.

All of the candidates here support affordable housing, attracting more doctors, and keeping taxes low. None of us are against development. The major differences between us are our vision of appropriate development and where we stand on openness, transparency and community engagement.

On October 20th please use your vote to elect a council that listens to people and will provide meaningful community engagement.

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