Resignation of Mayoral Candidacy - Municipal Election 2013
I am withdrawing my candidacy for Mayor effective immediately.
I passionately believe that the foundation for a strong, vibrant city is built on dynamic, engaged communities which are enabled by their neighborhood amenities. Community is built by us together. Every community needs physical spaces such as parks, rinks, schools and community halls to facilitate group activities, allowing that sense of community to develop and grow. City Council is undermining our communities through a “Parkland Ponzi” scheme in which land that was originally reserved exclusively for parks or schools is being illegally and immorally rezoned for multifamily housing purposes. The lands are then sold to hand-picked partners for private profit, with no benefit flowing back to the community that loses the public use of their reserve land. To me, this completely undermines the foundation for a strong, vibrant city, so I entered the mayoral race on the basis of democratic principles to take a stand on this issue, serving not only my community but all of Edmonton.
After long reflection and consultation with friends, family, and industry contacts, I have decided that I can better pursue my passion and serve the Edmonton community by focusing my efforts solely on the fight to retain our rights to our parkland, versus diluting my efforts through a mayoral campaign. Maintaining this space is our right and is our legacy to our children, and this issue deserves a dedicated advocate.
In the short time that I spent as a mayoral candidate I have met many incredible people and learned a lot. Thank you to everyone who worked with me for your time and dedication. I appreciate the support you’ve shown me in this short journey, and I look forward to working together towards a future in which we still have our public spaces.
For those of you that share my dedication to our common public parks, take heart! The Ermineskin community reversed the expropriation of our park through concerted political action, spearheaded by myself. We saved our park. You can save yours. You can save your park by showing solidarity with your neighbours and making your vote count in this 2013 municipal election. I believe the best way you can leverage your vote on this issue is to pin your candidates down on their own positions in writing regarding this and other critical issues. It seldom seems that our political candidates “walk the talk” and carry through on their verbal campaign promises. Therefore we need to ask our candidates to sign a brief written pledge confirming that they will act on what they have just promised. If your candidate will not sign such a pledge, they are likely just a garden variety double-talker that doesn’t deserve your valuable vote.
Also, make sure you have a good heart-to-heart with your School Board Trustee candidates. An easy way to avoid the Ponzi altogether is to build a school and playground on your municipal reserve site!