I attended the all-candidates debate last Tuesday evening. I am pleased to see so many people running in this election especially the younger candidates and five women.
The P3 water project kept coming up and I noticed that all our incumbents except Patricia Ross continually justified the P3 project. Many new candidates were either against it or wanted to slow the process down.
It appeared that most people in the room were not in favour of pushing ahead with the project, yet not one of the pro-P3 incumbents backed down from their sales pitch.
I didn’t hear talk of water saving ideas or that we are actually back at our 2002 levels of water use. These comments and ideas came from new candidates, not our incumbents.
Can you imagine how much water our city would save if half our homes had water-efficient showers, toilets, washing machines, dishwashers, etc?
What if our city approached companies such as Rona, Home Depot, our independents, and the people of Abbotsford were offered good discounts for upgrading to water-efficient items or property tax discounts were given for water-saving upgrades.
Our new meters are showing people how much water they are actually using, and they are being charged for it. Those now paying hundreds of dollars I believe will start conserving water and turning to water-saving devices.
With all the brilliant minds out there and all the rain we get in the Fraser Valley, there has to be a way to harness our rain and hold it, then disperse it when required.
Let’s make water conservation our first focus and we will have water beyond 2016 and we will have the time to research the best ideas for moving forward in the future.
I think young people with new ideas for council is a great idea. These are the people in the job market, with growing families, concerned about their children’s future and directly effected by all that is happening.
Most of the current council lived when getting ahead was easy, jobs were abundant, pay was good, pensions were around, homeless people did not exist, and now they are retired with pensions.
It is hard for us to put ourselves in young people’s shoes. Maybe it is time to let their voices be heard.