BC local elections: Ladysmith town council candidate Rob Johnson

Current occupation- Retired

Background- I am a native son of Ladysmith, and my family was one of the first settlers to what is now Ladysmith, arriving here back in 1899.

I graduated from Ladysmith Secondary and then went on get a Diploma in Business Management from BCIT, specializing in Marketing and Transportation.

After working for large Forest Companies in Vancouver and living in White Rock, I returned to Ladysmith in 1990.

Over my years in Ladysmith, I have been involved with many clubs and organizations. I am a past President of the Ladysmith Chamber of Commerce, past President of the Ladysmith Historical Society, and have been on the boards of the Ladysmith Maritime Society, and The Ladysmith Resource Centre, as well as on the Board of Directors of Mid Island Community Futures.

I served on Town Council for 6 years (2002-2008). In 2004, I was lucky enough to be a chair of Ladysmith’s Centennial Celebration. I have represented the Town by being elected to the Executive Committee of the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities, and I was also elected to serve on the executive committee of the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities.

Why are you running for council?

I am running because I feel that I can add to the discussion as to how Ladysmith needs to adapt to the pressures that are being put on it. I believe my experiences and love of the community will help shape the place both you and I want to live in.

Ladysmith is changing. I want these changes to be what the majority of the community would feel is best for our community. I want to hear from you, I want to work for you, I want to be your voice.

The incoming Council will be asked to make choices that will affect our community forever. You the voter must take the time to investigate what each candidate can bring to the table. Some candidates are seeking your support for re-election. You should ask yourself, are you happy with what the present Council has done regarding roads, taxes, selling off land purchased for parkland? Are you in favour of the rezoning with the intent to sell on land next to Transfer Beach Park for 6 story Condos? How do you feel about the outgoing Council doing so much Town business behind closed doors (last year 95% of the meetings were closed to the public part of the time).

Some are first-time Candidates are running with no past Council experience, they are offering new energy and a willingness to listen and work hard to make Ladysmith a better place.

If elected, what will your priorities be for the term and how you will tackle them ? I want the public to feel good about it’s Council and how it does it.s business. To achieve this I will fight to ensure that as much Town business is discussed in public as legally possible.

I want to ensure that our tax dollars are being spent wisely. It is unlikely that your taxes will go down as increases are already committed, so therefore I want to see that we get the best value for our tax money. I will question why the need to spend so much of our money on consultants and senior staff.

I want to see that any growth in population is matched to our ability to supply clean fresh, clean, safe drinking water to all our residents even it means the Towns park and fields have to go brown.

I promise to work to ensure that we attract more Doctors to our area so that everyone in our community has access to their own family doctor

I will work hard to promote regional planing and development. This means working with Nanaimo and Nanaimo Regional Distict and not just the CVRD. Ladysmith is on the cusp of CVRD and NRD. We can not continue to be self focus on the CVRD when we shop, work and play in the Nanaimo area.

What’s the best path forward for growth on the waterfront?

Our waterfront is part of a complex arrangement that involves both CVRD areas G and H, the Town, The Provincial government, First Nations and the Federal Government, as well as those that have private water lot leases.

We need to develop a team of all involved so that we can develop a comprehensive plan that will allow for economic growth that will preserve our harbour well still allow for marine tourism, recreational tourism, public use, as well as clean industrial growth allowing for green commercial ventures.

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