A conservative approach is what Red Deer City council candidate Calvin Goulet-Jones said he will provide if elected this fall.
“We have a very left-leaning council. That is okay for those who are left in the City, but the City votes conservative provincially for the most part and the City votes conservatively federally,” he said. “I think we need some more balance on council.”
This is something he said he can provide. “We need some voices who are standing up for people’s tax dollars and the businesses’ tax dollars,” he said.
“Businesses are hit from the federal government right now, everyone is getting hit from the provincial government and we need at least one level of government to protect the citizens. We need one level of government to really be the voice of the citizens because that voice doesn’t exist in the federal and provincial level right now – at least I don’t feel that way.”
Goulet-Jones said if elected he also wants to tackle homelessness in the community.
“I think we can make a significant difference in two short years. We had a plan to end homelessness by 2018 and the numbers actually went up in 2016 to 2017. We’re moving in the wrong direction – shelters are not the answer,” he said. “When we’re dealing with chronic long-term homelessness, we need a different direction.”
He added he also wants to advocate for a tax plan which reflects the hardship that Red Deer has faced.
“We had a 1.1 per cent tax increase this last year – that was just the budget increase, that was not the mill rate increase. If you’re home value stayed the same, you actually had a 4.5 per cent tax increase,” said Goulet-Jones.
Looking forward to the tourism opportunities the City can provide in the future is also on Goulet-Jones’ list if he is elected.
“Revitalizing the north end – there is such an opportunity in the north end right now and it’s just being squandered. Homes in the north end are worth $50,000 less than homes in the south end and we need someone to care for the north end.”
Another issue Goulet-Jones hopes to tackle is reducing regulation for business start-ups – especially when it comes to youth under the age of 18.
“We have that ‘lemonade bylaw’ where it is technically illegal for kids to go out on the street and serve lemonade,” he said. “I want to help business start-ups including those that work from home. If you sell Scentsy, or anything like that, you require a $185 license. The thing is right now, it’s not enforced, you still require that. That type of restriction for a 16-year-old wanting to start up a lawn mowing business, is too much.”
Meanwhile, Goulet-Jones said he would bring strong attributes to the table if elected.
“I’m an ideas guy. I come up with a lot of ideas. Not all of them are perfect but I think with the wisdom of council we can flesh a lot of these ideas out,” he said. “If you look at this last term, what has council really done? Other than the 2019 (Canada) Winter Games, they’ve had no new ideas, they have been stagnant for years really. We need someone out there to bring new ideas.
“I really want to make a difference in the City and I want to bring new ideas and make sure they move forward. I want to stand up for the people.”