Steve Ferguson

ELECTION: Langley Township council candidate Steve Ferguson

A Voter’s Guide to key election questions.

Steve Ferguson

Running for council in Langley Township

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Teacher, age not provided

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• Have you held office in past? If so, please specify: Yes, seven terms – not consecutively

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Candidate provided bio: Married and raised three children in Langley

Long time Langley Resident

Teacher/small business owner

Seven terms Township council

Two years Metro Vancouver board

Vice-chair Langley Seniors Resource Society

Rotarian, Langley Central (Lynn Fripps school playground,

youth programs, donations to community groups)

15 year legion member

Served six years Gateway of Hope board

Former chair Friends of the Environment

Served nine years on Otter Co-op board

Adopt-a-Street program volunteer

Member Canadian Museum of Flight

Member Willoughby Hall

Supports Fibromyalgia Well Spring

Langley Lodge supporter

Supports minor girls/boys hockey, girls/boys soccer, Langley Flip City and Langley Gymnastics Foundation, Valley Ball Hockey,

quarter midget, baseball, Scouts Canada.

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Website: SteveFerguson.ca

Facebook: @SteveFerguson and @SupportSteveFerguson

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Other internet/social media platforms where voters can learn about you: Twitter @SteveFergusonCA

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Phone: 604-340-9387

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Email: SteveJamesFerguson@gmail.com

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• Who is your favourite superhero, and why? Batman because he has all sorts of cool cars, bikes, planes, boats, etc plus he’s really smart and is super into technology.

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There are 23 candidates running for eight Langley Township council seats. The following are questions asked of each candidate hopeful. They were directed to provide a minimum of a Yes, No, or Don’t Know answer, and given an option to expand on one answer in print (to a maximum of 100 words per question). They could expand on all questions online, if they wished to do so. The following are their replies.

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Questions and Answers:

1. What neighbourhood of Langley do you live in?

Answer:

Brookswood/Fernridge

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2. How many years have you lived in Langley?

Answer: 37 years

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3. How many Langley Township council meetings have you attended in the past year?

Answer: 90 per cent of the council meetings, budget presentations, council priorities meetings, including Brookswood/Fernridge Official Community Plan, Smith and Williams Neighbourhood Plans.

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4: Should the municipality be directly funding social housing to reduce homelessness?

Answer: Yes. The municipality would be best served by working with partners in the community that have a much better understanding of the homelessness.

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5. Do you support elevated rail over light rapid transit from Surrey to Langley?

Answer: Yes. I have often said that if we helped to pay for elevated rail to Burnaby and Coquitlam, perhaps we should be provided the same opportunity.

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6. Should the municipality fund an arts centre?

Answer: Yes, again with partners. The City of Langley, our universities, our school district, grants from the province and federal governments, partnerships with private donors, and other opportunities.

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7. Would you vote to raise taxes to hire more police?

Answer: Yes, since safety and protection is paramount in serving a growing community.

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8. Does Langley need a new or second hospital to serve the growing population?

Answer: Yes, definitely, or even something that they have in Surrey the Jim Pattison outpatient unit. As Langley grows so does the demand on our small hospital. Anybody that has had to wait in emergency with a loved one, certainly knows that.

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9. Does Willoughby need its own dedicated library?

Answer: Yes, communities thrive with library hubs. Libraries are not just places where you read books (although people still do that) but videos are available, computer stations, amenity rooms, meeting places and a whole myriad of opportunities.

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10. Is there enough effort being made to preserve farmland?

Answer: NO, with the Township’s rural plan and the ALR, (we are barely keeping pace with the protection of farmland) the Township is doing its part to protect farmland. However, with the new rules regarding Cannabis, our valuable food production lands are in jeopardy.

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11. Should Langley allow construction of residential towers?

Answer: Yes, residential towers are designated for very special zones within the municipality. They have to meet extremely strict zoning regulations and requirements.

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12. Should Langley have its own municipal police force, replacing the RCMP?

Answer: No.

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13. Do you think residential property taxes are too high?

Answer: Yes. We have to find new ways of creating revenue sources.

There is an opportunity to grow our business and industry tax base, within our industrial parks, that can help deliver family-wage jobs. If we attract clean manufacturing and even head offices to Langley Township, this too can contribute to creating new revenue sources.

We cannot always rely on the taxpayer to fund growing demands for services. New growth should pay for itself, and efficiencies must always be met when budgeting for the future. We also need to stop the region, province, and federal governments from downloading services that were originally a part of their jurisdiction.

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14. Do you support the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline?

Answer: Don’t know. It is caught up in the courts and a real mess. Need some concrete direction from our senior levels of government.

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15. Should the municipality offer tax breaks, incentives, or rebates to companies looking to set up shop here?

Answer: Yes, the result would be a stronger tax base, good jobs close to home, and sustainable business/industry/manufacturing.

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16. Is Langley being pushed to grow too fast?

Answer: No, Langley has Official Community Plans with already serviced areas (sewer/water) ready to be developed. (In-fill)

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17. Do you support redevelopment of Fort Langley’s downtown?

Answer: Yes, it is important to bring new ideas and businesses to the Fort.

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18. Should development of Brookswood be phased in?

Answer: Yes. Phased development places less burden on neighbours, and prevents one area being built up partially whilst another area is constructed blocks away.

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19. Should the Township set a deadline to finish widening 208th Street in Willoughby?

Answer: Yes. It should be widened to at least four lanes by December 2020. This can be done in three parts. 1. The overpasses to 80th Avenue; 2. 80th to 72nd Avenues; 3. 72nd to 64th Avenues (although some part of that road is within the ALR).

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20. Should there be a limit to the number of consecutive terms a member of council can serve?

Answer: Don’t know. My understanding is that at the federal and provincial levels there are no term limits, I have no idea whether they are discussing legislation to limit the number of terms.

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