Val van den Broek
Federal public servant, age 49
Blacklock resident who’s lived in Langley 22 years
For the past 20 years, I’ve worked hard to build relationships within the community and regional boards.
I’ve also done this on provincial and federal committees and boards, as I will always advocate for Langley City – my home, where I love to live.
This means SkyTrain is coming in 2028.
Promises made, promises kept.
With my RCMP, corrections, and municipal employee background, I have the experience and knowledge to make sure it’s done properly.
Less talk and more action.
We need a fresh council willing to collaborate with Fraser Health, service providers, non-profits, and religious organizations.
Also provide community safety officers and open a health wellness centre/shelter to start addressing our social issues.
Together we can make our community better.
Have you held office in past? If so, please specify: Yes. Langley City Councillor 2014-2018 Langley City Mayor 2018 - Current.
(These answers are presented as the candidates submitted them)
1. Should Langley City have its own, separate RCMP detachment?
No. The Langley RCMP has provided excellent service to both Langley’s for many years. As a former employee and volunteer, I know firsthand the great work they do. Previous reviews have showed the shared costs and shared resources make sense. The Federal and Provincial Governments are currently doing a full review of policing services, the costs, efficiencies, and inefficiencies with the help of the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM). This will help municipalities across Canada decide what policing model may fit their community best in the future. We will also continue to monitor the cost benefits of Integrated Units across the Lower Mainland.
2. Should the City create a performing arts venue within the next council term?
Yes. We have always needed a venue in Langley City for the performing arts to gather. That is one detrimental part of our community that is missing. A performing arts center is an excellent investment in the health and well being of our community. A place to gather, a multi-purpose facility, often used by schools and other community groups as a place to hold functions and events. Why not explore building a high school in Langley City with an arts venue.
3. Does the City need more overpasses to reduce train-caused traffic delays?
Yes. Not in the foreseeable future. This would have to be supported or proposed by the Provincial or Federal Governments. I understand how frustrating it can be waiting at times but billboards have been installed to relay messages to motorist to take the overpasses already provided to avoid delays.
4. Should the City set targets for the creation of more low-income and seniors rental spaces, social housing units, and/or co-op development to improve home security?
Yes. We did this with the creation of our newly released Official Community Plan. It shows areas for development within the city over the next 30 years. This includes the area around the Skytrain which we must build a certain amount of transit-oriented development. The Lions housing area has also been approved to double it’s living capacity over the next 10 years.
5. Are City taxes too high?
Yes. We can not continue to keep adding to the citizens tax burdens without truly analyzing the City’s real needs and listening to the financial staff’s recommendations. I don’t believe we should be telling Seniors to defer their taxes. They’ve worked hard all their lives and if they want to stay in their home longer then we should be doing better to support them. We need the BC Assessment Authority to review and change how they divide housing categories for fairness amongst condo’s, apartments and single-family homes. This would curb the increase spikes in some dwellings one year while another dwelling may incur a decrease in taxes.
6. Is the City’s population growing too fast?
No. We are growing an a steady even pace giving us time to plan proper neighbourhood nodules. The new Official Community Plan is that tool for the next 30 years. It can be updated and revised if needed. We are a regional town center in Metro Vancouver, and it’s expected we will grow. We need to make sure that we stay on top of infrastructure needs to accommodate.
7. Should the City institute pay parking in some downtown areas?
Yes. This is currently under review and will be for some time with the arrival of Skytrain to the downtown core. I believe that its inevitable just like other City’s that it may be a solution to a parking problem. There are many questions to be answered, there’s just not enough information available yet.
8. Will the arrival of SkyTrain change Langley City for the better?
Yes. Langley City has needed the Skytrain for many years. This will open job, education, and business opportunities; it will revitalize the downtown. Transit police will be increased in the Langley area and the platform will be open and inviting. Built with Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) and Safe Growth design. We will be able to travel from Langley City to Waterfront Station in one hour and 6 minutes. The personal time commuters will gain back is priceless.
9. Can municipal staff and council do more to attract new green and high-tech businesses to open in Langley City?
Yes. This is necessary to do for the growth and long-term care of Langley City. Going out and seeking partnerships is a positive way to communicate what Langley City has to offer. For an example, working with universities could provide us with an idea of how to retrofit a building for a new business to operate. This attraction will also happen naturally as the Skytrain is built as we’ve seen large companies like Amazon move into the Township of Langley. The possibilities are endless.
10. Does the City have a handle on the problems created by homelessness?
No. Less talk, more action.
We continue, council term after council term, not taking any action.
Review after review after review.
The Langley Homelessness Action Table is going to be giving recommendations, which I fully support, for immediate action after a strategic planning session two weeks ago.
We need to work in partnership with other communities, so we’re not just shuffling people around.
We need a fresh council willing to collaborate with Fraser Health, service providers, non-profits, and religious organizations. To also provide community safety officers and open a health wellness centre/shelter to start addressing our social issues.
I will advocate to anyone and everyone to help with this issue.
People are living on the streets like animals. We should be ashamed of ourselves for not helping more.
Together, we can make our community better.
How the questions were presented to each candidate
Langley Advance Times readers have repeatedly told us how much they value this important, straight-forward reference guide that helps orient them with the range of choices on the ballots – both at the council and school board levels.
Towards that end, we have attempted to make this package available (along with the following instructions) to each of the candidates in a timely fashion ahead of the Oct. 15 election.
Please read carefully before you start to fill this out.
To help voters in Langley make their choices on election day, the Langley Advance Times is asking local candidates 10 issue-based questions.
You must provide a ‘yes,’ a ‘no,’ or a ‘don’t know’ (Y, N, D) response to EACH of these questions.
Each question MUST be answered with yes (Y), no (N), or Don’t Know (D). This will be published in a grid in the Oct. 6 edition. Any questions not answered will be LEFT BLANK.
Candidates may also expand on ANY OR ALL of these questions (to a maximum of 200 words each). Please note any responses longer than that will be cut off at the 201-word mark.
Due to space limitations, we can only guarantee to run one of these answers in the Langley Advance Times print edition ahead of the election. You must CLEARLY indicate which expanded answer you want to see published in print. If you do not specify, we will choose. Any and all expanded answers provided will be published online at www.langleyadvancetimes.com.
Have a story tip? Email: email@example.com
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.