Have you ever noticed before federal or provincial elections how polling companies start asking questions about the issues, and not your issues, but some that have been predetermined for you? This “agenda-setting” happens all the time, like when the Evergreen Line (province) announced public hearings for citizen input after they had already allocated (set) the station locations, cutting-out Port Coquitlam.

I wondered whether the “agenda-setting” is less likely during municipal elections so I decided to see if I could find out.

Since Robert Simons was the first candidate to officially announce his candidacy for Mayor of Port Moody on September 9, 2011, he’s been out on the hustings personally knocking on doors throughout Port Moody almost every day meeting with our neighbours. I realize there is nothing scientific about this, but that’s a lot of the very latest public opinion, so what better source could there be?

Btw, before I go any further, I am openly supporting Robert, although this post isn’t about why, and I’m not contributing funds or time to any specific candidate’s campaign. I did offer to do some door knocking with Robert but he was insistent on directly engaging the people of Port Moody himself because he personally wanted to hear the most up-to-date, concerns, opinions, views, etc.

As for issues, here are some impressions Robert kindly agreed to share with me from the campaign trail, and in the sequence he is reading from the public:

Transit and Transportation:

“The one issue that creates a common thread is transit and transportation. Public concern is there, but it’s been so long in coming that people will believe it when they see it.”

Economic Development:

“On probing I heard concerns about the current state of economic development in the City. There is a consensus that a refreshed economic plan is required and that the City must get in front of the opportunity now that the Evergreen Line is assured.”

Environment:

“Our residents see the protection of the environment and green space as one of Port Moody’s stronger attributes and it is also one that they are not going to allow for any encroachment.”

Taxes:

“Taxes and the level of same has come up in some conversations – mostly those families on fixed incomes. The fact that City taxes appear as two major bills – Utility and Property – leaves an impression that the taxes are exorbitant versus the provincial and federal taxes that are collected daily via sales, fuel and income related taxes to name a few.”

General commentary:

“From my discussions with Port Moody residents there is a common feeling that Port Moody is a great Lower Mainland location to live, and with plenty of unrealized potential.”

“Many young families have moved to Port Moody due to, a degree of affordability compared to other Metro locations, the local environment, and because they see Port Moody, in general, as a great place to raise a family. Port Moody also has a very high reputation as a safe place to live – credit the Port Moody Police Department for having set this high standard of public protection.”

These are just a few thoughts from the campaign trail so far, courtesy of Robert Simons, candidate for Mayor of Port Moody. Thanks Robert, and best wishes.

I don’t believe any polling companies or sitting government is involved in “agenda-setting” here, so do you consider these items genuine Port Moody issues or do you have others in mind, perhaps more important to you?

From the Port Moody Campaign Trail…

5 thoughts on “From the Port Moody Campaign Trail…

  • October 19, 2011 at 4:17 pm
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    Some random observations from my many weeks of door knocking.

    1) People are concerned about the crime that is associated with skytrain stations, even though they generally want to see the Evergreen Line come through Port Moody.

    2) Many people would like to see the west end of Port Moody (Andres Wine site) developed with cafes and a supermarket and residential mixed in. Most of those people would also like to see a skytrain station there.

    3) People want to see something done about parking at Rocky Point park. In the summer it is hard to come by. Most are not opposed to nominal pay parking as long as parking availability improved.

    Reply
  • October 19, 2011 at 6:10 pm
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    Great feedback Rick and I hope all of the candidates share their experience and feedback from the hustings of Port Moody.

    To your point 2) here is a related post: https://realestateevolved.com/2010/08/port-moody-councillors-display-disdain-and-disinterest/ Joe and Gerry were the only two to show real interest and engage the committee. And here’s another one: https://realestateevolved.com/2009/11/can-western-port-moody-neighbourhoods-be-integrated/ …it’s too bad they sat on their hands for so long!

    Reply
  • October 19, 2011 at 7:55 pm
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    Beginning in 2008 I along with a cross-section of Port Moody residents and business owners invested significant time and energy to justify a third Evergreen Line Station to serve the western part of Moody Centre and areas accessible from Harbour Heights, College Park, Seaview and Glenayre. As spokesperson for this group I presented the case to Translink’s Board of Directors, the Evergreen Line Project Team, Moody Centre Community Association and City Council. Even with significant public support and after meetings with local stakeholders the Evergreen Line Project was not moved to add a third Port Moody station. I believe there is still an opportunity to make the case to incorporate a third Evergreen Line Station in Port Moody and for it to be located one or two blocks west of Queens Street. What is required along with the continued strong community support is for your Mayor and Council to continue to lobby for this necessary service on behalf of Port Moody citizens – particularly those in the western portion of Port Moody.
    Skytrain and crime has been raised as a public concern. TransLink has guaranteed that the Evergreen Line will have Fairgates – which will be in operation throughout the Skytrain network before the Evergreen Line becomes operational. This added safeguard plus smartcards and better station designs intended for more open areas and lines of visibility will enhance the security and safety to be experienced on the Evergreen Line. Final station designs will have to pass close examination to ensure the community is satisfied that the considerations for safety have been fully incorporated.

    Reply
  • October 20, 2011 at 3:03 pm
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    In my door knocking, some residents are hard pressed to find anything wrong with Port Moody. Others have raised the following issues:

    Taxes – Residents are concerned about increasing taxes. Residents are being forced to move elsewhere.

    Traffic – People are concerned about the speeding and excessive traffic on Ioco.

    Evergreen – People are skeptical and have made comments such as “I’ll believe it when I see it!” Many would like to see a third station as Robert suggested.

    Reply
  • October 31, 2011 at 5:49 pm
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    If anyone can have a say in this, I would like to ask: If any of the Candidates running for Mayor and Council have ever considered the AIR QUALITY when they speak of the ENVIRONMENT.

    I am referring to the air that is polluted by woodsmoke emissions in neighbourhoods where wood burning fireplaces and other wood fuelled devices exist and operate.

    This does not only point to Port Moody alone but to any other community in the Try City area.

    An October 6, 2011 I was admitted by ambulance to Eagle Ridge Emergency, in the early afternoon, and when I was released in the mid- evening, the air was filled with woodsmoke.

    Further: September 1998 while a patient in the same Hospital, smoke contaminated air was drawn into the hospital during some nights, and my Nurse informed me that this is an ongoing thing and has been for a long time.

    This is not a healthy situation for patients and caregivers alike; especially since woodsmoke emissions are laced with chemicals, and some of these are carcinogenic. They are linked to many respiratory diseases. Including cancer! And this needs to receive attention from all the surrounding Community Leaders.

    The air surrounding a Hospital should be clean and fresh, and these wood-burning devices and fireplaces can easily be converted into a gas fuelled one.
    This would keep every community’s air cleaner as well.

    Reply

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