1) Yes or No: Should Owen Sound allow bricks-and-mortar marijuana shops to operate in its boundaries? Why?
Yes. I have concerns around young people using marijuana and the effect of grow-ops on Real Estate but I do not have a problem with a well-regulated retail outlet. It works for alcohol it can work for this.
2) Yes or No: Should Owen Sound lower its property tax rate? If yes, how would you achieve this? If no, why?
The actual tax rate is calculated on property value assessment and therefore goes up and down as they do. The real question is how do we rein in the very high taxes Owen Sound property owners pay? Some efficiencies may be found in services but to maintain a lot of the things we hold dear we have to expand the tax base. Some exciting new projects are on the way and I would work to encourage more.
3) Yes or No: Should Owen Sound continue to offer a vacancy rebate on commercial and industrial property? Why?
Commercial and Industry rates are very high. To pile on more taxes to already struggling businesses is going to have the opposite effect to what is trying to be achieved.
4) What is your plan to attract new industry and jobs to Owen Sound?
Owen Sound is beautiful and friendly. The lifestyle with can offer cannot be beat. As we work towards providing the type of housing newcomers are looking for retirees and young entrepreneurs that look to serve them will make this their home. We have to face that the world has changed and our traditional industrial base has largely gone. There will be new opportunities for new style business such as cannabis growth and tourism.
5) What is one other issue facing Owen Sound you would like to speak to, and how will you address this if elected?
I believe Owen Sound is on the cusp of large scale development and while I support this I will be mindful that we don't destroy the great sense of community we have here. Growth has to work for everyone and not leave people behind. I would seek community buy in on development and it's effect on local residents.