John Kidder - Green Party

Candidate Questions: John Kidder – Green Party

Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon Riding

1. What do you feel is the biggest issue impacting Mission residents and how will you and/or your party address that?

I hear concerns about local economic development and employment at home; about infrastructure – transportation, housing and of course the sewer/water issues; about homelessness and its effects both on the homeless and on local residents and businesses.

Mission provides housing and community services for people who work and often shop in Vancouver. The Mission residential tax base is not big enough to handle these costs – $900,000 per year to TransLink alone is an enormous burden.

Mission can attract businesses and build local employment – the federal government can assist with innovative funding for entrepreneurs and tech projects, including work to build local incubators and clusters.

It is nothing short of scandalous that funding for the sewer project has not been readily available.

Mission needs more affordable housing for its growing population – Greens propose a much-expanded co-op and co-housing program, which will also be a significant help to the homelessness problem.

2. What do you feel is the biggest national issue in the federal election and how will you and/or your party address that?

The transition off fossil fuels is the biggest problem and the biggest opportunity.

We have an inescapable moral duty to cut carbon to protect a livable world for our children and their children. Our plan “Mission: Possible” (I am lead author; the name came to Elizabeth May here in Mission) shows emissions down 60 per cent by 2030, and carbon-neutrality by 2050, with expanded employment for workers restoring the oilpatch, and tens of thousands of new jobs in renewables.

Other parties only see risk, and are doubling down on pipelines and fracked gas. We see opportunity and a hopeful future. Imagine abundant low-cost energy. Let your imagination roam. How might our forest industry add value to wood? How might cities benefit from clean air? How might a national project to retrofit and improve building stock make life better and less expensive? We can do this, together, and we all will benefit.

3. Describe for local voters why you chose to run in the election and what attributes/ideas you bring.

My long experience helps me to see problems from different points of view – I’ve worked in agriculture and fisheries, managed renewable resource projects, done economic analysis, founded and built companies, directed cultural and business associations and societies, and I have lived in the land. I recognize my privilege. I have worked with people across the country, in all walks of life. I know the heartbreak mental health and addiction problems can bring – I try to walk in compassion.

I am committed, as are all Greens, to doing politics differently. We don’t shout others down – working together gets things done. We’re not elected to represent a party and repeat canned talking points; we never “whip” votes. We are independent MPs with shared values – we sign a pledge never to let party “loyalty” rank above the wishes of our constituents. I won’t represent Ottawa in Mission – I will represent Mission in Ottawa.

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