Name: Jeff Jewell
Party affiliation (if any): None active
Education: BASc (Engineering, University of Toronto)
Occupation: Semi-retired / Councillor
Previous political experience: Councillor, District of Mission (since 2011)
Residency (city/neighbourhood): Mission / College Heights (since 2005). Previously: North Vancouver (1990); Edmonton (1979); Brussels (1976); Hamilton (1965); Toronto.
Community involvement: Councillor. Previously: United Way; political affairs program on Vancouver Co-op Radio.
Marital status/children: Married, 2 children, 5 grand-children
Social media: #JEWELL4council
What do you feel are the three key issues Mission voters should be considering in this civic election? Please outline what you would do in regard to these issues if elected.
An election is like a job interview, with each voter having the same interests and challenges as an employer. The employer always wants to hire the best person(s) for the job. The challenge is to sift through the credentials, candidate claims and references to decide who best meets the job requirements, will work the hardest and smartest, and is most trustworthy.
Character and experience are key factors in determining who has the right stuff and will do the best job. An elected official’s job is quite complex, demanding and challenging. Over a four year term, they must prepare for about 500 meetings and make about 5,000 decisions, covering every issue that arises.
Being retired prior to my election as Councillor three years ago, I’ve been able to devote myself to the job. I’ve worked hard, learned a great deal, and have found it to be even more challenging and rewarding than anticipated. My degree in engineering and career in information technology provides me with a strongly analytical approach to the challenges of Council. My management experience of twenty-five years within municipal governments has also been very useful.
Going forward, the new Council will hopefully build on the strengths and remedy the problems of the previous Council. Those problems centred mostly on leadership and character, which hopefully a new Mayor and Council will fix. Our greatest achievement was our fulfillment of promises, especially controlling taxes and spending. Sound financial management should be continued, given the lack of economic recovery and no growth.
The most pressing current issue is the proposed Highway 7 Realignment and Downtown Revitalization plan. The highway cost is presently unknown, as the cost-share with the province remains undetermined. Furthermore, the consequences of considerable lost parking and traffic issues are substantial. Despite repeated citizen engagement efforts, public participation and support has unfortunately been insufficient to justify proceeding at this time.
The next Council must also deal with the new Seniors’ Centre proposal, where again public cost and support remain undetermined.
I’m committed to empowering the people, by enabling citizens to decide such major issues directly, by voting in referendums!