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  #21  
Old Posted May 30, 2016, 1:53 PM
JET JET is offline
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Studies done by or funded by advocacy/lobby groups are not worth the paper they are printed on. Do you really think they would release studies showing that bike lanes are despised by the majority of businesses and that the loss of parking harms those businesses? Of course not.
Just curious, are there any studies worth the paper they are printed on? If so, which might they be, and who might they be funded by?
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  #22  
Old Posted Sep 16, 2016, 6:29 PM
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The official candidates list has been unveiled; http://www.halifax.ca/election/docum...didateList.pdf

Note:

There are two candidates for mayor (Mike Savage, Lil McPherson), Four councillors are retiring (Watts, McCluckey, Dalrymple, & Rankin), and four councillors have been acclaimed (Outhit, Craig, Karsten, & Nicoll). District 7 should be the race to watch with Mason taking on Uteck, and District 5 has eight candidates to choose from (good luck Sam)!
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  #23  
Old Posted Sep 16, 2016, 6:54 PM
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The official candidates list has been unveiled; http://www.halifax.ca/election/docum...didateList.pdf

Note:

There are two candidates for mayor (Mike Savage, Lil McPherson), Four councillors are retiring (Watts, McCluckey, Dalrymple, & Rankin), and four councillors have been acclaimed (Outhit, Craig, Karsten, & Nicoll). District 7 should be the race to watch with Mason taking on Uteck, and District 5 has eight candidates to choose from (good luck Sam)!
Maureen MacDonald has announced her support for Waye Mason and now he has prominent Dippers and Libs supporting him. The race looks over.
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  #24  
Old Posted Sep 17, 2016, 12:22 AM
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Maureen MacDonald has announced her support for Waye Mason and now he has prominent Dippers and Libs supporting him. The race looks over.
He is the one who deserves to be defeated.
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  #25  
Old Posted Sep 24, 2016, 12:32 AM
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and District 5 has eight candidates to choose from (good luck Sam)!
Thanks! Three weeks to go and my sense is it's going to be close. For anyone who hasn't seen my policy section, you can view it here. When it comes to development in Dartmouth, I'm keen to see Wyse Road redeveloped. Glad it's identified as a growth area in the Centre Plan.
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  #26  
Old Posted Sep 26, 2016, 11:13 AM
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Thanks! Three weeks to go and my sense is it's going to be close. For anyone who hasn't seen my policy section, you can view it here. When it comes to development in Dartmouth, I'm keen to see Wyse Road redeveloped. Glad it's identified as a growth area in the Centre Plan.
I am going to be away for most of the next few weeks... but best of luck to both you and Waye!
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  #27  
Old Posted Oct 15, 2016, 11:58 PM
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It's election night!

So far Sam Austin has 30% of votes for Dartmouth Centre which in a field of eight is very impressive.

Mason is also in the lead in Peninsula South, and Lindell Smith is creaming his opponents in Peninsula North.

Savage has ~70% support so we're keeping our mayor for a few more years..
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  #28  
Old Posted Oct 16, 2016, 3:21 AM
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It's election night!

So far Sam Austin has 30% of votes for Dartmouth Centre which in a field of eight is very impressive.

Mason is also in the lead in Peninsula South, and Lindell Smith is creaming his opponents in Peninsula North.

Savage has ~70% support so we're keeping our mayor for a few more years..
Sam is in..Congrats! As is Savage and given that McPherson wanted to put a "pause" on development, I think it's a good thing!
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  #29  
Old Posted Oct 16, 2016, 4:23 AM
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Congrats Sam!

Ugh, Streatch is back.
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  #30  
Old Posted Oct 16, 2016, 11:38 AM
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Congrats Sam!

Mason if you're still on this forum I look forward to sitting at the table with you again.

There was only two "upsets" last night. Councillors Mosher and Johns were defeated in favour of Cleary and Blackburn respectively.

There are 6 new faces on council; Steve Streatch (Waverley-Fall River-Musquodoboit Valley), Sam Austin (Dartmouth Centre), Lindell Smith (Peninsula North), Shawn Cleary (Halifax West Armdale), Richard Zurawski (Timberlea-Beechville-Clayton Park-Wedgewood), and Lisa Blackburn (Middle/Upper Sackville-Beaver Bank-Lucasville).
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  #31  
Old Posted Oct 16, 2016, 1:04 PM
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Congrats Sam!

Mason if you're still on this forum I look forward to sitting at the table with you again.

There was only two "upsets" last night. Councillors Mosher and Johns were defeated in favour of Cleary and Blackburn respectively.

There are 6 new faces on council; Steve Streatch (Waverley-Fall River-Musquodoboit Valley), Sam Austin (Dartmouth Centre), Lindell Smith (Peninsula North), Shawn Cleary (Halifax West Armdale), Richard Zurawski (Timberlea-Beechville-Clayton Park-Wedgewood), and Lisa Blackburn (Middle/Upper Sackville-Beaver Bank-Lucasville).

Sam Austin was a good choice compared to some of the jokers who ran in that district. Even though he is a planner he hopefully will have a broader perspective than that.Too bad we are again stuck with Mason but word is he may run in the upcoming provincial election for the NDP so maybe he will leave at that point. I think Lindell Smith will be fine but am concerned about the other 3 new faces, in particular Cleary and Zurawski, neither of whom distinguished themselves with their positions during the campaign.
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  #32  
Old Posted Oct 25, 2016, 9:15 PM
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I wonder if this new council will finally be able to move the needle on transit and push for a transportation authority and regional transportation planning (maybe in conjunction with the provincial government)? This was an area of perennial failure for past councils which messed around for decades with fast ferry and commuter rail studies without ever truly grasping the big picture of regional growth, intermodal connections, and future transit-oriented development or neighbourhood revitalization.

I see that Lindell Smith's platform included transit for example but there aren't a lot of specifics. Watts struck me as a small-town councillor who seemed to operate as though she were in a much smaller city. McCluskey was like this too. Halifax is too big now for tweaks to bus routes and bike lanes to fix its transportation problems. Could this be an age thing? Or maybe it is just an issue of homeowner bias; people who already have houses may have shorter commutes and may care less about traffic. Younger people are stuck working more, paying more, and moving farther out.

I also wonder if this council will be willing, as a whole, to continue to invest extra money into the regional centre, with the understanding that spending there benefits everyone. 2012-2016 seemed better for this but in the past dollars were doled out by district, not spent to generate good value for dollar. In 2008 they could have renamed regional council to the "suburban recreation infrastructure board".

Given the size and development patterns in Halifax I think there will need to be different approaches to transportation infrastructure in different parts of the city. There will be no one-size-fits-all grand LRT or subway plan like you see in some big cities and cities with simpler geography and transportation networks. Maybe some areas will get ferries, others will get BRT, others commuter rail, and others LRT or streetcars. For that to work there has to be a sense of regional priorities and a willingness to cooperate.

Last edited by someone123; Oct 25, 2016 at 9:26 PM.
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  #33  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2016, 12:15 AM
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I wouldn't hold my breath if I were you. From what I saw most of the new council members thought they were running for a MLA or MP seat, vowing to fix poverty, housing, diversity, human rights, all sorts of social justice things that are not part of HRM's legislated mandate. They all strike me as being vaguely anti-development too, at least right now. I would be shocked if very many of them get the kind of big-picture issues you are talking about.
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  #34  
Old Posted Sep 11, 2020, 12:14 AM
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I think it's time to bump this thread back into existence. The 2020 election is being held next month. I'll get more information into this thread soon but for now the finalized candidates list;

Halifax Elections - Official Candidates for 2020.

Note that Councillor Outhit (District 16) is acclaimed. He's a great representative for my former home and I've enjoyed working with him over the years. Congrats!

And I do wish everyone else good luck but in particular I'd like to shout out Councillors Hendsbee, Austin, Mason, and Smith. I've worked with all of you over the last four years and hope to continue doing so after COVID-19 and this election.
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  #35  
Old Posted Sep 11, 2020, 11:49 AM
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And I do wish everyone else good luck but in particular I'd like to shout out Councillors Hendsbee, Austin, Mason, and Smith. I've worked with all of you over the last four years and hope to continue doing so after COVID-19 and this election.
I hope you get to keep working with Hendsbee. But not Austin and Mason. I haven't seen much from Smith either way.
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  #36  
Old Posted Oct 3, 2020, 5:04 AM
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He's a junior Waye Mason with even less common sense if that's possible. All about the bike lanes and impeding traffic and commerce. He organized a totally worthless petition opposing the plans of Colonial Honda to improve their surroundings. Seems like strange positions to take by someone employed by the Downtown Business Commission.
Surely you don't think it was Colonial Honda's surroundings to 'improve' as they wished do you? And that there couldn't have been any better use of the land that they 'improved' than to expand their already waste of space parking lots? You claim to be all for 'development' as you define it, which I understand is turning say vacant lots (parking lots?) into (typically) more and more 'luxury living' complexes. Why would you conclude that Colonial Honda having a few more places to display their cars be more desirable than older declining housing stock remaining that is by nature more affordable (and at least not such an eyesore as that horrid new parking lot!) ?
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  #37  
Old Posted Oct 3, 2020, 11:58 AM
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Surely you don't think it was Colonial Honda's surroundings to 'improve' as they wished do you? And that there couldn't have been any better use of the land that they 'improved' than to expand their already waste of space parking lots? You claim to be all for 'development' as you define it, which I understand is turning say vacant lots (parking lots?) into (typically) more and more 'luxury living' complexes. Why would you conclude that Colonial Honda having a few more places to display their cars be more desirable than older declining housing stock remaining that is by nature more affordable (and at least not such an eyesore as that horrid new parking lot!) ?
Steele purchased the properties, most of which were run-down slummy rental units with little hope of improvement, so they could choose to do with them what they wished. I realize that according to planning dogma, car dealerships are bad and considered the equivalent to nuclear fallout, but that is a thriving business in a convenient location for its customers and the area in question at least looks all of a piece now. I have no doubt that at some point Steele may want to develop that parcel into something else but as of now it is fine.

That is far from the biggest issue with Council at the moment. Looking back on my post from 2016 above it seems I was prescient. The outgoing Council did exactly as I predicted, immersing themselves in pandering to social issues and ignoring the big-picture needs of HRM as they veered far out of their lane. The topper was the motion quietly passed in the final minutes of the final Council meeting of this bunch, enabling an absurd "living wage" requirement for HRM contractors. So now instead of selecting the lowest bid that meets requirements for things like security guards, snow removal, landscaping et al, they will require contractors wishing to do business with HRM to pay their employees the CCPA's theoretical and nonsensical living wage rate, over $21/hr at present. It is like walking into a convenience store and giving the clerk $10 for a carton of milk because you feel sorry for them, or giving the sales rep you bought a car from an extra few grand. Not only is it totally nuts, it totally ignores the fiduciary responsibility (a term I'm sure few members of the existing free-spending Council ever heard of, much less understand) they have to the taxpayer. And I suspect few of them considered the huge implications it has for HRM's collective agreements with their own employees, all of which will quickly be whipsawed upwards as union leaders demand that the existing spread be maintained. A shameful dereliction of duty.

The best thing that could happen is for all incumbents to be defeated. However, knowing the indifference most voters have towards municipal news and the widespread ignorance of what goes on within HRM, I'm sure name recognition and nothing more will return many of this bunch yet again. Tragic.
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  #38  
Old Posted Oct 3, 2020, 6:27 PM
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Did I miss the memo where there was an extra "local transit" charge put on property taxes at a rate of 0.0980 (i.e. almost 10% of assessment) since the last tax bill?

I don't mind paying taxes for services rendered, but don't like surprises for 'new' taxes that weren't budgeted for. It seems underhanded on the surface, and could perhaps enter into one's consideration of which way to vote in the upcoming election (hence the relevance to this thread).

But... perhaps I just wasn't paying attention. I couldn't find anything online about it - is it a one-time charge to compensate for the transit deficit due to Covid-19? Or perhaps an increase to fund new transit infrastructure/routes?
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  #39  
Old Posted Oct 3, 2020, 7:28 PM
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Did I miss the memo where there was an extra "local transit" charge put on property taxes at a rate of 0.0980 (i.e. almost 10% of assessment) since the last tax bill?

I don't mind paying taxes for services rendered, but don't like surprises for 'new' taxes that weren't budgeted for. It seems underhanded on the surface, and could perhaps enter into one's consideration of which way to vote in the upcoming election (hence the relevance to this thread).

But... perhaps I just wasn't paying attention. I couldn't find anything online about it - is it a one-time charge to compensate for the transit deficit due to Covid-19? Or perhaps an increase to fund new transit infrastructure/routes?
It seems to have existed since at least 2017 according to this: https://www.halifax.ca/home-property...taxes/tax-bill

It only applies to households within 1km of a transit stop. Maybe the transit changes brought a stop closer to your home?
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  #40  
Old Posted Oct 3, 2020, 7:49 PM
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It seems to have existed since at least 2017 according to this: https://www.halifax.ca/home-property...taxes/tax-bill

It only applies to households within 1km of a transit stop. Maybe the transit changes brought a stop closer to your home?
What a strange model.

Halifax traditionally had one of the highest farebox recovery ratios around, with users paying an unusually high proportion of the cost of operating the transit service (70%) while capital expenditures are often paid partially by the province and feds. The service does not only benefit people who live near transit or takes transit; it reduces the number of cars on the road and so reduces the amount of road capacity needed. Of course there is also park-and-ride and some people get on and off of buses or ferries that are more than 1 km from where they live.

Historically the tax arguments in Halifax often followed a traditional motte-and-bailey style argument (fallacy) that was based around the idea that poor rural people living in Musquodoboit shouldn't be paying for urban services. Somehow this morphed into low taxes for Hammonds Plains. And it was all kind of a lie since rural services are so much more expensive. From the perspective of the city's coffers, high-density development more than pays its way while rural areas tend not to even if they receive lower service levels. The far east half of the HRM should not even be part of the municipality, while part of Hants arguably should have been included.
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