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This article was published 6/10/2015 (1566 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
The Headliner posed four questions to all the candidates running for election in Portage-Lisgar. Here are the answers of NDP candidate Dean Harder.
Q: What are the two biggest issues you feel are of most concern to riding residents and how will you address them?
A: I think there is a large concern with keeping the youth connected to where they are from which points to: How do we make our communities even better places to live and enjoy life? This requires a government who will come to the table locally and federally, with a vision for communities and not just catering to the super rich.
I think there continues to be real infrastructure needs. The NDP will take one cent more of existing gas tax or $1.5 billion annually and put it into accessible, stable, long-term investment in core infrastructure for municipalities.
Q: How do you feel your party can support the lives of riding residents, specifically farm families and seniors?
A: Coming from a farm family, with parents who are in the seniors’ category, I’m concerned on both ends with Conservatives ‘let the market decide’ vision of our future. The NDP has a real vision. We have to offer stronger opportunities for young farmers entering farming. Funded apprenticeship programs in agriculture would go a long way as there is a real knowledge gap. We also need much stronger business risk management tools. For seniors, the NDP has a series of commitments that include raising the Guaranteed Income Supplement, honouring veterans, ensuring that a promised pension is a pension and of course, we will introduce universal comprehensive drug coverage.
Q: How would you address the issue of economic development for riding residents?
A: Any business that invests in innovation projects, improved infrastructure or research and development will pay reduced taxes
under a federal NDP government. We will also reduce the small business tax from 11 percent to nine per cent to give those businesses a better leg to stand on. We also believe that we must work towards more full time jobs. We will give 40,000 youth across this country apprenticeship-type jobs so they can gain experiences on the job.
Q: What personal qualities do you bring to the role of Member of Parliament for Portage-Lisgar?
A: I believe in finding balance and listening to a variety of perspectives to get the right results. Being a farm manager you can be assured I can make a tough decision in a short amount of time. The actor side of me also understands the crucial nature of digging deep into an issue and listening to good expertise to get the best results possible.