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March 22, 2019

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A Q&A with Tuxedo’s candidates

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 4/4/2016 (1082 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

The Sou’wester is reaching out to candidates in the April 19 provincial election to answer questions for voters.

Below are responses from Tuxedo candidates Bob Krul (Green), Heather Stefanson (PC), Michael Lazar (Lib) and Zach Fleisher (NDP). Look for more interviews with candidates in next week’s issue and online.

Bob Krul (Green) Age: Declined to say. Occupation: Co-owner of Cornelia Bean and borealwildcraft.com, two local small businesses dedicated to tea products and sustainability.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 4/4/2016 (1082 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

The Sou’wester is reaching out to candidates in the April 19 provincial election to answer questions for voters.

Below are responses from Tuxedo candidates Bob Krul (Green), Heather Stefanson (PC), Michael Lazar (Lib) and Zach Fleisher (NDP). Look for more interviews with candidates in next week’s issue and online.

Bob Krul (Green)
Age: Declined to say.
Occupation: Co-owner of Cornelia Bean and borealwildcraft.com, two local small businesses dedicated to tea products and sustainability.

Why are you running for MLA?

What we don’t do here in Canada is follow the rigidity of creating opportunities out of waste. That’s why I’m running for the Green Party — we’ve got to do a better job of working with our northern peoples, we’ve got to do a better job of dealing with our waste, we’ve got to do a better job on air quality, lifestyles, infrastructure, and coming up with better technologies for living in a northern environment. I don’t think we’ve done a very good job with that.

How will Tuxedo benefit if your party is elected to government?

Let me just say, the same person has sat in the same chair for 15 years... I don’t expect there’s going to be a movement to Greens and that’s not really my point. I think what’s important is that as the richest location in the city of Winnipeg… I’m not sure why it shouldn’t be the greenest.

What is the most important issue facing the community?

I think creating an openness. What surprises me is the fear that seems to be in the hearts of conservatives… They are absolutely closed-minded and unfortunately very PC-oriented and I understand that, I mean they’re all concerned about their money. But at the end of the day, there is a lot more to life and the beauty of the inner area of the city than worrying about how many cars you’ve got, how big is your house, and making sure your yard is well manicured.

Personally, what is one issue you want to work on if elected?

I won’t be elected as MLA. How do I want to contribute? I live in the city. I want to make sure it’s safe.
You have to say, no our children will not be burdened with bad decisions. Being able to take a fresh look at stuff — I don’t think it’s going to change without something different. As a Green Party we have a great opportunity of shedding the past and beginning the new.

What will your role/your party’s role be in the future development of land at and around Kapyong Barracks?

I’m concerned about the redevelopment of Kapyong barracks which could be a beautiful opportunity to create a sustainable business model. If our First Nations people get a hold of the property that will be even better because it will hopefully be a showpiece for their northern culture in the middle of our city.

At the moment if we force them they will put gas bars and more retail and I absolutely don’t think that’s what’s necessary. My contribution will be to try to push them into a beautiful green setting that will reflect their lifestyle in northern Canada.

How will your party’s tax policies affect residents in Tuxedo?

What we’re concerned about is eliminating poverty. Besides making decisions around sustainable principle concepts.

The way Selinger sprinkles money around the city isn’t sustainable. As you can see the quality of events and things that he’s implementing, it just doesn’t fit the bill. Where the Green Party wants to spend money would be on sustainability issues.

Zach Fleisher (NDP)
Age: 23
Occupation: Press secretary to Selinger government.

Why are you running for MLA?

I’m running because I feel Manitoba is at a turning point and we’re making a lot of steady progress in terms of investments in jobs, education and healthcare. I think we’re seeing that the province is really taking a step forward. What I see right now is a vision of a party that will keep on building Manitoba. 

How will Tuxedo benefit if your party is elected to government?

I think that we’ve seen a lot of investments into infrastructure. I think people in Tuxedo also see that investments in Assiniboine Park also add to the riding. A lot of people I know come to Tuxedo because it is such a beautiful neighbourhood and our investments in our parks have been a big part of that.

What is the most important issue facing the community?

I think infrastructure. The province has brought in a pretty substantive infrastructure plan and renewal plan that really works to build for the future of the province. And I think people in Tuxedo are seeing the benefit of that.

I think that we also see a diverse riding and one that has a fair amount of seniors. As people age, they really want to see the supports that they need and we’re seeing that in investments in healthcare as well.

Personally, what is one issue you want to work on if elected?

I’m a big fan of active transportation and I’d like to work with the City of Winnipeg as well as other partners to increase the amount of infrastructure for those types of projects in the constituency and around Winnipeg and Manitoba.

I see it primarily through cycling because that’s the way that I interact with it. I think also creating more pedestrian-friendly areas, especially for seniors, creates a more friendly environment for everyone.

What will your role/your party’s role be in the future development of land at and around Kapyong Barracks?

I think it’s time for us to come forward to honour our treaty obligations. At the same time, if I’m elected I want to make sure that everyone is consulted and has a role to play in how the lands are developed.

That would mean meeting regularly with residents of Tuxedo to make sure that their views are heard and consultation takes place.

How will your party’s tax policies affect residents in Tuxedo?

I think Manitoba has a fairly competitive tax advantage, where we see that we’re the first province in Canada to eliminate the small business tax completely.

I think it’s necessary to clarify that while we’re raising taxes on the wealthiest segment of society we’re also providing a break on taxes to middle and working class families. We all have a duty to help out where we can because we all have a collective responsibility to take care of each other.

Heather Stefanson (PC)
Age: 45
Occupation: Incumbent MLA for the last 15 years. Prior to election, worked as an investment advisor.

Why are you running for MLA?

I love what I do. I love representing my constituents, and whatever the issues are, I’ve held many different portfolios over the years, from health care and education, to conservation and water stewardship, and jobs and the economy, and I’ve really enjoyed the time at the legislature and being able to hold the government’s feet to the fire.

How will Tuxedo benefit if your party is elected to government?

I like to hope that people think I’ve represented them well over the last number of years and I really would like the opportunity for us to form a government and for me to be a part of Brian Pallister’s government.

I think it’s beneficial for someone to be part of a government but also part of a strong opposition as well, and I think that’s what we’ve been able to bring forward in representing my constituents in the Manitoba legislature over the years.

What is the most important issue facing the community?

I think there are a number of issues actually. Certainly going door to door, I’m hearing about high taxes, people are concerned about the future of their children in Manitoba, wanting to ensure they are given and awarded the opportunities to stay here in our province.

People are also very concerned about health care wait times; the fact that we are dead last in Canada in education. I’ve also heard from people that are concerned about children falling through the cracks in our child welfare system and  the highest number of kids in care in Canada.

Personally, what is one issue you want to work on if elected?

I’ve learned so much on all the portfolios that I’ve had the opportunity to work in. I’m open and I’m here to serve the people. And I’m open, if I am ever offered the opportunity in government, to help out in anyway I can to best serve our community.

I’d love to be a part of government. It’s been 15 and a half years of opposition. I’d really love the opportunity to help form government.

What will your role/your party’s role be in the future development of land at and around Kapyong Barracks?

I think in general, it’s been more than a decade that the land has been vacated by the PPCLI, and I think people in general now want to see something happen there. But people are concerned about what the land will look like once it’s developed. I think there needs to be a lot of consultation with the community as to what will transpire there.

How will your party’s tax policies affect residents in Tuxedo?

We’re the only party that has announced a tax reduction for all Manitobans. We will roll (the PST) back from the NDP PST hike to eight per cent, we will roll it back to seven per cent in our first term in office.

And we were all supposed to have the right to vote by way of a referendum and the NDP stripped Manitobans of that right. We want to ensure with any future tax increases that we reinstate that law to vote on major tax increases in the future.

Michael Lazar (Liberal)
Age: 58

Occupation: A lawyer of 32 years. Currently with Broadway Law Group.

Why are you running for MLA?

I think people should take an active role in the community they live in and the social fabric that they live in and it’s not enough to sit on the couch and complain about things. You should be prepared to come forward and do what you can to make the community better in whatever way you can.

How will Tuxedo benefit if your party is elected to government?

I could talk about specific policies that we have such as improving education, full-day kindergarten and daycare because we have a lot of people, where all the parents in the home work or want to work, and it’s important to have proper care for children to allow them to do that.

In a more general way, the most important thing is to have a balance in life in general and the body politic.

The Liberal party offers a fresh, new, moderate face where we’re offering a balanced approach and we care about the financial issues and the tax dollars that people are paying and eventually reaching a balanced budget, but we also care about social programs.

What is the most important issue facing the community?

I think Tuxedo is a very educated riding and issues regarding education are very important and we have a number of policies ranging from full-day kindergarten to moving from a system of grants instead of loans for university students.

I think for all Manitobans, the general economic situation is important and that includes dealing with the books in a responsible way.

Personally, what is one issue you want to work on if elected?

I’ve been practising law for 32 years and I do a lot of criminal law and I think the justice system is something that very much needs attention. The delays in the courts are not good for anybody involved.

And it’s just a disaster the way our courts are overburdened. So that’s obviously an area that I have personal experience with as a lawyer.

What will your role/your party’s role be in the future development of land at and around Kapyong Barracks?

Unfortunately it’s kind of a multi-jurisdictional issue… certainly as an MLA for the area I would want to advocate with my federal counterpart and the municipal people involved towards making sure that it’s developed in a responsible way that’s not going to impinge upon the housing values and the values of the lifestyles of the people living in the area.

How will your party’s tax policies affect residents in Tuxedo?

It’ll affect all Manitobans including people in Tuxedo. We are taking a graduated approach. We would like to see the PST reduced but we’re not going to promise in the first year of a Liberal government in office.

We’re going to do it in a responsible way. The party has are committed to taking the one percent the NDP added and ear marking it for municipal infrastructure improvements. The hope is that as the economy improves that we would be able to reduce the PST. 

Danielle Da Silva

Danielle Da Silva
Community journalist — The Sou'wester

Danielle Da Silva is the community journalist for The Sou'wester. Email her at danielle.dasilva@canstarnews.com

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