Anne Skipsey. - Submitted photo

Three questions for Qualicum Beach mayoral candidate Anne Skipsey

Candidate for mayor

What do you feel is the most pressing election issue in your community?

After participating in much of the public engagement in our community over the last couple of years, I can confidently say “housing” is the most pressing election issue, as it is in almost every community in this province. In 2008, the Town Council recognized the need for an affordable housing policy. In 2018, we still do not have a housing plan. However, the good news is there are many communities that have been working to address their housing issues and so we have many examples of what can be done. There is funding available ($6.6 billion over 10 years) from the province to help local governments address the housing crisis. But first we need to know what types of housing are needed most; how much can working people, families and seniors on a pension afford to pay; and who are the organizations with whom we can partner.

How will you balance the needs of seniors and those of younger residents?

There are some specific needs for different demographics but I believe in a holistic approach to community and meeting the needs of all of our citizens. All residents, regardless of age, benefit from community infrastructure and services such as recreational facilities, clean drinking water, roads, trails and transportation. After all, a great place to raise a family is a great place to grow old. It is essential to get all ages involved in community decision-making.

Ideally, there will also be a diversity of voices at the Council table – young, old, male, female. As mayor, I will ensure I connect with citizens of all ages, which may require some creativity and technology to find new ways to engage residents. I will listen to learn, consider, then act. Everyone should have a voice when important decisions are being made on behalf of their community.

What sets you apart from the other candidates?

My life’s journey has led me to this point and has prepared me to be the next Mayor of Qualicum Beach. Growing up in this community was very special and gave me the deep-rooted connection with and affection for this unique place.

I was brought up in a family that was involved in local politics and always valued community service. My degree in Business Administration and 15 years working in local government have given me the insight, knowledge and expertise in corporate administration, team building and the workings of local government.

Including my last four years on council, I have attended council meetings for more than 13 years. I have taken on many leadership roles over the years, from student council to senior management to town councillor. I would be humbled and honoured to lead this community that I love so much as Mayor Anne.

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