Mark Anderson is running for Duncan city council. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)

Water, taxation, housing top issues for Mark Anderson in bid for Duncan city council seat

I believe Duncan residents and taxpayers should be represented by other Duncan residents

Name: Mark Anderson

Running for Duncan council: Candidacy documents filed on Sept. 4

Background: Retired bus driver from BC Transit in Victoria. Now a licensed driving instructor, licensed to teach Class 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7.

Website: www.DuncanTaxpayers.ca

I decided to run for Duncan council after becoming involved in the campaign for the “No” side in the recent amalgamation referendum.

During the amalgamation referendum campaign it came to my attention that the majority of Duncan council members were not actually residents of Duncan. Most incumbent Duncan council members live outside Duncan and do not pay taxes in Duncan.

I am a Duncan resident and taxpayer and I believe Duncan residents and taxpayers should be represented on Duncan council by other Duncan residents, instead of the current situation in which the majority of our Duncan city council members live outside the City of Duncan.

My three primary issues are:

1. Taxation, particularly new taxation of Duncan residents being proposed by the CVRD in the two referendum questions placed on the ballet this fall by the CVRD regarding new taxation for the Cowichan Housing Association and a new CVRD water authority.

I will be voting “No” on both CVRD referendum questions on the ballot and I believe Duncan council members must take a stronger stand against future proposals by the CVRD for new taxation of Duncan residents.

Local taxpayers are already taxed to the max yet the CVRD wants to place new taxes on Duncan residents;

2. Retaining control of Duncan’s water and utilities — Duncan currently owns and controls its own water and sewer systems. The CVRD wants to create new regional authorities to oversee and control these services and also tax City of Duncan residents to pay for these new CVRD authorities. I believe Duncan city council must take a more assertive position than it is currently taking to protect these City of Duncan services against encroachment from the CVRD.

3. Housing — many working people and seniors are having difficulty finding affordable housing in Duncan. I believe Duncan needs to look at housing measures such as making it easier to have secondary suites in existing houses and new infill structures on existing lots while, at the same time, keeping Duncan’s current livability and character of low density and low rise structures.

Some employers are having difficulty getting new employees to expand their businesses because new employees have difficulty getting housing in Duncan.

I believe Duncan council needs to look at these issues very seriously in collaboration with the Municipality of North Cowichan.

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