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CANDIDATE: Christine Thompson (GF -- Council)
Please give a brief summary of who you are and why you have decided to run for office.
My name is Christine Thompson and I have lived in Grand Forks for 57 years, 42 of them as a taxpayer who pays the same taxes and rates as other residential property owners in our City. I have chosen to run for a seat on Council because I know that with my background and experience I can make a positive contribution to our community. Decisions I make would be based on what I believe to be the best for our community as a whole, taking into account all sides of an issue up for debate. Decisions I make and the reasons for them will be open and transparent.
What is your background? Have you held office before? What skills do you bring to the job if you are elected?
I worked for our City for 23 years, starting as an Accounting Clerk 11 and completing my career as Treasurer in 2003. In 2008, I ran for a seat on Council and was privileged to serve the City as a Councillor. In 2011 I challenged Mayor Taylor but was not successful in that endeavour. With my knowledge gained from both my employment and term in office, I have a solid understanding of how local government works, and the challenges a municipality faces when budgeting for the services the taxpayers expect to receive. I am a team player, a good listener and a good communicator.
I am committed to our City as I am a volunteer on many organizations. Currently I am the President of The Phoenix Foundation of the Boundary Communities; a Director and Assistant Treasurer of the Grand Forks Fall Fair Society; a member of the Gilpin Grasslands Committee, and from 2010 to 2014 the Secretary/Treasurer of the Boundary Restorative Justice Program. I also served for 2 years as the Chair of the Concerned Citizens for Community Health Care.
What do you think are the top three challenges facing the city/region/school district in the upcoming term?
In my opinion, the top three challenges facing our City are the following:
Monitoring the City’s asset management plan to ensure that our municipality remains at the top of the list when grants from senior levels of government become available to fund up to 2/3’s of the cost to upgrade and replace our aging infrastructure.
The availability of Child Care in the City for those parents who work 12 hour shifts, who work on an on-call basis, or who may have a child recovering from an illness and is no longer contagious but still unable to attend school was a major issue in the term when I was a Councillor. While I am aware that there are 2 licensed day care facilities in our community, parents that I and other members of Council met with said that they wanted to be able to choose who they wanted to look after their children. Licensed day-care, in some cases, were filled to capacity and unable to accept children.
The method to control urban deer in our City is a very controversial issue and one that must be dealt with by the next Council
How do you plan on addressing these challenges?
- Council needs to lobby senior levels of government by itself, through the AKBLG and the UBCM provincially and through the FCM federally to put funding into upgrading failing and aging infrastructure.
- Meet with parents impacted by child care issues for their input and prepare a resolution for Council to consider forwarding onto the AKBLG for their endorsement at the spring conference; then having the AKBLG submit it to the UBCM for approval at the annual conference in September.
- The outcome of the non-binding referendum question will provide guidance as to the wishes of the electorate and enable a decision to be made.
If you could describe yourself in three words what would they be?
Honest, reliable, responsible
What is the one thing that makes you stand out as a candidate? OR What is the one thing you want people to know about you?
I will take the time necessary to ensure that decisions I make will represent the community as a whole.