Larry Storm, Candidate for Ward 5 in Hamilton Municipal Election 2014

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Candidate Details (top)

NameStorm, Larry
ElectionHamilton Municipal Election 2014
AreaWard 05
Email larry@larrystorm.ca
Website http://larrystorm.ca
BioI like to say that I’m just a guy, but I’m much more than that.

I’m blue collar, having been a meat cutter since I was 17. I learned from my dad and he gave me the foundation to learn more and become exceptional at what I do. Hamilton became my home 6 years ago and the city has definitely welcomed me!

I’m a father and a husband, I’m at the Y twice a week taking my soon to be 18 month old son to swimming lessons and my 10 year old daughter to swimming and karate. I’m am hopefully giving them the foundation to be able to take care of themselves when they’re on their own.

I’m a runner, having been in over 30 races ranging from 5k’s to full marathons since 2010. I’ll probably never win, but when a person crosses the finish line after consistent training you’re a rock star.

I bike, I camp, I fish, I bowl. I do many of the same things you do day in and day out.

I’m concerned about the future here. The opportunities are out there if we look for them and ask for them. But we have this mentality that things will be the way they will. I don’t believe that. There’s always a tomorrow and there’s alway opportunity!

I want made in Hamilton answers for Hamilton issues and advancement. I want the worlds best road based transit system in Hamilton. I want to provincial and federal government to be straight up with us we need to and hold them accountable for what they offer and promise. We should expect no less!

We need to work with land owners and business owners to create affordable housing answers, small industrial spaces that have shared spaces, and entrepreneurial, start up visionary space.

I am 24/7 accessible. My phone is always on and never far from my side.

So my question to you is what do you want Hamilton to be in 10-40 years?

Let’s take Hamilton By STORM!

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Responses to Questions (top)

QuestionBrief ResponseFull Response
Do you support converting more of Hamilton's one-way thoroughfares into complete, two-way streets that support walking, cycling and transit? No I have walked downtown and I've biked downtown and I see no issue with the one way streets. Hamilton is famous for the, "Green wave!" It's something that's uniquely Hamilton. I can drive from my old job near Macmaster to home using the green wave as it did to take the 403/QEW. Not many places can say that for city streets. The speedy commute would help transit, would it not? I am currently of the opinion that there may be more benefits to one way streets than disadvantages.
Do you support an expanded role for Hamilton to provide more affordable housing? If so, what should Hamilton do? Yes The city should adopt a strategy that will allow for tiny houses and/or campers on private property. The tiny house movement is the perfect answer for housing for couples and singles on small lots. Hamilton needs to look to organizations like Habitat for Humanity to help with a master plan that will encourage the construction or re-development of small homes in existing neighbourhoods. The key to a plan should be the emphasis that the end goal is home ownership.
The Province has shelved a proposal to build a mid-peninsula highway from Niagara Falls or Fort Erie around Hamilton to connect with Hwy 401 or 407 north of Burlington. Do you agree with the Province's decision to put its development on hold? Yes This is a hindrance to people of south Niagara more than anywhere else (currently). Yes it theoretically eliminates a possible future urban boundary. But I think there is opportunity here. Here we have a chance, for a while anyway to look back into the city for redevelopment of light industrial and residential areas. We can also look at the land south of the current urban boundary and encourage sustainable, local farming. We can be a major metropolitan area that can provide a significant percentage of its food locally! How amazing would that be!
Do you support the city's plan to build an east-west light rail transit (LRT) line with full capital funding from the Province? No I am of the opinion that when everything is ready that the province will back out of the commitment. No contract has been signed. I am also of the opinion that the route is flawed. There are parts of the planned route that wouldn't allow any traffic other than the rail cars. This is not good planning. The argument that there will be an economic boom at stops may be true, but what about the businesses along the route that will lose business because ease of ingress and egress to their parking lots will significantly reduced.

We need a now solution to improving transit to all the communities. The near term answer would be more buses, more hybrid buses and bi-articulating buses and implementing all the BLAST routes for under 100 million.

If we can start BLAST as first a bus system and then look at LRT/BRT as evolutions of the system. I think we need to build ridership before we look at LRT, because as I mentioned the province is not as eager as they were before the election.
The Province plans to allow municipalities to use ranked ballots in future elections. If so, will you vote to adopt ranked ballots in Hamilton? No I know this is how political parties pick a candidate or leader. Are we looking at second and third ballots as well in this concept? I had a debate with a friend who is a proponent of this concept who ran for the Green Party in Niagara Falls, and he concludes his argument with the statement that results in most cases won't be different. If the results of ranked ballots won't be any different than first past the pole, why change it? We need to engage citizens to get interested in government again! Many people have turned government into a political laughing stock. It's that laughing stock that has become the main reason people don't vote.
Do you believe City Hall should be more accessible to Hamilton residents? If so, what steps would you take to achieve this? Yes Any city is the citizens city, not the politicians city. We need people in government who understand, as many have in the past that the resident is the politicians boss. City council is not the director of the city. I will be 24/7 available. I will be in the community, working for my ward residents and the residents of Hamilton as a whole. I'm approachable in every way possible and if I don't have an answer instantly, I know I'll have one soon.
Do you believe Hamilton should do more to protect and enhance its built heritage? Yes We have a lot of great buildings in Hamilton. For many it's a tourist destination to go see Victorian, or Queen Anne architecture. We need to come up with a plan that celebrates antique, heritage and unique structures. Not necessarily with designations, but giving property owners the right to enhance their properties with some sort of benefit.
The City's Cycling Master Plan is up for review. Do you support improving the plan to speed the installation of cycling facilities and provide more high-quality protected infrastructure like the new Cannon Street cycle track? Yes There definitely needs to be work done on Hamilton's cycling plan. My cycling commute to work is along the Beach Strip to Burlington and it is a good 48 minute ride. It's not the case riding in town. Some routes would be well served with cycling only lanes and in area's where road space is at a premium we can use divided lines to at the very least ensure a safe track for all cyclists. We need to get all parties interested involved. Police services, cycling unions and concerned residents need to work together to come up with a system that A) gives cyclists a safe route, B) ensures that all cyclists abide by the law and C) continues to allow a positive flow of all other traffic.
Do you support implementing a Vision Zero for Hamilton, with a goal of eliminating all pedestrian and cyclist deaths on our streets? If so, what specific actions would you take to implement this policy, and if not, why? Yes Ensure that cyclists follow all traffic laws is number one. Most cyclists obey the laws, but the ones that don't normally get hurt. Lane splitting, running ambers/red lights are a highway traffic act offense and should be dealt with the same way an automobile violation is. We can look at changing the time count between light changes, from the 4 we are used to, to a 6 count giving pedestrians and cyclists an extra second or two to complete their cross.
Do you support the use of participatory budgeting to allow ward residents to propose and vote on local capital projects? Yes For city owned/city run projects we should always have the ability to through whatever we can contribute to a project. As I mentioned earlier, this isn't council's city, this is our city! We have an annual budget in the hundreds of millions of dollars. If more people were giving their input in budgeting and capital projects there would be less crony ism, more accountability, transparency and hopefully more ownership of our city.