Michael Pattison, Candidate for Mayor in Hamilton Municipal Election 2018

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Candidate Details (top)

NamePattison, Michael
ElectionHamilton Municipal Election 2018
Email inquiries@michaelapattison.com
Website http://michaelapattison.com/
BioMy name is Michael Andrew Pattison, but you may know me as Homegrown Mike. I was born and raised in Hamilton, I’m a father to two girls, stepdad to one, one of four children to a hard working mother (Heather), who is employed in the transportation industry, and a son to my late father (Gary), who worked for Stelco.

My resume will demonstrate that I have held many roles in my professional life, including running successful businesses ranging from a designated driving company to more recently a beloved café in downtown Hamilton – Homegrown Hamilton.

Engaging in political dialogue has been a passion of mine since my youth. I follow the issues and get involved where I can. I have a great passion for this city and many outside of the box thoughts on how to move us forward and be self-sufficient in an ever evolving world.

The connections I have made with the community and businesses during my ownership of Homegrown Hamilton were sincere and lasting. I know firsthand what it’s like to work with various city departments, and how to manage and create a business that people still miss and talk about very fondly to this day.

The closure of Homegrown Hamilton has created a large void in the core and throughout Hamilton in general. From the dialogue, the music, art, poetry, craft beers, an onsite coffee roaster brewing fair trade organic beans, food made with love and local produce and meats, my café was a favoured space in Hamilton for these reasons and so many more.

Homegrown Hamilton was a place where people gathered, shared their thoughts, ideas, dreams, passions, and where so many met to discuss their advocacy around the city. Most of all, it was an environment where everyone from all walks of life could just be themselves and feel welcome.

I knows the issues. I have worked extremely hard both as a contractor and business owner. 46 years is a long time to get to know a City, it’s people, it’s successes, and it’s challenges.

You can be confident in knowing I have the knowledge, the skills, the passion, and the dedication to build a City that can withstand the challenges of the near and distant future, through being a trusted leader and building strong relationships with city staff, councilor colleagues, Provincial and Federal representatives and departments, and the various partners and agencies Hamilton deals with on a daily basis.

Most of all, I will be successful through the relationships I build with you.

Best of luck to all candidates for Mayor, Ward Councilor, and School Board Trustees. See you on the campaign trail. Let’s work together to make Hamilton a place that is home to all people, a place to thrive, a place to raise our children, a place to achieve our goals and dreams, and a place that continues to be a dynamic and forward-moving city.

I am ready to be your Mayor, and I am ready to make your challenges, concerns, and issues heard at City Hall, so you can live your life the way you deserve to- with dignity, respect, pride, and empowerment.

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Responses to Questions (top)

QuestionBrief ResponseFull Response
Do you support improved public transit in Hamilton? If so, what changes do you propose? If not, why not? Yes I support improved public transit and busing is the easiest solution to our needs. I would still like to see an answer for traversing the mountain and connecting the upper and lower city through transportation hubs at the cusp and base of the mountain. If LRT is commencing within our city, we absolutely require both an east-west and north-south vision.
Should Hamilton be trying to attract more young people to live, work and start businesses here, including the 60,000 students studying at Mohawk College, McMaster University and Redeemer University? If so, what should we be doing? If not, why not? Yes Personally, I feel that it's not just about trying to attract, but rather how do we continually stay attractive. Job growth, retention of graduates, and finding solutions to affordable housing are the primordial concerns that need to be addressed. Hamilton must focus on its place within Ontario and the future direction of our city. Once we have established our common role (Health Care, Shipping/Warehousing/Logistics, refuse, etc.) the proper investment strategies can help define and support local business and the opportunities they present.
Do you support the "Vision Zero" goal of eliminating traffic fatalities and serious injuries in Hamilton? If so, what specific actions would you take to implement this policy? If not, why not? Yes Vision Zero is a very commendable action strategy. I believe the city should have the right to be an underwriter/signatory on all auto insurance policies/driver licensing of those living within the Municipality. My rationality is that we, the citizens of Hamilton, should have the right to make someone uninsurable/license validity, if they amass to many infractions and/or obviously have no respect for the road or others. Drivers so easily forget that a car is a tool not a weapon. If used carelessly, the privilege of its use should be revoked. This also goes a long way to reducing auto insurance costs which are very high in this city compared with other municipalities.
Do you support phasing out area rating for transit? Why or why not? Yes It is not so much of; am I in favour of phasing out area rating for transit, as I am for proportionate representation. If any community areas are within a walking distance (10 mins) to a full service (every 30 minutes) bus route, then they should be paying equal and full taxation like everyone else in transit serviced Hamilton. On the flip side, I do believe all of Hamilton should be paying a percentage of transit. With the lowest percentage being 10% without any localized service. It would be more than fair to have un-serviced area transit monies being put into an open reserve for future services, added road repair and eventual growth of transit to the respected communities. We need to invest in One Hamilton.
Hamilton has been experiencing a slow-motion crisis in housing affordability. Do you support an expanded role for the City to provide more affordable housing? If so, what should Hamilton do? If not, why not? Yes I support the City of Hamilton expanding its role regarding affordable housing. As a child, I was raised in a culturally and economically diverse neighbourhood. The opportunity that’s been missed, has been blending social/affordable/inclusionary housing within new developments that have occurred over the past few decades. With the cost of real estate climbing and personal ownership declining, outside of the box or unconventional thinking must now be voiced and explored.

My continuing thought is always ‘how does the city “invest” in affordable housing?’ Engaging and partnering with local Architects/Building Consortiums and Financial Institutions is the vision I see for our planning practices moving forward. Pride of ownership should be the realistic goal of advancing Hamilton’s housing problems while keeping all parties profitable/sustainable through realistic return on investment(s).
Hamilton has a legacy of multi-lane, one-way arterial streets dating back to the 1950s. Do you support accelerating the conversion of these streets to two-way? Why or why not? Yes My opinion on this topic has been swayed over the years. Originally, I was against converting our one-way streets as I knew congestion was inevitable and my environmental stance was cars should be moving while polluting, not idling. Now I take the stand for conversion solely for the importance of mass transit. The way cities move must be adapted by all future generations.

I will make one more suggestion. Put pressure on the automotive/manufacturing sector for independent commuter vehicles. People are very different and every argument I have listened to over mass transit seems to come back to private spaces. Personal climate control, smells and even personal safety are securities that are controlled within one’s own vehicle. These vehicles should be produced with complimenting strategies of mass transit and fully compatible with the capabilities of all LRV/Transit options. Made in Hamilton maybe?
The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act mandates that cities must be completely accessible by 2025. What changes would you make to ensure Hamilton complies with this mandate? Yes First and foremost, let’s create the list of what is required to make Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities, and make it public. Everyone in this city should know the parameters of what it will take to move us forward to achieving all requirements within the Act. 2025 is only 7 years away. If we wish to see progress, allow all business, etc. the time to plan how to make proposed changes to their respective buildings/businesses at their pace allowing for planning and capital expenditures, before we can get into enforcement sometime around 2023/2024.
Council has voted dozens of times since 2008 to advance Hamilton's light rail transit (LRT) project, including voting to submit the plan with a full funding request to the Province in 2013, and voting to accept full funding and implementation from the Province in 2015. Do you support completing the LRT plan? Why or why not? Maybe The main issue I would like to see addressed regarding LRT, is the written commitment of construction consortiums and land owners that are planning to build along or close to the LRT route. Long term planning needs to know what is being added to our tax base. I want to know real numbers, not speculative windfalls. Letters of intent/commitment to building along or close to the improved infrastructure, with speculative timelines and/or applications. The argument that we do not have the ridership numbers is a good one and I want that addressed. Remember, Hamilton was raised as a car culture (subsequently built that way), and it is going to take real leadership to change the mentality and feelings of every generation to make this viable. Basically, show me the money and I can show you the future!
Since the 1950s, most new residential and commercial development in Hamilton has been single-use suburban sprawl. Do you believe Hamilton needs to concentrate new development within the already-built area? Why or why not? Yes All development in the City of Hamilton should be re-development in already built areas. First, the continuing cost for new infrastructure cannot continue as our existing infrastructure continues down the path of disrepair. Second, the need for food security in this ever changing climate must be addressed and all green space should be designated as such. Local farming should be an employment opportunity now, and secured for the future.
Bonus question: If LRT goes ahead, what will you do to ensure Hamilton receives the maximum benefit? Yes If construction consortiums and land owners commit to the building within the construction timetable of LRT, then they should be rewarded through incentives and/or reduced permit fees. I am hoping to showcase to Hamilton that when you get everyone on the same page, things can happen. My goal is to end the divisiveness that our city has faced going on 14 years now, and truly create a unified city that has vision and is ready for the future.
Global warming is an existential challenge facing humanity. Do you think Hamilton should play a role in addressing climate change? If so, what should the city be doing? If not, why not? Yes With climate change now rearing its head in so many directions, I don’t begin to have the answers but these are important conversations we need to be having. The city is finding out the hard way that planning and building for the fast-changing progression of climate change is real and we seem to be on the reactionary side of dealing with it. More permeable surfaces must be a top priority in dealing with precipitation. Public cooling and heating zones/kiosks must become a norm in this Municipality as well. City services such as waste collection and arterial road work should all be committed to the night time, trying to alleviate congestion, exhaust and CO2 levels.