Andrew Haines, Candidate for Mayor in Hamilton Municipal Election 2010

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Candidate Details (top)

NameHaines, Andrew
ElectionHamilton Municipal Election 2010
Email Andrew_420Graphics@msn.com
Website http://AndrewForHamiltonMayor2010.com

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Responses to Questions (top)

QuestionBrief ResponseFull Response
Many observers argue that Council meetings could be more respectful and professional. Do you agree? If so, what will you do to change this? Yes Answer to part one of your question: I agree.

Answer to part two of your question: Everything I can.

Passing an Eagle Feather between the speakers may be a good start.

In executive aboriginal circles, it is customary to pass the Eagle Feather amongst the speakers.

If you have the Eagle Feather: it's your turn to speak and everyone listens.

If you don't have the Eagle Feather: it's your turn to keep silent and let the one who has the Eagle Feather speak.

...ok, it may not work with the White Man; we're just too ornery, selfish and boisterous to be quelled by a feather.

But it's an idea, though.

Do you support Hamilton's LRT proposal? If so, what will you do to ensure Hamilton's success in building LRT? If not, why do you oppose it? No I used to work as a Bus Driver for the Hamilton Street Railway from 1988 to 2001 and every day that I worked there, I wished that the HSR still had streetcars on the road.

I think that Streetcars are cool!

I am a railway nut: I like trains, big or small.

I wanted to drive a Hamilton Streetcar SOOO bad; it hurt.

Unfortunately, the Streetcar had been absent from Hamilton streets for many, many years before I started at the HSR and they were unlikely to return any time soon.

So, WHY am I opposed to the installation of an LRT system in Hamilton?

I have several reasons:

1: The concept that the HSR cannot possibly provide timely, efficient and economical service to Hamiltonians WITHOUT the installation of an LRT system is utter horse feathers!

2: The five routes in the system could cost up to $500,000,000.00! (Yeah, like we have THAT kind of coin in our pockets!)

3: Streetcars, although really cool-looking and (I'm sure) fun to drive, STILL get delayed by other road traffic: they cannot magically levitate off their tracks and float over that congestion, gridlock or the fender-bender on the road ahead.

4: The entire concept of Hamilton getting an LRT system has been shoved-down our Hamiltonian throats in a very-similar way to how the "Stadium" debate has been shoved-up our Hamiltonian butts and I don't like the spin-doctoring surrounding the LRT system AT ALL!

5: The money needed for an LRT system could be better spent on things like health care for our Senior citizens.

However if that amount of money MUST be spent on transit, I believe that the City should acquire every fleet taxicab in town, call them HSR vehicles, replace them, by attrition, with electric hybrids of similar size and finally have the HSR provide value-added, door-to-door service INSTEAD of spending Billions on an LRT system which will NOT provide more efficient service than what is being provided now.
Some cities have committed recently to publishing their public data in an open format that citizens can directly access. Should Hamilton pledge to become an "open source city"? Why or why not? Yes Yes, we should endeavour to become an open source City. However, I believe that would only be one step toward Saving the City. We need Transparency, as opposed to Opacity. WE need to become involved in Government like never before.

As yourself: "Can we all govern?"

Participative Government. Picture this: in the process of checking your daily e-mails, you get a link to the City of Hamilton's daily issues page. There, you see the issues that City Council will be dealing with that day. One by one, you click on the issues and read about them. Then you vote on them. Then you confirm your choices and click "ok" and close the page. Then you move or delete the e-mail and carry-on with your day.

You've just participated in the actual functioning of your City Council: your vote is collected along with hundreds of thousands of other Hamiltonian votes and is used to guide the direction of Council.

If you like this idea, you may like my website: AndrewForHamiltonMayor2010.com
The City of Hamilton has committed to doubling transit ridership by 2020. Do you support this goal? If so, how would you realize it? Yes How about we double the transit ridership by 2011 instead?

1st: Expand the service to the outlying communities forthwith. That means REAL transit service, NOT a single, almost empty bus driving around the perimeter of Waterdown, for example. REAL transit across the entire Greater Hamilton Area.

2nd: Lower the base fare to $2.00 and charge $0.25 for a 120 minute transfer.

3rd: Acquire a fleet of electric taxicabs and use them as HSR transit vehicles, providing value-added door-to-door service for less than a "regular cab" would charge. (doing so would ALSO lower the overall emissions from the HSR as a whole.)

Basically: make it silly to NOT take public transit.
Is Hamilton doing enough to support and encourage new investment in our older neighbourhoods? If not, what should the City be doing? No Everything they possibly can!
Should we spend the Future Fund to build a Pan Am / Ticat stadium on the CP Rail Yard lands? Why or why not? No No, we should not. We have more important responsibilities, like feeding clothing and sheltering or poorest citizens.

Giving our poor a chance at having a real future is more important than building anew stadium with the future fund.

ESPECIALLY when you consider that our Current City Council HAD an offer of FREE MONEY from the Feds and the Province, yet our Council gave the upper levels of government a hard time.

Despite the powers that be; giving Hamilton extension after extension, our City Council has STILL managed to find a way of screwing things up for all of us!

Don't get me wrong, I'd love to see a new stadium built to house our Tiger Cats, I just think that taking care of each other is more important.
Hamilton's Cycling Master Plan has Council approval. However, the implementation timeline is very long and ward councillors can block individual bike lane projects. Do you support accelerating the completion of a continuous bicycle network and other initiatives like a bike sharing program and better access up and down the Escarpment? Why or why not? Yes Yes, I support accelerating the completion of a continuous bicycle network and other initiatives like a bike sharing program and better access up and down the Escarpment.

For the longest time, Brantford was the MOST bicycle-friendly City in Ontario while Hamilton was the most bicycle-UNfriendly City. In recent years, that has changed somewhat. Hamilton NEEDS to be extremely bicycle-friendly, as soon as possible.

I ride a bicycle from time to time, and when I do, I marvel at how comparatively few injuries and fatalities are experienced by Hamilton cyclists.
Do you believe that poverty is the most critical issue facing Hamilton today? If so, please outline your solutions. If not, please explain your reasons. No No, poverty is the second most critical issue facing Hamilton.

The MOST critical issue facing Hamilton is the deliberate avoidance of public involvement in the process of guiding the actions of City Councillors. Once elected, politicians typically ignore those who have just installed them in Office.

I am advocating a system by which, the average Hamiltonian has a REAL say in how Hamilton runs.

Based upon the model of "facebook", "hammerbook" could easily allow the average Hamiltonian to participate in the decision-making process at City Hall and, for example, would substantially reduce the amount of money that our City Council spends on "consultants".

I guarantee: Hamiltonians care more about each-other than we give ourselves credit for. Just look at the number of social outreach programs which are active in this community; if we didn't care, we wouldn't have these programs.

I'm certain that given the opportunity to help, the average Hamiltonian will not only do so, they will do so with gusto!

How many people out there would be willing to take-in a homeless child and feed them, wash their clothing and let them have a shower and a warm bed or couch to sleep on and who'd also be happy to feed them breakfast in the morning before wishing them well, on their way out the door?

I'd be willing to bet that the number of willing people is in the tens of thousands!
For your campaign, will you be accepting donations from corporations or unions? If so, why? If not, why not? No The answer to your question is "no, thank-you".

I believe that by accepting a corporate or union donation would leave me vulnerable to the influence of the donor and would, thus, create a conflict of interest for me, before I even get started.

I believe that Hamilton is the centre of the universe, I would like to be its leader and I wish to run an honest campaign which treats everyone fairly.

"Love All, Serve All" is one of the very best mottos that I've ever heard. It's the Hard Rock Cafe's motto and I have adopted it for my campaign.
Will your term change people's first impression of Hamilton, and make that first impression more attractive to visitors, students, commuters and newcomers? If so, how? Yes If Hamilton became known as the City which is, truly, guided by its own citizens.,

If Hamiltonians were given the opportunity to love each-other and to help each other just a little more than they already do.,
If Hamilton NO LONGER NEEDED to have homeless shelters or soup wagons.,
If Hamilton had easy access to affordable and efficient transit.,
If Hamilton RE-emerged as the "Centre of the Universe", THE place to be, THE place to work, THE place to raise a family and THE place to invest-in, what would ALL that say about those of us here, in the Hammer?

As I have asked countless times: PLEASE visit www.UsNowfilm.com and see exactly what I want to introduce to Hamilton.

And remember: "Career Politicians" are a lot like diapers: they need to be changed often and for the same reason.
Council is poised to vote on the Airport Employment Growth District, a 3,000 acre plan to expand the urban boundary around Hamilton International Airport for employment lands. Do you support this plan? Why or why not? Yes Yes, I agree with the concept of the Airport Employment Growth District. We have an International Airport and I believe that it and the lands around it are crucial for the economic development and prosperity of Hamilton.