Liban Abdi, Candidate for Ward 2 in Hamilton Municipal Election 2010

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Candidate Details (top)

NameAbdi, Liban
ElectionHamilton Municipal Election 2010
AreaWard 02
Email liban.abdi@libanabdi.ca
Website http://www.libanabdi.ca

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Responses to Questions (top)

QuestionBrief ResponseFull Response
For your campaign, will you be accepting donations from corporations or unions? If so, why? If not, why not? No I have made conscious decision not to accept any campaign donations from unions and corporations. My reason is, I wish to ensure transparency and act in the best interest of the people I am representing. Also wish to avoid any direct or indirect influence however small that may arise out of such donations.

This is not a very difficult decision to make. Yes I understand campaigns nowadays cost a lot, but the people's work is above all.
Is Hamilton doing enough to support and encourage new investment in our older neighbourhoods? If not, what should the City be doing? No As someone who worked in Ward 2 for the last 17 years and have engaged in both social and business community. I am not impressed with the level of support for new investments. I have personally worked with individuals who have brought in investment from overseas and attempted to open business in Hamilton.

It was such a difficult journey for this person going through the number of zoning, by-laws and red-tape in order to open a recycling plant. He finally left for West of Hamilton. Similar challenges exist in older neighborhoods.

It is frustrating for someone to open a business in Hamilton. I believe first, reduce red-tape, cut down the multiple fees associated, which is a form a taxation. Offer incentives for new investors such reduction in property taxes for small businesses and offer business guidance that is accessible.
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? Maybe I do support LRT system for Hamilton. However with current proposal, there are number of questions that remain unanswered. How many passengers or ridership are expected to use the LRT system? Would cost of building LRT worth the benefit for long run and how long will it take for this benefit to be realized vs. the $800 million plus that would it cost to build? Do we have to close King St from Wellington?

What about enhancing the B-line express bus system which would cost far less money for taxpayers. My biggest concern would be over the long run, maintenance and servicing cost who would pay for it and where would the money come from?

What I would do is to ensure first that there are enough passengers for LRT system that make it worth while of an investment for our city. Ensure that we do not lose King street businesses as a trade off. Conduct cost analysis study for long term sustainability and if it is a wise investment. Could this money be used for other investments that would yield far more benefits for the city? I would hate to see a moving target as we have seen over the stadium issue in terms cost of building and committing to a large scale project.