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?
Responses to the question: "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?"
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3 Candidate Responses (top)
|Candidate||Brief Response||Full Response|
|Behrens, Chris||No||I do not support the urban sprawl around the airport. However, as we all know, we do have a huge poverty issue in this city, we need jobs and a lager tax revenue that does not come from the home, or business owner. If there is an alternate solution, perhaps building upwards, opposed to outwards, that would be great. I would support that.|
|Knowles, Steven||No||No I do not support that plan. We are stretch ourselves thin. While I support responsible development, that is uncalled for at this time.|
|Yan, Nathalie Xian Yi||No||I oppose the plan, as it is a myopic public strategy. First, I believe that the city's layout should stay as it is for 20 years to preserve our arable land, besides, we have not taken fully use of our existing infrastructure.
The land is most precious and competitive resources in the further. We save it for our offspring. We should focuses on channeling growth into areas with existing infrastructure. We have lots of empty factories, and it is ridiculous that we are allegedly looking for employment land.
We already have an unbalanced city budget, if we cannot fix the problem in the first place, How can we be sure that this unemployment epidemic would not spread to the so-called "employment land"? Enhancing the battle effectiveness is far more important than opening up a new battle field.
In most cases, city sprawl is driven by population growth. We do not have an over-crowed population density. On the contrary, we need a higher population density to prosper. Therefore what we should do is to reduce the taxes, lower the business expenses, encouraging the investment of sunrise industries, etc.
Second, the plan reports are not convincing, and it could put taxpayers in hock for decades with zero benefit to the economy. Dillon Consulting and Community Liaison Committee have been working on this proposal since 2007. Even after reading their latest report, I still feel I am not convinced. According to Dillon Consulting, 55% capital costs associated with the AEGD will be funded through development charges, 33% are from developer, and the rest 12% are from taxpayer. The high costs of settlement may have adverse effect on the intention to attract more business and settlers.
Once again, if elected, I will not vote for it unless I believe that will be in the best long term interest of the tax payers of Hamilton.
On the other hand, it may drive up taxes. Many communities are subsidizing new development in the form of new roads, water and sewer lines, schools, emergency services and other infrastructure or services. They are also subsidizing growth by offering incentives to new businesses or industries that locate there, often sacrificing tax revenues needed to serve existing residents and businesses. I would not tolerate this.
Response Summary (top)
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3 Candidates Have Not Responded (top)