Trevor Halford, BC Liberal Party, Surrey-White Rock
1) The City of Surrey’s decision to transition to a municipal police force has raised concerns among constituents over costs and transparency. How would you address these? Is a public referendum the answer?
A: I have heard concerns from numerous residents in Surrey that they want a direct say in how Surrey policing will be delivered in the future. Our commitment is to pause the process on policing, provide all the information available, and then let Surrey residents decide. Our government will ensure a referendum is held for Surrey residents to directly decide.
2) Covid-19 has exposed some cracks in the system with regard to seniors’ health – particularly those in long-term care. What approach would you favour in dealing with this?
A: COVID-19 has had heartbreaking impacts on our long-term care facilities and assisted living residences. I have relatives in long-term care and I have seen first hand how the NDP government has not delivered for our elders. The BC Liberals have proposed a $1 billion capital program to upgrade our assisted and long-term care facilities - making life more comfortable and safe for anyone who chooses to live in one. If you decide to live in your home, a BC Liberal government would provide a new Seniors Home Care Tax Credit so you can save your money.
3) What is the best path to take in helping B.C. and the Semiahmoo Peninsula in its economic recovery, and for supporting business during, and after, the COVID-19 pandemic?
A: Families need a break from that tax so they can invest in their families rather than give more money to Victoria. Over and above the increased consumer spending from the elimination of the PST, a BC Liberal government would eliminate the small business tax - every small business in Surrey - White Rock is pinching pennies to get through this tough time and they deserve a government that recognizes that. At a time of such uncertainty, there’s no room for half measures. That’s why a BC Liberal government that I’m part of will immediately eliminate the PST for one year and then keep it at 3% the following year.
4) What would you like to see done to improve educational facilities, and to address ongoing school overcrowding, in the riding?
A: John Horgan promised to eliminate portables in Surrey. He broke his promise. Surrey - White Rock deserves an MLA who won’t make promises just to get elected and then immediately forget about the promises that they made to voters. I will fight for Surrey - White Rock and ensure that we get our fair share of education dollars so our kids have the education that they deserve.
• ALSO RUNNING IN SURREY-WHITE ROCK
5) What is/are the most pressing environmental concern(s) for residents in the riding and how would it/they be best addressed?
A: We believe our natural environment must be protected for future generations – we owe it to our kids to make sure that we leave things in better shape than we found them. Our goal is for B.C. to lead the world in respecting our air, land, and water – as we did when taking bold steps like introducing North America’s first revenue-neutral carbon tax.
6) Strata dwellers in B.C. saw a sharp rise in their insurance rates over a single year, with Metro Vancouver residents seeing an average increase of more than 50 per cent. Has the current government done enough to address this issue. If not, what other steps should be taken?
A: The NDP have abandoned homeowners facing further economic hardship due to huge insurance rate increases. In fact, the BC Liberals proposed a dozen solutions to the NDP government to address this growing crisis and were ignored. My BC Liberal colleagues and I will bring in real solutions for homeowners.
7) Transportation continues to be a concern for local commuters. What can and should be done at a provincial level to help relieve gridlock?
A: Immediately replace the George Massey tunnel with a 10-lane bridge. Shamefully, the NDP cancelled the project when it was already underway; we’ll get shovels back in the ground.
8) What is/are the most pressing health care concern(s) for residents in the riding and how would it/they be best addressed?
A: One of my biggest priorities is to work with a BC Liberal government to build a second hospital for Surrey. Surrey and White Rock are growing at such a fast pace we need health care services that keep up. This means shorter wait times and improved access for our everyone. The NDP dithered on building a second hospital –a second hospital is one of my first priorities.
9) Would you support a cap on the percentage increase in rent/lease rates that commercial landlords in B.C. could impose upon tenants in a single year? Why or why not?
A: My family built their small businesses right here in both South Surrey and White Rock. I will work with municipalities and regional governments to find solutions to pressing problems, including commercial rents and leases. I know first-hand that small businesses are the heart of our communities and we need to make it easier for them to succeed.