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Lisa Helps | Victoria | Mayor

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#1 Mike K.

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 05:46 PM

City of Victoria councillor Lisa Helps has announced she will seek position of Mayor of the City of Victoria in the 2014 election. In the 2011 election Helps placed 3rd out of eight council positions.

 

Website: http://www.lisahelpsvictoria.ca/


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#2 Baro

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 08:32 AM

I sadly have to admit I've sort of "unplugged" from civic politics and issues since the last election, but from what has managed to filter down to me, Helps has been one of the least offensive on council.


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#3 Mike K.

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 09:06 AM

I like her. I'm not impressed she voted for the speed limit reduction but otherwise she's exactly the sort of person we need in power.

She's taking a MASSIVE risk running for mayor but you have to respect her for that.
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#4 Nparker

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 09:19 AM

My opinions about re-electing incumbants notwithstanding, given (only) a choice between Mayor McCheese and Ms. Helps, the latter would get my vote. I seem to forget, has ANYONE else made public their intention to run for mayor of Victoria? 


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#5 Mike K.

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 09:28 AM

A few fringe candidates will no doubt.

I hope Chong has given up.
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#6 29er Radio

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 09:45 AM

since I conduct a podcast with lisa which I post for all of you wonderful Vibrant Victorians to listen too, my opinion doesn't count for much. However, what I think I can say fairly generically is that she is very attentive to experts on subjects that matter, she did her post secondary schooling on land use and how it affects society, she is pretty flipping smart, ( I interviewed her for my other show "Growler Hour" see www.29erradio.com) which doesn't mean she will be a good mayor, but it does mean that she understands critical thinking and since I have known her, she has been mature enough to see where her logic is faulty and has altered her opinions accordingly.

 

What drives me crazy about most politicians is they think that what they think is right and unassailable. We need human beings who understand their short comings and use them to ask better questions of the experts so they can make informed decisions for all of us who pay taxes to run the city. 


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#7 Nparker

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 10:36 AM

Since I conduct a podcast with Lisa which I post for all of you wonderful Vibrant Victorians to listen to, my opinion doesn't count for much. However, what I think I can say, fairly generically, is that she is very attentive to experts on subjects that matter...

And yet, did she not also go against the advice of the experts at City Hall who recommended NOT moving to 40 km/h speed limits?


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#8 Mike K.

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 11:31 AM

Yeah that's what sort of rubs me the wrong way as well.

Is there more to this limits thing then just a reaction to the safety brigade?

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#9 sebberry

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 01:21 PM

Is there more to this limits thing then just a reaction to the safety brigade?

 

The unanimous, support any iteration at all cost approach seems to suggest there is, doesn't it?


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#10 Mike K.

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 03:30 PM

Sure does. It's like it's a piece of a bigger puzzle but nobody dares open that can of worms until after the election because, you know, in Victoria our elected officials bring us up to speed on their agendas only AFTER getting elected.


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#11 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 12:10 PM

Helps has opened a very nice campaign office on Fort St.  South side, in the 900 block maybe (?).  Or 1,000 block maybe.  I forget.



#12 Szeven

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 07:17 AM

I personally like this policy of hers:

 

Year three: Explore innovation in affordable housing including shipping container developments, tiny homes, and opportunities for rent-to-own or other programs to make home-ownership more affordable for first-time buyers.

 

I'm not sure what exactly that is a year three proposal, but I would like to see the trend of smaller and smaller units continue.



#13 Baro

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 07:21 AM

Rent to own is a horrible policy.  Who is advising her?


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#14 Mike K.

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 07:30 AM

Remind me why low income earners need to own homes? Is living in a shipping containers that you "own" really the solution to high housing prices?

Why not allow greater heights and densities to give developers the ability to offer a wide range of unit pricing? Yeesh, Victoria has to make everything so darned difficult but the affordability problem is one we could solve immediately if we only stopped creating the very barriers that lead to the problems we're trying to solve.
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#15 lanforod

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 07:30 AM

Rent to own is a horrible policy.  Who is advising her?

Depends on the terms. It can be great.



#16 Nparker

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 07:32 AM

...I would like to see the trend of smaller and smaller units continue.

Yeah why stop at shipping containers? Fridges come in pretty decently-sized boxes; for families of course. A single person doesn't really need any more space than a dishwasher or stove box.


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#17 Mike K.

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 07:35 AM

Hey, here's a thought, instead of calling a rental project in North Park the "most difficult decision of this term" why not call it the easiest decision one could ever make?

Politicians will kill housing proposals then lament the lack of housing. It's unreal.
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#18 Baro

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 07:40 AM

Housing prices are high because of high land values and an access to ridiculously cheap and easy credit (which she can't change).  Containers and renting to own address none of that.  Low density developments that use lots of land but don't provide a lot of units are not going to address housing.  Micro-houses are a feel-good fad.  If you want to address housing issues via policy, allow more and denser residential development.  If you want to create affordable housing you have to buy it, because the market can not produce affordable housing at a profit and it must be subsidized.  We have some excellent not-for-profit affordable housing groups in town, they just need more funding.  Ownership right now is financially idiotic, a horrible thing to saddle on people in need of affordable housing and a wasteful thing to subsidize.

 

Housing is also a long term investment with a long cycle.  Those expensive rentals today can be normal priced in 10 years and affordable in 20 depending on how the building evolves.  The key here is to not allow bottlenecks in demand by doing stupid things like voting no to dense rental housing in a walkable area next to downtown.  But no one who states they are concerned about housing and auto-dependence would do such a thing so no worry there.


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#19 Mike K.

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 07:52 AM

Secondary suites make land affordable. I refuse to believe that $500k for a house is unattainable, you just have to be more creative. Can't make ends meet with a $500k property? Then find one that can help with the mortgage with one or two suites.

This stuff isn't rocket science but our politicians have this notion that affordability means cheap. Affordability is what you make it, IMO. Just get out of our way and stop siphoning money from our pockets for subsidized housing that robs Peter to pay Paul. There are institutions like Cool Aid that do what they do and do it well, now let them do their job (but alas the latest proposal for a Cool Aid building was recently criticized at City Hall for it's less than stellar aesthetics -- for real?).

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#20 Baro

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 08:08 AM

We've seen affordable housing struck down for every reason under the sun yet it remains at the top of every politician's stated concerns.  When it comes to housing our city talks the talk but doesn't walk the walk.  I learned this early on when I was involved in a rental project that was going to replace an under-used surface parking lot in James Bay.  Fortin had just been elected and I was excited because I was at an event where he gave a speech exactly supporting in-fill, specially on under-used parking lots.  Our project would have been one of the first rentals built in the city for 30 years, so clearly it would get support.  Only 4 stories too, and almost all the neighbours were 4 story apartments.  A slam dunk right?

 

Nope, the owners of the 4 houses across the street raised a huge fuss and city hall decided they didn't want touch it.

 

Now we come to a similar situation, with a politician who claims to support such things...  I think history will repeat itself.  Victoria loves to TALK about housing, and promise to build more housing "somewhere", but when that "somewhere" finally becomes a specific place in the city,there's always something wrong with it.  Our politicians love the abstract idea of building more housing, but hate the specific projects and locations.


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