Mohini Singh is running for re-election.
“I feel there is a ton of work left to do,” she said. “I have to keep my sleeves rolled up and be ready to dive in and do my best.”
Crime, affordable housing, high-rises, agriculture and traffic are just a few of the issues she is focused on.
“One of the things I firmly believe, we need to get the appropriate number of police officers to take care of our city, but we also need to be vigilant as a community,” she said.
Singh added council has heard loud and clear about the need for attainable, affordable housing and the shortage of rentals in the city.
“We as a council have approved so many rental units, yet there is still such a demand.”
Another problem the city has is the lack of room to grow in terms of space, Singh said, referring to the fact that nearly 40 per cent of Kelowna is in the agricultural land reserve.
“A certain portion of our city is on mountainside so we have a permanent growth boundary,” she added. “So it leaves us scrambling to find housing.”
Singh said development has shifted from building city centre to going up.
“But not everyone wants to live in a high-rise. It’s a question of juggling all those requirements and building a healthy, inclusive city.”
She added that she believes council needs to carefully and properly manage high-rise development in the city.
“We seem to be going higher and higher, and once it’s built we can’t take them down. So we need to make sure we have our policies straight.”
Maintaining the green belt and agriculture are also issues Singh says she will focus on if re-elected. Especially when it comes to orchards and farms coexisting with residential neighbourhoods.
“I want to make sure we do everything in a sensitive manner so people can live next door and farmers can continue their business.”
Traffic congestion and transportation in the city and the region are also concerns for Singh.
“Is it time to begin a robust discussion on a second crossing (Okanagan Lake)?” questioned Singh. “We need to start pushing the government harder for help with other roadways to help take the pressure off Highway 97.”
Interest in October’s municipal election seems to be high – as to date, eight people have indicated an interest in running for mayor and 42 have picked up nomination papers for councillor.
“To me, it indicates the desire of the members in our community to feel they want to be part of the future of Kelowna,” said Singh. “So that’s a very good thing.”