Black Press Media is reaching out to all candidates running for Lake Country council in the 2022 municipal election, asking them for their response to three specific issues in their community, as well as a fun question. Responses will be published in the order they are received.
Bill Scarrow - Incumbent councillor
If elected, how do you think council should manage growth and development of the district, while also providing affordable housing?
Growth is a fact of life for Lake Country. When you consider every road in our district, upon incorporation in 1995, was in need of repair to some degree. We had no sewer at all and four different water districts, among other issues. Add to that the record-setting growth we have experienced since then, (6,200 in 1995 to nearly 16,000 today). You can appreciate that our decisions on growth have to be balanced with catching up on our inherited infrastructure deficiencies. Upgrading, maintaining, and newly built projects all have to fix into the infrastructure budgets so in my opinion balance is the keyword.
What steps do you think council could take to help improve traffic flows and road infrastructure in the district?
The main problems with our traffic flows are the intersections on Highway 97, Beaver, Berry, and Crystal Water turn off , those projects are in provincial hands and continued advocacy is really our only option. As far as internal roads go, I feel a need to focus on the east-west connecting roads and the lack of connectivity. With sidewalks and trails, I put my focus on connecting schools to homes, to improving biking lanes on and off the roads and developing our Rail Trail and Pelmwalsh Parkway which has been a great economic boost for our district.
From cancelled routes to driver shortages, Lake Country is plagued with transit issues. What would be your solution to help solve them?
Because I am also a bus driver I will say the region that the contract covers is way too large , all the stakeholders need to co-operate and rethink how this service is delivered. The question should be; do we use a for-profit contractor to provide the service and extract that profit, or could we bring it in-house and invest that profit in better service?
Who is your favourite Okanagan celebrity and why?
James Baker is our retiring mayor. I have served on council with James for 18 years. His dedication, intelligence and appreciation for others have been consistent for all those years. Thank you, James.