A trio of all-candidates meetings are coming to Cloverdale.
The Cloverdale District Chamber of Commerce will be hosting three meetings for the upcoming municipal election.
The series kicks off Oct. 4 with the school board all-candidates meeting. An all-councillors meeting will be held Oct. 6. And the series concludes with mayoral hopefuls having their say Oct. 13.
All the meetings will be held in the atrium area of KPU’s Cloverdale Campus.
“It’s important for the community to be able to make informed choices in the next election,” said Scott Wheatley, the Cloverdale Chamber’s executive director. “Whoever we pick for both councillors and mayor will have a huge impact on the city’s business community.”
He said his number one wish for an elected official will be someone who will prioritize bus service for Cloverdale. Wheatley’s been advocating for more bus service for years, but despite promises, there still has been no improvement for underserved areas in Cloverdale, such as Campbell Heights.
“It’s all I want,” Wheatley said. “They all pay lip service to it. ‘Oh yeah, it’s top of mind!’ But where’s my buses?”
Wheatley said he’s organizing the three meetings while Chamber president Rebecca Smith will moderate them.
“It’ll be interesting to see which candidates show up to the three meetings and which candidates don’t,” added Wheatley. “I think the three meetings, being very close to the actual election date, will offer a timely forum for candidates to chat about their platforms.”
Although it won’t happen this year, Wheatley said he’s in favour of extending the vote in municipal elections to business owners, if they are also property owners.
“In years past, business owners did have votes in municipal elections—I don’t know if they were also property owners or just business owners—but I think owning property is key prerequisite.”
Wheatley said property owners should be able to vote because they pay the “lion’s share” of taxes.
“It only seems fair, otherwise you have taxation without representation.”
As for the all-candidates meetings, Wheatley said they’ll run from 7 to 8 p.m., with doors opening at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free, but registration is required. The Chamber prefers pre-registration, which can be accessed by visiting cloverdalechamber.ca, but, if meetings have not reached capacity, walk-ins will be accepted,
Questions for the candidates in any of the three meetings can be emailed to email@example.com. For more info, visit cloverdalechamber.ca.
KPU’s Cloverdale Campus is located at 5500 180th Street in Cloverdale.
The 2022 B.C. municipal elections will be held Oct. 15.