Why should you vote for me? - Elect Sim for Ward 10

Friday, 29 September 2017

Why should you vote for me?

Earlier today I joined several candidates on the Ryan Jesperson show to make a two minute pitch for why Ward 10 residents should vote for me.

I wanted to take the time to elaborate on some of the reasons in a blog post so Ward 10 residents can get to know me and what kind of a Councillor I would be a little better.

Unlike most of the candidates running for City Council this election year, I have NOT lived in Edmonton all my life. I moved to Edmonton a little over 6 years ago. Edmonton is the 9th city in the 5th country I have lived (and worked) in. I am not even counting the ones I have traveled to. I came to Edmonton for a visit back in 2005. It took me just 4 days in the city to see how much potential our city had and soon after I left I was already telling people around me, they should move to Edmonton. Over the years, I looked for a job specifically in Edmonton, and moved here when I got my position at the U of A as an Educational Developer.

Why should it matter to you that I have lived in other cities (the likes of New York City, Istanbul, Prague, and others ranging in population of 40,000 people to 20 million people)? It matters because when our next Council is faced with problems to address and solutions to choose from in the upcoming term, I will have first hand experiences as a Councillor to highlight the things that worked for people where similar solutions were implemented, and the challenges they faced.

That unique exposure, combined with by background in budget administration, IT and HR management, as well as extensive community volunteer experience makes me an ideal candidate for Council. I will be there to ask the tough questions, and challenge the proposed solutions.

I believe the current residents of a neighbourhood must have the ultimate say in shaping the future of their communities. I won’t be one of those Councillors who go out doorknocking only during campaign periods. I will be there at every opportunity to hear your concerns and your vision for your community.

And I will of course be the independent voice to advocate for your vision. My campaign is solely financed by individual donations, and my own funds. I have not received and will not accept donations from developers, or any other corporation that does business with the City of Edmonton. Running a campaign with individual donations means I can maintain my impartiality at the Council table, and that I won't be afraid to demand more from the developers as they set their sights to build new suburban communities. As things stand now, Ward 10 residents living in the newer communities in Ward 10 are dealing with roads never built (to accommodate the full load of the communities) and are in constant fundraising mode to try to build a playground, or a community hall. We can and should be demanding more from the developers. If there are legislative barriers preventing us from demanding more, it is our job as Councillors to work with the Province to change that.

There is clear discrepancy between how well current Councillors think the City has been engaging with their citizens and how Edmonton residents perceive that public engagement. Clearly, citizens don't feel like they have been heard when it comes to the failed infill experience that has been pitting neighbours against neighbours, or the traffic problems caused by the LRT. They are frustrated and want to be heard.

Edmonton has a strong history and culture of community leagues and is blessed to have engaged citizens who are willing to spend hundreds of hours of their time trying to tell the city what will and will not work in their community. I am ready and committed to tap the potential of those great volunteers, and concerned community leaders who know "what's best" for their communities. I will make sure the plan for the future of our city is built on their, on your vision.

On October 16th, please vote for me, Sim Senol. I would love to be your next Ward 10 Councillor.

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