My first 100 days as your Mayor
Last week my team and I reached an important milestone and I want to tell you about what we have accomplished. My first 100 days in office could be summed up with three words, relationships, resilience, and restitution.
Relationships: We are a team, no one can do it alone.
When I started in politics, I always took the time to build trust and honesty with everyone I worked with regardless of their position. That has carried through to my role now more than ever. Relationships are one of the most important tools we have as leaders and I believe that good relationships are the key to good governance.
- I spent time building strong relationships with my council colleagues. I am very proud of the relationships we have with one another. We often disagree on policy and issues but we are never disagreeable. The level of respect we have for one another is immense, helping us to work together to make life better for Edmontonians.
- I worked hard to strengthen my relationship with both the provincial and federal government and I pride myself on this. I know that building collaborative relationships is how you get things done. I have met with a number of ministers including the PM and Premier. That collaboration is starting to pay off. We received funding from the provincial government for shelters. We got additional funding from the federal government to convert 3 hotels for supportive housing to reduce houselessness .
Resilience: We prioritize a thriving community
COVID-19 has added so many competing priorities to the plates of all Edmontonians. I stuck to my commitments to ensure our small businesses, community hubs, and everyday workers have the resources and funding they need to weather this hardship.
- I worked with my council colleagues to make sure property taxes will stay below the cost of inflation while continuing to fully fund public services Edmontonians rely on.
- We allocated funding for two rec centres: Lewis Farms Rec Centre and Coronation Rec Centre. These public buildings will transform their neighbourhoods and become central gathering places for families and communities.
- We provided $1.2 million through the arts recovery grant — a grant aimed at helping artists struggling to get by during these past two difficult years.
- We have helped 4000 small businesses by lowering their BIA levies. I made a promise to advocate for struggling small businesses in my campaign and I’m proud to continue to live up to it.
- We have approved funding to keep our downtown and Chinatown clean. This commitment was important to me to keep these core areas vibrant and safe.
- We gave $600,000 to FreePlay for Kids: a program that helps families facing barriers get their kids active and gain a sense of belonging through sport. This program helped to support a young Alphonso Davies to become one of the best soccer players in the world.
Restitution: We are accountable to each other.
Edmontonians are known for our strong communities, willingness to help when we see someone in need, and ingenuity in the face of difficulty. My goals in office are the same as my goals as a father and community-member: to empower with compassion, empathy, and strength.
- During our very first council meeting, I put forward an actionable anti-racism motion. It passed unanimously and we expect an update from our administration on this important initiative later this month.
- We allocated $1.14 million to our anti-racism advisory committee to support community-based organizations to combat racism and discrimination in Edmonton.
- I advocated for supportive housing — of which we announced two locations with the federal government last month and expect to announce a third soon.
- I know shelters are a short-term, bandage solutions but they are a necessity until we find permanent supportive housing for all Edmontonians struggling with houselessness. I worked hard to ensure our houseless population have a warm space to stay safe by continuing to support emergency shelters while we work towards long term solutions with other orders of government.
- We are redirecting $23 million to social programs to start the work creating a holistic and equitable community safety plan in collaboration with social agencies, cultural groups, and the police.