Name: Doug Parkhurst
I own and operate KMA Chartered Accountants Ltd. in Nanaimo. I graduated from Simon Fraser University with a double major in Business and Economics. I articled with Coopers and Lybrand in Vancouver, and after five years, we moved to the Island for lifestyle.
I was an improvement district trustee from 1999 to 2003. From 2003 to 2011 I was a District of Lantzville councillor. I was an outspoken advocate for the people of Lantzville, working to bring about projects that benefited residents.
Why are you running for council?
I decided to run for council after receiving a large number of requests from residents of Lantzville. Some of the concerns shared with me included the never-ending increases in spending, projects for no apparent reason, lack of public input, and the divisive nature of some on council.
What three priorities are important to you and how do you plan to tackle these issues, if elected?
Plain and simple, spending in Lantzville is out of control. The current council has let spending grow out of control. E.g. 30 per cent more on wages in 2014 when compared to 2011. It is time to get back to basics and rein in the spending. I plan to fix this by reviewing all spending in the district and reduce it to a sustainable level.
Fixing how council works. The current council had promised for a year and half to consult on the water deal. But they signed the deal and are now telling residents about it. The way to fix this is to change processes by sticking to your word. I support the policy of regularly releasing in-camera minutes.
A lack of checks and balances. The current council has put forth a new agreement with Foothills. This agreement strips away many of the safeguards that the community wanted. I will work to restore these by advocating for the affected residents.
How do you plan on managing spending and taxes?
The first step is to exercise some common sense. Don’t take on projects if you don’t need to do it.
Review all spending in the district. I want to eliminate unnecessary spending. Given the growth in spending over the last three years, there will be areas for reduction.
Always keep in mind the current level of tax increases. I will work hard to get the overall level of spending under control.
What does it take to lead Lantzville? Describe your style of leadership and co-working.
Leading Lantzville requires independent and critical thinking. This means each member of council should try to research the major issues, listen to what people have to say and evaluate both pros and cons of each alternative. Once you have the information, then you can decide.
I believe in leading by example. I work to understand the issues, what are the implications of alternatives, both in the short and long run. I then believe in an open and frank discussion amongst council about these points. This requires that you deal with issues, not personalities.