A retired executive says debt and managing tax increases will be the biggest issues Powell River will tackle if he’s elected mayor.
Ron Woznow ran in the 2018 campaign and says a lot of people contacted his late wife, Susan O’Brien, in the last couple of years and urged him to take a second shot.
“We said, if people will put together a good campaign team to show that they would like a change here in Powell River, then I’ll run, and that’s what happened, that’s why I’m running,” Woznow said in a Vista Radio interview.
He’s in a three-way race with current councillors Maggie Hathaway and CaroleAnn Leishman.
Woznow says the city needs to create opportunities for new business while cutting red tape around permits.
“We’re going to maintain taxes. We’re gonna attract good businesses here. We’re going to open up housing by utilizing city-owned land that’s just sitting there. Yeah, the total picture,” Woznow explained.
When it comes to city hall, Woznow wants the corporation to conduct itself differently, such as having open meetings with the mayor. He believes every citizen of Powell River should be treated equally.
“If anybody has a question, they want a better understanding of how their money’s being used , what the priorities are, they will not have to file a Freedom of Information request and wait months in order to get an answer back,” he said.
Woznow also has “zero tolerance” for favoritism and conflict of interest. Under his leadership, the public could call out elected officials on their conflicts.
Asked what sets him apart from the competition, Woznow says the mayor is the CEO of the corporation and “I’ve been a chief executive officer for foundations, not-for-profits and for-profit companies so I understand what is involved.”
He’s also been the president of the local ratepayers society, as well as one in Toronto.
“I think I know a lot of about the role of the mayor, the role of councillors, and more importantly, the role of the municipality in terms of serving the needs of the people that live here.”