Candidate for Lake Cowichan Town Council: Kristine Sandhu

Kristine Sandhu

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  • Please tell us a bit about yourself and what made you decide to run in this election?

I was born and raised in Lake Cowichan. I was an elected school trustee from 1999-2008, and was a councillor for the town of Lake Cowichan from 2005-2008. I’m a strong advocate for affordable recreation. I believe in fiscal responsibility, open community planning are some of my reasons for running. My past political experience will help guide the new council with openness and accountability to our residents and business owners.

  • Do you support the Drinking Water & Watersheds Protections Service bylaw referendum?  

YES. We must have the resources to monitor and gather data needed to provide a safe supply of water and in the future. In having this protection service the CVRD will be able to apply for grants. In having watershed management we will be able to observe and fix the risks to our water supply and water quality. Having the data to approve future land development to ensure long-term water resources. Climate change is real & we must plan long term to have a safe supply of water for generations to come.

  • Do you support the Cowichan Housing Association Service Establishment bylaw? 

YES. We must have the financial resources needed to partner with CHA. Cowichan Housing Association is a nonprofit organization which will do the leg work to apply for Provincial & Federal grants. This partnership will maximize the funds to support and approve attainable & affordable housing for all. This will give new opportunities for our young people, seniors, and families to be able to put down roots in Lake Cowichan.  

  • How do you plan to work with other governments within the region, including local First Nations as well as provincial and federal governments?

Having joint planning sessions with our local regional district and First Nations. Bringing issues and future planning to the table for discussion & debate. To attend UBCM conventions to connect with Provincial & Federal ministries to discuss issues, and future planning in our community.  

  • One Cowichan supporters have expressed concerns about climate change, especially local impacts on our water resources. What local climate change mitigation and/or adaptation strategies would you support if elected?  

Climate change is real and we don’t have the cold winters with snow we once had. Snow pacs are melting faster due to the warmer temperatures we face. Water restrictions are in place. We must protect our watershed and plan so we can assess future land developments that need long term water. I would support climate change mitigation and/or adaption strategy in conserving our water source.

  • How do you propose managing growth sustainably in the Cowichan Region (e.g. transportation, environmental/agricultural protection, land-use, housing, cost of living)?

By developing & adopting an approach to address and inter grate environmental, social, and economic well being for our community. Meeting the needs of rapidly growing infrastructure. We must work with land developer, Cowichan Housing Association to develop growth management plans.

  • What do you consider the three most pressing issues facing local government and the one most important thing local government should do on each one?

Economic Development:  To improve the economic well-being and quality for our community. By creating and supporting local businesses, this will help maintain jobs and support growing incomes and tax base.

Affordable housing: by saying yes to the referendum Bylaw No. 4201 we are giving support for providing funds to the CHA, a nonprofit society that can apply for grants at Provincial & Federal level. CHA has strong connections with other community-based organizations working on housing issues.

Senior care facility: The need for a senior care facility is now, not in 5-10 years. Could be a multi-care facility also offering hospice, assisted living for seniors, new health care unit.

  • Our citizen surveys indicate a desire for more consultation and accountability between elected officials and their constituents. If elected, what would your approach be to those issues?

The new council must continue to advertise dates & times for regular council meetings & committee meetings thru the town's website & social media sites. Every 3 months, hold a open house and hold this in the town office. Advertise thru their website and social media sites. Also look into the cost for electronic communication live website, but I really prefer meet and greet in person.