Whitehorse Daily Star

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PRIORITIES EVIDENT – Coun. Dan Boyd says the major issues include the work on the upcoming Official Community Plan; land development and housing; and keeping the city’s finances in check.

Councillor is seeking a return engagement

Dan Boyd is hoping to continue his work as a city councillor, confirming to the Star this morning his plans to seek re-election in the Oct. 18 municipal vote.

By Stephanie Waddell on September 12, 2018

Dan Boyd is hoping to continue his work as a city councillor, confirming to the Star this morning his plans to seek re-election in the Oct. 18 municipal vote.

He noted it can take some time for councillors to figure out the issues and learn to work with staff and other council members on those issues.

It can be beneficial to have consistency on council, he added, so it had been on his mind when he was elected in 2015 that he would seek re-election in three years.

“There needs to be continuity,” he said.

While Boyd’s most recent stint as a councillor began in 2015, he also has the experience of having served two previous terms as a councillor from 1994 to 2000.

He acknowledged this term started “a little rockier” than those he had served on in the 1990s, noting it took council a little longer to come together as a team.

As time has gone on, things have smoothed out, he said. While council members didn’t always agree on everything, they were able to work together on many issues, he believes.

Heading into the election, Boyd said major issues are the work on the upcoming Official Community Plan (OCP); land development and housing; and keeping the city’s finances in check.

He noted the “real work” on the OCP will begin next year after some preliminary efforts by staff currently underway. It’s that document that will “lay the ground work” for all land planning in the city, from quarrying to housing, he said.

That will include looking at where the next major site for residential development in the city will be after the Whistle Bend neighbourhood is built out.

Boyd pointed out some preliminary work has gone into looking at two areas near McLean Lake and Long Lake.

He noted that both sites would be expensive to develop. The Long Lake area would also require a bridge and consideration for access to the Alaska Highway, he noted.

The OCP will look at land use of all types in the city.

And, as Boyd said, land development is a major issue for the city, with little to no available for housing, commercial and industrial development.

Prices in all areas have risen significantly, he said, noting the tight supply makes purchasing or renting a home expensive.

“There’s not much choice,” he said, highlighting the need for more supply in all areas.

Boyd noted that the city has taken some positive steps forward with initiatives like a $1-million grant to the Challenge Disability Resource Group’s Cornerstone Building that’s set to be developed on Main Street and include affordable units.

However, he also said there are also actions the city is taking that push prices up in other areas.

He pointed to the recent addition of two undeveloped lots in the Mary Lake subdivision that the city sold at fair market value for $230,000 each. That now sets the price tag for other country residential lots, pushing the prices up overall, Boyd noted.

He also noted the price of $230,000 is without any services. New owners will have to add any utilities they want, pushing the price up even more.

“We have to be very sensitive to what we are doing,” he argued, adding that “those types of things have a huge impact.”

He also pointed to the increasing cost of single-family homes in all areas of the city.

When the sale of the lots came up at council, Boyd had argued against using market value to determine the price.

He pushed for a deferral on the sale of those properties and other infill lots the city was selling in town in order to look at other pricing options.

Council ultimately voted against the deferral, with many members citing the need to make new properties available as soon as possible.

Boyd argued the city has to look at the “full spectrum of issues” in dealing with the housing and land issues around the city – something he hopes to continue pushing for if he’s elected to another term in office.

He will also continue his efforts to ensure city finances are in check and to keep taxes down.

Boyd was one of two council members to vote against this year’s operating budget, which included the 2.3 per cent increase to property taxes.

“I don’t believe we needed to go 2.3 per cent,” Boyd said, arguing a 2.1 per cent boost would have been more appropriate.

He acknowledged that while it may not appear to be a major difference from the 2.3 per cent hike, the city should keep tax bills as low as it can to provide the services.

While he didn’t agree with this year’s tax hike, Boyd said the city was able to keep the increase more in line with the higher Consumer Price Index in the two years previous.

Boyd would also like to see the city spend more time examining its reserves, pointing out there doesn’t seem to be a sense of how big the reserves should be.

That’s something he would like to look at more in the next term, should he be re-elected.

Boyd is the most recent council member to announce his intentions for the Oct. 18 vote.

Councillors Roslyn Woodcock, Betty Irwin and Samson Hartland have also said they will run again. As the Star reported Tuesday, Coun. Rob Fendrick has confirmed he will not seek re-election.

Coun. Jocelyn Curteanu has not said whether she will seek another term in office.

Also planning to run for one of the six councillor seats are former councillor Mike Gladish, ex-councillor and former NDP MLA Jan Stick, former Yukon Party MLA David Laxton and local residents Steve Roddick, Andrew Smith, Laura Cabott and Cory Adams.

Mayor Dan Curtis is pursuing a third term, with Rick Karp and Wilf Carter also planning to seek the mayoralty.

Comments (12)

Up 0 Down 0

Scott Etches on Oct 11, 2018 at 6:07 pm

Having met Dan Boyd, discussed with him and argued, I find him open to reconsidering his opinion on the role of Municipal government in regards to accepting a civic social responsibility to have Council at being leaders in becoming the glue to our various institutions and NGOs for comprehensive service delivery.

Up 4 Down 1

ProScience Greenie on Sep 18, 2018 at 10:30 am

The capital city, spending tax dollars like drunken sailors and doing a poor job of representing it's citizens would be my beefs W.

I'm with Brian - sorry, it doesn't work that way. Every Yukoner has a right to criticize what goes on in the Capital City of the Yukon as it
a) affects the whole Territory and
b) is done on YG and Fed taxes payed by all Yukoners.
Then there's the whole Freedom of Expression thing. As far as the Trump thing goes, technically none of our business following your logic above, don't worry I'm doing what little I can to get that orange Soapy Smith con man out of office.

OJW - yep, that pretty much covers it.

Up 3 Down 5

Josey Wales on Sep 15, 2018 at 6:40 pm

I’m with Brian....wee bit testy are ya? Think of PSG as a shareholder, taxes PSG pays get funneled into this socialist failed experiment...as many others across this once great country. PSG can have whatever opinion they choose, who made you the gatekeeper of thought?

And W....I suspect the beef as you put it, is with irresponsible entitled political windbags and their zealot like ways.
When we are governed Vs. represented by so many clueless idiots, for such a long tour it creates a bad mojo in town. Ever think PSG might have pals that vent their civic rage to PSG as friends do?
Maybe PSG has seen too many good pals leave as a result of the composted town, the sheer costs incurred via inept unaccountable windbags and their minions in CoW management?
Maybe PSG, like so many across this Orb we call home...are fed the hell up with social engineering, SJW’s, the PC Crusade...and gobs and gobs of folks willfully ignorant?
I of course am not speaking for PSG, just guessing as to the beef based on my history of perusing PSG’s POV.
For folks with a narrow focus, there is a general push by many citizens, of many nations, for many reasons, epic polarization created by philosophies supported within our civic team here...and minions just as virtuous, self serving and entitled across the Orb are pissing of their citizens too.

No the entire sky, is not falling...but yes there are many soaked to the bone and needing some dry time.
We have our rainmakers here too, hence my call to not underestimate a mere civic government to destroy a community, create chaos keeping us all scrapping....easier to deceive when distracted.

If you think I need a tinfoil hat, perhaps you may be one of many...willfully ignorant folks.
In my opinion...PSG is not one of those.
...carry on.

Up 12 Down 4

I'm with Brian on Sep 15, 2018 at 8:51 am

@ PSG You have stated on this site many times that you are not a resident of Whitehorse. That means you have no standing to vote council in or out. That also means you have no right to complain about them, imo.
Telling Whitehorse voters what to do or not to do is out of line. Mind your own business. Go bark up your own community's council. Surely with such strong opinions you must be a councilor or mayor in whichever community you live in.
As a user of Whitehorse services, you might have a right to complain at the service desk, but keep your two-cents worth out of Whitehorse politics.
Does your community have recall legislation? Why don't you work on that so the residents in your community can vote you out for minding Whitehorse's business instead of your own community's business?
Or maybe you could take on US politics and get rid of Trump for the good of the whole world.

Up 8 Down 2

W on Sep 14, 2018 at 10:13 pm

Greenie, you don't even live in the city. What's your beef?

Up 16 Down 5

Barbara on Sep 13, 2018 at 10:12 pm

I really enjoyed and appreciated working with Dan on COW council back in the '90s. I didn't always agree with him but I respected his commitment and attention to detail that he brought to our discussions. And I agree that a corporate memory is important. Dan always had the best interests of Whitehorse foremost in his mind and I salute him for throwing himself into the slings and arrows. He is braver than I.

Up 19 Down 8

Ilove Parks on Sep 13, 2018 at 8:24 am

Look, Dan has many good qualities and is the right fit for the mayor's position which makes his decision to run for council disappointing.

Up 17 Down 7

My Opinion on Sep 12, 2018 at 11:18 pm

Thanks Dan. I was hoping you would put your name forward again. You and Samson have been the only ones on the current council trying to be fiscally responsible and you have my vote. Rick Karp as well, we needed a choice for Mayor and you will do a great job. Thanks Guys.

Up 5 Down 11

Juniper Jackson on Sep 12, 2018 at 6:20 pm

I won't be voting for a single existing council member. Mr. Boyd thinks continuity is important? For what? it's the City planners and Managers that provide that. I'd like to replace some of them too.

Up 19 Down 6

Yukon Watchdog on Sep 12, 2018 at 5:09 pm

Glad to hear you're running again. You've certainly got my vote!

Up 18 Down 6

Jayne W on Sep 12, 2018 at 3:14 pm

Thank you Coun. Boyd for stepping up again! I see Coun. Boyd and Coun. Hartland beneficial to Council. Might be nice to fill the rest of the spots with a new slate of folks including the Mayor's position. Dan and Samson can be the experienced members for the new team.

Up 14 Down 7

ProScience Greenie on Sep 12, 2018 at 2:59 pm

CoW residents - vote out all incumbents including the mayor. Then start demanding recall legislation be put in place so that the next batch understand exactly who they represent and work for.

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