Candidate Survey Results

General Info

Hannu Piironen

Ward 10

Transportation


Transportation Survey Responses:

1. What does sustainable transportation mean to you?
It means creating a system of moving people and goods efficiently and cost effectively in an environmentally conscious fashion. All modes of transport , walking, cycling, transit and personal vehicles have to be taken into consideration. We have to look at our transportation system on a holistic basis.

* 2. How are you going to support it in our community?
I will support initiatives such as bicycle routes which will actually be able to take people where they want to go, safely and without battling automobile and truck traffic. Share rows are not the answer. I would promote Sudbury Transit. We should be looking at new routes and a revamped Sunday service. More people on buses mean fewer vehicles on the roads.

* Above includes answer to Top Public Question 3. What are you going to do to enhance walking, bicycling and transit usage in Greater Sudbury over the next 4 years?


Level of support for:

(a) Dedicated annual funding in the municipal budget for cycling and pedestrian infrastructure
I will vote in favour
(b) Adopting a Complete Streets Policy that details how to implement streets that are designed for all users
Unsure
(c) Improvements in transit service and fares to meet the needs of citizens
I will vote in favour
(d) Implementation and coordination of Transportation Demand Management
I will vote in favour
Explanation:


Water Quality


Water Quality Survey Responses:

1. In your view, what are the most important steps the city needs to take to protect water quality?
One of the most important steps is to complete Watershed studies of our significant lakes beginning with Ramsey Lake. We need to create scientific bench marks so we will be able determine if efforts and policies adopted are making progress toward improving water quality. Phosphates and other contaminants must be prevented as much s possible from entering our water systems. Storm water run off should be controlled by catch basins and natural filtration should be utilized as methods of water cleansing before it reaches our lakes. Septic systems and field beds must be inspected by the proper authorities to ensure that they are up to code and operating properly and not leaching pollutants into the waters. I am also concerned about the transport of crude oil and other dangerous toxic chemicals by rail through our community and especially within metres of Ramsey Lake. We should know what types of cargos are carried through our City and we should have plans in place to deal with what would be an environmental catastrophe in the event of a derailment near Lake Ramsey. In the longer term we should work towards moving the rail lines and yards to a safer area.

* 2. How are you going to support it in our community?
I will support initiatives at the Council level as stated above to achieve these ends.

* Above includes answer to Top Public Question 1. What plan do you have to protect and sustain our many lakes? What actions will you take to support your plan? What resources will you devote?


Level of support for:

(a) Requiring larger shoreline buffers
I will vote in favour
(b) Dedicated annual funding in the municipal budget to complete priority watershed and subwatershed studies
I will champion that
(c) Rejecting development in floodplains and wetlands
I will vote in favour
(d) Adopting higher standards for storm water management, and expanded capacity in vulnerable areas
I will vote in favour
(e) Support for the Vermilion River Stewardship’s opposition of proposed modified run-of-river hydroelectric dams on the Vermilion River
Unsure
Explanation:
A-Yes, if and when necessary C-Generally yes. Wetlands are important to water filtration and wild life and developing on flood plains create unnecessary risks to persons and property. I would not support large scale development in these types of areas. E-I will have to study the matter further.

Natural Environment


Natural Environment Survey Responses:

1. How will you balance development with protection of the natural environment?
Most development will impact the natural environment. One way to protect the existing undeveloped areas is to focus on using existing road, sewer and water infrastructure as much as possible. We should encourage infilling and densification. This will result in the most efficient use of our resources both financial and environmental. Our transportation system would benefit. We could encourage more walking, more cycling and using of public transit.

2. How will you champion opportunities in your ward to fill gaps in parks service and to protect unique natural areas (identified by the Green Space Advisory Panel)?
Ward 10 is blessed with a lot green space and parkland both publically and privately owned. There are policies in place to acquire green space when it becomes available adjacent to existing parkland and in conjunction with certain developments. I would be very supportive of acquiring more land for public use especially around the creeks running through the Ward and where there are trails and bicycle paths passing over private property.


Level of support for:

(a) Dedicated annual funding in the municipal budget to implement the green space acquisition strategy
I will vote in favour
(b) Policies in the Official Plan to recognize and protect important natural areas
I will vote in favour
(c) Removing the “Laurentian link” road from the Official Plan transportation schedule
Unsure
(d) Re-assessing proposed roads on the Transportation Schedule that impact natural areas
I will vote in favour
Explanation:
C-Any new road that would pass through this area would only be done so with the consultation of stakeholders which would include the people who live in the area, users of the land, environmental groups. There is currently only one access road to Laurentian University and beyond. There may be valid safety and planning factors that would necessitate an alternate access route. I do not believe that any road is an immediate concern since it is in the 20 year plan and is not under active consideration at this time. D-I would suppose most new roads would impact on natural areas. There should be l review of environmental impact before new road is built, especially if some large span of time has passed since the initial assessment.

Local Food


Local Food Survey Responses:

1. How do you see the city’s role in food system sustainability, access to local food, and the connection to health?
One of Sudbury’s greatest assets is the amount of good agricultural land located within the City limits. The City can do more to promote agricultural products grown or produced here. We should encourage local food policies in all of our area institutions to use more local ingredients in their food preparation. There are already the beginnings of this trend which is very promising. I would like to see the Farmers Market sell more local products and organic produce. I would promote the establishment of more community gardens. I applaud the efforts of many apartment buildings in Ward 10 and co-ops that have made space available for community plots. I would like to see more. I would promote and encourage projects such as “Share your Fruit” which would make use of all of the bounty around us which often goes to waste.

* 2. How would you develop local agriculture and fresh water and forest foods?
Agriculture land in Sudbury is a vital resource. Unfortunately for the producer it often does not pay to keep land in production. We have to “brand” our local produce in such a way that people are willing to pay a premium. I, for one, would be willing to pay a little bit more for a local potato, chicken or dairy product. Many others, of course, cannot afford to, or are unaware of beneficial aspects of buying local. One is freshness and resulting better taste and nutritional values and second is the lessening of the carbon footprint of one’s food. Eat local and save the planet at the same time!

* Above includes answer to Top Public Question 2. What is your commitment to encourage a local food economy?


Level of support for:

(a) A food action plan for the city
Unsure
(b) Developing targets for procurement of local food in municipal institutions
I will vote in favour
(c) Providing support for urban agriculture initiatives
I will vote in favour
(d) Expanding the amount of land preserved for agricultural use and avoiding incompatible use
I will vote in favour
(e) Designating the market as a Farmer’s Market
Unsure
Explanation:
A-Unsure as I haven’t read the plan D-The City should also consider a policy of setting aside monies for agricultural land banking. We need agricultural reserve land which is in the long run a benefit to all. The costs should not solely be borne by individuals who happen to be sitting on lands designated an Agricultural reserve. The City should be able to buy agricultural land from willing landowners who wish to sell their property. These lands could be banked for future generations of agriculturists or leased to people who want to farm the land now. E-I do not know what the minimum percentage would be. I would like to see more local vendors but I would be concerned of the viability of the Market if there is not a sufficient number of local vendors and with a sufficient variety of items and produce available for sale.

Citizen Engagement


Citizen Engagement Survey Responses:

1. How will you ensure that community consultation is done effectively and openly, with productive dialogue from start to finish for municipal projects and decisions?
I will start with myself. I will make myself available for consultation with individuals and community groups and stakeholders. I will be open to suggestions ideas and perspectives that can only enhance the decision-making process. I will assist in the creation of a Community Action Network for Ward 10. This group, which will operate in an arms length relationship from me as Councillor, can offer advice and feedback on my work at City Hall. Should there still be a form of Healthy Community Initiative Funds, I would seek input from the community on how they are to be spent.

2. How will you ensure a consistent culture of openness and support for public input across all city departments?
Only a culture of openness and a respect for public input will erase the distrust and disconnect between citizens and City Hall. As Council one of the first acts should be to remove the overt security at City Council meetings. There should be no barriers between the public and its representatives. Council should set the example for all staff.


Level of support for:

(a) Adopting an enhanced system for resolving all issues and complaints, including tracking numbers and prescribed timelines
I will vote in favour
(b) Requiring proactive engagement of citizens and stakeholder groups when forming policies and developing projects
I will vote in favour
(c) Requiring agendas and background material to be publicly posted two weeks in advance, and minutes to be posted one week after meetings of Council and Committees of Council
I will vote in favour
(d) Providing timely, fair and transparent support to citizens and citizen groups for community projects that contribute to the community
I will vote in favour
(e) Ensuring easily accessible, complete and searchable information on the City website
I will vote in favour
Explanation:
A-One of the most frequent complaints I have heard is a lack of follow up on calls to City Hall. It is very difficult to talk to the same person in relation to a complaint lodged or on a particular issue. B-while you can’t force engagement from the public it is important that the public be informed of pending policies and projects before any final decisions are made. C-as soon as practicable. There could be good reasons for late changes or additions to agendas and background material. However if the only reason to withhold the material or agenda items is to forestall full discussion of the item in question I would be very opposed to the delay.

Climate Change


Climate Change Survey Response:

What actions should the municipality take to reduce carbon emissions and improve community resilience in the face of climate change?
A lot of the initiatives as I have outlined in the above survey will reduce our collective carbon foot print in Sudbury and ultimately do our part in reducing green house gases. Planning for smart growth by using existing infrastructure and encouraging infilling as much as possible will result in densification. We could then have a more sustainable transportation system with more people walking, cycling, using public transport and resulting in shorter automobile trips. Promoting local foods, community gardens, and fruit sharing is a healthy way of reducing our carbon foot print. The less we have to transport from far afield the better it is for all of us. The city already has a fleet of hybrid vehicles .We should expand this program and look at hybrid or fuel-celled buses for our transit system. We need programs that will reduce our reliance on fossil fuels for home heating.