Thursday, June 13, 2024
HomeNewsHalifaxQ&A: Tom Martin

Q&A: Tom Martin

Gazette LogoDal Gazette: Why would a student vote for you over any other candidate?

Tom Martin: A couple of reasons. I think that the issues on my platform, especially affordable housing, safe streets, and dealing with transportation are all issues important to students. I have a fairly significant number of students working on my campaign.  To me, it is very important to listen to the students and address their issues. I sometimes think that I may know what the answer is or what the issues are, but I make sure to listen to the students and hear their concerns.

DG: With regard to sustainability and clean energy in HRM, what are some of the changes that, as mayor, you would implement?

TM: I think that we need a much bigger plan than we currently have. In HRM, we are lacking a clear, concise and attainable vision for what we want to achieve within the municipality. In order for us to become a 21st-century municipality, we will have to come up with 21st-century ideas. We have to start looking at fewer cars on the peninsula, reliable public transportation, and programs like city solar that actually take steps to ensure we are aware of our carbon footprint. Sustainable solutions will benefit our children and our grandchildren.

DG: Your stance also includes an anti-idling policy.on Spring Garden Road. There are always taxis idling at any time throughout the entire year. What do you plan to do about that?

TM: Everything must have a starting point. My stance has to do with less use of cars, more transit for the municipality, and an expansion of alternative modes of transportation such as bike lanes. The taxis on spring garden road are step 2, or step 3 of the process, but once we establish the anti idling policy then we can start spreading the program. Once idling your car becomes frowned upon, no one will do it anymore. It takes time.

DG: How do you plan to integrate a public transportation system that is both efficient and reliable?

TM: We have to look at a couple of things when it comes to public transportation. It has to be reliable and available. The biggest complaint is reliability. At peak transit hours on well-used routes, I would like to see buses on such a frequency that no one would even need a schedule.

DG: How do you plan to encourage development of the downtown core?

TM: First and foremost, we have to realize that small businesses make our economy strong. It is essential to follow HRM by Design and address the business tax rate. It is unreasonable to allow smaller stores to pay higher taxes than large corporations.

DG: What’s something about yourself that not many people know?

TM: I like to carve wood; it is one my great pastimes.

This interview has been edited for clarity and length.


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