Randall for Council?

August 26, 2008 at 10:45 pm 5 comments

Over the last year or so, folks have been asking me if I was running for Victoria City Council in November. Others have explicitly asked me to run. I think the former group came about when they saw me attending Committee of the Whole meetings at City Hall at 9 a.m. thinking “who in their right mind would volunteer to do such a thing unless they were thinking of the next election?”

The honest answer was that there were a lot of important issues on the agenda this year of great importance to Downtown residents and it was my duty as Chair of the DRA to keep tabs on them for the benefit of those that can’t attend. As for the latter group, the people that think I would make a good Councillor, well — that’s a nice thing to hear, and often it came from people I have great respect for — politicians, business people, media people and social policy advocates.

Things started getting serious back in May when Monday Magazine’s Jason Youmans was following up the rumour mill asking various community-minded people if they were considering running in a cover feature on the lack of news on the election front. I wasn’t ruling a run out, I said, and Jason quoted me as follows:

“I think this is a huge turning point for the city,” says Robert Randall, chair of Victoria’s Downtown Residents Association and unconfirmed council contender. “I think this may be the most critical moment in Victoria’s history since the big urban renewal debate of the 1950s, as far as doing some serious introspection and figuring out where we are and where we want to go.”

This is an important time and there are things I can tackle as Councillor that I can’t do as chair of Downtown’s Community Association. One of the most frustrating things is not being able to do as much as I could for non-Downtown residents. I get calls from residents just outside Downtown’s borders (Downtown is smaller than you think) wanting help on an issue, whether it be urban trees in danger of being cut down or problems related to non-conforming construction. Mind you, Councillors still face those frustrations — only they’re across the border in Oak Bay and Saanich!

I haven’t made up my mind yet, but a decision is pending soon. A prime motivator so far is a lack of exciting candidates for Mayor and Council. I have yet to hear a name that makes me think, “Yes, this is exactly what this City needs.” Most seem to fall into two categories: (1) earnest but unsure exactly what to do, or (2) more of yesterday’s ideas.

I’ll keep you posted.

Entry filed under: Election 2008, media.

Carolyn Heiman to leave Times Colonist for BC Gov’t I’m running!

5 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Yule Heibel  |  August 26, 2008 at 11:28 pm

    Oh, you *better* run, Rob! Everyone knows it’s not a picnic to sit on council, but you know you’ll get lots of support from …well, your supporters!

    Besides, imagine the alternatives! I’ve heard that going backwards can be quite painful…

  • 2. robertrandall  |  August 27, 2008 at 8:35 am

    Thanks, Yule!

  • 3. Christina  |  August 27, 2008 at 11:06 pm

    Do it! There needs to be more Robert Randalls and Ken Kellys in this city…running for council!

  • 4. Louise  |  August 29, 2008 at 9:44 am

    Rob, you may not remember but we met a couple of years back when I was with the Harbour Authority. I was very impressed by what I saw then and I wish you all the best with your campaign. As a Fernwood resident you’ll get my x.

    Take care,

  • 5. robertrandall  |  September 3, 2008 at 9:04 am

    Good to hear from you again Louise. I enjoyed hearing the GVHA’s vision for a revitalized harbour. I look forward to talking to you and your Fernwood neighbours again soon.


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