“I am running for council because I want to shape how decisions are made in West Kelowna. I want our government to be more proactive about hearing from the diversity of voices in our community; more committed to including those voices in its decision making; and more transparent about the decisions that it does make. Having recently finished a PhD at the University of Victoria that was focused on collaborative decision making I understand how difficult this can be. Collaboration takes time and commitment.
The payoff, however, is decisions that are better informed by facts and values, and much more likely to be effectively implemented. If elected I will be focused on applying this approach to two equally important and connected objectives: ensuring that our community works; and ensuring that it thrives. In order for West Kelowna to work we need to do a much better job of attracting new business, implementing existing development plans, investing in critical infrastructure and making sure citizens have the essential services they require. In order to thrive, everyone in our community needs to feel safe; to feel valued; and to have opportunities to pursue rich and meaningful experiences. Some of the investments required to realize these twin objectives will come with sizable price tags: West Kelowna needs revitalized waterfront and downtown areas, for example, and better recreation facilities. Others are more mundane but also important: paved shoulders, sidewalks and bike paths could dramatically improve how we live and move in our city,” Akins said.
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