A veteran councillor and single-term mayor wants to lead council again.
Charlie Cornfield says he was encouraged to run by people from all walks of life.
In an interview with Vista Radio, Cornfield says the city will face a financial challenge with policing.
“We pay for the RCMP so we have budgetary issues coming up. There are wage increases that were negotiated by the federal government that are going to have (a) big financial impact,” Cornfield said.
Other issues facing the city are inflation, cost of housing, attainable housing, the “unhoused” situation in the downtown “and then climate change on top of it.”
After serving 20 years on city council since 1996 – 17 years as councillor and three as mayor – Cornfield says you learn in government that nothing happens fast.
He points to the hospital project that took 17 years to be completed as well as the homelessness task force that happened 12 years ago when he was mayor.
“The recommendations could have been written yesterday. I know that I don’t have all of the answers…I don’t believe there is a quick fix,” Cornfield explained. “But I do know that if we all work together – that’s the community groups, the people, the businesses, government at all levels…I’m sure we can find a solution that works. It may take years to accomplish but we got to start doing something different because what we’ve done for the last 12 years is not working.”
“When your using taxpayers’ money, you have to go the extra mile and take the extra time to do it right,” he said.
A self-described “change advocate,” Cornfield wants to see positive change that gets results, not “change for change’s sake. I like to get things done.”
Cornfield also wants to continue relationship building with the area’s Indigenous and “working together with them to bring along everybody, to move our whole community forward, to get rid of this idea of ‘them’ and ‘us’.”
Asked what sets him apart from the other four candidates, Cornfield says, as mayor, he did and continues to have an open door policy. “I’ve always been open, accessible and I’ve always had time for anybody regardless of their social status. Whether they’re people living on the street or people doing extremely well.”
Cornfield urges people to exercise their democratic right and vote but to make sure to pick council or mayoral candidates who “will best represent your values, your visions, your hopes. You choose who you want to vote for. Don’t let someone else tell you who you vote for.”
In his spare time, Cornfield is a golfer and fisherman and also likes to “dabble in art” with wood carving. He has a 41-year-old special needs son. “I am very well versed in what their needs are and we should never lose sight of what I call the most vulnerable.”
He currently has a blended family with five adult children. His fiance is status First Nations, which he says gives him added perspective and understanding. Cornfield lost his first wife to cancer.
Election day is Saturday, Oct. 15.