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Candidate for mayor wants referendum on safe injection site

Cody Botelho is running for mayor of Cambridge
Cody Bothelo is running for mayor of Cambridge.

Cody Botelho



Why are you running in this election?

I am running in this election because the Cambridge City Council lacks leadership, transparency and accountability. When I mention a lack of leadership I am taking about the poorly thought out “rainbow crosswalk.” Our council did not take the time to consider the proposition, council voted in favour of the crosswalk because Kitchener had one.

Our council fails to understand symbolism if they think walking on the symbol of group of people is not disrespectful. Would you walk on the Canadian flag? 

When I mention lack of transparency and accountability I am taking about how 150 Main Street was recommended as an injection site by our city council. The site was recommended without the support of the residents, without a proper discussion with the public, and without being on the agenda.

The 150 Main Street recommendation was discussed behind closed doors because the council understood how much opposition from the community injections sites face.

What qualifies you to be mayor?

I am a resident of the City of Cambridge and my certification documents prove it. Our present mayor Kathryn McGarry listed 715 Coronation Blvd. as her qualifying address. When I went to view the documentation of her certification, I found no such identifying document with her listed qualifying address.

I have previously served as chair of the City of Cambridge Archives Board and am familiar with the rules governing council meetings.

Why should people vote for you?

People should vote for me because I say what I mean not what I think people want to hear, because I will spend the time to think about every council decision, because I would be more accessible to the public not having all communications go through an office administrator that sends out form emails on behalf of
Mayor, because I am a ordinary person that understands the concerns of ordinary people not the wealthy elite like Prime Minister Trudeau or German Chancellor Olaf Sholz like our present mayor.

What do you see as the main issues facing residents of the ward?

The main issue is the injection site, with the Amazon warehouse not far behind. This election is going to come down to being a referendum on council's decision of recommending 150 Main Street as an injection site despite opposition from the public. We need to remember only one person voted against this proposal and it was councillor Ermeta. If you want a leader who will stand against this injection site and actually vote against it instead of walking out and having a temper tantrum, you want Cody.

What do you see as the main issues facing residents of Cambridge on a broader scale?

The main issues facing residents of Cambridge on a broader scale are inflation and rising taxes. The federal governments fiscal and environmental policies has led to increased costs for food, fuel, and all essentials due to both inflation and increased taxation. It is important for regional and city governments to limit any increase in taxes to an absolute minimum if at all. Residents can not afford governments that seek a continually larger proportion of their income.

What is the most important thing you want to see changed in Cambridge?

One of the things I want to see changed in our city is our response to crime, you do not have to look far to find a victim of crime in this city. Walk in the core areas of Galt, Preston, and Hespeler and see the shattered windows for yourself, look at the encampments where the police refuse to issue trespass orders, take a look on your own patio or backyard and see if you have been a victim of a theft so someone could afford to get high. We should not enable addiction or normalize the criminality in our city.

What services need to be improved in Cambridge?

The services that need to be improved the most in Cambridge are bylaw enforcement, police services, and roads. These services are the responsibility of the City of Cambridge in regard to by-law enforcement, the Region of Waterloo in regard to police services, and a combination of both in regard to roads. We need to be able to enforce by-laws especially around property maintenance.

Encampments in the city create waste and are a fire hazard. By-law needs to work with property owners to ensure properties are maintained and not left derelict. Working with bylaw enforcement and property owners we need to improve policing.

When residents want people removed from their property we need to ensure the police serve a trespass order, residents should not have to wait to get an article in a paper to get police to protect their property rights and remove encampments.

With the anticipated growth of the region we need to expand our road system to avoid an ever worsening commute. A considerable amount of upgrading is taking place but we need to co-ordinate projects between the city and region more effectively to avoid concentrating too many projects in one area.

Is Cambridge growing too fast, just the right amount, or not fast enough?

Cambridge is growing too fast. We have high rents and massive purchase prices due to shortages in housing, continued growth at present rates will make the situation worse.

What can be done at the local level about the rising cost of housing?

The only way to deal with the rising cost of housing is to build more housing. On the local level that means reducing the paperwork and large fees that go into housing construction and planning. The red tape and thousands upon thousands of dollars in fees both slows down construction and increases costs before a shovel breaks ground.

What can be done locally about the homelessness issue?

The only way to deal with homelessness locally is with mental health support, not by excusing criminal behaviour or enabling addiction.

How do we make Cambridge an even better city to live in?

We can make Cambridge an even better city to live in by enforcing the law and preventing an injection site in Cambridge.

For more information on Cody, visit Instgram: codybotelhoformayor