Occupation: Owner of The Hub Bicycle Shop Ltd. together with my wife Meredith Vanclief
How long have you lived in Cambridge?
I have lived in Cambridge for 39 years. I currently live and Ward 4 and have lived here for 16 years.
Why are you running in this election?
I am ready to bring my experience working with City Staff and Council to represent the businesses and residents of Ward 4. My wife and I have owned our business for 20 years and we live in Ward 4, this gives me great insight and perspective of the community needs. I have been invested in Ward 4 issues and city Issues for a number of years showing my passion for the Ward and City. I want to ensure what is best for everyone is heard and continue with strategic growth for our city
What qualifies you to represent your ward?
I am qualified to represent Ward 4 due to many years of involvement with Boards and Committees. I have worked with City Staff, City Council, community groups and community leaders on various projects throughout the City.
Currently I chair the Hespeler Village BIA and during the last 19 years of owing our business we have volunteered with most of the Community Neighbourhood Organizations servicing bicycles at the Bicycle Rodeos.
Previous political experience:
Chair Hespeler Village Business Improvement Association – Current (concurrently with Council term)
Member of Cambridge Wellness Advisory Committee
Vice Chair of Cambridge Wellness Advisory Committee - Past Vice Chair
Hespeler BIA Liaison to Cambridge Core Area Patrol
Helped coordinate multiple visits from Federal and Provincial Ministers
Member and Past Chair of Active Cambridge
Why should people vote for you?
I feel I am the best choice for Ward 4 as stated above I have worked on many City Boards and Committees. I have been very active in Ward 4 for such items as Soper Pool, CTS location, facilities for youth and other community items. Outside Ward 4 I have worked with many Community Associations and Interest Groups in Cambridge. I would like ensure Cambridge has a plan to grow that will ensure it keeps its small town feel and a sustainable growth pace.
What do you see as the main issues facing residents of the ward?
I feel Ward 4 has a few main issues facing residents. One of those is the feeling of safety and security in their neighborhood and businesses. We need to ensure people know they can enjoy our downtown areas and neighborhoods. We need to ensure the work with WRPS and Crime Prevention Council continues. Another concern is development and height of the buildings in those projects. We have to ensure that the projects coming forward do not interfere with our small-town charm. Development is needed to bring people and business to the community, but we must make sure it will fit the area.
What do you see as the main issues facing residents of Cambridge on a broader scale?
Aside from a steady tax increase and cost of utility delivery to homes, we need to make sure our growth matches what our roads, infrastructure and community. Moving people safely through an area is crucial to the community. We need to ensure our youth have areas that they are welcome and that they can get there safely. Another issue is to ensure our Aging Adults have housing security. We are already seeing the effects that the cost of housing is having on families.
What is the most important thing you want to see changed in Cambridge?
I think we need to ensure Cambridge is known as a destination place to visit, raise family and play. When people visit a community, they spend money, that puts money directly back into our friends and family pockets. We have a great opportunity to support our small businesses, tourist destinations and service clubs. Build properly and make sure we can move safely in our communities and people get out and spend money. When we have people out and about in the community, it creates an energy and people like to be par of that energy.
What services need to be improved in Cambridge?
The list of services that need improvement is always an ongoing list. It is a list where we can leapfrog into better services for future generations. As population, taxes, industrial, residential, and commercial areas change we need to make sure our services are matching that change. I feel one of the services that need our attention is that housing for those who are experiencing homelessness.
We must ensure help is available for both tenant and Landlord, we need to continue to work with Provincial Government to communicate the needs of Landlords and Tenants. We have great information from local organizations and that information has to make it to our Provincial Leaders.
I also feel we need to focus on events and facilities that encourage our youth to be visible and active in the community. If we want to prevent future issues, we need to foster growth for our youth today.
Is Cambridge growing too fast, just the right amount, or not fast enough?
I feel we are growing just right but are on the edge of growing too fast. We know we are about to see a flood of development come to town, we know Cambridge is a hot spot right now for development, We need to ensure that growth has a sustainable path and framework.
What can be done at the local level about the rising cost of housing?
At the Municipal level we need to be aware of and informed of the work with Federal and Provincial Partners to ensure that legislation continues to address issue of the cost of housing in our area. As Council we can look at proposed projects to ensure that geared to income and affordable units are included. We can continue to investigate and invest in secondary units and tiny homes.
What can be done locally about the homelessness issue?
I have touched on this briefly and I know we can do a lot to ensure Cambridge is a Provincial leader in what we can do about homelessness. Both Landlord and Tenant need to be included in this conversation and the LTB needs to look at the current complex situations that are arising here in Ontario. As Municipal Council we can continue to support groups that help with getting people of the streets and into safe housing. Again, work with groups who are invested in this already and investigate and support groups with solid solutions.
How do we make Cambridge an even better city to live in?
Cambridge has the potential to be an amazing city for people to raise family here and to invest in. We are on our way currently, but we can continue to strengthen that by offering events, facilities, attractions that are family friendly, inclusive and desirable. Utilize our rivers and trails, encourage tourism, encourage tech sector to build and invest here. We have so much we can do but only if we elect those with vision and understanding of the needs.
To learn more about Clifford, email him or click on the following links:
Email – [email protected]
Twittter - @vote_ward
Instagram – cliffordforward4
Facebook – Clifford Vanclief – Ward 4 Candidate@cliffordforcambridge
Website – www.cliffordforcambrige.ca