Removing the monetary barrier to our youth participating in public activities at our recreation centres, our rinks and our pools. #ImagineOurCity where kids 18 and under just walk to an aquatic facility and enjoy some “liquid fun” and don’t have to consider an admission fee.
As part of Surrey First’s Public Safety Plan, we are proud to announce a $30 million commitment to invest in prevention and intervention community programs.
This means 125,000 Surrey children will now have free access to all City pools, rinks and rec centres.
It will also create a new central hub to allow parents to access community resources for their kids with one phone call.
This is an important step forward in supporting Surrey families and keeping young people active, engaged and moving forward in a positive direction.
To the 40,000 plus people of Surrey who placed their trust in me, by voting for me yesterday, I thank you. To all the voters in Surrey who chose Linda Hepner as their Mayor, and to those same people for putting their trust in the entire Surrey First Team of Councillors, I thank you as well.
To those who did not vote for me, I hope over the next four years, to earn your confidence and help make Surrey a better place to live.
I would also like to thank the Surrey First Campaign Team who kept us moving forward with positive messages, positive ideas and providing a positive look at the future and what we can accomplish. Our team stayed on the high road and the public responded well to the positive things we have done and what we will do in the future.
I would also like to thank my personal team made up of neighbours, friends and family who surrounded me with non-stop words of encouragement and support during the past few months. They kept me moving forward with the goal to be in City Hall, and to be in a position to keep the City we live, work and play in, the best place to be in the world.
Thanks to the Fire Fighters of Surrey who were awesome during this campaign. They provided me with unwavering support by sharing what I stand for. They were critical to the Surrey First Team with the placement, maintenance and upkeep of all those signs. They also made those “gold and black” shirts, some of the most sought after goods in this campaign. More importantly, my Brothers and Sisters of the Surrey Fire Fighters’ Association, placed their trust in me that I will keep public safety and the needs of the citizens of Surrey at the forefront, no differently than I had done for the 32 years I served as a Surrey Fire Fighter.
Lastly, thanks to my family. I will never forget that dinner when I asked them what they thought about my possible endeavour. They had no hesitation and quickly came up with ideas on what they could do to help me and the Surrey First Team. I could not have survived this campaign if it were not for the love, compassion and support they gave me.
I look forward to taking a seat on council and moving the issues I talked about during my campaign, forward, and helping move the City forward over the next four years.
An open thank you to all of those who have helped me. Because of Elections BC regulations, we aren’t allowed to be ‘social’ on Social Media tomorrow… but please don’t think, because this account suddenly goes silent, that we aren’t out there, trying to earn every last vote.
I appreciate all the LIKES, SHARES, and wonderful comments of support we’ve received throughout the campaign! They mean SO much to me and my team. On Election Day, please remember to contact your friends, family and neighbours, and remind them how important it is to vote.
A few shout-outs before the silence of Social Media becomes the regulatory requirement.
I want to thank all of you that I have had the opportunity to meet and speak with over the last few months. I have to let you all know that regardless of the support (one way or another) I have grown from this experience. I hope the voters of Surrey give me the opportunity to use this experience.
I want to thank “Mike’s Campaign” team for all of their hard work and their persistence to keep me moving forward. They have been there at a moment’s notice for tasks that we wanted and needed to be done. These are the people that I am proud to call friends and will cherish taking this journey with them.
To my fellow firefighters. Words will never describe my thanks for your efforts to get me noticed. Yes. I know I did some of that on my own, but my IAFF Brothers and Sisters efforts have surpassed my wildest dreams. Together we have made firefighting synonymous with public safety, as it should be. I am truly proud to be a member of the IAFF and will never forget a somewhat copied phrase I have used from many years ago and plan to continue to use, “membership has its privileges” and I’m privileged and honoured to be a member.
Lastly, to my family. They have seen the highs and lows of this campaign and offered nothing other than words of praise (sprinkled with a few swift kicks in the butt) during the past months. They understand the pressures I have been under and I couldn’t have done this without their support. Love you all!
Consider this a “good luck” chain letter and consider calling 10 people and letting them know that the Surrey First TEAM is the best choice for all of Surrey and you get great luck! Add the Surrey First Education team and you get super great luck!
Thank you for showing interest and taking the time to come to my website.
On November 15th, it will be time to exercise your right to vote. Everyone needs to be well informed on who will do the best job for those who live, work and play in Surrey. Make sure you are voting for someone who can deliver on their promises. As a Surrey First Councillor I will deliver on all of the issues I have put forward during the election campaign.
Recovery Houses need to be supported and registered. Those that are not, will need to be shut down. There is only one person in the City of Surrey that has been in ALL of the recovery houses and that is ME.
We don’t need 24 additional By-Law Enforcement Officers, as some claim. We need City Hall to follow through and implement plans and recommendations I made as Chief Fire Prevention Officer.
Secondary Suites need to be identified and inspected on a regular basis, to ensure the safety of those who live there, and to ensure the property owners are paying their fair share to the City for the services they receive. Surrey First has a plan to deal with all of the issues that surround secondary suites in a prompt way.
I want to ensure the work done by our Seniors’ Advisory and Accessibility Committee (SAAC) continues to grow with our growing seniors population. The Seniors Strategy that was developed with this committee is comprehensive and has short and long term goals. Our seniors are cherished members of our community, and we need to ensure they continue to have access to physically and socially active programs.
Public safety has been in the forefront this election and as a firefighter in our community for 32 years, I know what the firefighters have done for public safety and what they will continue to do. The firefighters know how a sense of community plays a role in keeping our neighbourhoods safe. They know we need to add a public education program with the additional RCMP members that Surrey First had requested. We know that when a person has an incident, they want a well-trained and armed Peace Officer showing up on their doorstep and not “plastic police”.
This election is going to set a path. For those of you in the fire service, remember what our growth was and what our staffing levels were, up to 2005. I started in 1982 and there were four firefighters on an engine. During a time of growth with a tax freeze, we shrunk to three firefighters on an engine, which often resulted in firefighters putting their lives in jeopardy while trying to save the life of another. Freezing taxes and reducing costs by an unexplained 3% only increases risks for those densified areas that required more resources. We can’t let history repeat itself!
Surrey First has the experience that no other slate has. Every member on this team works with both the positive and the negative sides of the City on a daily basis. We don’t speak to what we read or hear, we stand on what we have accomplished.
I want to take my experience and bring that to Council to effect change and make my City even better. I have spent 32 years in the TEAM environment with the Surrey Fire Fighters and this is the next TEAM I want to work with.
So, on November 15th, please get out with your family, friends and neighbours and vote for Mike Starchuk, Linda Hepner and the Surrey First TEAM.
While you are in the voting booth, please also consider casting your School Board votes for the Surrey First Education Team.
Thank you for your consideration!