"Every member of Council needs to work together on the things that matter most. It's the only way we're going to build a better Hamilton. As a Council, we need to lead in public, not behind closed doors, so residents can see us, hear us, and feel welcome to participate in their local democracy. No more secrecy and no more coverups. During this term of Council, we must earn back the trust we have lost. I am committed to this vision and to working with every Hamiltonian to make this city the best it can be."

Cameron Kroetsch - Candidate for Ward 2 Councillor


Environmental Stewardship

"Hamilton is one of the most naturally beautiful places in Ontario with hiking trails, waterfalls, and the escarpment just minutes from our front doors. We have to do everything we can to protect it and that includes taking the City's declared climate emergency more seriously. Climate change is affecting how we live our lives and the impacts to our environment, both natural and built, must be considered as part of every decision the City makes. Our future depends on it."

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Ward 2

  • Accelerate the expansion of greenspaces and parks - this will help to mitigate the effects of urban heat islands and aid in the development of the urban forest canopy; it will help neighbourhoods adapt to rapid change and provide more equitable access to outdoor spaces

  • Commit to a minimum of 45% of urban forest canopy cover in the downtown core - this will help to make our climate more resilient and support local biodiversity

  • Reduce light and noise pollution in residential neighbourhoods - this will contribute to making Hamilton a more bird friendly city and provide relief from excessive noise and light

  • Develop policy to encourage the adaptive reuse of heritage structures - this will reduce landfill and waste from the demolition of buildings that have the ability to continue to serve the community

  • Provide dedicated space to local food growers at the Hamilton Farmers' Market - this will increase local grocery options downtown, improve overall market traffic, and reduce the costs of transporting food

Citywide

  • Upgrade the City's capacity for monitoring the quality and condition of the air, water, and land that we steward - this will allow us to more readily determine when there has been contamination so that we can more quickly address it

  • Implement mandatory Green Development Standards (GDS) for all new development - this will increase energy efficiency to reduce energy costs, minimize greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs), decrease stormwater impacts to address infrastructure costs, improve public health, and preserve the natural environment

  • Support a smoke stack monitoring program - this will directly fund the work being done by local non-profit organizations who are currently monitoring the status of the industrial sector and create better public reporting and accountability

  • Introduce a new fee structure for development or building improvements that increase the burden on our stormwater system - this will ensure transparent, equitable, and sustainable funding of additional stormwater infrastructure and will incentivize innovation to reduce future impacts to areas like Cootes Paradise

  • Hire additional City staff to prioritize Hamilton's declared climate emergency - this will remove the responsibility from a small team, integrate expertise across the organization, and ensure that there are actionable timelines and robust plans for the Community Energy & Emissions Plan (CEEP) and Climate Change Impact Adaptation Planning (CCIAP)

  • Remove built obstructions to local waterways (daylighting) - this will improve the City's natural biodiversity and the health of nearby ecosystems; this will also help to reduce heat impacts in adjacent areas and provide relief to nearby wildlife

Affordable Housing

"If Hamilton is going to remain inclusive, the City can't support policies that push Hamiltonians out of their homes. I'm going to fight to make sure that doesn't happen. We must move beyond blaming upper levels of government and harness innovation and creativity, both locally and globally, to implement solutions to our housing crisis. We can do this together, but only if we do it differently."

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Ward 2

  • Sign on to the first Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) - this will increase affordable housing and create a culture of community dialogue and partnership that provides vital community amenities and jobs through fairly negotiated agreements with developers

  • Audit and grade downtown shelter spaces - this will level the playing field and help to create a uniform approach to service delivery that will reduce negative impacts for shelter users

  • Retrofit CityHousing buildings to provide emergency cooling and heating relief during extreme weather - this will provide relief to residents and will create a backbone of staff support to support residents on site when these events occur

Citywide

  • Complete an immediate audit and assessment of all City land assets - this will determine what land can be allocated and leveraged to build long term deeply affordable housing and to create a municipal non-market housing program (including rentals for all income levels)

  • Develop a policy for addressing houselessness that is founded in compassion and accountability - this will provide better outcomes to houseless Hamiltonians and help the City to better determine its ability to support them

  • Implement local landlord licensing - this will protect tenants from substandard housing conditions by ensuring that the City's property standards bylaws are enforced and that there are proactive inspections

  • Draft local tenant protection policies - this will introduce regulations to protect tenants from renovictions by landlords who want to do renovations and demovictions by landlords who want to demolish buildings
  • Coordinate CityHousing Hamilton and the City's Housing Services department - this will save money, allocate services more equitably, and make it easier to develop and implement policies

Accountable Leadership

"If Hamiltonians could trust their Councillor to hold themselves accountable, to put resident priorities ahead of their political ambitions, and to be responsive to their ideas and concerns, just imagine all of the energy that communities could unleash to make their city better. Residents deserve to experience joy in their communities and they deserve a City Council that's prepared to lead with integrity."

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Ward 2

  • Meet with and listen to residents regularly by holding town halls, attending meetings of neighbourhood organizations, and participating in local events - this will provide me with the continued feedback I need to advocate for members of the community

  • Increase the volume and methods of communication with all Ward 2 residents - this will keep residents better informed about issues and ideas that affect them; more information makes for a more engaged community

  • Speak out, in public, and in an accessible manner, about important issues - this will let residents know that I support them, see them, value them, and am listening to their concerns

  • Bring back the Ward 2 Community Council - this will enable neighbourhood organizations to bring their issues to their City Councillor and to have the opportunity to meet with other community members, exchange ideas, collaborate, and advocate collectively for change

Citywide

  • Encourage any organization receiving City funding to share feedback, positive or constructive, about issues involving the City - this will ensure that key City partners are providing it with the necessary feedback required to improve the services it delivers

  • Update the City's governance model including the elimination of the General Issues Committee and the requirement for all members of City Council to sit on all Standing Committees - this will make City meetings more efficient and timely and ensure that all members of Council are more immediately aware of vital issues facing the City; this will reduce the overall number of meetings for Councillors and save money by reducing staff attendance at meetings

  • Hire an arms-length auditor to administer municipal Freedom of Information (FOI) requests and access records using the City's IT infrastructure - this will eliminate the possibility for members of Council to determine which records they disclose and will introduce more impartiality to the process

  • Eliminate the use of single sources for municipal contracts and choose bidders based on balanced scoring - this will allow for open bidding processes and result in choosing bid winners on the basis of quality of work and high standards, not just the lowest bid

  • Add a majority contingent of community experts to the Board of Health - this will ensure that decisions around health outcomes for Hamiltonians are made with the direct input of those with learned and living experience

  • Expand City Council through the election of a member of Hamilton's Indigenous communities - this will prioritize the involvement of members of Indigenous communities in citywide decisions and help to ensure that the water and lands upon which Hamilton is situated are stewarded with care

  • Advocate to the Province for both term limits and recall provisions for members of City Council - this will allow for more participation in municipal politics and introduce serious accountability for local government

Safe Neighbourhoods

"As Hamiltonians, we want to get around our great city without worrying if we will arrive at our destination in one piece. We can't do that if our sidewalks, streets, school areas, and bike lanes are danger zones. We deserve to be able to get outside when and how we want to. For our neighbourhoods to thrive, we need infrastructure that is designed to help people move through our city safely. To do this, we must address our infrastructure issues now. We can't leave them for future generations to deal with."

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Ward 2

  • Collaborate with neighbourhoods to redesign unsafe streets - this will slow down streets, make neighbourhoods more liveable, and make it safer for everyone to get around in their city

  • Increase the number of public washrooms, drinking fountains, and garbage cans - this will make it easier for residents to enjoy the outdoors for longer periods of time and provide the basic services for everyone who needs them; this will reduce the amount of blowing garbage in the core and discourage littering

  • Implement traffic calming measures equitably across neighbourhoods - this will give underserved neighbourhoods a chance to catch up so that all Ward 2 communities benefit equally

  • Prevent non-local truck traffic from cutting through downtown neighbourhoods - this will force truck traffic to exclusively use the purpose-built ring road network for non-local deliveries

  • Support the expansion of community fridges - this will provide direct support to residents who need help meeting their basic needs

  • Expand the number of Consumption and Treatment Sites (CTS) and SIS (Supervised Injection Sites) in the core - this will help people who use drugs by reducing harm and stigma and by providing immediate support; this will be coordinated by a specialized team drawing on best global practices

Citywide

  • Audit roads, sidewalks, and other public spaces to ensure that they're hazard free and kept that way - this will provide all Hamiltonians with a better pedestrian experience and will remove barriers for folks who use assistive devices to get around; this will require the City to make a serious commitment to Vision Zero principles

  • Clear snow from all sidewalks, side streets, bus stops, and hydrants - this will provide residents, including those who are isolated, with the confidence to enjoy their city year round; it will also make it easier for City staff to access critical infrastructure in the winter

  • Connect existing cycling infrastructure and improve the current network - this will create much needed citywide cycling connectivity so that people can more readily choose active transportation and will prioritize protected cycling infrastructure

Dependable Transit

"The only growing source of greenhouse gas emissions in Hamilton comes from transportation. That means we must prioritize expanding and improving public transit so that residents have options. Hamiltonians deserve great transit services that can get them where they need to go, whether that's to the grocery store or Bayfront Park. Our city can't afford another 10-year transit strategy. We must act now. Time's up."

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Ward 2

  • Manage the implementation of Light Rail Transit (LRT) in Ward 2 to mitigate impacts to residents and business owners - this will help those most impacted to navigate the years-long disruption to their lives and livelihoods

  • Modernize local Hamilton Street Railway (HSR) routes - this will not only provide a more efficient local bus network to support Light Rail Transit (LRT) but it will improve individual routes (including those that have not been changed in several decades)

  • Introduce shuttle service to and from major public amenities and events - this will connect downtown residents to citywide festivals, events, and amenities like Christie Lake, the Royal Botanical Gardens, and Fifty Lake Conservation Area

  • Plan downtown street design to prepare for building out the BLAST transit network - this will prepare the remaining changes require to fully integrate B-line LRT and to make improvements for A-line transit up the mountain

Citywide

  • Equalize funding for transit across the City - this will end transit area rating and ensure that transit reaches and serves all residents

  • Develop a phased plan for free local transit - this will involve working with upper levels of government for funding; it will reduce barriers, reduce traffic (and wear and tear on our streets), mitigate our climate impact, and help to address our growing infrastructure deficit

  • Improve the Disabled and Aged Regional Transit Service (DARTS) including vehicle upgrades, additional funding, and robust reporting - this will make life easier for those who rely on this service to get around to accomplish their everyday needs, to get to the polls and citywide events, and to see family and friends

  • Expand the current electric bus pilot - this will pilot electric buses on an a route that will allow for rigorous seasonal testing

  • Grow the Hamilton Bike Share fleet both east of Ottawa Street and on the Mountain - this will provide more equitable access to modes of active transportation

Community Engagement

"Hamiltonians love to talk about Hamilton. This city matters to the people who live here. Like me, they love their city. As elected leaders, we need to embrace that enthusiasm and tap into the lived experience that's all around us. It's our job to listen deeply, again and again, until we can deliver what residents want and need. That means reaching out to residents in the ways that make sense to them, when and where they feel most comfortable engaging with us, and treating every single Hamiltonian with respect, whether they agree with us or not."

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Ward 2

  • Continue to knock on doors and make phone calls to residents in between elections - this will allow me to connect with people, one on one, who our office might be missing through electronic communication

  • Set up a texting service and dedicated office social media accounts - this will make it easier for residents to reach us when they need to and how they feel most comfortable

  • Restore and expand participatory budgeting - this will include developing a program to identify resident priorities for the ward and City budgets and to update those budgets to reflect Clear Writing (CW) principles

  • Put up signs to explain significant physical changes in neighbourhoods - this will make it easier for residents to understand what's happening with service disruptions, new developments, emergency repairs, and other major infrastructure planning; signage will be written using Clear Writing (CW) principles

Citywide

  • Place resident feedback, correspondence, and delegations at the start of City agendas - this will encourage resident participation and ensure that individual residents are provided with a time window for their participation so that they can better balance other priorities (including childcare and work schedules)

  • Respond directly to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's Calls to Action for municipal government - this will address the direct calls to action that the Indigenous community has asked municipalities to take up (specifically Calls to Action 22, 23, 57, 87, 88, and 91)

Responsive Services

"We deserve excellence in every service provided by the City. As residents, we all pay for City services. Good enough is not good enough. That means I, and every member of my office staff, commit to providing excellence in everything we do do for Ward 2 residents. It also means I'll work with my colleagues to hold all City services to a higher standard, to measure and report on our results, to make improvements, and to celebrate our successes. It's the least we can do."

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Ward 2

  • Increase the staffing complement in the Ward 2 office to 3 FTEs - this will better serve residents who call, email, or reach out through social media to their City Councillor and make it possible to expand office hours to include evenings and weekends

  • Break down barriers for local businesses to get started in Hamilton by broadening the scope, mandate, and staffing of the Hamilton Business Centre (HBC) - this will allow the HBC to provide realtime support to businesses without forcing them to speak to multiple City departments to get service; HBC will manage, coordinate, and respond efficiently to help businesses get going quickly

  • Create safe City-supported spaces for members of communities that have been targeted by discrimination and violence - this will help to address the needs of Hamiltonians with disabilities and members of Two Spirit, BlPOC (Black Indigenous People of Colour), LGBTQIA+, Muslim, and Jewish communities, who have all been asking for these supports for many years, especially those without direct support from a City department

  • Expand free public wireless internet in the core - this will put WiFi in more public parks, start a downtown pilot across the Hamilton Street Railway (HSR) fleet and facilities, and investigate the feasibility of City-owned and -controlled municipal broadband program

Citywide

  • Launch a dedicated 311 service for Hamilton - this will make it easier for residents to reach the City and will help to amalgamate many frontline services under one administrative umbrella; this will include the implementation of an online tracking system that can be easily checked by residents to determine the status of their request

  • Expand the hours for frontline City staff to include evenings and weekends - this will create more equitable working conditions for those who are working during the City's current operating hours and create more flexibility for residents who need services on evenings and weekends

  • Pilot a bylaw reporting app that allows obvious infractions to be reported through a mobile device to the City in real time - this will decrease the need for traditional enforcement and decrease call centre wait times

Sustainable Growth

"The downtown core is home to tens of thousands of Hamiltonians and full of incredible businesses, retailers, and restaurants. But it's growing and changing rapidly and it's going to be difficult for many of us. We're only going to get through this transition together if we ensure that no one is left behind. How we manage the coming change, and how we look out for one another, will define us a city."

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Ward 2

  • Plan for more transit connections and local amenities to keep up with the pace of development - this will make it easier to manage change in neighbourhoods experiencing significant growth by ensuring space for grocery stores, laundromats, and community hubs

  • Introduce a formal flexible zoning program for emerging business uses - this will allow businesses to more easily deal with existing and often outdated bylaws that restrict simple changes to commercial use, parking, and adaptive reuse

  • Expand the vacant homes tax to include commercial properties - this will encourage development and discourage property speculation

  • Create pedestrian-only zones in the downtown core - this will make commercial areas more vibrant and encourage residents to use public spaces

  • Revitalize the Hamilton Farmers' Market - this will improve the current governance structure by adding a role for vendors and the public and ensure that vacancies are meaningful filled and all space maximized

  • Support the introduction of new Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) in downtown Hamilton - this will make it easier for new BIAs to start up and to get access to staff resources and funding opportunities

Citywide

  • Develop policy to support the inclusion of as much "missing middle" housing as possible - this will introduce gentler density within the urban boundary while allowing us to meet our Provincial growth targets

  • Stop sprawl by continuing to promote and enforce building within the existing urban boundary - this will keep the costs of suburbanization at a minimum, lessen the municipality's infrastructure burden, protect vital farmland, and conserve natural landscapes like wetlands and creeks

  • Mandate zoning changes from commercial to mixed use during turnovers, sales, or tear downs - this will provide additional residential density within the existing urban boundary

  • Advocate to the Provincial government for a commercial rent control program - this will prevent longstanding community businesses from being renovicted or priced out

Further Reading

Candidate Surveys and Questionnaires

Media Releases