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Public Opinion in Coquitlam/Port Coquitlam--Who will win Mayor?-ROBBINS Van Rassel
  Aug 09, 2008

90 respondents in the city of Coquitlam who follow local municipal politics “closely”. 50 respondents in the city of Port Coquitlam July 30-August 6, 2008--who follow municipal politics closely. No margin of error provided for. The Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam Mayor polls sponsored by Glen P. Robbins and Associates and Jim Van Rassel (candidate for Coquitlam city council) (604) 328-5398

Question #1
A ROBBINS poll of 150 Coquitlam property owners between July 5-11, 2008. No margin of error is provided. This poll was internally funded and ROBBINS sponsor Jim Van Rassel did not contribute any consideration for this poll. PRIVATE PROPERTY exists in different forms. There is the average citizen’s private property-their home-- and there is property held by companies and citizens for development/commercial purposes. In your opinion, which of the following choices for response best depicts which private property is most important to you?
Private property held by average homeowners    58 %
Private property for commercial development    02 %
All types of private property are equally important    40 %
Unsure/Undecided    11 %
Question #2
Coquitlam city councillor Lou Sekora wants city hall to begin to use zero balance budgets in the future instead of their current method of simply having departments justify budgets from the year previous including increases if any. Zero balance budgeting simply means each year you start from square one-determine your costs—and estimate your revenues. City officials and departments often don’t like zero balance budgets because each year they have to go through each and every cost to taxpayers—and departments have to compete for intensely for every dollar they are claiming to require through the fiscal year. Do you support Lou Sekora’s zero balance budgeting approach to Coquitlam?
Yes    72 %
No    28 %
Unsure/Undecided    05 %
Question #3
90 respondents in the city of Coquitlam who follow local municipal politics “closely” WHICH of the following candidates do you prefer for Mayor of Coquitlam in November 2008?
City councillor, Environmentalist Fin Donnelly- (22)    24.5 %
City councillor, former Coquitlam Mayor and former Liberal MP Lou Sekora- (19)    21.2 %
City councillor, former BC Liberal MLA Richard Stewart-(18)    20 %
Mayor, former Coquitlam city councillor and school trustee Maxine Wilson- (16)    17.8 %
Other/Undecided- (15)    16.7 %
Question #4
Which of the following 2 choices best reflects your choice for your Member of Parliament if a federal general election is held this fall 2008?
Federal Liberal, Port Moody Mayor Joe Trasolini- (22)    24.5 %
Federal Conservative, Cabinet Minister James Moore- (21)    23.4 %
Other/Undecided- (47)    53 %
Question #5
In your opinion which of the following statements BEST reflects your impression of what direction current city councillors who have served three terms ought to go in terms of their political careers?
Either move up or move out for new fresh blood- (37)    41.2 %
It’s up to each city councillor to do as he/she pleases- (26)    28.9 %
Unsure/Undecided- (27)    30 %
Question #6
50 respondents in the city of Port Coquitlam who follow municipal politics closely Which of the following candidates do you prefer for Mayor of Port Coquitlam in November 2008?
Port Coquitlam city councillor Mike Bowen- (10)    20 %
Port Coquitlam city councillor Darryl Penner- (12)    24 %
Port Coquitlam city councillor, BC Liberal/carbon tax supporter Greg Moore (11)    22 %
Port Coquitlam Mayor who plead guilty to assaulting his former girlfriend Scott Young- (05)    10 %
Other/Undecided- (12)    24 %
Question #7
Which of the following 2 choices best reflects your choice for your Member of Parliament if a federal general election is held this fall 2008?
Federal Liberal, Port Moody Mayor Joe Trasolini- (14)    28 %
Federal Conservative, Cabinet Minister James Moore- (12)    24 %
Other/Undecided- (24)    48 %
Question #8
In your opinion which of the following statements BEST reflects your impression of what direction current city councillors who have served three terms ought to go in terms of their political careers?
Either move up or move out for new fresh blood- (28)    56 %
It’s up to each city councillor to do as he/she pleases- (18)    36 %
Unsure/Undecided- (04)    08 %
Commentary
(Commentary for questions 1 and 2)Coquitlam property owners are split on whether private property held by average homeowners or all types of private property are equally important. Only a few respondents selected private property for commercial development as equally important.
Two candidates for Coquitlam city councillor in November 08, Jim Van Rassel and Linda Reimer are pushing for private property rights. Although Jim Van Rassel supports all private property rights, his focus has been concentrated on the private property rights of the average homeowner, while Linda Reimer is a real estate agent and related to a developer.
Most recently a dust up between these two candidates emerged when Linda Reimer solicited her views for private property rights at residences in Burke Mountain with No Trespassing signs on the property-a clear sign that she may not full understand the implications of the private property debate.
In an earlier ROBBINS poll of Coquitlam residents—it was clearly determined that Jim Van Rassel’s private property policy was perceived as hugely more important than Coquitlam city councillor Fin Donnelly’s desire to have portions of private property close to estuaries and streams donated back to the city.
This ROBBINS poll reveals that the private property rights of the average homeowner are perceived by homeowners in Coquitlam as far more important than private property rights for commercial development—a position more supported by real estate/developer and candidate Linda Reimer. Will Jim Van Rassel take advantage of Linda Reimer’s recent trespassing gaffe and real estate/developer background to secure more votes in the upcoming civic election?
It would appear that candidate for city councillor Jim Van Rassel has a significant hold on the private property issue going forward to November 08.
Despite the lack of awareness of Lou Sekora’s zero budget balance strategy---most respondents in this ROBBINS poll were clearly in favour of its theoretical practice. Only a minority questioned its efficacy. Those in favour understood that current practices by city hall and city council exist out of laziness and/or a desire for the status quo on spending—while those against are concerned that government services might decline. This type of policy issue is probably most likely to be advocated by a candidate for city mayor. Will the popular Sekora be taking the plunge this November?
A ROBBINS poll of 150 Coquitlam property owners between July 5-11, 2008. No margin of error is provided. This poll was internally funded and ROBBINS sponsor Jim Van Rassel did not contribute any consideration for this poll.
Commentary (for questions 3 through 9 Poll #2)
Coquitlam city councillor Fin Donnelly is the odds on favourite to win the Mayor’s job in the next municipal election in November, should he decide to run. The time is right for Fin to bust a move—he knows what he is doing—has great (and positive) name recognition---and is principled and reasonable despite his strong links to environment. Hanging around for another term as city councillor- particularly at this time- will make him far less relevant three years from now.
Well known political personality Lou Sekora has not announced his intentions but his bombast, knowledge of city hall, great personality, inclination to speak his mind (when every other elected official seems far less inclined), and his pure entertainment value—drawing more voters—makes Sekora a close second to win the Mayor’s job should he decide to run. Playing city councillor to Richard Stewart’s Mayor would make Sekora his political ‘Fool’; however he can play the role of antagonist well if Maxine Wilson lucks out and wins a second term as Mayor.
Former BC Liberal MLA Richard Stewart has declared his intention to seek the Mayor’s job—as an independent. His entrance into the race was awkward-obviously not well planned—as he was linked to BC Liberal supporter and former failed candidate for city councillor Linda Reimer—whose political website still cannot tell us what she is ABOUT—and to the very unsuccessful Coquitlam First group. If Richard Stewart can arrange for a photograph of himself throttling either former Mayor Jon Kingsbury or any developer—he will add popular points. Richard is smart and certainly capable—but unwilling to step up and put a ‘political-cap’ in his former friends and in particular his former boss Gordon Campbell—which would demonstrably help secure his independent role. Removing his visible support for Linda Reimer from her website is a start. Rumours already abound that Richard is linked to the WesBild group—and goes hard on behalf of developers. If he lands in a two way race with city councillor Fin Donnelly—he runs uphill—unless he can re-invent himself. Maxine Wilson knows the ropes, but her inability to gain majority votes, and the most recent months of city council work has given many council watchers the impression that her time as Mayor is over. Sekora and Stewart knocked her around—and Wilson’s quiet tenacity and odd responses made her appear far more stubborn than stoic or strong.
Both Port Moody Mayor Joe Trasolini and Conservative Cabinet Minister James Moore are in tough should they lock horns in the next general federal election. NDP, Greens and undecided are apparently sufficient in size to make these two very competitive.
A majority of decided Coquitlam respondents are of the opinion that city council needs fresh new blood. A corollary question indicated that three-quarters of respondents were of the opinion that elected positions are a profession not a job.
In Port Coquitlam it’s a three way race for Mayor. The favourite in a ‘manipulated’ setting (Greg Moore is featured with ‘political baggage’ and Scott Young with well publicized personnel problems)-is Darryl Penner with Moore and Bowen in the hunt. Scott Young has some support despite his problems of late—but this has much to do with the fact that Port Coquitlam is still rising up in lower mainland rankings for livability. Before Scott Young’s problems this may have been the best city council around.
Greg Moore like Richard Stewart has to lose the BC Liberal/Gordon Campbell baggage if they want to win. Port Coquitlam is not BC Liberal country, the carbon tax has little support here—and Greg Moore is up to his eyeballs in BC Liberal baggage as a very long time lieutenant of the party. A deeply religious man—he has a lot of new age Christian church support as well as a significant popular base—he can parlay this into victory if he is smart about it---a loss means a rest from politics for awhile—lest he be seen flailing around like Jon Kingsbury did when he lost he re-election bid for Coquitlam Mayor. By choosing to run in the municipal election rather than the provincial election—with the new Burke Mountain riding available to him—both Moore and Coquitlam’s Richard Stewart have already signaled they have doubts about Premier Campbell’s ability to win another term. Greg Moore like Richard Stewart needs to do a gut check to determine if they really want to win or not. Sticking a stake in Campbell’s heart will help them both with swing voters who lean BC NDP and undecided.
Not a lot is known about Darryl Penner or Mike Bowen but both Port Coquitlam city councillors are well respected in the community---if there is any political baggage—please tell ROBBINS and the citizens of Port Coquitlam—these are two politicians who come off clean as a whistle. The city of Port Coquitlam is moving in the right direction—save for the histrionics surrounding Scott Young—but voters see this as more about personalities—than bottom line about the proper functioning of city hall—and the perception is that either of these two potential candidates can successfully handle the job.
Our featured federal candidates Port Moody mayor, Liberal Joe Trasolini and Conservative cabinet minister James Moore are in tough in Port Coquitlam—another dead heat. Both live in Port Moody and each in his own right has been successful. Trasolini seems less affected by the unpopularity of Stephane Dion and James Moore though very talented is seen by many as aloof, standoffish, if not a little arrogant. Criticisms sometimes attached to his boss the Prime Minister. Joe’s advantage is that he has done his thing in Port Moody and really needs to make a move elsewhere. If he knocks off Moore who now has a crown on his head—he would be a federal Liberal star—and become kingmaker in BC for federal Liberals—and federal leadership race-should Dion lose. If he runs close and loses to Moore—same thing (lite). This has to be good news for Trasolini. James Moore’s ties to Gordon Campbell—the carbon tax are at odds with his own party’s position and this causes confusion with voters—who CSI “who are you?”

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