With the provincial election in the rearview mirror, candidates for Saskatoon’s top job at city hall wasted no time reaching out to voters this week.
Former mayor Don Atchison addressed public safety at a Friday morning press conference saying he’d like the number of officers per citizen to match levels under his watch.
This would require hiring around 60 more officers.
“Those are difficult decisions that are going to have to be made over a period of time. We’re not going to go through $6 million of officers in 2021, nor will we get there in 2022,” Atchison said.
He added more needs to be done to prevent youth from being lured into gangs.
Atchison spoke about working with organizations like the YMCA to create recreation centres in core neighbourhoods.
Charlie Clark also talked to reporters Friday and set a target for the city to create 15,000 jobs during his term if re-elected.
“The mayor’s office can help to work to convene and create the conditions for business success here. We have done it through the mayor’s infill roundtable to reduce red tape and to streamline investment and to make sure that we can get people investing here,” he said.
Clark noted the region created nearly 12,000 net new jobs between 2017 and the start of the pandemic.
Cary Tarasoff isn’t sold on Clark’s plan and said there have been opportunities to bring more food processing to the region, but hasn’t been pushed forward by city council.
On Thursday, Rob Norris spoke about creating a Saskatoon immigration plan, which would focus on moving 5,000 people to the city.
“What this is going to do is reflect and reinforce that as a city we want greater control over our own fate and future. This is our chance to raise Saskatoon’s flag not simply across the country but around the world,” Norris said.
Candidate Mark Zielke says if elected he’ll support the ongoing replacement of lead pipes in core neighbourhoods.
The city is already doing this and plans to be done by 2026.
We also reached out to Zubair Sheikh but did not hear back in time for publication.