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On the phone with community volunteer Debbie MacKinnon, District 10 

The candidate’s main agenda is to see taxpayer money spent in her district.

OLIVIA HUOT
  • Olivia Huot
Although originally from Cape Breton, Debbie MacKinnon has lived in Fairview for the last 25 years. She schooled at Mount Saint Vincent University and “never ended up leaving. That’s how much I like the place.”

MacKinnon has been involved in the community ever since her children were little. She’s volunteered as chair of the school advisory council at Halifax West high school, and as a member of the Fairview community association, which puts on free barbecues every year among other things. But now that her kids are older, she wants to take this involvement to a bigger level by running for the District 10 (Halifax–Bedford Basin West) council seat. “Now is the time to take what I like to do, which is helping the community, and potentially helping a larger portion of the community.”

She says people have complained to her that the Canada Games Centre is not affordable to everyone, and she’s been looking for a location to build an affordable community centre. “I’m really committed to bringing a community centre back to the community because I feel like our communities are disjointed right now,” she says. “My dad always used to tell me, ‘If you have a goal and no plan, it’s just a dream.’ I’ve got the goal and I have a plan and I just have to get to a place that I can actually make it happen.”

She says Fairview does not look great right now compared to downtown Halifax, adding that her most important goal is to ensure taxpayer money is used in the district. “We have no sidewalks, we have no safe crosswalks, there’s not investment at all in District 10,” she says. “We pay taxes, and I just don’t see where our tax dollars are going. Certainly not back in District 10.”

One of the other complaints she’s received from speaking with residents is the heavy traffic in the district. She says there would have to be traffic-calming measures implemented in areas with heavy vehicle use.

On defunding the police, MacKinnon says the term is misleading. “I do think we need to reallocate resources. She mentions the mobile crisis team as a resource but calls for more funding to be allocated toward this kind of policing.

She says she should be elected as councilor for her district because she is committed and passionate. “I have no other agenda to push on council other than what’s in the best interest for District 10.”

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