Meet the candidates: Lambton-Kent-Middlesex – James Armstrong

James Armstrong, Green
Hometown: Bothwell (45 years)
Occupation: 17 years at Sarnia Suncor refinery – currently Operations Program coordinator (management’s representative on the back shifts). Twenty-five years farming.
Political experience: Three years on the Lambton Kent District School Board Oct 2003. Ran as independent in the LKM riding with one school board platform. That, along with the rest of the Green Platform, is why I support the Greens this time. Six years on the executive of the Suncor employees bargaining association.
Community involvement: Alvinston Fair volunteer, member of the Alvinston Hackers, hockey coach.

What is the best way to stimulate the economy in your riding?
Lobby the federal government to lower the interest rate so our dollar value goes back down. The dollar where it is will eventually spell layoffs.

What is the biggest environmental issue facing your riding and what can be done to solve it?
Coal-fired generating stations: we should be investigating burning corn in them.

What is your solution for Ontario’s energy needs – nuclear power, coal, wind/solar?
Wind/solar/biomass. The Green Party and I believe in conservation of energy and renewable fuels.

Taxation: The Green party says it will cut income and corporate taxes in favour of pay-as-you-go consumption taxes. What is your opinion of that?
This will have to be phased in, today we are living in a convenience society and the packaging is contributing to the garbage problem

Do you think the minimum wage should be raised to $10 per hour?

Do you support public funding for all faith-based schools?
NO. There should only be one school board. I am a new member of the Green party. I am frustrated with the flip-flopping of the Liberals and the Conservatives when it comes to funding of education. In 2000 the Liberals wanted to fund faith-based schools and the Conservatives would not. Now it’s a complete switch. I feel that at some point in time the public will catch on to the misleading promises that these two parties continue to campaign with, in order to get themselves elected and find alternative parties to support. I believe that if a party comes out with a campaign promise during the election campaign and it becomes a lie, the leader must resign.

Which electoral system will you be voting for: Mixed member proportional representation (MMP) or first past the post (FPTP)?