Ac­coun­tant launches may­oral cam­paign

Regina Leader-Post - - News - TER­RENCE MCEACHERN tm­ceach­ern@lead­er­post.com

Chad No­vak said he wanted to do things a “lit­tle bit dif­fer­ently” Mon­day morn­ing.

The 36-year-old launched his may­oral can­di­dacy by driv­ing up 12th Av­enue on to the City Square Plaza in a flashy red Pon­tiac Sol­stice con­vert­ible sports car, wear­ing a black suit and sun­glasses. The car’s Saskatchewan li­cence plate read 4MAYR.

“If that doesn’t show peo­ple I like to think out­side the box, I don’t know what else will,” said No­vak, who is orig­i­nally from Moose Jaw but has been liv­ing in Regina for the past four years.

No­vak un­veiled “four key plat­form ideas” of his cam­paign to a hand­ful of me­dia and mem­bers of the public.

First, No­vak said he wants to re­view the Regina Re­vi­tal­iza­tion Project, and af­ter­wards, ex­tend the ini­tia­tive to the North Cen­tral neigh­bour­hood. Pro­vid­ing land­lords in this neigh­bour­hood with fi­nan­cial in­cen­tives to ren­o­vate their prop­er­ties would help with the city’s af­ford­able hous­ing cri­sis, he said.

Se­condly, No­vak wants to “elim­i­nate the waste” in City Hall through ad­min­is­tra­tive re­view and re­form. His plan would be to find ef­fi­cien­cies and pos­si­bly elim­i­nate “some (staff) po­si­tions through at­tri­tion, re­tire­ments, those kind of things — lay­offs will be a min­i­mum, if at all,” he said. New staff po­si­tions could also be cre­ated through the re­view.

No­vak’s third key idea ― ac­count­abil­ity and trans­parency to tax­pay­ers ― would strive to im­prove the di­a­logue be­tween City Hall and the public. This would in­volve bet­ter use of so­cial me­dia such as Face­book.

His final key idea is to find in­no­va­tive strate­gies to ad­dress au­to­mo­tive con­cerns for the city’s car en­thu­si­asts. A mo­tor­sport fa­cil­ity could im­prove public safety by tak­ing rac­ing off the streets, he said.

“This has been some­thing on the minds of so many cit­i­zens for decades, but un­for­tu­nately it seems their con­cerns have fallen on deaf ears more of­ten than not,” he said.

Other plat­form ideas would be re­vealed in the months lead­ing up to the elec­tion, he said.

No­vak, a mar­ried ac­coun­tant at Sasktel, said what sets him apart from other can­di­dates, in­clud­ing his main ri­val Coun. Michael Fougere (Ward 4), is his train­ing as a strate­gic thinker through his cer­ti­fied man­age­ment ac­coun­tant (CMA) des­ig­na­tion. No­vak also said he plans to run a clean cam­paign by fo­cus­ing on his own merit rather than “throw­ing dirt” on other can­di­dates.

Although he drove up the blocked sec­tion of 12th Av­enue be­tween Lorne Street and Scarth Street (with the city’s per­mis­sion), No­vak said he sup­ports keep­ing the sec­tion closed per­ma­nently.

No­vak, who has no pre­vi­ous mu­nic­i­pal coun­cil ex­pe­ri­ence, said he was orig­i­nally plan­ning on run­ning as a city coun­cil­lor in Ward 8. But af­ter Mayor Pat Fi­acco an­nounced on Feb. 14 he wouldn’t be seek­ing re­elec­tion, No­vak de­cided to run for mayor in­stead. “I felt that it was my time,” he said, adding that he has enough pro­fes­sion­al­ism, sup­port and a “fresh view” to be the city’s next mayor.

No­vak said he’s plan­ning to raise some of his mu­nic­i­pal con­cerns at the March 12 city coun­cil meet­ing.

BRYAN SCHLOSSER/LEADER-POST

Chad No­vak an­nounces his in­ten­tions to run for mayor.

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