Member of Parliament candidate Hannah Hodson said the number of homes and small business investments promised for Victoria in the Conservative Party of Canada’s recovery plan is “frankly, the boldest” and closest to the scale required to address shortages in both.
Hodson, running in the Victoria riding, has known the area since attending and graduating from the University of Victoria’s political science program in 2014. The native of Grand Prairie, Alta. has called B.C. home since moving with her family in the 1980s.
After graduation Hodson worked with various ministers in the B.C. Liberal government, including Shirley Bond (Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training), Michelle Stilwell (Social Development and Social Innovation). Justin Trudeau’s election in 2017 brought Hodson to Ottawa to work for the Conservative opposition, which also brought her desire to enter federal politics.
“This riding could use a new voice in Ottawa advocating for the community … I’m here to talk to people, hear what they’re concerned about and explain to them why, ultimately, I truly believe Canada’s Recovery Plan and Erin O’Toole are the best plans to bring Canada out of the pandemic and into the future,” Hodson told Black Press Media.
For the residents of Victoria and Oak Bay, and the portion of Saanich encompassed in her riding, Hodson said a future of Conservative leadership focuses on the housing crises and small business.
Their plan includes a promise to build one million homes over the next three years with a focus on public transit proximity. It sounds like a lot, she said, “but it is actually what’s needed to address the scale of the housing shortages across the country.”
Canada became a very attractive country for foreign real estate investment under the Liberal government, Hodson said. Conservatives plan to ban the purchase of homes to those who won’t live there for two years, while encouraging foreign investment in rental housing, she said. “We want people to move here (from abroad), (but) we want homes for people to live here,” she said.
Tax credits and smarter microloans for small businesses would “make a big difference here in the Victoria riding,” Hodson added. “Coming out of the pandemic, it’d be a shame if we lose the character or charm of our communities.”
Victoria’s opioid problems are also close to Hodson, who has abstained from alcohol for 11 years. “I’m really happy that the Conservative Party put mental health as a primary pillar of their plan,” she said.
Following more than three decades of NDP and Liberal MPs in Victoria, Hodson is eager to earn Conservative votes in the riding. “Every time in politics we think that things are settled, they surprise us.”
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