Solutions, not promises, is what Al De Genova says sets him apart from his Vision Vancouver rivals and is what makes him the best choice for mayor in November’s civic election.
“If you want something done, you ask Al,” said De Genova, 52, a five-term park commissioner.
“If you breakdown at 2 in the morning and you’re in Squamish and you call me up, I won’t even hesitate. I’ll just jump in the car, grab an Oh Henry bar, and drive there and get you. That’s how I work ... I’m here to serve.”
De Genova’s solutions include a plan to house 600 to 800 people, by turning deplorable, unlivable suites into housing.
He aims to turn the Downtown Eastside’s 20 worst buildings into 20 of the best.
The city would purchase the buildings, bring them up to fire and health codes, and partner them with detox and rehabilitation services, De Genova said.
Funding would come from $100 million that De Genova hopes to extrapolate from the development of four city sites.
De Genova, who is married with three children, sat as a Non-Partisan Association park commissioner for 13 years, but was suspended from the NPA caucus by Mayor Sam Sullivan in 2006. He has sat as an independent for the past two.