THUNDER BAY — City businesswoman Lori Paras has already staked out some priorities as she prepares to run for an election that's still over a year away.
Paras announced recently on social media that she's seeking to represent McKellar ward on the next city council.
She failed to win a position as councillor-at-large but captured 3,767 votes in a crowded race in the 2018 election.
In an interview Tuesday, Paras said her platform includes developing better strategies for combatting neighbourhood crime, and taking on the opioid problem with expanded local addiction treatment facilities.
She'd like the city to look at a program in Calgary that deals with situations where rental properties end up being taken over by criminals, but landlords are unable to evict them.
"If there is political will," there are ways to deal effectively with these kinds of issues, Paras said.
She'd also like to see more police officers on foot patrol in the downtown cores.
Paras said she plans, as well, to push for a review of ward boundaries, saying it's time to consider adjustments after so many years.
She stated that McKellar ward, for one, is "quite large," although the rationale at the time the boundaries were drawn was probably reasonable.
"If we are looking at the wards being redesigned, then you would see if we needed all ward councillors, or whether we need all at-large councillors, or a smaller council...It makes sense to start with that."
McKellar ward is currently represented by businessman Brian Hamilton.