Proudly Surrey has announced Parshotam Goel is its newest council candidate for the upcoming Oct. 20 election.
The party says Goel’s announcement completes the party’s nominations of school board and council candidates, fielding slates of four candidates for each of the two municipal boards.
Goel, a 68-year-old Sullivan resident and owner of Peace Park Developments, said he aims to “make city hall’s decision-making process accountable and transparent.”
“I know from years of experience just how opaque, confusing and unaccountable our decision-making process is,” added Goel, who is also current secretary of the Hindu-Sikh Forum of North America. “As a developer, I had a choice: throw in with a party that might give me privileged access to this unaccountable system or join with the party that has the best, most comprehensive plan to reform that system and bring transparency to our city government.
“And, of course, it is not just development decisions that are so predictably unaccountable and take place out of public view,” said Goel. “We have an excellent rapid transit option for our city that risks being rejected by voters in this election because of the lack of public trust and legitimacy in both the process that selected it and the councillors who participated.”
“Proudly Surrey has a plan to solve these problems with reforms to the voting system, hearing processes, councillors’ offices and all of the things that link citizens to decisions by councillors,” Goel noted. “I’m enthusiastic about the policies the party has already announced and, after a good look at the policies to come, I am looking forward to introducing our whole transparency package to the public in September.”
Goel joins three other Proudly Surrey council candidates, joining three others: Stuart Parker, Felix Kongyuy and Adam MacGillivray.
Other slates running in the fall election include Surrey First headed by mayoral candidate Tom Gill, former Surrey First Councillor Bruce Hayne’s Integrity Now slate, People First Surrey, and former Surrey mayor Doug McCallum’s Safe Surrey Coalition.
The Surrey Community Alliance party seems to have been dissolved after founder Doug Elford split to run with McCallum. Council candidates on that slate (Asad Syed, Saira Aujla, Bernie Sheppard and Imtiaz Popat) are considered independents for the time being.
Surrey voters head to the polls on Oct. 20.