He may share his last name with the mayor, but make no mistake, Kevin Chernoff is his own man. Chernoff is once again running for city council and, if elected, would enter his third term.
“I am very proud of the work I have done on council and I will continue to advance the values that will lead Castlegar to a sustainable future,” he said.
Chernoff is proud of the many accomplishments of council during the six years he has served.
“Some of the biggest accomplishments include reducing the city’s debt by 2014,” he said. “I think that’s something more than many municipalities can say.”
With more than $9.7 million in net financial assets, the City of Castlegar is in an enviable position when compared to surrounding municipalities such as Trail’s 2009 financial assets of $102,000 and Nelson’s $5.3 million, said Chernoff.
Chernoff is also pleased that council has made a concerted effort to improve arts and culture in Castlegar with events such as Sculpture Walk.
“The direction we’ve taken with events like Sculpture Walk is important,” he said. “As well, our joint hosting of the B.C. Senior Games was a very big success. It’s what makes a community a community. When you have an event like the senior games, for example, where we had the number of volunteers run that event and you have people from larger municipalities that have hosted that event and say ours were that much better. These people remember and they come back and visit and they spend money here.”
Chernoff doesn’t think there are any real pressing issues the next council need be concerned about.
“I don’t know if there are any huge issues,” he said. “I’m very accessible. I work in a place where I have people stop by probably an average of two per day. People will voice their opinions to me. I haven’t had anybody say ‘this is the issue for council’.”
The water and sewer expansion to the airport lands is important, Chernoff said. “This was a direction that’s been in the works by council since 2007. It’s part of our Official Community Plan, it’s not something new. We’ve personally lost one business I know of because we have no larger tracts of lands available. By doing that sewer and water extension, we make that land way more viable to attract new businesses.”
Chernoff does see the Pioneer Arena issue as something Council will have to revisit eventually.
“There was two ways of doing it,” said “We could have tried to ram it through and that’s not what council did. That’s why it went to referendum the way it did. The citizens of Castlegar and the adjoining communities made their decision. It is something that the City will have to continue to work on because our Pioneer Arena is not going to be there forever.”
Chernoff has lived in Castlegar his whole life. His business, Trowelex, has been around for 47 years. He was born in Trail due mostly to the fact that their was no hospital in Castlegar at the time.
“We’re a family business,” he said. “I’ve always felt a strong sense of community. There probably isn’t an event around that we don’t do something with.”