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Candidate Karen Leibovici

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  • Candidate Karen Leibovici

    This thread is to ask questions of Candidate Karen Leibovici – Councillor Ward 5.

    All members are asked to allow the Candidate to post first in his or her thread. This is to allow the Candidate ample opportunity to introduce their background, platform, and any other information they may feel is pertinent to this discussion.

    All decorum expected of members in the C2E Ask Forums will be expected here. An addendum is that posters may ask as many questions as they wish, but they are also politely asked to follow any instructions on posting or reply timelines that the Candidate expresses.

    Thank you to all for participating in the 2010 Connect2Edmonton Election Forum!
    Last edited by Moderator8; 21-09-2010, 09:28 PM. Reason: Spelling fix

  • #2
    Hello Connect 2 Edmonton

    Please visit my website for some information on myself, my record and my platform. You can email me at [email protected] and follow me on twitter @karenleibovici. Feel free to post questions on this forum as I will now be checking daily for any questions comments or concerns you may have.

    Look forward to hearing from you all,


    • #3
      Hi Karen,

      Thank you taking the time to visit this forum. I'm sure you are busy in your campaign. I'm not a resident in your ward, but still have a multi-part question for you.

      Edmonton suburbs seem to have a disconnect with our downtown. Although our downtown has made significant strides over the last decade, much progress is still needed. Many other cities have thriving and bustling downtown/city centers, and downtown is seen as a premiere destination, for shopping, retail and play. In Edmonton, I find it's the opposite, and helps further suburban sprawl we have in this city. What will you do to bring more urban life into our still-struggling urban center? What in your views is needed to bring more people to downtown?
      A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.


      • #4
        Hi Karen,

        A question on the approved LRT to the west. The routing for the most part has been debated and decided and is likley not going to change. While the route does provide a decent high volume public transit between WEM and Downtown, it misses a major population node in Callingwood and areas around.

        Would you be in support of adding an LRT extension from WEM to Callingwood? If not, what public transit initiatives do you see working for that area of Edmonton?



        • #5
          Medwards response

          Thank you for your question.

          There are many requirements that need to be met in order to have a vibrant downtion. Some of these include high density, street front retail/entertainment and an effective, efficient transportation network to take people to and from downtown.

          Council passed the downtown plan, which can be found on the city website. The revitalization of downgown has been a major focus of council in conjunction with the downtown business association.

          Hope this helps,


          • #6
            Grish response

            As you may know, I have been a supporter of extending the lrt to the west end.
            Given budget realities however, it would be a significant amount of time before extensions to the main line could be considered.
            Enhanced bus service would provide the connectivity to the lrt.



            • #7
              Hi Karen! How do you feel about the proposed backyard chicken pilot project?


              • #8
                Reply to DiscoBandit

                I would be willing to consider a pilot project.I understand that one of the conditions would be that the neighbors would have to agree.


                • #9
                  Hi Karen,
                  A question on the west LRT. Do you approve of/agree with the route down 87th avenue from Lewis estates to 156 street? We live in Elmwood. We don't have many ways to get in and out of our community as it is. How would this LRT route affect our entrances?


                  • #10
                    What is your opinion on an arena downtown and how would you approve of paying for it?
                    What is your opinion of this Expo bid? and the cost of this Expo?
                    What is your opinion on the city of Edmonton going farther into debt for various things, such as the LRT, Expo?
                    I am tired of hearing about only the city centre airport.


                    • #11
                      Hello Karen Leibovici,

                      What are your plans regarding the biking trails, pedestrian walkways, and trails of Edmonton if you were to be elected?


                      • #12
                        We are all tired of hearing about the airport... it's probably an issue most would want to avoid since it seems to have polarized many people. If the airport is shutdown how would you like to see that area developed?

                        Also I'd like to thank you for having the best online presence of all the Ward 5 candidates.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Sheba View Post
                          What is your opinion on an arena downtown and how would you approve of paying for it?
                          What is your opinion of this Expo bid? and the cost of this Expo?
                          What is your opinion on the city of Edmonton going farther into debt for various things, such as the LRT, Expo?
                          I am tired of hearing about only the city centre airport.
                          Thank you Sheba for your questions.

                          With regards to the Expo, it has been voted on and we are moving forward. This is a wonderful opportunity for Edmonton to once again showcase the many attributes of our city. These include our people, our businesses and our extraordinary natural environment.

                          As for the Downtown Arena there are many questions that need to be answered before a decision can be made. We as Councillors have also asked numerous questions on this issue.

                          Below are a few of the questions I have asked over this issue.

                          Council has no proposal in front of it so I cannot comment other than to see that it is clear that citizens do not want to see increased taxes if the arena and entertainment district is built.

                          Councillors’ Questions on Sports and Entertainment Facility

                          Page 10 of 18

                          Attachment 1

                          COUNCILLOR LEIBOVICI

                          Questions for Northlands:

                          1. Can Northlands provide the current operating budget for Rexall Place and Northlands? Detail all revenues and expenses for Rexall Place. Can Northlands provide a projected operating budget if Rexall is not part of its revenue stream?

                          2. Please provide the HOK report as well as the reasons that the report was commissioned. Does Northlands agree with the analysis in the HOK report of the need for renovations at Rexall Place.

                          3. Please explain the different calculations that are in the media re: required renovations at Rexall Place, i.e. $49m; $200m; $250m; any other figures. Has there been a cost benefit analysis to renovate vs building a new arena?

                          4. Would Northlands be able to attract private capital to renovate Rexall Place and operate Rexall Place without any public subsidy? Who is currently responsible for any capital improvement to Rexall Place?

                          5. According to the 2007 HOK report how does Rexall Place compare as either a hockey arena or concert facility with other arenas?

                          6. Does the City currently receive any property taxes from either Northlands or Rexall Place? Does the City receive any revenues from Rexall Place?

                          7. Are there any agreements in place with the City and Northlands which guarantee that Northlands will operate an arena after 2014 either at the current Rexall Place or any new arena?

                          8. What is the current revenue sharing agreement with the Oilers and the City regarding; 1.) Rexall Place; 2.) Northlands?

                          9. Can Northlands confirm that they agree with the concept of a downtown arena?

                          Questions for Katz Group:

                          1. Have there been any discussions with the Shaw Conference Centre Management (EEDC) to determine whether there are any synergies regarding the Shaw Conference Centre expansion plans and the proposed sports and entertainment district?

                          2. Have there been any agreements reached with post secondary institutions regarding student housing?

                          3. What is the projected construction schedule for building the arena? What are the projected timelines for build out of the other facilities, i.e. residential and student housing, hotel complex, etc.?

                          4. Can the Katz Group provide its business plan for the arena, as well as the sports and entertainment district?

                          5. Given that under the proposal presented at the City Council meeting that the City will own the building is the Katz Group adverse to a design competition being held?

                          6. Is it understood that all City owned buildings must be certified at a minimum LEED sliver standard?

                          7. Is a Sports Hall of Fame museum envisioned as being part of the sport and entertainment district?

                          8. What will be the terms of the location agreement?

                          9. Has there been any indication by the Province, that casino revenues could be utilized to fund the arena?

                          10. Explain the NHL requirements for arenas and provide information on the funding agreements that are in place between municipalities and NHL teams in both the United States and Canada for both capital requirements and operating revenues.

                          11. Explain what revenues personal seats or luxury suites licensing could provide?

                          12. What guarantees would the Katz group provide to the City of Edmonton if the CRL projections are not realized?

                          13. Has the Katz Group considered a community benefit agreement as entered into by the Staples Centre in Los Angeles and Millennium Southeast False Creek Properties Ltd; City of Vancouver and Building Opportunities with Business Inner-City Society?

                          Questions for Administration:

                          1. a) Has the Administration reviewed the 2007 HOK report and do you agree with its findings?

                          b) Who commissioned the report and why?

                          c) Does the report indicate that a renovated Rexall Place ($250m) would result in decreased revenue?

                          d) Has the Administration reviewed whether there is a need for a new arena and if yes, where the most appropriate location is?

                          2. If the City is the owner of a new arena, who would be responsible for any potential capital cost overruns?
                          2 b) What revenues can the City expect from a new arena and who would be responsible if operating revenues are not sufficient?
                          2 c) On an ongoing basis who would be responsible for on-going capital costs to maintain the arena?

                          3. Has the City undertaken a cost/benefit analysis of a renovated vs new arena; different operational options; different forms of development either on the existing Northlands site or with a new sports and entertainment districts?

                          4. Can a condition of a CRL be a guaranteed revenue stream? In other words if projected development does not occur as anticipated can the City require that the Katz Group provide a guarantee to cover debt servicing costs?

                          5. If a guaranteed revenue stream is not possible how will payment be made on the loan provided by the City?

                          6. Does the City have access to the Katz Group and Northland/Rexall financial statements? What analysis has been undertaken to ensure that projects proposed to finance the CRL are achieved and that projected operating revenues and debt servicing can be met?

                          7. Are the Katz Group timelines for both the building of the arena and the projected build out of the sports and entertainment district achievable? Outline the scenarios considered by the administration re: the amount of the CRL interim financing required, debt servicing ($25-30 million?) and repayment schedule? How does the administration propose to service the debt at the outset? Is the debt proposed $120m?

                          8. Has the City been involved in any discussions with the Katz Group and post secondary institutions re: potential student housing requirements in the sports and entertainment district?

                          9. a) Has the City engaged expertise or does the Administration have information regarding NHL requirements re: arrangements between other municipalities and NHL teams; location agreements and options available if teams are sold or moved before the CRL is repaid?

                          b) The comment was made at the City Council meeting that every city that has an NHL team needs a new arena. Can administration provide information on the status of the other NHL arenas?


                          • #14
                            Hi Karen.
                            Has the current city council every considered a new Civic Centre. It would seem advantageous to have all the city departments under one roof or one complex.
                            What are your thoughts on this.
                            Thank you and have a good Thanksgiving.
                            Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.


                            • #15
                              Thank you for ypour response to my other post.
                              A question on the west LRT. Do you approve of/agree with the route down 87th avenue from Lewis estates to 156 street? We live in Elmwood. We don't have many ways to get in and out of our community as it is. How would this LRT route affect our entrances?