This is my third interview with an elected Provincial official! His name is Kelly Lambrock. Here we go in his words—
1- Where are you from?
Marysville, in Fredericton
2- How long have you been an MLA?
Nearly 2 years.
3- How old are ya????
4- What are the most important issues in your riding?
A- Making the education system work for all kids.
B- Access to university and community college for all citizens
C- Investing in the kind of high-skill jobs that build Fredericton's economy.
D- Getting a fair unconditional grant for our municipality.
5-Do you believe there's a problem with Ritalin in this Province? If the answer is yes? How do we confront this issue?
Yes, I do. I do NOT think that politicians should overrule doctors' prescriptions, however. What I do believe is that certain policies, like the under funding of special needs education and the lack of counselling resources in early grades lead to doctors over prescribing Ritalin
because we don't have the resources to deal with behaviour issues properly.
I would support fixing those two problems and then tracking to see if
Ritalin use declines.
6-Do you believe there's a major problem with prescription drug on the streets?
That's what I'm hearing from a number of community leaders. I wish that we had a better monitoring system in place so we could see numbers.
7- How would you handle the issue of Vlt's?
I believe that, generally, people should be free to make their own choices about whether to gamble or not. I don't like government telling people whether or not they can play poker (or drink beer, or use the internet, which are also things where people get addicted).. But I also
know that a lot of people say that VLTs aren't really about peoples' choices, because they operate in addictive way.
So, first, I would have an independent commission take over gaming, instead of the Department of Finance, since their mandate is simply to make money. Second, I would make an ironclad law that so much money from gambling has to go back to treatment programmes. And I would call for a review to see if VLTs are more addictive than other forms of gambling. If they are, then I would phase them out and replace the revenue with less addictive forms of gaming.
8-Why don't Bernard Lord go out and face the protesters in front of the Legislature? Do you believe that Shawn Graham would be different?
I won't speculate on what motivates the Premier. You can ask him. But I think that politicians should meet, and talk with people who disagree with them. When I proposed my dog law, I met with everyone who asked. And I learned some things from those with different opinions. And on some other things, I was able to convince people that I had a point. When I proposed a compromise, both sides seemed happy. I know already, Shawn Graham meets with people who disagree with his policies on things like forestry and Point Lepreau. He's not too insecure to listen to constructive criticism. And I think he'll be like that as Premier, too.
9-Do you believe that voters look at you different because your a lawyer?
Now that you mention it, I do notice people tilting their head upwards
when they look at me. But maybe it's because I'm tall. :-)
10- Do you think there will be a Provincial Election this year?
I don't think about things I can't control. If the Premier tells you, let me know.
11- What's your views on the Monopoly the Irvings have in the Newspapers business in this Province? Should New Brunswickers be concern?
I think concentration of media ownership is an issue in all of Canada -- although my reading list includes all 3 Irving papers because there's lots of good journalism there. I just read other sources too. The internet allows people to do their own research and thinking. If enough people broaden their reading lists to include thoughtful, fact-based journalism, mass media will respond to it. If people don't want anything else, then the market won't provide it. It's in our hands, really.
11-Are you going to re-offer?
I will decide on that when an election gets closer. I have young kids, and they come first.
12- Do you believe that the bureaucrats are running this province so therefore no political party can change the system. One reason would be that we only
have a population of 674,000 people? What do you think?
If I believed that, I'd go back to teaching full-time.
Thanks, Charles -- that was fun.