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By Rhonda Spivak

Winnipeg entrepreneur Matthew Ostrove is seeking the nomination of the Liberal Party of Manitoba in the constituency of Tuxedo, a riding which has been held by the Conservative MLA, Heather Stefanson for the last ten years.

The thirty-year old Ostrove, who grew up in Winnipeg’s North End, and graduated in 2004 from The University of Manitoba with a degree in economics and with a minor in commerce, gave his first interview to the Winnipeg Jewish Review.

“I am running because I believe that Manitoba needs a younger vision for change to make this province shine as a leader in Canada. I am running to evoke change and bring energy and enthusiasm to the legislature, said Ostrove, who in 2005 began his business, Luco Light Systems, which sells LED lighting products for residential and commercial uses.

In addition to his lighting business, Ostrove, who went to Garden City Collegiate for high school, began a second business selling Israeli Natural Formula hair products. 

Referring to the former Leader of the Liberal Party, the late Israel Asper as “my corporate hero,” Ostrove said he is unaware if anyone else will be seeking the Liberal nomination for Tuxedo.  “So far no one has come forward.  But we will see.”

Ostrove, who has been a card carrying Liberal since 2004, told the Winnipeg Jewish Review  that “I agree with the Liberal platform that having a government that stands up for social justice and fiscal responsibility is important.  I am deeply concerned about our aging population and know that reforms to the present health care system will be necessary to accommodate the needs of the older generations. Furthermore I am also concerned about public safety and how our justice systems needs to be more vigilant about who we let back on the streets who can once again harm the public! “

Regarding  issues of economics, Ostrove said, “ Coming from an entrepreneurial background, I would like to see more government funding for start ups and a development fund created by local entrepreneurs to assist small and medium size businesses with growth.  This way, when recessions hit, we can keep doors open. Concerning Manitoba’s current debt, I would like to find ways in which to pay it down so we can become a ‘have’ province.”

Another issue that Ostrove cares about is the environment.

I am concerned about our environment and I am presently working on resolutions as part of the policy committee within the Liberal party to ban styrofoam and replace it with biodegradable products.  I am also working on a resolution to assist with developing a compost program for businesses and restaurants and banning organics from our landfill which other provinces such as Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island have already done,” he said.

“We have to take larger green steps for a greener tomorrow now!” he added.

Ostrove also noted that in regards to health care, “We in Manitoba are also one of the only provinces left who have not regulated or accredited acupuncture.” He told the Winnipeg Jewish Review that at the upcoming annual general meeting of the Manitoba Liberal Party this weekend in Portage La Prairie, he will be working on a resolution to call for the accrediting of acupuncture.

“I also care about early childhood education and the waiting lists for child care facilities in the province,” he said.

Specifically in Tuxedo, “I care about taxes imposed on homeowners.”

Ostrove has been active in political campaigns working for Dr. Jon Gerrard, who has been the leader of the Liberal party of Manitoba and MLA for River Heights in the last ten years.   Should Ostrove be successful in winning the nomination for Tuxedo, he is prepared to engage in an extensive door to door campaign to meet with the constituents and find out what their concerns are.

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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.