Hello Ward 5!

Councillor Debbie Schaefer
Hello Ward 5 and other residents of King Township.

As a King Township Councillor my top priority continues to be increasing awareness about decisions being made in the municipality.

For me this is critical as it enables citizens to get engaged in these decisions and it enables citizens to know what their elected officials are doing!

Since the launch of this website and blog I have received alot of feedback that people do see the value of this effort. And, I have been particularly gratified that people are using the blog to make comments and that these comments are adding more perspective and information about the issues. (more…)

Need GO station at Kirby now

Wednesday morning I was at the King City GO train station with Vaughan Councillor Marilyn Iafrate (Maple/Kleinburg) to request support for a petition to the Province to push forward the planning for a new GO station at Kirby Road.  This station is going to be built as it is on both Vaughan and York Regions plans; but timing is 10-20 years out.  There is an opportunity to build it much sooner leveraging a private-public partnership that has been offered by a developer working in the area where the station will be built.  If you would like to help this earlier timeline to be realized please sign the petition here.

As anyone knows who uses the GO train, parking at the stations is inadequate.  While talking about this issue with Councillor Iafrate I learned that the parking bottleneck at the King City station is exacerbated by Maple commuters (i.e. people who would normally use the Maple train station) driving “up the line” to King City as the trains are often packed by the time they reach Maple and it is necessary to make the trip standing up.  Metrolinx knows that more capacity is required and they have plans for adding more trains and/or trains with more cars.  Clearly, without more parking the inadequate train capacity will not be addressed.

Road congestion is everyone’s problem in the GTA.  For those who need to get from A to B, valuable time is being wasted on the road.  And everyone bears the consequences of the carbon dioxide greenhouse gas emissions.

At a very local level a new station at Kirby Road is one piece of a multi-faceted solution to the parking problem at King City Station.  We persuaded York Region Transit to run the King Local (Bus 61); I hope as many commuters as possible are using Bus 61 as the ridership needs to be large enough to ensure that it continues.  If you aren’t familiar with the King Local (Bus 61) schedule click here.  We are now being more aggressive in publicizing parking opportunities on municipal properties within reasonable walking distance to the GO station; namely Wellesley Park (King Rd/Keele), United Church (50 Elizabeth Grove), King City Arena (east side Doctor’s Lane). Finally we continue to work with Metrolinx to consider this issue as a high priority.





Events about Volunteers and Bees

I would like to remind you of two important events which are coming up.

Community Showcase and Volunteer Appreciation Night on Thursday, April 24

The Buzz About Bees & Food on Tuesday, April 29

For more information click on the event.  Hope you can make it!

Community Tourism Plan–draft plan

On the Council agenda this week (4/14/14) there is an excellent report presenting a draft 3 year community tourism plan. You can read it here. I call it excellent as it is evident that a very thoughtful process has been undertaken including a very smart decision to leverage the financial capability and expertise of Central Counties Tourism and significant inclusion of people who know King best i.e. residents and business owners.  The report presents an action plan and targets/goals.  And it makes very clear that we will need to make a commitment in our 2015 budget if we are to achieve the goals.  Overall, in my opinion the strategy does seek to leverage what is unique and special about King.  I do question the absence of any clear reference to our cultural heritage; I will be asking about this at Council.

The potential benefit to our businesses, to our economic well being is well defined.  Day trippers spend $43/day in (more…)

York University Satellite Campus Proposal

As it is often mentioned in the media about the Province’s intent to fund satellite campuses  I thought a report going to Council 4/14 would be of interest to readers.  I think King’s intention to support the proposed application to the Province  by York University and Seneca College by supporting inclusion of the Seneca King campus is a very appropriate.  Furthermore, I agree with the recommendation that King will be supportive of an effort by any York Region municipality, particularly  the northern municipalities  to secure a satellite campus. Such a development would enhance the local economies and be of benefit to the community.  You can read the report here.

Events w/o April 14

Just a reminder of two events w/o April 14.

Wednesday, April 16th TRCA is presenting “Greening Your Grounds Workshop: Getting Started” on Wednesday April 16 7-8:30 PM at King City Library.   It is free but pre-registration is requested at www.york.ca/seminars.

And Saturday April 19th is Clean Up King.  If you have are not familiar with details see my earlier post on this.  The event is very flexible in terms of time.  Yes, 4/19 is the day that hubs will be open for picking up supplies but if you can’t do your share to clean up King that day, do it another day and you can still participate.

Clean Up King!

As I rejoice at seeing the snow and ice melt away I grimace and groan with disgust at the newly exposed litter on the litterstreets and in the ditches.  I know that I am not alone!

Saturday April 19th (Earth Day) is our official day for clean-up. To bring some fun to the effort families, neighbours or community groups are encouraged to register here as Sustainable King Stewards for Change.

On April 19th there will be 3 depots where you can pick up supplies for cleaning-up including safety vests, gloves, bags. When you register you are also requested to identify where you will leave your collected garbage so that it can be picked up later. Note: this garbage does not need to be sorted into the different streams such as recycle; experience has shown that often bottles are often so dirty, for example,that it is not productive to sort. Also, it is very cumbersome for the people do the picking up to carry different bags.

The King Environmental Stewardship Team would like you to take action photos of your clean up efforts and submit them to environmentalstewardship@king.ca

For full review of the program to clean up King see here. If you are keen to help but April 19th specifically is not a good day, you can still get involved. I recommend that you connect with either of the two co-ordinators to arrange for pick up of your supplies and to make plans for the garbage pick up. The co-ordinators and their contact information can be found here.

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