Shall We Enable Sprawl?

The Province’s decision to eliminate Schedule 10 from Bill 66 was very welcomed as it seriously threatened security of our water, our farmland and our green spaces.  But, there are still threats as the Province is proposing amendments to the Growth Plan  for the Greater Golden Horsehoe which directs how we grow and where we grow. The current Growth Plan approved in 2017 emphasizes building compact communities with boundaries that not can not be expanded without substantial review. Its goal is to accommodate more people and jobs without sprawl by increasing density within communities.  Higher density is achieved with  smaller lots and taller multi-level residential structures than built traditionally.  Proposed amendments to the Growth Plan include lower demands for density and easier ability to expand the urban boundaries. We are all negatively affected by less dense communities:  public transit costs more and for many public transit will continue to be inadequate; maintenance of public services (water and sewage) increases as there are more pipes.  We start growing houses and not food!

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Main Street Revitalization Project

On Jan. 28 Council agenda there is a report on the revitalization of Schomberg’s Main Street.   About a year ago we learned that we were eligible to receive a grant of $52,000 from Rural Economic Development; since then there has been work with stakeholders (business owners, community members) to develop goals strategies. This report includes two appendices:  one presents the background data analysis and strategy and the other reviews specific actions plans, timing and budget requirements.

 

How Your Council is Paid

There is a report on January 28 Council agenda reviewing a proposed change in remuneration paid to Council members.  As reported an increase in gross is proposed which will translate to a zero change in net pay.  The change is recommended as the way to address the accounting change required by Federal legislation (Bill C 44).  The latter included the elimination of treating one third of Council remuneration as a non-accountable expense allowance.  I think the proposal is appropriate; and I agree with not mixing in this adjustment with any other salary adjustment.

2019 Budget

Here is the schedule for developing the 2019 budget. The first public consultation is Feb. 12 at the Municipal Office at 7PM. As reviewed in an earlier post and report the draft budget and business plan will be tabled at the Feb. 11 Council meeting.  This report also reviews that a budget and business plan for the full term of Council will be prepared.  The latter will be valuable in terms of planning.  The schedule for doing the budget is deliberately later than previous year given the new Council.  I am sure that for 2020 and beyond we will return to completing the process by late January at latest as that is worthwhile in terms of getting better prices for capital projects.

New Partner in Nobleton Community Centre

On January 28 Council agenda there is a report about the opportunity to lease a portion of Dr. William Laceby Nobleton Community Centre & Arena for an Ontario Early Years Centre.  There are numerous direct community benefits including the fact that the Centre will allow for coordinated and centrally located family and children programming services that would be accessible to all families with young children in the Township.  It sounds very exciting:  to learn more I encourage you to read the report.

Pop-UP Youth Centre