Tough Reports on Expenditures

September 26 Committee of Whole (COW)  provided a tough reminder of expenses—some we do control and others we don’t.

1. One of the bitter realities identified during the 2011 budget discussions was the need to prepare for refunding  golf courses.   At that point we knew that the  golf courses had appealed their assessments (some as long ago as 1998).  MPAC has finally ordered reductions; and to date 3 King golf courses have settled and are requesting refunds from King, York Region and schools.  From these 3 refunds from King totalling $461,000 have been requested.   Negotiations have started to arrange for a payment schedule with 2011 payment being maximum $240,000 which we had built in our 2011 budget.  Our 2012 budget will need to include some portion of the outstanding  $221,000 plus some/all for the remaining 3 courses which are still awaiting their settlements. (more…)

Moraine Can’t Wait

Realization of any vision is very dependent on actions and decisions by upper tiers of authority. As many peoples’ vision for King, including my own, has as its very foundation, a protected Oak Ridges Moraine (ORM), it is important to me to be assured that the next government of Ontario recognizes the value of the ORM and is ready to not only continue the current legislation but to address deficiencies in it.

If you agree, you can  send a request, from here, to the leaders of the parties asking for declaration of their position on the protecting the ORM and improving the legislation and policies governing it. (more…)

Party Leaders’ Promises for Municipalaties

As I posted a couple weeks ago, in late August I attended the annual conference of Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO).  The agenda included speeches from the leaders of the 3 traditional Ontario parties.   Earlier all leaders had been provided the top 12 asks of AMO.  As health of our municipalities is important and, as municipalities are significantly affected by the decisions of the Province I am providing you here with a summary of those remarks.  I am pleased to see that the summary from AMO includes remarks from the Green Party of Ontario although they were not invited to participate in the conference; they did receive 8% vote in 2007 so we should hear from them too.

Shuttle Buses for King City GO–resolution to YR

My resolution to “request the York Region Transportation Services Committee to investigate and report upon options of parking/shuttle services within King Twp. to help alleviate and remedy the existing as well as future increase of parking demands at the King City GO Station” was seconded by Councillor Mortelliti and passed unanimously at the 9/12 Council meeting.

I will make a deputation at YR Transportation Committee when the resolution is tabled.

You can read my motion here or by going to the “Record” page up at the top.

Sustainability Plan for King

September 6th I participated in our 4th meeting of the Task Force leading the development of the sustainability plan for King Township.  We saw draft visions and goals from the 4 pillars:  Economic, Financial, Socio-cultural and Environment.  We then drafted our 1st version of an overall vision. We were updated on efforts to get input from the businesses and residents of King Township.  Given the summer season the latter has been challenging but with the plans in place for the rest of September we are hopeful that we will see a substantial increase in respondents to our survey.

The survey is short and but very important.  We need to hear from you as to what you love about King and what you want to see changed. (more…)

Museum Update

Museum Update

The initiative to allow Genview to utilize the east section of our Museum as a sales office is essentially moving into execution phase now.  At 08/29 Council authorized the entering into an agreement to cover the temporary tenancy.

From the outset I have considered this initiative as one offering opportunities.  We will see important maintenance work done, such as a new roof; given our poor financial profile this is very good.  We are showing a willingness to work differently, to try different commercial relationships in order to move forward; this is important as public-private initiatives will be increasingly important to us.   Finally, we are achieving this without damaging our museum’s artifacts; nor are we jeopardizing the programming capability of the Museum.

To further ensure the last point I requested that the agreement be amended to include a commitment on response time to identification of a scheduling conflict.  Despite the assurances of Genview’s intent to avoid programming conflicts I think it is appropriate to include a commitment on response time as over the life of this agreement personnel can change and verbal good will agreements can be lost.

I am pleased to see the very specific time parameters in the agreement.  “The one year lease term will commence upon completion of construction which is expected to occur within three months of the formal signing of the lease and renovation agreement. Extension of the term of lease can only be at the discretion and agreement of the Township. At the end of the one year term, Genview Homes will vacate the premises and return them to a condition that is appropriate to ongoing museum operations.” You can  read the whole report and agreement here.

One concern has been the aesthetic.  I think we have reached a very acceptable design thanks to the suggestions and advice from the Heritage Committee and the proponent’s willingness to listen.  To quote Fiona Cowles, Co Chair of Heritage Committee:  “I believe that the old schoolhouse should not be adversely affected by the new rooflines on the east and west wings …..the pitch of the roofs should allow the focus on the old schoolhouse as the core of
the building to continue.”

Next step is to approve the zoning bylaw amendment to allow a temporary sales office at the museum site.  The required public meeting for September 26th; you can read public notice here.