Saturday, December 15, 2007

Saturday December 15, 2007

The last week before Christmas and the business of the Town is starting to slow down before the break. The Town offices are closed from December 24th to January 1st inclusive.

The last big meeting will be the Council meeting this Monday at 7:30 pm. And it promises to be interesting.
- The Town will debate what to do with the social worker program that has been in our downtown for about six months. Simply put the Town does not have the money ($80,000 to $100,000 per annum) and other funding sources are reticent to come forward. At best we are likely to see an extension for the next quarter.
- Kirk Ruston and George Kontos will make a plea for the wakeboard event they are proposing for Little Lake. The major issue they have run into so far has been the environmental concern. This issue should challenge Council.
- A summary will be presented of our budget deliberations. Your Council has met twice to look at costs, with a draft final budget to be ready by the end of February. The perennial problem remains – it all comes down to the taxpayer.

For those looking into the New Year, the next Pesticide Committee meeting is set for January 10 at 7pm. The Snowmobile Committee meeting will take place shortly thereafter – date to be announced.

On a non-Town note the Out of the Program started December 1st. We are seeing a similar level of use as last year. The guys appreciate the new shelter at Knox church and understand that the people of Midland are reaching out to them. Feels like Christmas.

My very best wishes to you for Christmas and 2008.

Gord McKay

Monday, November 19, 2007

Monday November 19th 2007

The cold weather is settling in. Despite that, our Remembrance Day ceremonies showed that this Town is full of warm hearts. We had the biggest turn-out yet at the Cenotaph to honour our soldiers and veterans.

An interesting couple of items at Town last week:

1) Discussions started on how much your municipal politicians should be paid. This is usually a prelude to an increase and always contentious.
2) The Town reviewed a request to hold a “wakeboard event” in Little Lake Park. At the same meeting we heard that the Park has also just been designated as a “Provincially Significant Wetland”. A debate is about to start on future uses of the Park.
If any of your want to comment on these items, please do so.

Wednesday November 21st at 7pm sees us sitting down at the Town again to discuss the Pesticide issue. Hopefully we can start moving this towards some form of closure.

And the Good for Life Group is sponsoring a free skate at the Recreation Centre on Friday November the 30th at 6:15pm. All are welcome.

Gord McKay

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Saturday November 3rd 2007

If you listen carefully you can hear the sounds of Christmas in the distance. But in the meantime…

This Monday November 5th at 7pm, the Town will hold a public meeting at the Recreation Centre to discuss the new fees for our Town sports and recreation programs.

On Wednesday the 7th at 7pm we will have a Public Hearing for our revised sign by-law.

And at 7pm the same evening the Planning Advisory Committee will address some interesting topics:
- Our recently passed home occupation bylaw has been appealed to the OMB. PAC will discuss its next move
- The west end of Little Lake has been designated a Provincially significant wetland. Midland gets greener and
- Our Wal-Mart is looking at expanding

Next week will be equally as interesting as the Town discusses how (if) it will be involved in the delivery of social services – Wednesday the 14th at 7pm at the Town. And on the 15th the Town will have a special meeting to review its involvement with the Chamber of Commerce.

Gord McKay

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Sunday October 28, 2007

The days are getting shorter and the Town agenda seems to be getting busier.

Fees will be going up for Town recreation programs and facilities. If you are interested in finding out how you will be affected there will be a Public Meeting on Monday Nov 5th at 7pm NSSRC.

The Town will be participating in a “Business Retention and Expansion” survey starting this fall. The survey, lead by the North Simcoe Community Futures Development Corporation ( try saying that quickly), will contact a cross section of local business to find out how they are doing and what can be done to improve their operating environment. This is a good start for our long needed business development plan.

On the social services front, the Town is organizing three public meeting to decide what role it should have in delivering social services. The meetings:
- Tuesday Oct 30, 7pm at the Town – receive report on downtown field work to date
- Wednesday Nov 14, 7pm at the Town - meet with area social agencies to determine role for Town
- Thursday Dec 6, 7pm at the Town - discuss funding options and partners for a possible $100,000 plan.

The Huronia Foundation for the Arts held its inaugural dinner this past Saturday – the 180 attendees had a great time. The HFA will now hold its first public meeting to elect a Board on Thursday 8th at 7pm, Seniors Room NSSRC. You are most welcome.

And lastly construction of the new Out of the Cold shelter at Knox is going well. Expect completion by mid-November with the doors to open on Dec 1. We are looking for volunteers who can help a few hours a week, so send me an e-mail.

Happy Halloween.

Gord McKay

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Saturday October 6th 2007

Before we get to the turkey a few quick notes about the upcoming week.

Tuesday October 9th the Town will be having its regular General Committee meeting. A couple of items of interest:
- We will hear about the 2008 water and sewer rates – should be about a 2% increase over last year or roughly $10 per consumer.
- The 2008 budget review schedule will be discussed. The first meeting is a lot earlier this year, set tentatively for December 4th.

Wednesday will feature a 7:00 pm public meeting on the zoning for the Stollar property at 935 Yonge St. This will be followed at 7:10 with the Planning Advisory Committee. Two interesting PAC items will be arrangements with the Town for the new Huronia Players Theatre and a prospective daycare development located at the Georgian Bay Native Friendship Centre.

Indications are that we will have another public meeting shortly to discuss the SOS outreach workers. I will let you know as that one firms up.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving

Gord McKay

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Wednesday October 3rd 2007

It’s all about growth.

There is going to be a flurry of meetings intended to educate all of us about the County/Province’s growth plans for our area.

This Thursday October 4th at 7:00 pm, the Simcoe County Growth Management Presentation will take place in our Town Hall.

The County is also holding a number of other information evenings:
- October 16th, 4:30 pm Elmvale Community Centre, Elmvale
- October 22, 4:30 pm Barrie Country Club, Barrie
- October 23rd, 4:40 pm Highwayman Inn, Orillia

Changes are coming to our area. This is a good chance to see how they may affect us.

Gord McKay

Monday, October 1, 2007

Monday October 1st 2007

Just a quick note.

Two interesting meetings tonight October 1st at Town Hall. Councillor Jeffery will start off at 7pm to discuss what the Town is going to be doing about the proposal from the two social outreach workers the Town hired this summer. Ideally we will hear where the Town stands on funding/participating in social service delivery in Midland.

Right after that the Mayor will broach the affordable housing issue. This will be the first meeting on the topic so little forward progress is likely. But we should begin to understand how likely the Town is to committing to getting involved in the issue.

The next Pesticide meeting is October 18th.

And if I can be permitted to promote a favourite group – The Huronia Foundation for the Arts will be hosting its inaugural dinner October the 20th. This will be a showcase for our local artists. Please e-mail me if you need tickets or information.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Saturday September 8 2007

The Town is back in full gear. As one of you commented to me, its time for the Councillors to start earning their salaries.

Lots of meetings coming up:

- Pesticide Committee – Thursday, September 13 at 7pm, Town Hall
- Streetworker Report – Monday, September 17 at 7pm, Town Hall
- Snowmobile Committee – Thursday, September 20 at 7pm, Town Hall

Our first General Committee meeting of the fall takes place this Monday the 10th at 7pm. The Frederick Street development will be discussed again and hopefully a final decision made on sidewalks and boulevards. We are also going to further our discussion on affordable housing. Should be interesting.

One other issue that I would appreciate your comments on. The Town is proposing to change its hours of operation to a consistent 8:30am to 4:30 pm year round. (It currently operates from 9am to 5pm during the colder months). Do you see any problems with such a change?

We will have a Public Meeting on the Home Occupation By-Law, that will take place Wednesday September 12 at 7pm in the Town Hall. The By-Law defines what type of business/employment can occur in a residential dwelling. It has generated some interesting debate on what is appropriate in our neighbourhoods. If you wish to see a draft of the by-law before the meeting, give me (or the Town) a call.

One sad note - our faithful town reporter on the Mirror, Kim Goggins, will be leaving us shortly. I will certainly miss her staying up late with us at Council meetings and the good reporting she has provided to all citizens in Midland.

And so as not to end on a sad note - the Huronia Foundation for the Arts will be holding its launch dinner on October 20th. More details at

Gord McKay

Friday, August 24, 2007

Friday August 24 2007

The trees are changing color – can you believe it! Summer is rapidly slipping away.

Well your Councillors are still busy. We were all attending the Association of Municipalities of Ontario Conference (AMO) in Ottawa this week. The conference hosted 1,700 attendees, including politicians from all levels of government. If you want to know what we were talking about, read on.

Reducing the Tax Burden on Municipal Ratepayers
Some of the social services provided by the province are still paid for through your property tax. Premier McGinty announced that the costs of ODSP (disability support) and ODB (drug benefit) will now be paid by the Province – removing some $930 million from property tax bills over 4 years. What you should see is a 1-2% reduction of your tax bill. Whether you will see it depends upon how our County and your Town set their 2008 tax rates.

Better Waste Management
A highlight of the conference was a tour of the PLASCO waste treatment facility in suburban Ottawa. PLASCO uses a new “plasma” (heat) treatment process that gets rid of all noxious gases and reduces 1 ton of garbage to 300 pounds of a safe gravel-like aggregate. And each ton also produces 1400 KWh of electricity. Many of your politicians were impressed with this promising Canadian technology.

Affordable Housing
The conference underscored that the top down approach has not solved our affordable housing problem. We also saw how some municipalities have gotten serious and made significant improvements. I will be bringing our affordable housing situation to the Council Meeting this Monday at 7:30pm.

The business of the Town will get into full gear shortly. The Ad-Hoc Pesticide Committee will meet on September 13th at 7pm at the Town Hall. The Snowmobile Committee will also be meeting shortly – I will let you know on that one.

Gord McKay

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Wednesday July 4 2007

I know you all are busy this summer so I will keep this short.

The trail from Hwy. 12 to Bay Street has been penciled in. There are two areas where long term trail commitments are needed from property owners before we have a complete trail. Hopefully that will happen. Planning trails through the rest of the Town will take a least another year.

Huronia Players Theatre:Planning Advisory Committee will be meeting today, Wednesday July 4, at 7pm in the Town Hall. The first presentation will deal with the “new” theatre located at roughly William and Yonge. If you are interested you are most welcome to attend

Work on the 12 story condominium tower is expected to start this fall.

First public meeting was well attended. More to come.

Eastern Waterfront Trail:
Most of the cement waterfront trail is now in place. The last parts of the trail through to highway 12 are being finalized. Hopefully the trail will be ready this summer. The Town has agreed to form a “Trails Committee” to look after our growing trail system. If you want to get involved give me a call.

Gord McKay

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Tuesday June 19 2007

Summer is here and life is busy in the Town.

The Site 41 issue is looking like it is coming to a head. As reported in the press, recommendations have been made to start work on the Site 41 local roads and storm water pond. County Council of the Whole will review and may vote on the matter on June 26. Ray Millar, of the citizen’s monitoring committee has asked me to pass along the attached notice of meeting.

“The Concerned Citizens of Site 41 would like to invite all interested parties to attend an information event, held at the Wyebridge Community Center, 8340 Highway 93, Wyebridge, Ontario, Saturday, June 23 at 10:00 am.”

Should be an interesting one.

This Thursday at 7:00 pm the Town will start the public discussion on the use of pesticides. It should also be an interesting meeting as people will be able to present their views on this contentious issue. If you wish to deputate, please call the Town (526-4275) in advance.

And lastly, Friday the 27th will see the farewell dinner for our CAO Mr. Fred Flood., a man who has served the Town long and well. I believe tickets are still available until this Friday at the Town office. And not surprisingly, I expect to here the name of our new CAO announced this week.

Gord McKay

Monday, June 4, 2007

Monday June 4 2007

A few more meetings to let you know about – and please don’t forget that our regular Town meetings are always open for you:

- General Committee - second Monday of every month, 7pm at the Town offices

- Council - fourth Monday of every month, 7:30 pm at the Town offices

Saturday June 9th 10am to 1pm at the Sports Centre – SSEA
The Severn Sound Environmental Association is having an open house at the Sports Centre. They will be telling you about their good work in protecting our environment.

Thursday June 21st at 7:00 Town Hall – Pesticides Public Meeting
This will be your chance to speak out about what changes are needed for Midland’s pesticide bylaw.

And a final note on what we can expect from MPAC – the body that assesses the value of our residential properties for tax purposes. As stated in the recent budget:
- Property assessment updates will occur every four years starting in 2008
- Starting in 2008 residential, farm and managed forest property assessment increases will be phased in over four years
For more information please refer to

Gord McKay

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Saturday May 12, 2007

It’s now officially springtime and lots of things are happening in the Town.

If you are a walker you may be interested in the sidewalk restoration projects set for this year:
· Victoria Street - South side, Fourth Street to Sixth Street
· William Street - West side, Jeanne Street to Alcorn Subdivision
· Lindsay Street - East side, Bay Street to Barnett Avenue
· George Street - West side, Bay Street to Barnett Avenue
· Bay Street - South side, King Street to Midland Avenue
· Hugel Avenue - South side, Russell Street to Manly Street

And for drivers, the following roads will be resurfaced. (Please note a few other roads – not on this list - are being fully rebuilt).
· Cedar Street (all)
· Huron Street (all)
· George Street (Gloucester north to end)
· Portage Park Lane (all)
· Vindin Street (Ludlow Street to Fifth Street)
· Little Lake Park Road (approx 280m)
· Everton Road

The old St. Theresa High school on Barnett Ave has been scheduled for demolition in May.

The Town has been officially notified that the Regent Park Public School on Russell Street has been approved for closure and disposition. So if you want to buy a school, now is your chance.

Team Glen Howard is going to be honoured on Saturday June 2nd at 4:00 pm at the Coldwater Curling/Recreation Center. There is an admission fee so you may want to contact the arena at 705-686-3946.

And don’t forget our own Twisted Pines arts and music festival this May long weekend.

Gord McKay
May 12, 2007

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Tuesday May 1, 2007

Happy Trails to you …. And if you have no interest in the Town trails please delete this e-mail.

I have had a number of inquiries about the completion of the bicycle/walking trail that connects the Tay Shore trail to our waterfront trails through the Tiffin development. According to our Town Planner, Bryan MacKell, the connection may be established this year but will depend upon negotiations with many of the affected property owners.

To follow this trail route description you may want to get a map out. The trail connection should run along the Tiffin waterfront to the Georgian Bay Islands National Park lands - then out onto the Wye Valley Road at the north end of the Doral building - then south along the Road to the intersection of Hwy 12 - then along the road allowance to the CN Bridge - then over the CN Bridge - then over the wood trestle bridge over the Wye River and onto the Tay Shore Trail at Ste. Marie. We will obviously need a few directional signs.

At the other end of our waterfront trail system, the new Midland Loop Trail is being affected by construction. You can still get through on the Rotary Trail but the “loop back” portion has been affected by earth storage from a nearby condominium development. Hopefully the loop trail will be back for the next biking season.

And snowmobile trails? The next Ad-Hoc Snowmobile meeting is scheduled for May 23rd at 7pm at the Town Hall. We should be getting close to a solution by then.

Gord McKay
May 1, 2007

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Wednesday April 12, 2007

It’s been a tough couple of days and I’m not just talking about the weather. Last night’s Committee Meeting at the Town went on until 11:30. The good news is that if the level of heat in these debates continues our TV ratings will definitely go up.

The main agenda item for last night was the Budget discussion. Our budget, containing a tax increase of 4.4%, will go for a final vote on April 23rd at 7:30pm.

Two other Committees that you may be following:
- Active Transportation will meet again on April 16 at 5pm in the Council Chambers. The meeting will likely consider if the Committee should be continued or if most the ducks are now in line.
- Snowmobiling Committee will take place on April 17th at 7pm in the Council Chambers. The Committee should receive an expanded map of all our snowmobile routes and options.

And another special meeting tonight at the Town! (I really should have read the fine print on that contract). We are going to discuss how we fit into the County’s growth strategy. This is an extension of the IGAP initiative. Other items tonight (that may be moved to a closed meeting) include the possible acquisition of our downtown harbour by the Town.

The road crews are getting the trucks ready to make some major road improvements, so summer cannot be too far away.

Gord McKay
April 12, 2007

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Tuesday March 27 2007

Spring is definitely in the air – and lots of good things are happening.

This past week saw the second meeting of our Snowmobile Committee. Not surprisingly discussing snowmobile trails raises the passions of many and the meeting demonstrated some of those fireworks. Most of the meeting was spent looking at the trail issues along Aberdeen Blvd. between Highway 12 and Bay Street. The Committee has asked for a better map to be produced of trail options and will use that to start making decisions. The next meeting date has yet to be announced.

What would spring be without a debate on pesticides? Get ready for a public meeting on this topic likely in the next two months. I will let you know when we have a date.

Our final major budget meeting will take place Monday April 2 at 6pm at the Town. The mood of Council seems generally set to accept a Town rate increase of 6.16 % for an overall residential tax rate increase of 5.38%. Since there is no property assessment change this year (MPAC is under review) you can determine your 2007 taxes by taking last year’s amount and multiplying by 1.0538. However, there is at least one more meeting to go.

Outside the Town some very good ideas are bubbling:

- Look for a “very special” type of Farmers Market event to likely take place in August. The coordinating group is talking about featuring local produce, local chefs and a family fun day.

- A dynamic group of local artisans and entrepreneurs got together this past Monday to plan a cultural renaissance for our area. This group, while still in its formative stages, plans to help our many local artists and artisans to flourish. As a start look for the Twisted Pines Music and Arts Festival this May18-21.

Gord McKay
March 27, 2007

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Sunday March 18, 2007

Meetings, meetings, meetings … and Midland has a lot of interesting ones over the next two weeks.

A lot of discussion over the recently released Census Canada data showing population growth for Midland – data that is used by federal and provincial planners. Our population numbers, which include Midland Point, are:
1999______ _2001 ______2006
16,347 ........16,214........ 16,300

Unfortunately the underlying numbers are not yet released. Two that I am looking for are the age data to be released in July 2007 and the wage/housing cost data to be released in May 2008. In the meantime the population number will be discussed at PAC on April 4th 7:00pm at Town Hall. Should be interesting.

Our second Active Transportation meeting will take place Monday March 19th, 5:00 pm at the Town Hall. This meeting should get down to acting on some of the first ten Active Transportation items and reviewing where the Committee may be headed. Also note that the Town will be advertising for civilian members to join the Committee. Please try to become part of making our Town more Active.

The second Snowmobile Committee will take place Tuesday March 20th, 7:00 pm at the Town Hall. With the organizational matters out of the way the meeting should start looking at trail options and hearing from groups affected by snowmobiles. Another interesting meeting you may want to attend.

And lastly, a special meeting coming from a group of Councillors. On March 31st at 1pm at NSSRC a presentation and discussion will take place based upon Al Gore’s movie “An Inconvenient Truth”. If this is anything like the movie, it is well worth attending. While the event is not an official Town function it is supported by the Mayor. A tip of the hat to the organizers – Zena Pendlebury, Pat File and Stephan Kramp.

Gord McKay
March 18, 2007

Friday, March 9, 2007

Friday March 9 2007

For those of you who did not attend the budget meeting last night, you missed an exciting time. There was a good level of debate fueled by some differences of opinion. Centre stage was the Town tax rate increase supported by topics such as holding the line on costs for the Sports Centre and looking at our Town utilities as a source of revenue. The bottom line – the Town tax rate increase will come in at about 6% and when combined with County and School amounts should give us a 2007 rate increase of 4.5% to 5%. (Please Note: the final rate numbers have yet to be determined by the Town)

Needless to say that my position that we should be in at 3% met with some opposition but I was pleased to have put my arguments on the table. The final budget revisions will be presented on March 29 at 7pm with the budget being adopted at the April Council meeting.

Rumours are afoot that we may have a local Farmers Market in Midland this summer. If you have any thoughts on what you would like to see in a farmer’s market, please drop me an e-mail.

And on the social housing front, planning is underway for a street drop-in centre. The project is being pulled together by a group of citizens and social agencies. If things go well it may be in place this summer. More on this later.

Gord McKay
Mar 9, 2007

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Tuesday February 27, 2007

The February 23rd edition of the Mirror carried the headline that Penetanguishene intends to set its Town tax rate at 2.6%. This creates an interesting backdrop for the Midland budget discussion set to take place on March 8th. Speaking of your tax bill, some of the numbers are in:
- the County/Waste portion (just over 20% of your bill) will increase by a little more than 4.75% this year
- the Education portion (just under 20%) will have an increase of 0%
- the remaining 60%, the Town of Midland has to decide
The first two numbers give us a 1% tax increase so far.

A group of Councillors and staff met for our Active Transportation Committee kick-off meeting. I was surprised that there were no citizens in attendance. The Town is going to advertise for additional committee members but we need all of you to get your ideas into the mix.

And the date for the next Snowmobile Committee meeting is looking like the latter part of March. The Town is trying to get some of the Committee members onto snowmobiles so they can see things first hand. Should be interesting.

Gord McKay
Feb 27, 2007

Monday, February 19, 2007

Monday February 19, 2007

The snow is definitely getting deep out there – 2 to 3 feet in most places. Saw some guys “para-boarding” (using a steer-able kite to pull a snowboarder over the ice) out on the bay this week. Looked like fun but still haven’t figured how they get back home from the other side of the bay?

The deep snow prevented many of the residents of Aberdeen from getting to their “super” mailbox this week. Art Yung (President of the Tiffin Homeowners) took the matter in hand and contacted the Town and Canada Post. He quickly found out there was some disagreement between the two parties on who is responsible for snow clearance for the mailboxes. While the matter has yet to be fully resolved, folks have pulled together to get the mail delivered. Jerry Jones stepped up and plowed out all the accumulated snow this past Saturday. Thank you Jerry! Doug Baker has agreed that the Town will keep the snow plowed for the rest of the winter. The plan is that before next winter the Town and Canada Post will decide who plows the snow or if the boxes need to be relocated.

A couple of committee notes to pass along:

1) the Active Transportation Committee will have its start-up meeting tonight, Monday February 19, at 5pm at the Town offices. This Committee will deal with how the citizens of Midland can get more physically active and make Midland a healthier place to live.

2) the Snowmobile Committee has not announced the date of its next meeting but we should know this week.

3) the next Budget Meeting is March 8th, 6pm at the Town Office. This meeting will summarize many of the budget changes and likely discuss this year’s tax rate.

If you can participate in any of these meetings, it would be great to see you there.

Gord McKay
Feb 19, 2007

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Sunday Fenruary 11, 2007

A third of the way through February and the days are getting longer and the snow deeper. My thanks to the folks who are making sure our streets are plowed through this non-stop snow.

Last Monday saw our first Snowmobile Committee meeting, ably chaired by Councillor Jeffery. Approximately 20 visitors were there, many wanting to get right into the issues. This organizing meeting gave standing to the snowmobile association (Georgian Bay Snowriders) and the Tiffin homeowners. The Committee also intends to request input from other groups. The date of the next meeting has yet to be determined. Snowmobiling has a long history in our area and I hope these meetings will help build a safe long term trail solution in our community.

The next Town budget meeting has been moved to March 8th at 6pm. At the present time Town staff is using the direction set by Council at the last public budget meeting to refine the draft budget. I hope to get our final tax rate down to no more than 2%, especially given the recent economic statistics from the TD Bank.
- CPI for 2006 for Ontario - 1.8% (indexed pensions)
- mean hourly wage increase for 2006 for Ontario - 1.6% (workers)

Yesterday I received a number of calls from homeowners upset about the ice blocking their driveways from the recent plowing. My wife and I grabbed shovels and went to see. We met a spry WWII vet and over a cup of coffee he told us of his amazing exploits in Normandy. We have a great community here. Get out and enjoy it.

Sunday, February 4, 2007

Ladies and Gentlemen

The snow is getting deep outside - and cold. Our Midland Out of the Cold program has just had to invoke its second cold weather emergency. This will open up Knox church during the day for the homeless.

The Town Planning Advisory Committee is scheduled for this Wednesday February 7 at 7pm at Town Hall. There is a full agenda. Items to be discussed that may be of particular interest to you are:
- draft plan conditions for the Tiffin Harbour Marina Condominium and the Bayport developments
- zoning by-law discussion to consider a commercial plaza on the south-west corner of Yonge and William.

And a reminder, the first snowmobile Committee meeting is this Monday the 5th at 5pm at the NSSRC.

Gord McKay
Feb 5 2007

Monday, January 29, 2007

Sunday January 28 2007

It may be cold outside but things are warm at Town Hall.

Three items for your consideration.

The first meeting of the "Ad-Hoc Snowmobile Review Committee" will take place Monday February 5th at 5pm at NSSRC. The Committee with debate the long term plan for snowmobiles in the Town. I expect the first meeting will decide who should be asked to come and speak to the Committee. The public is welcome to attend.

The first meeting of the "Ad-Hoc Active Transportation Committee" will take place Monday February 19th at 7pm at NSSRC. The Committee will establish our commitment to healthier forms of transportation and living in Midland, and hopefully do something about them. The public is welcome to attend.

The first phase of the budget process is now over. A lot of information was presented by the departments and there is a feeling amongst Councillors to select a tax rate increase higher than last years. I caused a bit of a stir by pointing out such things as we continue to have the highest Town tax rate in Simcoe county; 19% of our population is pensioners often indexed to CPI ( increasing at 2% a year), Ontario's wage rate is actually decreasing when CPI is included; I concluded that 0% rate increase would be more appropriate. Lots of work ahead.

Gord McKay
Jan 28 2007