Ladies and Gentlemen
You are likely aware of a number of organizational changes taking place in the Town offices. The most recent changes are the outsourcing of the police dispatch service with the loss of four permanent positions and the re-organization of the Public Works and Community Services departments, so that we have just one “operations group” instead of two. These changes have taken place with minimal reductions to service levels and in fact will allow for improved and new services to residents.
These changes were not made lightly. They come about because we know the needs of our residents are changing. Understanding that our core municipal services must be maintained, citizens also want new emphasis on making Midland a better place to live - more active transportation; more programming such as the Butter Tart festival; a more welcoming downtown as seen in our developing Downtown Masterplan; and even better sidewalks. And this change must take place while moving our municipality out of the unenviable position of having the highest tax rate in Simcoe County.
Part of the driving force behind making the above changes was to give us needed “fiscal room”. This first step will result in a sustainable reduction of $500,000 in the annual cost of running the Town. With this new capacity we can now improve our services to the community and lower tax rates in the years ahead.
Monday March the 9th begins at Pearson airport as I travel with my fellow North Simcoe mayors and Sharon Vegh (EDCNS) to visit Minister Gary Goodyear in Ottawa. We are responding to an invitation from the Minister to tell him how he can help our local economy. We will be presenting 14 different projects from local manufacturers and will be asking the Minister for financial assistance.
I will probably not be back in time, but General Committee starts at 7:00 pm at Town Hall. A fairly lengthy agenda including;
- Discussion on whether we should have more than one farmers market in Midland
- Sale of land adjacent to Ingram Crescent
- Release of the Sunshine List for 2014. In Midland we have 16 police, 9 fire and 6 other staff over $100,000 per year
- A request to consider a new park in the Sunnyside area
- A recommendation to transfer the Midland Fire dispatch to Barrie
- A new by-law on backflow preventers
- Traffic recommendations for both King Street by Tim Hortons and the lights at Galloway and King.
Following General Committee is a special Council meeting directing staff to provide a report on MPUC
On Tuesday the 10th the day starts at 9:00 am with the County Council meeting. At 1:00 pm at the MCC you may wish to attend the Spring Job Fair being run by the YMCA and area businesses.
At 7:00 pm in the evening at the MCC is the next installment of the Day in the Life. A special treat for baseball fans, it will feature Paul Beeston. Paul is the President of the Toronto Blue Jays. Paul presided over the two Blue Jay World Series Championships. He served as President/CEO of Major League Baseball. He knows everybody in the game. Tickets are available online at www.midlandculturalcentre.com or at the Box Office at the MCC.
On Thursday March 12th, more fun at the MCC with the 2014 edition of Midland Reads. Five great books and lots of debate as the panel decide on Midland’s next great book selection. Action starts at 7:00 pm.
Friday the 13th will see me meeting with Mr. Will Baird the new General Manager of Huronia Historic Parks. Then at 11:00 am is the Waterfront Project Steering Committee.
A quiet week-end. Time to start thinking of the garden work needed for the upcoming season.
Be part of Midland’s Year of Bold Action - 2015