Monday, September 7, 2015

Monday September 7, 2015

Ladies and Gentlemen

And I am back….

I hope you had a great summer – a chance for good times with family, friends and just taking time to enjoy this wonderful place we all love as Midland.

To say it was a quiet summer would be misleading. Some of the things that you may have participated in or missed over the last two months:

-       The Martels have wrapped up their touring career with a set of final concerts
-       The Metis Nation of Ontario’s 400 delegates had a great time visiting Midland including a paddle in the Bay
-       Cruise ships Pearl Mist and St, Laurent have made 5 visits to our Town
-       The Ontario 55-plus summer games showcased the best Midland has to offer to over 200 visitors
-       First place – Midland’s newly minted “Best Maple Butter Tart beer” came first at the Muskoka craft brewers contest.  The winner will be coming soon to an LCBO outlet near you
-       The Hwy 12 - Jones Road intersection is almost open (still)
-       Mountainview Mall is under new ownership and expecting redevelopment in 2016
-       The Hanson development on Highway 12 has over1,000 pre-registrations
-       The recent provincial by-election sees the leader of the loyal opposition as our own MPP
-       Staff is deep into the 2016 budget process.  Look for the first public meetings later this month
-       Midland now allows (with permit) small backyard fires
-       Marina Park (building next to Bayport) has been sold. The Town is in discussions with the new owners to get this project completed
-       Downtown Health Centre (part of Edgehill Park)  will go to Council for a final decision on Sept 28
-       Environmental work continues on the Midland Bay Landing site. Still awaiting the draft design.


The all-star series, a Day in the Life, continues at the MCC this Tuesday at 7:30 pm, September 8th.   Fred Hacker will be speaking with Adam Dixon, a celebrated para-athlete who hails from our area.   As a youngster, Adam loved hockey.  Then, when he was 10, he was diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma. leading to the removal of his right tibia.  While Adam's dream of playing “stand up hockey” was shattered, he began playing sledge hockey at the age of 11 and, by the time he was 17, he was invited to try out for Canada's national team. He starred on the bronze winning Canadian Paralympic sledge hockey team in Sochi in 2014.  Fred invites you to learn more about a truly inspiring young man.

On Wednesday September 9th at 6:30 pm at Town Hall you are invited to a Special Meeting of Council addressing two important topics. The first will be about our Library, where Council will hear about the Library Board’s intentions for new services they are considering for Midland.

The second topic of the night is a panel discussion on how different Local Distribution Companies (LDC – like our MPUC) are handling changes in the energy sector.  This panel has come about due to Council’s interest in looking at different business arrangements for our own LDC. The panel will feature speakers from municipalities/utilities that have experienced recent sale/mergers, including:

Mr. Chris Litschko, President of Lakeland (a similar sized LDC)
Ms. Lynn Strachan, Board Member Powerstream ( provides power to Penetanguishene)
Mr. Steve Zorbas, former CFO Town of Richmond Hill - PowerStream
Mayor Tony Van Bynen, Newmarket - Newmarket Tay Hydro (provides power to Tay)

The panel will discuss first-hand experiences about the pros and cons of sale/merger and what Midland power users could expect if Council chose to pursue one of those options. The discussion should also help us understand:
-       The risks in the energy sector for small LDCs given the government’s push for consolidation (MPUC with some 6,500 customers is a very small LDC)
-       The challenges and risks to a small LDC in keeping up with changes in technology including off-grid power generation
-       The Ontario Energy Board’s role in setting our hydro rates and realizing that some 80% of your hydro bill is a provincial pass through over which the LDC has no control
-       What to look for in choosing a partner for pursuing your LDC’s business objectives

Thursday the 10th starts at 8:00 am with a breakfast at Lakehead University, hosted to recognize the County of Simcoe’s support for Lakehead. At 7:00 pm that evening at Penetanguishene Town Hall is a meeting to hear more about the joint transit system that will be shortly linking Midland and Penetanguishene.


-       15th annual Pow Wow at Ste Marie starting at noon


-       Pow Wow continues at Ste Marie starting at noon


Many of you will have fond memories of recently retired OPP Constable Dave Hobson. Far from being “retired” Davey is still sending me safety notices.  Please see the attached and stay safe.

Gord McKay

Be part of Midland’s Year of Bold Action - 2015

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