Big, Bold, Positive Ideas
The campaign will focus on Big, Bold, Positive Ideas and I'm looking forward to knocking on doors and chatting with fellow Newmarket residents about those ideas.
The campaign runs from May 1 through to election day on October 22nd. I will be announcing a series of platform items throughout the campaign period, so check back for more as the campaign progresses.
- REGIONAL FIRE SERVICE - York Region having 8 separate Fire Departments is an idea that has run its course. We must improve our service and eliminate duplication by merging all departments. I have the experience on Fire Services and throughout the Region to help lead these efforts. Reducing from the current 8 Fire Chiefs and 12 Deputies will represent significant cost savings. After all, York Regional Police has only 1 Chief and 2 Deputies.
- LOBBYIST REGISTRY - Transparency must be the hallmark of any level of government. While there will always be a need for community leaders to meet with businesses and the development industry, taxpayers should know when those meetings take place, and how often.
- PLANNING THAT REFLECTS COMMUNITY NEEDS - With the Province of Ontario scrapping the OMB, cities, and towns have a greater say over planning decisions. We need a community that works with residents to set a clear vision for growth management and sticks by those plans.
- ARTS AND CULTURE HUB - The town-owned Old Fire Hall, that currently sits vacant on Main St., should be converted into a hub for Arts and Culture. Restoration will attract further investment in our downtown core. We must leverage private sector dollars to make this a reality.
- IMPROVING ACCESS TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT - Debates on issues should move from afternoons to the evening when residents can attend to have their voice heard. Residents who watch or attend Council meetings see it as a rubber stamp of the prior weeks Committee of the Whole, and they’re largely right - this needs to change. We need to constantly review ways to improve transparency and accessibility to local government.
- ESTABLISH AN INNOVATION OFFICE - Let’s inject a private sector approach and an entrepreneurial spirit into local government. It would start as a board of volunteers and eventually move towards a Chief Innovation Officer. They will be tasked with improving municipal processes and services to better reflect resident and business needs.