Guest blog by Mark McGuire and Chris Ritsma, Co-Chairs of the Mayor’s Millennial Advisory Committee.
Mayor Rick Goldring’s Millennial Advisory Committee met on Thursday, Nov. 10 at Burlington City Hall in Council Chambers. The committee welcomed two guest speakers: City Manager James Ridge and Manager of Committee Services and Election Services Danielle Pitoscia. Both James Ridge and Danielle Pitoscia presented key insight into the responsibilities of Burlington’s municipal government and services and identified areas that millennial input would be beneficial.
James described a concise and eclectic list of responsibilities provided by the Burlington municipal government. James gave an excellent introduction to the services provided by the City of Burlington to the community. Learning how all the aspects of the City of Burlington network interact in city operations was insightful to the committee and for the public attendees at the meeting.
James commented on the staffing efforts of towns and organizations to include millennials as their core labour force approaches retirement. James identified that millennials represent a smaller portion of full-time city staff, but identified the demographic as an area for continued growth. James commented on the innovative solutions that young professionals often bring to challenges and that he hopes more millennials will take an interest in finding careers within municipal governments.
Danielle outlined the various ways Burlington residents, including millennials, can volunteer and participate in municipal politics. Danielle extolled the importance that actions such as delegating and holding positions on committees allow for expressing opinions on how the city should evolve. Danielle gave a brief introduction to city council procedure both in council chambers and committees. Danielle emphasized the fact that the city is always willing to listen, and always welcomes people who want to help out in some way. There are various ways to engage with the City of Burlington, some of the ways are community meetings, emails, delegations or even calling the city.
After the dialogue with James and Danielle, the Mayor’s Millennial Advisory Committee discussed the finalized plan for engaging attendees at the Inspire Burlington event New Directions in Transportation on Monday, Nov. 14, 2016. The committee set up a display table at the pre-event social session and engaged with residents that came out to the free event to listen to the two experts advising the City of Burlington on transportation. Brent Toderian, an urban planning expert, and Jarrett Walker, a public transit expert, delivered presentations to Burlington addressing the strategic decisions in the 25-year plan, 2015-2040 Strategic Plan. For those not in attendance, the event was filmed by local CogecoTV and will be posted on the City of Burlington’s Grow Bold page soon. Brent and Jarrett had a workshop earlier on Monday, Nov. 14 with Burlington City Council that can also be viewed online.
The committee concluded with deliberations on preparing for a millennial-focused Inspire Burlington event in March 2017. A core group of the Mayor’s Millennial Advisory Committee has been identified to lead the planning and decision-making process that will need to take place before the event.
The committee discussed engagement practices to foster millennial influence in the community through events, traditional media, and social media. Engage with us on Instagram and Twitter by searching #burlennials.
The Nov. 10 meeting was the last of 2016, as December will be a break from monthly meetings. The next meeting will take place in the New Year on Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. at the Aldershot Arena – Community Room. Councillor Rick Craven will be giving a presentation about Burlington’s Ward 1, with a focus on the Aldershot Mobility Hub and the redevelopment of Plains Road. Guests are always welcome and asked to RSVP to Tina Depko-Denver in the Mayor’s Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read the October Update by Millennial Advisory Committee co-chairs, Chris Ritsma and Mark McGuire. You can keep up to date on news from the Mayor’s Millennial Advisory Committee by visiting Burlington.ca/millennials.
The Mayor’s Millennial Advisory Committee was created to develop initiatives and provide input on how to keep and attract residents aged 18 to 35 in Burlington. It will also concentrate on creating opportunities to engage millennials with their community. All meetings are open to the public, especially millennial-aged residents. Meeting attendees are encouraged to bike, bus or walk.
For more information about the committee, contact the Office of the Mayor at email@example.com.