An open letter to Premier Kathleen Wynne

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Appeared in the Burlington Post, June 18, 2014 and is available online.

Congratulations on your election win. While your victory was hard fought, the real work lies ahead.

Ontario is at a critical juncture: our economy and prosperity continues to be challenged by globalization and automation resulting in job loss in many sectors. Given our size, location and historic position as Canada’s economic engine, Ontario must be a catalyst for a strong and vibrant Canadian economy. With your new majority mandate, you now have the opportunity to bring all orders of government together to address the issues that affect all of us.

I believe there are five issues that are vital to inspiring progress and change. Continue reading

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Celebrating our Friendship with Itabashi, Japan

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The Gift of Friendship25th Anniversary Celebration

On June 12, a delegation from Itabashi, Japan, will be arriving in Burlington to join us in celebrating the 25th anniversary of the twinning of our two cities. The twinning agreement was signed to “foster mutual understanding in such areas as culture, education, politics, history, recreation, sport, business, industry and service.” Building stronger links and understanding different cultures supports the vision of a world community and contributes to our international understanding.

Our twinning relationship has helped shape our city as we have enjoyed official delegation exchanges, cultural exchanges, gift exchanges, and enjoyed each other’s festivals and events. Just recently a delegation from Burlington visited Itabashi. During the visit, they gained a deeper appreciation of the rich culture of our twin city Itabashi and enjoyed the vibrancy of their culture, history, heritage and traditions. Continue reading

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Are You Ready to Vote in the June 12 Provincial Election?

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June 7, 2014

Ontario is at a critical juncture: our economic and job growth have been challenged. Because of our size and location, the reality is Ontario can be the “difference maker” in making the Canadian, if not the North American economy strong and vibrant, or merely a follower.

The June 12th election ofOntario Election 2014fers an opportunity for renewed discussion, ideas, and, far more importantly, action. We need a true leader to bring together the Federal Government, other provinces, and municipalities to resolve issues that matter to and affect real Ontarians every day. Continue reading

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May 2014 Progress Report

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June 2, 2014

Burlington Progress Report: May 2014

Committee and Council Meetings

Information on the most recent standing Committee meetings is available online, including agendas, minutes and videos.

  • Development and Infrastructure Committee: May 26, 2014
  • Community and Corporate Services Committee: May 27, 2014
  • Audit Committee: May 28, 2014

Our next Council meeting is on June 9.

Council Update

BEDC Inc.

I have continued to report on the transition of the Burlington Economic Development Corporation as this continues is one of my key areas of focus. As mentioned last month, we established a plan for a new business corporation – BEDC Inc. – with an expanded mandate and purpose.

Continue reading

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LUMCO invitation to Party Leaders

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The Large Urban Mayors’ Caucus of Ontario (LUMCO), of which I am a member, invited Premier Kathleen Wynne, Leader of the Official Opposition Tim Hudak, and Leader of the New Democratic Party of Ontario Andrea Horwath to meet individually with the LUMCO membership, requesting that they, or their representatives, present their party’s Provincial Platform on the issues facing Ontario’s Big Cities.Large Urban Mayors' Caucus of Ontario

LUMCO’s key priorities for 2014 include gridlock and transit issues, the rising cost of emergency services, and job creation in Ontario. LUMCO Chair Mayor Jeff Lehman spoke for all Mayors’ when he indicated that the organization is working to advance the issues facing the majority of Ontarians in our large Cities. This Provincial election campaign provides us the perfect opportunity to find out where the leaders stand on our key priorities. We remain cautiously optimistic and hopeful that the important issues of infrastructure, transit and job creation will remain on the Provincial agenda, regardless of the election outcome.

A press release resulting from last Friday’s meeting is posted on my blog indicating where the parties have or have not addressed the issue put forward at the LUMCO meeting.

The Large Urban Mayors’ Caucus of Ontario (LUMCO) represents 67% of Ontario’s population with Mayors of 26 communities over 100,000 residents. LUMCO advocates for issues and policies important to Ontario’s largest cities.

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