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Recent Posts

  • UPDATE ON EAST LONDON COMMUNITY CENTRE CONSTRUCTION

    Dear Argyle Residents,

    I know we’ve all been waiting a long time for the Argyle neighbourhood to get a proper community centre, over 19 years in fact.

    It was a privilege to stand with (then) Mayor Brown in the fall of 2017 and officially break ground on the construction site.

    And, it has been a disappointment to have the opening repeatedly pushed back from fall of 2018 to spring of 2019, to fall of 2019.

    Since being elected I’ve stopped by the work site and connected with the management team on a regular basis. I know they’ve been doing what they can.

    Unfortunately, it falls to me to share the bad news that we are still behind schedule.

    Continue Reading

  • Multi-year Budgets and Provincial Uncertainty

    I recently had the opportunity to speak with London Free Press columnist Chip Martin about the city’s next multi-year budget cycle.

    Already the Ford Government in Ontario has downloaded or cut services that will add at least $4 million to the city’s budget costs. Staff have already told council just to stay on track next year we need to raise property taxes another 2.7%.  And of course we have a federal election looming this year that could result in more changes to affordability for Londoners. That concerns me a great deal. Seniors on CPP and OAS benefits aren’t able to keep pace with those kind of increases and stay in their homes. The rising costs of groceries, hydro bills, and everything else is making it harder and harder for people to make ends meet, and property taxes are the LEAST FAIR form of taxes possible.

    People should make no mistake, decisions of senior levels of government have profound financial impacts on municipal governance. Continue Reading

  • Time to Say No to a Bridge to Nowhere

    The 2014-2018 Council (including the former Ward 2 Councillor), set aside $5 million to potentially fund the “Ribbon of the Thames” portion of the “Back to the River” project.

    What has become known as the “bridge to nowhere”, a suspended lookout bridge and river facing amphitheater space, has already ballooned in cost from $2 million to $7 million, with additional costs for shoreline work, excavation, and flood mitigation measures coming in at another $3-4 million.

    Staff pegs the cost of the “Ribbon of the Thames” at a minimum of $12.8 million dollars, with only $2 million in private donations from the London Community Foundation, leaving the project with at least a $5 million funding gap even if we spend all $5 million of the public dollars set aside.

    And that’s without spending a penny on the removal of the decommissioned Springbank Bank that has gates and hydraulic systems currently sitting at the bottom of the river. Continue Reading

  • An Inside Look at Construction of the East London Community Centre

    Opening in the fall of 2019, even if it might not appear so from the roadside, construction of the East London Community Centre is moving along well.

    Continue Reading

  • Ward 2 Gets $6 Million Infrastructure Renewal Approval

    During the election campaign one of the things I promised to do was to make the renewal of the Calgary, Churchill, Edmonton, Manitoba, Winnipeg, Vancouver, Whitney Street area of Ward 2 a priority.

    I was sworn in as your Councillor on December 4th. Getting started on this was my first priority and on December 5th I sat down with our City Engineer, Manager of Roads, and Director of Water and Wastewater. As you know, it is not just the roads that are in bad shape, sewer and drainage upgrades are needed as well, Whitney and Calgary Streets shouldn’t flood every time it rains. It was at this meeting that I learned that some of the drainage in the area dates back to the 1920’s and the City of London’s infrastructure renewal for this neighbourhood was not in the plans to be completed until 2029- 2030!!!

    I made it clear that wasn’t good enough. Not only had residents been led to belief for years that improvements were “just a couple of years away”, but the city was constructing a $20 million community centre in East Lion’s Park with no plan to upgrade the roads around it for another decade!

    Continue Reading