• The BRT Vote and Better Transit, What Does It All Mean?

    After almost 4 years of the Matt Brown led council insisting that their BRT plan absolutely had to be an all or nothing decision, staff clearly indicated to the new council that not only could the BRT plan be broken up into pieces and still be viable, but that other options besides the old BRT plan were available which could qualify for provincial and federal funding.

    A list of 19 projects came to council to decide which ones to submit for federal and provincial funding approval. These included; 5 component pieces of the old BRT plan, an intelligent traffic signal management system, bus stop amenities including 60 new bus shelters, the purchase of more buses, a portion of the Adelaide St. underpass design, an intersection improvement project for Wharncliffe & Oxford, Thames Valley Parkway connections, pedestrian connections to the transit network, new sidewalks, and three different cycling proposals along with a couple of others.

    What changed from the old BRT plan? Continue Reading

  • In Debate on BRT: The Argyle View

    Discussing in the first video how Argyle residents feel about always being left out when it comes to service and investment from city hall.

    In the second video, presenting an amendment to the East London Link rapid transit proposal to include improved service to Argyle, the airport, and employers along Veterans Memorial Parkway to get people to jobs.

  • Listening to Londoners Frustrations on Snow Removal

    From the London Free Press:

    Coun. Shawn Lewis spent much of his long weekend listening to Londoners voicing frustrations about city hall’s snow-removal service.

    The rookie Ward 2 councillor says he received a flood of complaints from his constituents and residents of other wards after a weekend snowfall blanketed streets and sidewalks that were already covered in ice.

    “I was actually hearing from people from wards all across the city,” Lewis said Tuesday.

    “Pretty much everything I heard this week from constituents was about how bad the roads were. I had people tweeting me about it, I had Facebook messages, phone calls, emails, the whole gambit.”

    Making snow removal one of his priorities, Lewis last month suggested city hall should lower its minimum threshold for sending plows into the streets…

    Read the full story at:

    Snow-removal complaints piled up over wintry long weekend: Politician

  • Making a Responsible Budget Decision

    In the 2019 Budget deliberations an item of contention arose around removing $521,000 from the anticipated budget costs that was earmarked last year for a provincially legislated minimum wage hike. With the change in provincial government, that requirement was removed. It was the staff recommendation that we not proceed with a wage increase and remove that earmarked amount from the budget.

    Advocates have argued that “it was in the budget already, you shouldn’t remove it”. But of course things that were not anticipated had to be added to the operating budget, including additional funding for ambulance services to tackle growing response times ($590,000), cycle network maintenance ($408,000, required to meet new provincial standards), mental health funding for police officers ($161,000) and restoring seniors bus tickets ($285,000) transit access at a more affordable rate. In total, over $1.4 million in operating costs not planned for were added.

    The result, the increase this year is 2.7%. In comparison a senior in our community living on Canada Pension Plan benefits will receive only a 1.5% increase.

    Making budget choices is never easy. And whether in a council seat, or as resident of the city, budget decisions need to balance care and cost, and also need to be considered in context and in impact, not ideology. Continue Reading

  • Time for WiFi in City Owned Recreation Facilities

    Many of our city owned recreational facilities already have internet connectivity onsite for staff use. But public access to wifi is an increasingly important “quality of experience” factor for users of libraries, recreation centres, gyms, etc, for both regular users and visitors alike, and can also be a safety enhancement.

    Continue Reading

  • PUSHING FOR BETTER SNOW CLEARING AT COUNCIL

    At Civic Works Committee on Tuesday (Jan 8th), I introduced a motion to start the process of looking at options for better snow clearing for London residents.  This is an issue I heard about during the campaign, and promised to try to tackle.

    My motion was seconded by Councillor Elizabeth Peloza, who supported my campaign pledge on this issue and it read as follows:

    That staff be directed to investigate and report back, before the next multi-year budget process begins, on the operational and budget impact of:

    • lowering the clearing of residential streets from 10cm to 8cm and 7cm options.
    • the capital costs for new equipment and options for faster response times during heavy or consecutive snowfall events.
    • to lower the threshold of sidewalk clearing from 8cm to 5cm.
    • to ensure that school walking routes are cleared as a priority.
    • to conduct a review of current snow plowing routes and available technologies to implement smarter, more flexible and responsive snow clearing.

    There has been lots of interest from Londoners across the city, and from the local media on this effort. I invite you to check out the media stories at:

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/london/london-snow-removal-1.4971779

    London councillor aims to improve city’s snow clearing standards

    https://lfpress.com/news/local-news/city-hall-briefs-15

     

  • End of 2018 Update

    Today we say goodbye to 2018 and prepare to start a new year. There is no doubt the future holds both challenges and opportunities for our city, and I’m confident we are ready to face them! Please take a minute to read this Ward 2 update and let me know what your priorities for City Hall are in 2019 by clicking the link at the end that will take you to a short survey.

    Today also marks the end of my first month as your city councillor and it has been a busy time. The first thing any new council has to tackle is the appointment of councillors to standing committees, as well as the appointment of both councillors and citizens at large to the 25 boards and commissions our city has.

    In addition to being your Ward 2 Council representative I will be serving as a representative on: Continue Reading

  • Post Election Update

    First off, my sincerest thanks to the people of Ward 2 for placing their trust in me to represent them at City Hall for the next 4 years.  With 64% support, you’ve given me a strong mandate to work for you and fight for our neighbourhood.

    And, my deepest gratitude to all the amazing people who volunteered on my campaign. Continue Reading

  • The Issues, The Person, Shawn Lewis for Ward 2

  • Lewis & Morgan Unite Candidates for Better Snowplowing in London

     

    London: Getting plows on the streets and sidewalks sooner is key to improving snow removal for Londoners during the winter months say Ward 2 Candidate Shawn Lewis and Ward 7 Candidate Josh Morgan.

    “Improving snowplowing in London starts with plowing less snow, more often,” says Lewis. “Waiting until we have 10cm of snow on residential streets is why cars are getting stuck and driveways end up with snow mountains at the end of them when the plow finally does come by. Most people understand that main roads need to come first, but the streets where people live are being left too long. Especially when we have multiple days of snow falls, by the time the plows get to crescents and cul-de-sacs, people are driving on snow pack with ruts 6 inches deep or more. ” Continue Reading