It's time for change:
Why do I want to be Mayor. I believe the Township needs accountable Council with good experienced leadership. With my Municipal background, I believe I can provide this. The status quo is not good enough, we need change and we need it now.
In 2018, taxpayers had to pay a tax increase of over 8%. Is this fair. Is your salary increasing this much?
In addition, one would expect that residents and taxpayers would deserve to their equal share of services for tax dollars paid. This did not happen and will not happen unless we have change.
Did we see increased levels of service, did you see what we received for this additional money. I did not.
If I was elected Mayor, I would encourage Council to keep tax increases to maximum of 3% or lower, in line with the cost of living.
I believe the Township must look at all other revenue sources. i.e. Development Charges
Development Charges are collected from new development and there are intended to fund infrastructure related to growth. i.e. sewer & water, roads, fire,etc.
"Wayne for change"
I would recommend to Council and to the Province, that the Council be reduced by two members of Council or more before the next Municipal Election and that the Councillors be elected “at large”. . Many communities with larger populations operate very well with only five members of Council.
Our Budget & Infrastructure
Discussions are underway to build a new community center or renovate the existing one. The cost of this project could be over $10,000,000.00, depending on the option selected. Can we afford this and how do we pay for it. What are the options?
Is this the highest priority in the community and how would you know until you understand the state of all infrastructure?
Do we have a capital forecast and does it deal with the needs of the taxpayer?. I have not seen one yet.
Do we have a waste management program? Has the Township had discussions with the County on transferring landfill operations to them?Provincially, waste management is an upper tier responsibility. Can this happen without becoming a single tier government?
Why has waste management not dealt with Mountain Lake and the seagull issue?. Can we not answer them with some help.
Let's start by understanding the assets we have and how do we maintain them.
Water and wastewater infrastructure is to be paid for by user fees of the system. Tax dollars are not to be used in these areas and the budget should show a separate section for these funds.
If I was elected Mayor, I would start by understanding the state of all infrastructure, and then prioritize the upgrading of these in order of priority. I would ask staff to not only set out a capital program for the next year, but a "five" year and "ten" year capital forecast, with realistic numbers and made available to the public.
The Flood Watch for Minden
My understanding is that the review of the flooding and mitigation measures is ongoing. For most affected, it is taking too long with no action. We must make this happen sooner and put our efforts into a solution not annual flooding announcement.
Can we improve the way we do business? Can we help development and redevelopment take place? I would start with our planning documents. I believe Council should re look immediately at the official plan and rezoning documents and provide streamlining wherever we can. It should be " one stop" shopping, not three months of waiting.
Immediately, we should introduce a " Special Policy Area" for any flood prone areas. This policy allows for improvements to your property in the floodplain areas. It allows for the continued viability of existing uses and address the significant hardships to the community that would result from strict adherence to provincial policies concerning development.
I would recommend immediately implementing a development charge bylaw for new development. Growth should pay for itself. Has there been any development charges collected by our Township. I see no records of these funds and no reference to a bylaw. This should be implemented immediately. It is a source of funds we need.
The Township of Minden Hills has initiated a Community Improvement Plan project to help revitalize and beautify areas of the Village. A CIP allows the Township to provide financial incentives( i.e Grants and Loans) to eligible landowners and tenants to help make physical improvements to private property, within the area defined as the Community Improvement Project Area. The first meeting to receive public input is Tuesday, Aug. 21st.
A CIP is not new and many communities are doing this. I believe the issue is the definition used being the Village of Minden Hills. If a CIP is truly for our community, then the entire Township should have the opportunity to apply for the grants and loans. Would this not be the fair way to share our tax dollars.
The County of Haliburton has proposed new changes/provisions to control what happens in the 30 m. setback to protect our lakes. I would like to see provisions to provide for reforesting areas of lakeshore that have been cleared. I also, believe we need quicker action on the septic inspection program and retrofitting those systems which are too close to the lake or not functioning properly.
I will continue to update this website and more issues are raised.
I would appreciate your questions or comments, so please email at firstname.lastname@example.org