PETER'S TEAM PLATFORM
"Town building is a TEAM effort. It will be through collaboration, communication & teamwork that the Blue Mountains will be successful not only as a Town but more importantly as a Community. By taking charge of our own future, we can ensure that we are continually growing a vibrant town with the financial and economic strength that will have an enduring competitive advantage in attracting and maintaining the people and businesses to support our continued future prosperity for all."
CURRENT ISSUES & PRIORITIES
Respectful & Positive Dialogue
A healthy community is based on respectful discourse. The two best components of any good relationship that I have found to be most effective are common sense and being a good listener. You need to have Respect for fellow Council members, all Town Staff and for all of our Residents.
There is nothing wrong with a healthy professional debate within Council! Asking questions to find the right answer in a professional manner is essential to the democratic process.
During the Public process it is important to let all residents know what you are doing. Decisions made in the dark will always create rumour and half truths. I truly believe that if you are honest and open with people you will gain mutual respect. Decisions made for the greater good of all are paramount and should also be treated as such with Mutual Respect for all parties involved. The most important relationship a Town Councillor can build is the relationship with four groups, Blue Mountain Residents, Business Owners, TBM Staff and fellow Council Members. Being on Council is about building those relationships and being part of a team.
One must remember that this is a TEAM effort and harnessing the power and wisdom from all four groups is the only way to move forward and get things done.
The TBM boundaries do not represent our economic or demographic activity anymore. We need to look at the entire Region as a whole for all services, not just within our own borders. We contribute to two Hospitals and to Charities those reach and draw are Regional not just local. Grey County receives over 26% of their tax base from TBM, but we still have one of the smallest voices/votes at the County table. We have been talking for years about an unfair distribution system and unbalanced weighted voting at County. The TBM County Task Force will be a Priority, we will continue to communicate and make our deal better! It is a long process and all parties have their issues but we must be able to collaborate with the existing situation while still working on a better fiscal deal for Blue. We have project needs right here in the Blue Mountains that need to be accomplished within our borders.
There are many important and impassioned issues that need to be dealt with now, not next year or beyond.
Pretty River Pit - We need your help to keep this rural land as significant woodland and forest. Help us convince this council that changes should not be made to allow its destruction. This will be a priority with the new council!
Hwy 26 Expansion - Proposing a 4-5 lane highway through Craigleith and beyond make absolutely no sense. Tearing down hundreds of families homes and further cutting off our waterfront doesn't help anyone. Even if we are looking at 10 years down the road, we must get the MTO to take this option completely off the table.
Housing & Labour - We are at a tipping point in The Town of the Blue Mountains. There are immediate needs and a clear strategy needs to be followed. Many Great plans in the South Georgian Bay Tourism Industry Workforce Housing Research & Business Case can be adopted.
Let us achieve a fine balance between meeting the everyday needs of today, while developing the vision of a future far beyond the next four years.
Our Life in Blue - Today & Tomorrow
Our Blue Mountains community is diverse, unique, close and caring, lively and authentic. Municipal governance matters far more in our daily lives than most people imagine. While it is Federal and Provincial politics that receives the most ink in the media, we are impacted by decisions made at the municipal level almost everywhere we turn. The stores where we shop, the neighborhoods where we live, the streets we use to get from place to place, the parks we play in, and the many services we use without even thinking about them are often controlled, in some way by municipal government. We can also do ourselves a disservice by failing to realize that our municipal governance has implications far beyond the everyday issues of what time the garbage gets picked up in the morning.
For the people you elect do not just enact policies which affect us living here today: we as Elected Officials must enact policies that will affect generations of Blue Mountains residents into the future. As a Town we must not just meet the needs of the moment, but projecting ourselves 40 or 80 years down the road. We must be conceptualizing solutions that will continue to work into the future. You have to think several stages ahead and as a Town and we need to think the same way. It is that ability to conceptualize and propose policies such as the Official Plan, Zoning and Economic Development that take into account not only the immediate needs of the present, but which also set the stage for decades – centuries – of future growth.
Big challenges require big solutions, and openness to big thinking. Municipal politics can be so much more. I will not shy away from tough conversations, but I will always try to steer them to constructive outcomes in the best interest of all.
These can't just be words anymore, the public deserves to know what is happening within their Town. Access, Transparency and Communication are the KEYS to a healthy Town relationship.
Respectful and positive dialogue ensuring that Council actively listens to the community and represents their vision for a healthy, vibrant and strong Blue Mountains community is essential.
During the new term we also need to establish the Community Communications Committee comprised of at least one Member of Council along with staff and resident's to have complete transparency.
Reaching the right person or department at Town Hall can also be very confusing. Sometimes, people just don't know who to call or contact with questions.
Who do I speak with for a building permit?
Can I cut down a tree on my Property?
I would like to look at establishing an ACCESS BLUE phone hotline with a live operator to answer questions or direct to the right department. Based on models from other municipalities, a single operator can answer over 60% of the resident's questions without a referral in minutes. To me that would be true access.