Budget 2: Development Charges

Development Charges are an important part of the municipal budget, they’re very complicated, and the province is making big changes to how they work that could significantly reduce how much we can use. So as we go through it here, keep in mind that our goal is not to understand the technical details of complicatedContinue reading “Budget 2: Development Charges”

Municipal Budgets 1: Taxes

It’s that time of year. I suspect that we choose January and February to do most financial activities because it’s the one time of year that there isn’t anything more interesting going on. Can you imagine trying to write a budget document or file your taxes in July, when you’d rather be at the lake?Continue reading “Municipal Budgets 1: Taxes”

The Public Trust

My last three posts here have been about the Council Code of Conduct and the role of the Integrity Commissioner, and this morning I was in a training session with councillors and senior municipal staff from across Northumberland. Out of the enormous binder I was presented with once I was elected, and the numerous trainingContinue reading “The Public Trust”

Integrity on Council, part 3

In the last post I went through the first ten rules of the Council Code of Conduct to try to lay them out in layman’s terms. They’re pretty straightforward, so these posts are more about summarizing them. You can read the full Code of Conduct here. Now let’s pick up at rule 11. 11. RespectContinue reading “Integrity on Council, part 3”

Integrity on Council, part 2

The Council Code of Conduct is a thorough set of guidelines that, if followed, should more than keep us out of trouble; it should keep us respectful, united, and productive. (For more info on what happens if we step out of line, see part 1 on the Integrity Commissioner.) The Code of Conduct The CouncilContinue reading “Integrity on Council, part 2”

Integrity on Council, part 1

Political scandals are so common now that we’ve come to expect them of our elected officials. While federal and provincial political scandals are often personal (allegations of sexual misconduct, prejudicial comments, or other questionable behaviour), municipal scandals tend to be a bit more technical and procedural, usually oriented around a real or perceived conflict ofContinue reading “Integrity on Council, part 1”

Bill 23 and Why It Matters, pt 3

This is the final part of a 3-part series. See parts 1 and 2 for the rest of the story. The text of Bill 23 is here. Undermining Municipalities, Imposing Sprawl We’ve already seen how the Province is consolidating its power to overrule virtually everyone, and how they defunded CAs back in 2020; Bill 23Continue reading “Bill 23 and Why It Matters, pt 3”

Bill 23 and Why It Matters, pt 2

This is the second post in a 3-part series, because there was just too much to cover in one. Read more about it in part 1 here, or part 3 here. The text of Bill 23 is here. Gutting Environmental Protections, Opening the Greenbelt Doug Ford has been talking about opening the Greenbelt for years.Continue reading “Bill 23 and Why It Matters, pt 2”

Bill 23 and Why It Matters

Ontario Bill 23 was introduced on October 25th. A bill gets three “readings”, or opportunities for MPPs to debate it, and is often sent to appropriate committees in between for revision. It passed Second Reading on Halloween, and is currently at the Standing Committee on Heritage, Infrastructure and Cultural Policy. That means there’s a chanceContinue reading “Bill 23 and Why It Matters”

Sewage Stewardship

It’s hard to think of a more perennial political issue in Brighton than wastewater treatment. (It’s also hard to think of a title for this post that isn’t punny and a little crude! This will have to do.) Back in the 2018 election, what to do with our wastewater treatment system was already an oldContinue reading “Sewage Stewardship”