Gravenhurst — Councillor — Ward 2, Acclaimed
1. What actions have you personally taken to support a greener, more sustainable climate?
I would love to take this opportunity to answer your questions.
In 2019 at the AMO Conference I attended the Hydro One workshop and requested that Gravenhurst be considered as an early pilot in the IVY electric vehicle charger program. As such we now have three fast EV chargers in our Sobeys parking lot which didn’t cost the taxpayers a dime. There are also more to come so stay tuned.
In February of 2020 I initiated and led the Gravenhurst delegation before Minister Caroline Mulroney and the MTO to ask for the return of passenger rail to Gravenhurst. I have so many people tell me they would rather take a form of transit rather than sit in a car on the 400. I had to ask three times but on the third try, she said yes. The polar express will be returning and stopping in Gravenhurst in the mid 2020s.
Also in 2020 I worked with Councillor Ruth Nikishawa from TML in order to ask the District to consider a complete network of bike lanes from Bala down to Gravenhurst. This would connect them to the Trans Canada Trail. As 169 is a District road, they are the decision makers on this one but we have shown our interest. They also know at the very least we would love a bike lane from Gull Lake Park to the Wharf.
Every year at budget time when a fleet vehicle is being replaced I ask if it can be electrified. In the beginning the fleet manager said that electric were not the work horses they needed them to be. Some times during storms they travel far and work long hours. The batteries just weren’t that reliable. However! It was at the last budget that it was decided they could buy the first electric vehicle for the building inspectors. That is more of an 8-4pm job which they could use and then charge all night. At least it is a start!
I believe those are the most prominent ideas that I was directly involved in initiating.
2. What opportunities for climate leadership at the municipal level (e.g. greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs)) would you champion in one or more of these areas: Buildings | Housing | Land use (sprawl) | Transportation | Other
I am very interested in a little company that is creating in house organic “cookers”. All the “food” that goes from our buildings into a landfill is troublesome. If we could get a program going for all the lunch rooms it would be a real head start.
3. A long-term problem requires a long-term solution. What is your 100-year plan? If elected, what would be your first action?
My 100 year plan would be to coordinate our efforts with other municipalities and the province. Bracebridge not allowing straws and Gravenhurst not allowing ballon releases is too low level. The public will tune us out if they are receiving too many messages. I would hope that someone like Canadian Municipalities with outdoor recreational spaces would take the lead and lobby for funding and coordination I just don’t believe we can do it one municipality at a time. We need teamwork on this with a big capital “T”.
Thank you for reaching out to all of us. I know there are decisions to be made on your part during this next election.