I have lived in Whitchurch-Stouffville for 35 years and more than 30 years actively serving my community. As Ward 2 councillor for 6 years, 1997 to 2003. I am very familiar with holding the office of Local Government. Following this, I joined the lines of the Whitchurch-Stouffville Fire and Emergency Services. I have been a Volunteer Firefighter for 18 years with achieving the rank of Captain and Instructor for the Fire Department.
I was the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville Certified Arborist, in the Public Works Department, from 2016 to 2022. I resigned my position as the Lead Arborist and Operator. The policies and procedures set forward by Council and management where not in keeping with professional knowledge and current science for the preservation of our natural heritage. The council and management are not utilizing their positions to progress the Town to a more sustainable outlook for the health of our residents and our communities. The lack of sustainable policies and the refusal to enforce policies within the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville has left the Town far behind other municipalities in York Region and Southern Ontario.
Accountability and Transperancy
As you have been told, the current Council has passed the appropriate planning policies for the successful outcome of the development of our Town. The current council, under the leadership of Mayor Lovatt and supported by staff, have consistently turned to the Province of Ontario to administer Ministerial Zoning Orders (MZO) to develop our Town. No other municipality in Ontario has asked for, or supported, more MZO’s than the current Council of Whitchurch-Stouffville. This is turning our planning over to the Province of Ontario and failing to follow our own planning policies.
In 2020, the current council took it upon themselves, through closed door meetings, to lease out part of our beloved Main Street Clock Tower Court Yard, to what was described as, “a friend of the Mayor”. Then in 2021, again the current Council held closed door meetings for the sale of our 42 acre, Bethesda Sports Field. If this had unfolded as the Mayor wanted, this park would be sold as of today for residential development purposes. The Town and the Mayor with the CAO have now been named in a 38 million dollar lawsuit by the developer over what has unfolded. These meetings were held in violation of the Ontario Municipal Act and our own Town Policies for Transparency and Accountability. These are what they have been caught doing. What else have they been doing over the past 4 years and not told us about?
The Mayor will also tell you that he and his council have brought stability back to the Town with high-ranking Town staff. This cannot be further from the truth. Staff changeover has been happening more frequently than usual. Planning, Leisure Services, Assistant CAO, and Human Resources departments have all seen a dramatic change over in staff under the leadership of Mayor Lovatt. This rate of staff turnover is an indication that there is something wrong and change is needed. I want to be that change. and use my leadership for the better.
My vision for the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville is developing resilient and affordable housing, fostering healthy communities, and encouraging and promoting the preservation of our natural environment, enacting policies that will see our communities grow in a sustainable manner and creating an open and honest Council with strong principals and proper leadership that is accountable to the residents of Whitchurch-Stouffville.
Other Important Issues
- Developing affordable housing, and better planning of our communities.
- Increased access to Public Transit.
- Job creation and clean industry development.
- Protection of our natural environment.
- Clear Policy guidelines for development of our Main Street corridor.
- Policies to help mitigate climate change at the local level.
- Protection of our heritage districts.
- Traffic Calming for improved community safety.
- Emergency Services to keep pace with growth of population needs.
- Council and Staff accountability.
The Principles that Will Guide Me in Successful Leadership
- Humility, to Live life selflessly, not selfishly.
- Honesty, to walk through life with integrity and will seek not to deceive others.
- Wisdom, to allow myself to learn, respect my limitations and to recognize and respect the differences between each of us.
- Truth, to be true to myself and all others. I will show honour and sincerity in all that I say and do.
- Respect, to treat others in a way that I would like to be treated. Not to be hurtful to others.
- Bravery, to face the difficulties and defend what I believe in and what is right for the community.
- Promise, To maintain integrity I will not solicit campaign funds from the development community or any other industry that will come to Whitchurch-Stouffville to affect our way of life for profit. This is considered “Lobbying”.