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Newsletter December 23

As we prepare for the holidays and the new year, we can look back on 2016 and reflect on all that City Council has been able to achieve.

London’s culture, sports and entertainment sectors took centre stage in 2016. We hosted our largest music event ever, the Canadian Country Music Association Awards, we welcomed home our London Knights as the 2016 Memorial Cup Champions and hosted countless festivals and concerts that showcased our city’s exceptional downtown spaces and venues.

We endorsed SHIFT, the largest infrastructure project in London’s history. This bus rapid transit system is the foundation of the London Plan. It will change how Londoners move across the city and it will change the way we grow over the next 20 years as well. This $500-million investment shared between all levels of government will produce over $1.3-billion in economic, environmental and transportation benefits for our community.

We welcomed close to 2,000 Syrian newcomers this year in London. This is the seventh largest number of people welcomed in the country and third most in the province, behind only Ottawa and Toronto. Our community offered our new neighbours and friends support at a time of desperate need, and now they are working hard to start anew. As Mayor, this is something that makes me incredibly proud.

The Strategic Plan that council endorsed within our first 100 days is 95 per cent either complete or on target. We outlined four areas of focus: building a sustainable city, strengthening our community, growing our economy, and leading in public service.

We have approved over 1,622 units downtown, which have been reviewed to ensure that they attract further investment in our core and positively contribute to our vision of the downtown. We accomplished this in just two years while it took the previous council four years to approve approximately half this amount.

Council also unanimously voted to call on our police board to end carding. It was one of the most spirited and moving moments of this term. We listened to the people we represent and took a leading role, becoming the first council in Ontario to make such a request of its police board.

We did this all together, as a community.

I am looking forward to the great things we will accomplish over the next two years. Council will return in 2017 ready to continue the important work we’ve been doing to build a better city for all Londoners.

Over the holidays, I hope you cherish your time spent with family, friends and neighbours.

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,


Mayor Matt Brown

Business_Cares_Food_Drive_Wrap.JPGAttended the Business Cares Food Drive wrap up where it was announced the organization collected more than 325,000 lbs. of food

Damian_Warner_Outstanding_London_Ambassador.jpgHonouring Damian Warner as the first recipient of the Outstanding London Ambassador Award.


Events and Occasions:

  • Marconi Club of London’s 34th annual Christmas Lunch

  • Holiday Party at Paramount with Ab Chabar

  • Air Show update with Jim Graham, Dave DeKelver, Gerry Vanderhoek and John Winston

  • Mayoral Monday with Craig Needles on AM980

  • Record holiday greeting with Jorge Herrera

  • MindGrind on 103.1 Fresh FM

  • Meet USC Vice-President Jaime Cleary

  • Market Tower Christmas Tour

  • Social Service Site Christmas Visits

  • Meeting with Cassandra DeMelo

  • CJBK Morning Roundtable

  • Aroma Restaurant Holiday Fundraising Dinner

  • Business Cares Food Drive Wrap Up

  • Meeting with Matt Farrell

  • Meeting with Vito Frijia
  • Phone call with Pat Moauro

Council Briefs:

The Mayor and City Council welcomed Damian Warner as this year’s recipient of the annual Outstanding London Ambassador Award. Damian is a Canadian decathlete who won an Olympic Bronze Medal at this summer’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. A native of London, he is supported by an extensive local coaching, medical and strength team; including high school teachers/coaches from Montcalm Secondary School, Oakridge Secondary School and the Head Coach of the Track and Field Team at Western University. In 2015, he won the gold medal at the Pan American Games and the decathlon silver at the IAAF World Championships in Beijing. He is the current Canadian record holder in the decathlon and now has his sights set on Tokyo for the 2020 Summer Olympics.

In other Council business:

Council approved an enhanced income-related subsidy program for public transit for qualified Londoners and asked staff to bring forward a 2019 budget amendment in the multi-year process regarding ongoing financing for the program.

Council also approved a by-law allowing children under 12 years of age to ride LTC buses for free as of January 2017.

Council endorsed Terms of Reference for development of the Urban Agriculture strategy.

Council received for information a report outlining improvements to public engagement during planning processes.

Council received for information a report regarding a transportation review around the old Normal School in Old South.

Council voted not to seek cost recovery for London Fire Department attendance at structure fires.

Council approved a public education plan with respect to the Open Air Burning By-Law.

Council received an update on the London Community Gardens Program Strategic Plan.

Council also received an update on the Emergency Management Program.

Council directed staff to review increasing measures to combat hate related graffiti.

Council approved writing-off approximately $9 million in uncollected fines, some decades old, under the Provincial offences Act and agreed to advocate the Provincial Government for expanded recovery tools to collect unpaid fines.

Council directed staff to request the Lieutenant Governor to increase the size of the London Police Services Board from five to seven members.

Council received for information a scoping report regarding City assets and directed staff to report back on the potential proceeds from the sale of vacant land and buildings and major venues.

Council approved a by-law to revoke any Council policy pertaining to benefits to common-law spouses.

Council directed staff to report back on increased opportunities for recycling in the downtown.

Council accepted the Environmental Assessment for the Dundas Place flexible street and ordered it placed on the public record for comments.

Council approved hiring London lawyer Barry Card as the City's new solicitor.

Paramount_Holiday_Party.JPGSpeaking at the Paramount Holiday Party alongside Ab Chabar.

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