This week, I had the opportunity to address Londoners in the State of the City, the largest event of its kind in Canada.
We are seeing positive growth in a number of areas and your City Council is doing what we said we would do.
London is on track with its Strategic Plan - over 95 per cent of the tasks in the plan are either on target or complete to strengthen our community, build a sustainable city, lead in public service and grow our economy. Click here to see the City of London’s Strategic Plan.
We are truly building more inward and upward. In just two years, Council has approved 1,650 high density units in our downtown and Old East Village.
London is drawing world class entertainment and we are prepared to roll out the red carpet for more. We successfully hosted the Canadian Country Music Association Awards in 2016 and welcomed the return of the Airshow London. Attractions like Boler Mountain and Museum London are investing millions of dollars to upgrade their facilities to bring in visitors from across the region.
We continue to be a leader in the digital creative sector. Success stories like Voices.com, Arcane, Big Viking Games and many others started with innovative ideas that have flourished. With over 9,000 jobs -- 2,000 in the past year -- and hundreds of openings, it continues to be an area of phenomenal growth.
I am also committed to fighting for London’s fair share of funding from our provincial and federal governments for rapid transit. This half-a-billion dollar project will be transformative for London - a sustainable way for Londoners to get to and from work, community centres and our downtown. Our portion of the funding has already been earmarked. We are ready and waiting for our provincial and federal counterparts to give us the necessary infrastructure funding to make this project a reality.
We have so many stories to tell here in London. Please visit my Facebook page to see some of the remarkable stories we had the privilege of telling during the State of the City.
The Mayors of Southwest Ontario also met with the Honourable Charles Sousa, Ontario’s Minister of Finance, to discuss regional priorities for the 2017 budget. My colleagues and I were able to speak directly with the Finance Minister about strengthening southwest Ontario’s competitiveness, transportation networks, core infrastructure and housing. We continue to call on our provincial and federal partners to produce a National Housing Strategy to address Canada’s housing crisis and to lift thousands of Londoners (and Canadians) out of poverty. Click here to read the “London For All” report on poverty.
I was also one of many Londoners who gathered in solidarity at the London Muslim Mosque and Victoria Park in light of the recent act of terror in Quebec City.
We will not accept religiously intolerant, racist, or xenophobic views. London is a diverse city and our community is stronger when we come together and embrace our differences. More than 1,600 Syrian newcomers arrived here last year and I am so proud of how Londoners opened their arms and welcomed them to their new home with open arms.
Finally, February is Black History Month, a time to celebrate and recognize the many achievements of the black community in London and abroad. The London Black History Coordinating Committee has planned several events throughout the city. Click here for more information on these events.
Chatting with guests from the City of London at the State of the City Address.
Meeting with members of the Mayors of Southwest Ontario and Finance Minister Charles Sousa in Guelph.
- Hundreds of Londoners gather at London Muslim Mosque to condemn Quebec City shooting
- Black History Month kicks off in London
Events and Occasions:
London Muslim Mosque Prayer Service
- Fanshawe 50th Anniversary London Lightning Game
2017 State of the City Address
Economic Road Map Advisory Panel Quarterly Meeting
Meeting with Abbey Duggal
Meeting with Gail McMahon
Meeting with Jeff Preston
I Step Forward Training
Mayors of Southwest Ontario meeting
- Night prayer service at London Muslim Mosque
The Mayor recognized Mario Circelli for his work with the Jack Richardson Music Awards.
The Mayor and Council recognized the 2015 Bravo Awards of Excellence. The Awards of Excellence are designed to showcase and share the stories of our employees and the contribution they make to the community and the workplace.
In other Council business:
Council approved the contract award to Youth Opportunities Unlimited to build and operate London Housing’s first emergency shelter for youth.
Council approved the award of the contract for the implementation of a homeless management information system. The proposed information system can provide immediate information in a number of areas including: emergency shelter bed availability by location and overall occupancy, and can assist with rapid response to emergency situations.
Council made amendments to a proposed vehicle for hire bylaw. Final reading of that bylaw will be read at the Feb. 14 Council meeting.
Council received information that staff held a public participation meeting on new categories recommended for licensing and will proceed with a comprehensive public participation meeting to receive further public comments about potential by-law changes for pay day loan companies and door-to-door sales persons.
Council decided against the removal of cold beverage vending machines in City recreation facilities and City Hall, but approved the removal of candy machines from recreational facilities at the end of the existing vendor contract in 2017.
Council directed the City Clerk to begin a public consultation process on implementing ranked ballots for the 2018 municipal election, which would include a draft bylaw to be presented at a future public meeting.
Council authorized that Councillor Harold Usher be allowed to pursue a seat that became vacant on the Federation of Canadian Municipalities Board of Directors for the remainder of 2016/17 year.
A public participation meeting will be held related to a property at 1509 Ed Ervasti Lane.
Council approved a change in zoning for the property located at 1245 Michael Street to a Holding Residential R4 Special Provision to permit townhouse dwellings.
Council approved an intensification project for a 2 storey, 12-unit apartment at 169 Foster Ave.
Council approved by-law changes that will permit a mushroom farm at 6188 Colonel Talbot Rd.
Council directed that the recommendations of the London Advisory Committee on Heritage report about the structure at 100 Stanley St. be considered as part of the Environmental Assessment Study for Wharncliffe Rd. S from Becher St. Commissioners Rd W.
Speaking to Londoners who had gathered at the London Muslim Mosque following a shooting at a mosque in Quebec City.
Hundreds of Londoners gathered at the London Muslim Mosque in a show of support following a shooting at a mosque in Quebec City.