Council “wish list” could increase tax levy
by Roger Varley
Uxbridge council revised the 2018 budget Tuesday afternoon by adopting a number of items from the so-called “wish list,” raising the possibility that the forecast property tax increase could be boosted by as much as a couple of percentage points.
At the start of the proceedings, Councillor Pat Molloy, chair of the finance committee, said residents currently are facing an increase of 2.29 per cent over 2017, plus one per cent in asset management. He told council the wish list they faced Tuesday should be assessed on the basis of wants and needs.
Council responded by approving somewhere in the neighbourhood of $200,000 in additional spending. Mr. Molloy, noting that taxes increase by one per cent for approximately every $117,000 that is added to the budget, pointed out that the treasury department has yet to determine how much of that extra money will come from reserves and how much will be added to the tax levy.
However, various items will be brought back for further discussion at another budget meeting scheduled for 1 p.m. on January 23. They include a number of improvements to various ball diamonds in the township, a commuter cycling plan, a pedestrian safety plan and an extension to the Perry Street sidewalk. The commuter cycling plan was tabled until Councillor Dave Barton, who was listening in on the proceedings by phone from Mexico, can provide council with a report. Council asked public works director Ben Kester to come back with a report on the feasibility of a Perry Street sidewalk, and facilities manager Bob Ferguson was asked to provide a report on safety issues at the ball diamonds before approving any of his requests.…continue reading…
“13 Ways” Installment #5 – Where are the younger generations – the future?
by Roger Varley
This is the fifth “installment” in a series of columns and articles inspired by a book entitled “13 Ways To Kill Your Community.”
Where are the young people?
Doug Griffith’s topic this week is on engaging youth in the community, and it is worth noting right off the top that, as he points out in his book, “13 Ways To Kill Your Community,” when he talks about youth he is talking about those 35 years of age and younger.
If he had meant youth in the terms most of us understand, it could be argued that, in Uxbridge, youth are not only engaged but are engaging. Witness the entrepreneurial spirit of Leo Gallard, a young man who, for the last three years, has brought a food, music and arts festival to Elgin Park with successful results, results that have led to plaudits from council when he appears in front of them.
Then there is Adrian Giacci, another young man who made major contributions to the establishment of the skate park at the Fields of Uxbridge and then went on to launch his own landscaping business.
Teenagers Josh Morrison and Hayden Prince have likewise been applauded for their charitable work, helping to house and feed the needy. Many people know of the work of a large number of Uxbridge Secondary School students in honouring and supporting our veterans to the point they have become an integral part of the township’s Remembrance Day activities.
However, when Doug Griffiths includes 35 year-olds in the equation, things look a lot different. For example, most, if not all, of the township’s service clubs have a decidedly grey look to them. The number of service club members under the age of 40 could probably be counted on one hand.…continue reading…