It looks like Midland’s budget deliberations are all but concluded for 2018. The budget will likely be approved at the Town Council meeting on April 23rd.
It appears your local Government is prepared to loosen the purse strings a bit in an election year.
The decision to transition to OPP has provided Council with an opportunity to spend future savings before they have actually been realized. While some may say that spending money before you earn it can be a prudent move, one-time windfalls, like payday loans, have an end date. It seems to us it’s time to begin to realize productivity gains and savings through the Service Delivery Review. So far this review has only involved ‘investing’ taxpayer money with dividends on that ‘investment’ still to be seen.
Back to the budget. The headline operating budget increase appears to be 2.34% for 2018. However, a significant amount of additional spending in 2018 will be funded by projected police savings. But for the OPP decision, the 2018 budget increase would be well in excess of 3% resulting in back-to-back years with increases over 3%.
It would be nice if everyone in town who pays taxes saw a 3% increase in their income – every worker, every pensioner and every local business but we all know that is far from reality.
With this as a backdrop, let’s shift our focus to the 2018 Municipal election.
First Mayor McKay has announced he’s hanging up his skates and we’d like to thank him for his service. Under his stewardship Midland did make some big, bold moves. If properly managed they will pay dividends for years to come.
Acquiring the Unimin site, switching to OPP, sharing services and personnel with neighbouring communities, and selling MPUC are good examples of moves to help the future arrive on schedule.
With the Mayor stepping down along with a councilor or two, Midland needs to get focused on attracting new candidates.
While being a member of Council requires no specific qualifications, we believe Midland’s future will depend on the combined skills, experience, wisdom and principles of the people we select as our municipal leaders.
What follows are a few of the qualities we believe we should look for in our elected officials:
1) Enthusiasm for continuous learning
2) Openness to change and innovation
3) Ability to work co-operatively as part of a team
4) Experience making wise and informed decisions
5) High standards of ethics and behaviour
6) Ability to accept setbacks with grace and dignity
Be sure to consider these qualities when you cast your vote later this year.
If you think you have the needed qualities and are considering running for office, then perhaps you’re ready to take a test we call the “Look in the Mirror Test”. Honest reflection is necessary, healthy and a first step in aspiring to perform at a higher level.
MUNICIPAL COUNCIL SKILL/BEHAVIOUR REQUIREMENTS
Ask yourself the following questions.
1) Can I effectively work with others to reach common goals?
2) Am I respectful in my dealings with all persons involved?
3) Am I always motivated to do the right thing and always acting
in the best interest of the Town?
4) Do I support the most effective, innovative and efficient ways
to accomplish goals and deliver services to my customers?
5) Do I operate under the highest standards of professional
6) Do I practice open and honest communication at all times?
With diverse skills and experience along with a strong sense of community, new candidates complimenting some existing talent will add strength and capability to help Midland again become the economic engine for North Simcoe.
Midland Matters, You Matter, and Getting Involved Matters.