Halton Region to ask the Province to address local court resource and infrastructure shortfalls
Halton Region’s rapidly growing population has stretched the current capacity of local court resources and facility infrastructure causing delays for many legal proceedings.
“Our current court infrastructure does not meet the growth related needs for Halton,” said Regional Chair, Gary Carr. “We have been mandated to grow, but our legal infrastructure has not kept pace. Our system is stretched beyond capacity and residents and legal professionals are feeling the pressures. I will continue to work with local MPPs and Regional Council including the Mayor of Burlington, Rick Goldring, Mayor of Milton, Gord Krantz, Mayor of Halton Hills, Rick Bonnette and the Mayor of Oakville, Rob Burton, as we simply cannot wait any longer to see changes to this critical community service.”
On Wednesday, January 25, 2015, Halton Regional Council will consider a resolution for continued support by the Province to address the shortfalls with Halton’s legal infrastructure. There are a number of pressing issues to be resolved including outdated court house facilities resulting in significant delays for legal proceedings.
Halton is including the issue of court resources and infrastructure shortfalls in its Provincial pre-budget submission later this month. In addition, the Region has requested a meeting with the Attorney General outlining the need for further action to ensure that legal facilities are in place to keep pace with mandated provincial growth. Halton’s advocacy efforts on this issue date back a number of years including a 2012 meeting with the Attorney General, John Gerretsen, where the Halton court situation was presented.Posted: Jan. 30, 2015 Under: Halton Region Permanent Link to this Article
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Town of Halton Hills designated a “Safe Community”
The Town of Halton Hills has become only the 65th community in Canada to earn the Safe Community designation.
Mayor Rick Bonnette and other community leaders participated in an event today that marked the Town earning the prestigious designation. An initiative of Parachute, a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to an injury-free Canada with Canadians living long lives to the fullest, Canadian Safe Communities believe that a safe life is a basic right. Being designated a Safe Community is Halton Hills’s affirmation of, and testament to, the community’s aspiration to create a safer life for all residents. The official designation of a municipality as a Safe Community indicates a publicly articulated commitment to work towards a safer locality for all.
“This designation is validation that our efforts to maintain a safe and healthy community to live, learn, work and play are on track,” said Mayor Bonnette. “It’s wonderful to receive this designation from Parachute, but we know we can always do more. We all need to work together to keep all Halton Hills residents and visitors safe.”
Communities that choose to be designated a Safe Community are committed to a collaborative relationship with Parachute, members of the Parachute network and others in the domain of health and safety, are also agreeing to some guiding principles, namely leadership, sustainability, community engagement and prioritization of injury prevention.
“Congratulations to the residents and community leaders of Halton Hills for living and working in a Safe Community,” said Louise Logan, Parachute President and CEO. “This designation reflects your commitment to injury prevention within your community. You all deserve to be applauded for your great work.”
Communities who have obtained the Safe Community designation have shown considerable commitment to promoting injury prevention and safety promotion locally. They have brought together local officials from their municipalities at a leadership table, including representatives from local government, public health, police, fire and emergency services, educational institutions, local business, and health and safety organizations. Designated Safe Communities have completed a formal Priority Setting Exercise and community scan, to inform their programming decisions, and they have a proven plan for sustainability.
Halton Hills was designated a Safe Community by:
- Engaging community partners in the designation process.
- Working together to increase the awareness of safety and injury prevention in the community.
- Providing a forum for community, business and government leaders committed to community safety and health.
- Working towards enhancing existing programs and resources through networks and partnerships at the grass roots level to achieve sustainable results.
For more information about the Halton Safe Community visit www.parachutecanada.org.Posted: Jan. 29, 2015 Under: Halton Hills - Georgetown Permanent Link to this Article
Halton Hills Mayor Takes Free Trade Fair Trade Message to Quebec
Mayor Rick Bonnette participated in a press conference organized by the Canadian Institute of Steel Construction (CISC) held in Montreal on January 20, 2015. Halton Hills has been a leader in making the public aware of the implications of the Buy America Act that specifies that steel and iron products used in public infrastructure projects are sourced exclusively from U.S. companies.
“This about Canadian jobs and assessment,” said Mayor Bonnette. “The Buy America Act has negatively affected many communities across Canada and we must put a stop to this discriminatory legislation.”
Canadian companies cannot bid on projects in the U.S., while foreign companies are free to bid on infrastructure projects in Canada. Hellen Christodoulou Quebec Regional Director of the CISC cited many examples of U.S.-based companies supplying the steel and iron for Canadian projects; she empathically stated that Canadian companies would be excluded from U.S. projects.
“I thought that the Buy American provisions were behind us,” added Mayor Bonnette. “We received a Canadian exemption in 2009 after intense lobbying at all levels, but more and more legislation in the U.S. at both the state and federal level now contain buy American clauses”.
The Buy America Act is having an impact on Canadian companies. Mueller Canada, based in St. Jerome, Quebec, announced suddenly on December 19, 2014 that it would close its Canadian operations laying off 71 employees as a direct result of the Buy American provisions, an American plant will now service the Canadian market.
“What we are looking for is Fair Trade with the U.S., an acknowledgement that our supply lines don’t recognize borders and that reciprocity should be the cornerstone of the trade relations with the U.S”, said Edward Whalen president of the CISC.
Mr. Whalen encouraged provinces and municipalities to be pro-active on this issue and in the event the U.S. government does not exempt Canadian companies that we should reconsider our current open market procurement stance.
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) is also alerting its members of the serious consequences to the Canadian economy. Halton Hills Regional Councillor Clark Somerville, who also serves as the second vice-president of FCM, is fully engaged in making sure the message resonates with all Canadian municipalities that free trade should be fair trade.
Mayor Bonnette continues to work closely with the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association (CME) on this issue meeting with representatives on January 19, 2015 prior to the Montreal press conference. Mayor Bonnette added, “We are prepared to fight for Canadian jobs. It is the right thing to do”.
Halton Hills Regional Councillor Clark Somerville, who is also second vice-president of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, and the Town’s Economic Development Officer Doug Penrice, also attended and supported the Mayor’s participation.Posted: Jan. 28, 2015 Under: Halton Hills - Georgetown Permanent Link to this Article