This morning my Council colleagues and Mayor Watson honoured me with the responsibility of serving our City as one of our two Deputy Mayors for this term of Council.
Over the past four years as the Chair of the Community & Protective Services Committee I have been privileged to have come to know many within the respective departments witin the CPSC mandate and I have been grateful for this opportunity.
Each one of these areas is filled with dedicated people who serve our community and residents well. They continue to make people’s lives better each day with the work they do.
Our Parks, Recreation, Arts, Culture & Heritage team under the leadership of Dan Chenier have been a blessing to work with. Whether it was community recreation, sponsorship, public art or public spaces great work has been done. The opening of our new Archives Centre was a key milestone in our cultural work. Special events, festivals and fairs which have been ably shepherded by this department will become even more prominent in the lead up to the 2017 celebrations and I look forward to playing a role in this file from my economic development mandate.
Dr. Aaron Burry and his management team have been wonderful to work with as we pulled together to address homelessness, housing and the daily challenges faced by many. I look forward to continuing close collaboration with this file and the good work our team does there. Similarly the work to modernize childcare, manage long term care and provide social assistance to those in need is ongoing work and the team who deliver these services should be very proud of what they do each day. Recent changes by the Province have added additional burdens to many of our staff in this area and they have stepped up to deliver for Ottawa residents.
Within Emergency & Protective Services I thank General Manager Susan Jones and her Chiefs, Linda Anderson at By-Law, Pierre Poirier at Emergency Management/Corporate Security, Anthony DiMonte at Paramedics and John deHooge at Fire. It has been a learning experience and pleasure to work with them all. Files ranging from taxicabs and street vendors to paramedic dispatch technologies, emergency procedures and fire service evolution are complicated and serious issues. Thank you to the entire team who manage them daily with humility, grace, humor and deference.
In my new capacity as Deputy Mayor I look forward to:
- Growing our city’s economic development efforts with staff, Invest Ottawa & our new Innovation Centre,
- Working with business leaders & the community on opporuntities to grow local jobs & talent,
- Working to ensure our 2017 celebration year strengthens our local economy,
- Continuing the commitment to ending chronic homelessness in our city within 10 years, and
- As both a city wide and Bay Ward issue, continuing to be involved in the work of building an Age Friendly City.
I look forward to also serving our community in additional capapcities:
- As our City representative to the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO),
- Continuing my role on our Finance & Economic Development Committee (FEDCO),
- As a Member of our Board of Health, and
- As a Member of our Ottawa Community Housing board.
As always I remain thankful and committed to the residents of Bay Ward who provided me the opportunity to serve our community.