A significant priority for me is improving our two-way communication: Much of the time things in Wolfville hum along pretty well, but from time to time there have been, and will be again, issues that bring out at least two sides. Often these issues are development related, occasionally they are operational. Hindsight always teaches us that communication can smooth the way. All municipalities and Wolfville is no exception, have policies and protocols, legislation and resource limitations. With an understanding of that reality I believe we can and must do a better job of listening, and communicating. While that won’t guarantee that all initiatives make everyone happy, I believe formal and informal communications can be improved, and if done well will lower the temperature on the future issues that we are most certain to confront. You have my word that as Mayor developing stronger communication protocols and practices throughout the community will be one of my priorities.
Livable neighbourhoods – behaviour and social interaction: During my first term on Council I initiated and chaired the Core Neighbourhood Review Group and authored much of the report. As a resident of the core I brought that experience to my terms on the RCMP Advisory Board, Planning Advisory Committee, and work with individuals affected by undesirable behaviour. Every bone in my body says we are better off with a strong core neighbourhood, where children play in the schoolyard, where there is “pride of place”, where seniors feel safe, where young adults and empty-nesters can walk to the grocery store, where landlords, permanent and temporary residents understand their contribution to healthy neighbourhoods. We have made some progress, but there is still much more to do. The coming year will be a test of our resilience and strength as a community. We will navigate our ongoing work to ensure all neighbourhoods are desirable places to live, while in the midst of the uncertainty of the ongoing pandemic. Staying on top of these dual issues is a priority for me.
Effective regional services: Just because we are a small town doesn’t mean we don’t have the same needs and aspirations that all modern communities do. We are fortunate to have in place a number of regional services that allow us to afford these services. At the same time our regional service agreements are dated. We need robust regional cooperation and for some services more efficient integration of those services. In addition to modernizing our service agreements for waste management and transit we need more robust integration of our leisure and environmental initiatives. Greater influence with other levels of government on issues of local health services, affordable housing, and the care and wellbeing of our senior population, would benefit residents throughout our region. Increasingly the security and quality of our municipal services will be rooted in regional cooperation. Our attractiveness as a vibrant town will grow with sustainable regional services. I am committed to working with neighbouring municipalities to secure greater efficiency and effectiveness of regional service agreements, to create constructive links between our municipal and provincial community services.