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Thursday, October 11, 2018

Shirley Keaveney (incumbent councillor)

Meaford | by Matt Hermiz  

Meaford Deputy Mayor Candidate

1) Yes or No: Should Meaford allow bricks-and-mortar marijuana shops tooperate in its boundaries? Why?
Council will be receiving information on the legalization of cannabis as it becomes available from the federal government.  Meaford, like any community will have a onetime opportunity to "opt out" but in my opinion Meaford should begin with a local cannabis taskforce to consider a strategy that will be appropriate for our municipality. Our residents should participate in this process. The safety of our residents and a concerted level of public education should be council`s first focus.

2) Yes or No: Should the municipality invest more into infrastructure androads maintenance, even if it creates more expense for ratepayers? Why?
When I became a Councillor our first task was to prepare a Strategic Plan. Infrastructure became our top priority. We would need huge dollars to fix and restore it. Over the last four years Meaford has accumulated Reserves for Capital Projects exceeding $8M. With reserves and capital funds earmarked from our tax base plus grants from Provincial and Federal levels of government we will be able to spend in excess of $20M. over the next four years without borrowing monies for roads and bridges. Our discipline over four years has put the Municipality on sound financial ground. Now we are in position to get lots done.
3) Yes or No: Should Meaford hire a Chief Administrative Officer or continuewith the model in place since the departure of the past CAO? Why?
Meaford is managing well currently with four directors sharing the duties of operating this municipality. We have saved the salary of our past CAO and Director of Parks, Rec and Culture. However Meaford needs leadership, the next four years are going to bring many changes to the face of our municipality. Meaford is going to grow and I believe we should be right not fast in hiring a CAO, I would entertain the prospects of a CAO who brought an Economic Development background, someone who could guide sustainable growth moving forward.

4) What is one other issue facing Meaford you would like to speak to, andhow will you address this if elected?
OPP... I believe many residents are concerned with the current perceived lack of OPP presence in our municipality, I hear this at most doors I knock on. The next council should address this issue early on. Meaford doesn`t have a contract at this time. We will engage a citizen`s policing advisory committee and we will have to wait to see what changes come to us when the Policing Act adjustments arrive in January of 2019. I`d like to see the new council discuss enhancements to provide Meaford with a dedicated presence on our roads and in our school. 

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