TOWN OF COLLINGWOOD HONOURS LOCAL VOLUNTEERS Mayor Brian Saunderson, along with Members of Council, presented the Order of Collingwood and Companion of the Order of Collingwood Awards at the 2020 Mayor’s New Year’s Levee.
The event took place on Sunday, January 5, at the Georgian Bay Hotel & Conference Centre. A large crowd enjoyed motivational speeches and greetings, live music, Town highlights from the past year, and a celebration of community members who have gone above and beyond as volunteers for the Town of Collingwood.
The Order of Collingwood Awards
The Order of Collingwood recognizes exemplary volunteer achievements by people who improve the social, well-being, natural or cultural environment, or recreational character of the Town of Collingwood.
Recipients: Larry Hogarth
Larry began volunteering in Collingwood dressed as a clown for the Santa Claus parade in 1969! He spent 2 years with CUSO, a Canadian Volunteer organization, supervising the construction of water systems in rural Botswana, as well as providing training in appropriate construction techniques.
Larry served on the Board of E3 Community Services for two -12 year terms. Worked on the Special Olympics World Winter Games Snowshoe venue at Duntroon Highlands. He is a charter member of the Optimist Club of Collingwood (1986) with 30 years of Mother of All Yard Sales, Kids’ Fish Days, soccer, music programs, and parade float construction.
Larry is a member of the Trinity United Church Board (Property Committee) and is the current Chair of the United Church Cemetery Board. He is also a founding Board member and current Treasurer of the Institute of Southern Georgian Bay.
Larry has assisted with site selection reviews and site servicing for Campbell House and has helped the Collingwood Garden Club with their annual Plant Sale, Christmas “Make & Take” and structural projects at the arboretum. In retirement, Larry enjoys assisting friends with their “Mr. Fixit and MacGyver” projects.
Over the past 30 years as a Collingwood resident Ron has volunteered as a coach and Board member of the youth soccer league, holding several portfolios including referee development and Board president.
With colleagues, Ron began the ‘Gallery in a Suitcase’ project which staged contemporary art exhibitions in empty downtown storefronts (they were plentiful in the 90’s!). Ron also helped develop a Visiting Artists series of exhibitions with Blue Mountain Foundation for the Arts as he was also a member of the Town’s Visual Arts Committee for several years.
Recently, Ron has been an active volunteer with the local Taoist Tai Chi Society, a non-profit charity dedicated to helping people maintain their health through the practice of Tai Chi, and has volunteered to edit the weekly newsletter for the Curling Club of Collingwood.
In 2016, Ron joined the Collingwood Syrian Sponsorship Committee to help settle Syrian refugee families in Collingwood. This group has settled three families of newcomers who have since been joined by three other families who moved here voluntarily from other communities. Ron’s focus is to help them adapt, find work, introduce activities for the children and just be a good neighbour and friend. The greatest reward as a volunteer for Ron is the many wonderful people he continues to meet and the deep, lasting friendships he creates along the way.
Shashi & Eswar Prasad
The Prasads came to Collingwood in 1983 to start a technology company that is now run by their daughter Niru. Sensor Technology exports over ninety percent of its products to over 30 countries. Its clients include the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canada Space Agency and several energy companies.
The Prasads have been active in the community since their arrival. Shashi has taken to assisting the hearing impaired through the Quota Club and with the Industrial Accident Prevention Association. Eswar has assisted Georgian College in Collingwood and the Georgian Triangle Development Corporation (now the Centre for Business and Economic Development). He has also worked with the Collingwood General and Marine Hospital Foundation on fund-raising and program development and the Collingwood Music Festival. The Prasad Family Foundation continues to support many causes in the community, especially the Collingwood General and Marine Hospital Foundation.
Eswar and Shashi have received the MSMF (Ottawa) Humanitarian Award. Eswar has served on the Board of an Ottawa-based foundation for the prevention of blindness. Shashi has received the Ontario Voluntary Service Award. Eswar volunteers as a professor and Advisory Board member in the engineering faculty at the University of Toronto. He teaches a graduate course in mechatronics and supervises and mentors research students at the University of Toronto and Ryerson University. Eswar and Shashi also volunteer as chefs at a soup kitchen in Toronto.
David was born in Collingwood and volunteerism was a family tradition. In fact, both of David’s parents were proud recipients of the Order of Collingwood.
After graduating from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute in 1970, David joined the family business and became a Director of The Collingwood Chamber of Commerce. During his fourteen years there, he Chaired and Co-Chaired many events including Summerfest, Casino Nights and Collingwood’s 125th Anniversary Gala. Also, as a Director of the Chamber, David was present at the formative meetings of the BIA. David was a member of All Saints Anglican Church, where he served as a Warden and cooked at many pancake dinners. David also participated in fundraising at the G&M Hospital and served on the Georgian Triangle Economic Development Corporation.
Since retiring, David has been proud to serve as the Vice Chair of the Georgian Triangle Residential Resource Centre. In addition, he has been serving as the Chair of the Blue Mountain Foundation for the Arts since 2017. David and his wife Brenda also enjoy helping with the Community Dinner Program and Pickleball as part of the Outreach and Social Action Committee at the Trinity United Church.
Barb has been a resident of Collingwood since 1971. During her tenure as a teacher at C.C.I., she coached volleyball for 25 years and choreographed eight musicals. Barb served on the Board of Theatre Collingwood for one year.
Barb has been involved with many community outreach programs at First Presbyterian Church for the last twenty years including First Contact Youth group, Vacation Bible Camp, First Christmas and Easter Stories and A Little Night Music. She helped found the free PA Days for youth, the First Pres. Tappers, and Music and Movement. She is presently the director for Burning Bush Theatre which offers free musical theatre to youth ages 7 to 17.
Since 2010, Barb has been a choreographer for Clearview Community Theatre. For the last four years, she has been a drama coach for CASLE. Barb is proud to be a contributor to the life of this wonderful community.
The Companion of the Order of Collingwood Awards
The Companion of the Order of Collingwood is awarded to those people who have previously received the Order and have continued to make outstanding volunteer contributions to improve social, well-being, natural or cultural environment, or recreational character of the Town of Collingwood.
To offer a different lifestyle for her son, Marilyn moved to the area over 38 years ago. Marilyn operated a business in Collingwood for over 20 years. With her mother and brother being diabetics, Marilyn was inspired to get involved with the Canadian Diabetes Association and Team Diabetes. Team Diabetes offered a means of fundraising in many cities around the world and through this, Marilyn has met so many wonderful people from around the world who have taken up the fight against diabetes.
Marilyn began fundraising by doing book sales, bottle drives and even an art walk where local artists would contribute a piece of work and display it in the windows of local Downtown businesses which then grew to larger community sales events at locations like the Collingwood Legion. Marilyn now has a Team Diabetes web site where she runs specialty sales and weekly auctions 24 hours a day.
Although at times Marilyn’s home looks like a warehouse, none of her work would be possible without the generous contributions of local businesses to whom she is truly thankful for. With this support Marilyn has been able to support local food banks, the Salvation Army and local animal shelters with donations. Marilyn is thankful for all the volunteers and donors who give their time selflessly and have made this cause their own.
THE ART OF WINTER FESTIVAL The Art of Winter
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1: a festival that embraces winter as a snowy canvas for creativity, activity, and connectivity
2: the embracing of winter – a Collingwood art form
Friday, January 24 to 26, 2020
Central Park, Collingwood
Winter happens in Collingwood and embracing it is a Collingwood art form. Need a gentle reminder how to do it? Join friends and family January 24 to 26 when Collingwood turns into a snowy canvas for creativity, activity, and connectivity. Central Park and the Collingwood Trails Network play host to daytime fun and nighttime magic including professional snow carving, children’s games, snowshoe treks, Rock the Rink moonlit skate, and Watchful Eyes flashlight-powered scavenger hunt.
Amateur Snow Sculpting Contest
Saturday, January 25
1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Turn your snowmaking skills into a creative sculpture! All you need is a team of 3-4 members and your sense of fun, adventure and creativity. No experience necessary. We’ll provide a ready-made block of snow (6' x 6' x 6'), some sculpting hand tools and lots of warm beverages! Professional snow carvers will be on hand to provide assistance and select the winners. Assemble some friends, family or co-workers and join the fun! Register your team at email@example.com
TOWN SEEKS PUBLIC INPUT ON THE COMMUNITY BASED STRATEGIC PLAN REFRESH The Town of Collingwood is refreshing its long-term vision, and accompanying Community-based Strategic Plan (CBSP) to confirm what Council should focus on to meet the needs of the Town’s current residents, enhance public spaces, manage development and growth, and boost public access to the waterfront.
Mayor Brian Saunderson comments, “In developing an effective strategic plan that looks out over a 20-year horizon, Council is deeply interested in the Community's input, and wishes to be sure that it is reflective of the needs and wants of various stakeholders, including community groups, residents, Town staff and Council, and in the case of Collingwood, the tourists and regional users that bring business to the Town.”
The plan must also consider Collingwood's unprecedented growth, mounting asset investment needs (including water treatment expansion, roads, and information technology), judicial inquiry outcomes, and the desire to retain and attract businesses.
Council and Staff had great conversations with the public at a Tuesday, December 10 Open House event that featured information on the CBSP refresh. The Town is also planning another Public Engagement Session for early 2020.
The community is encouraged to visit Engage Collingwood to learn more about the proposed Vision, Pillars, Objectives, and Action Items for the refreshed Community Based Strategic Plan, and provide feedback.
TOWN OF COLLINGWOOD APPROVES 2020 CAPITAL & OPERATING BUDGET Town commits significant funding to infrastructure upgrades & customer service enhancements
At the Tuesday, December 17 Special Council meeting, Town of Collingwood Council approved the 2020 Operating & Capital budgets. Council and Staff thank all residents and stakeholders who participated in public meetings and online engagement, providing valuable feedback through the budget review process.
Mayor Brian Saunderson commented, “With this budget, the Town strives to balance the needs of current residents and the challenges of our community’s unprecedented growth and mounting investment needs, with finding opportunities for service efficiency, business attraction, and enhancements to our waterfront and public spaces. The Town continues to commit significant funding to infrastructure upgrades and customer service enhancements. I would like to thank our staff for their hard work on this budget and for moving us forward on a fiscally responsible path.”
The 2020 operating budget is comprised of $59.7 million in operating expenses, which accounts for the costs required to provide services (such as transit, recreation, and roads), as well as staffing and administrative costs.
Total capital expenditures approved for 2020 come in at $32.8 million. Capital expenditures relate to projects and expenses where the benefits can be seen over many years, including facilities, vehicles, and parks. New infrastructure in Roads, Public Transit, and Parks and Recreation are significant capital expenditures for 2020.
For the average residential property assessment of $324,385, the municipal portion of taxes will increase 1.09% and the Capital Levy will increase 0.04% for a combined total of 1.13% or approximately $25.
Marjory Leonard, Treasurer for the Town of Collingwood, said, “Town Staff work to create a fiscally responsible budget that reflects Council’s strategic direction while keeping the tax burden to a minimum.”
OUTDOOR RINK OPEN AT CENTRAL PARK Enjoy the Outdoor Rink at Collingwood's Central Park this winter. The Outdoor Rink opened in mid-December and the schedule is available at www.collingwood.ca/skating.
Get active and enjoy a variety of drop-in programs offered at one of our ice rinks.
Visit the Central Park Arena for P.A. Day Skating (regular admission charges are $3.00 per person or $8.00 per family) or enjoy the new Adult Indoor Shinny program ($5.00 per person).
Contact a Recreation Service Advisor at 705-444-2500 Ext. 3382 or firstname.lastname@example.org to check out the available ice rental times for your club or private function.
Join us at the Outdoor Rink throughout Collingwood’s outstanding winter season!
WINTER PARKING Please take notice that Winter Parking Restrictions began on Sunday, December 1, and will be in place until March 31. Parking is prohibited on municipal streets and municipal parking lots from 1:00 AM to 7:00 AM.
We need your help as we work to keep our roadways, sidewalks, and sewers clear throughout winter. Please remember that parked vehicles are prohibited from interfering with snow removal operations (as outlined in our Parking By-law). Residents are asked to make sure that vehicles parked in driveways do not hang over sidewalks or roadways in even the smallest amount. Keeping vehicles off roadways and sidewalks is critical for our crews to complete snow clearing operations under difficult winter conditions. Vehicles obstructing winter operations may be subject to the full penalties outlined in the by-law.
Please also refrain from placing snow and ice from your property onto the roadways and sidewalks.
We thank you in advance for your cooperation.
NOTICE - EXTENDED TRAIL CLOSURE Please take notice that a section of trail in Harbourview Park, at the north end of Oak Street, will be closed from Friday, January 3 to Friday, March 20 due to bridge replacement.
Detours will be available to the bridge at the north end of the park and also to the sidewalk along First Street.
Signage, barricades, and fencing will be in place at the site.
Thank you for your patience and understanding.
REMINDER: CLEAR YOUR VENTS & GAS METERS Snow and ice buildup can lead to dangerous buildup of carbon monoxide in homes
The Collingwood Fire Department reminds all residents to clear the snow and ice from vents and natural gas meters.
“A blocked furnace or water heater exhaust vent prevents exhaust from escaping your house, and can lead to a dangerous buildup of carbon monoxide inside your home,” said Fire Chief Ross Parr. “With this recent snowfall and cold weather, we are asking all residents to check every few days to ensure their vents and natural gas meters are clear of snow and ice.”
Chief Parr also reminds residents that all homes with gas-fired appliances, fireplaces, or attached garages are now required by law to have CO detectors installed adjacent to each sleeping area. Residents should make sure that their CO detectors have fresh batteries, which should be changed twice a year along with smoke alarm batteries. Smoke alarm and CO detectors do have an expiry date, and should be replaced after 10 years.
Residents are encouraged to check the vents and natural gas meters of neighbours who may not be able to clear the snowy buildup.
WINTER OPERATIONS & SNOW REMOVAL Which Streets Get Plowed/Sanded First?
The Town is divided into 6 routes. Each route is made up of streets categorized in priority order, with priority streets cleared first. Priority roads are arterial roads or secondary collector roads that carry the highest volumes of traffic. These roads are used to access business areas, fire and police and the hospital. Other roads are primarily residential, residential rural or secondary routes. These are systematically plowed after the priority routes have been completed.
When the streets become slippery due to snowfall or simply cold, moist weather, the Town’s streets are sanded by the following priority ranking:
Highways and Arterial Roads such as Highway 26, Hurontario Street, Mountain Road
Bus Routes and other collector routes, and Town owned parking lots
Major intersections and inclines in residential areas
This ranking reflects the speed and traffic levels, and therefore the degree of risk involved in each roadway category.
Why Does The Plow Fill My Driveway? Can The Town Clear My Driveway Out?
The Town makes every attempt to minimize the amount of snow plowed into the driveways during its snow plowing operations; however it does not clear private driveways.
It is important to note that our plow operators do not intentionally block driveways. Due to the difficulty of removing large amounts of snow, many people find it easier to clear the snow before it becomes too heavy. Often this is before the storm has ended and while snowplowing operations are still underway. Please understand that until roads are completely cleared, it should be anticipated that you might have to clear your driveway several times during and after storm events.
Why Does It Seem To Take So Long To Clear My Street?
Snowfalls or snowstorms that last many hours, and windy conditions or freezing rain that turns into snow pose unique challenges. In these conditions, priority streets may be plowed more than once before other local streets.
What Do I Do If My Street Was Missed By The Plow?
Although crews are very conscientious in following route schedules, sometimes streets may be missed due to an oversight. Please contact the administration office (705-445-1351) and crews will be notified and arrangements will be made to have the street cleared as soon as possible.
When Will My Sidewalk Be Sanded/Plowed? Which Sidewalks Are A Priority?
Similar to snow maintenance on the roads, the Town is divided into 4 routes with Arterial and Collector roads completed first. Priority sidewalks include sidewalks around schools, medical facilities, community safety zones, and business areas.
Report Sod Or Boulevard Damage Caused By The Snow Plow Or Sidewalk Plow
If there is damage to your sod or boulevard during the winter months from maintenance, please call the Public Works office at 705-445-1351 to report the issue. Public works repairs damaged sod or boulevard damage in the spring and summer months.
COUNTY OF SIMCOE WASTE COLLECTION UPDATES The County of Simcoe is changing curbside waste collections to bring consistency and predictability back to pick-up schedules and support the growth of the County’s green bin program. Starting February 3, 2020, garbage and recycling collection will occur on alternating weeks, while green bin collection will continue every week.
During the week of February 3 to 7, residents will receive garbage and green bin collection only. The following week (February 10 to 14), residents will receive recycling and green bin collection only. Collections will alternate on this schedule moving forward. Collection days are not changing; however, collection times will be adjusted. Residents are reminded to have materials out to their curb by 7:00 AM on their regular collection day.
“Resolving the impacts to waste collections and restoring consistency and predictability to pick-up schedules are top priorities for County Council and our staff,” said Warden George Cornell. “We sincerely apologize for the delays that our residents have experienced for the last few months and these changes will assist our contractor with their staffing challenges by reducing the number of drivers required each day. This transition will also mitigate the need to increase our costs for alternate solutions, benefit the environment and help restore confidence that your waste materials will be collected on schedule.”
What this means starting February 3, 2020:
No change to your regular collection day. Collection times will change, so have your materials out by 7:00 AM on your collection day
Green bin collection will continue to occur every week
Garbage and recycling collection will alternate every other week (one week garbage the next week recycling)
Residents can set out two bags/containers of garbage every other week (weight and size restrictions still apply)
Recycling no longer needs to be separated into different bins. Materials will be sorted later in the process
Excess recyclables can be placed in bins, cardboard boxes or see-through plastic bags
In addition to restoring predictability to curbside waste collections, this change will help lead to longterm environmental benefits, encourage residents to positively adjust their waste habits, and control costs, since it:
Encourages use of green bins and promotes increased diversion (40 per cent of the average garbage bag consists of items that should go in the green bin)
Helps keep organic materials out of landfills and thereby extends the lifespan of landfills
Encourages reduction of single-use plastics, cans and containers
Lowers greenhouse gas emissions produced by collection vehicles by reducing the number of trucks on the road each day
Helps control contractual costs
While many Ontario municipalities have already transitioned successfully to bi-weekly collection services, the County recognizes that this is a significant change for residents. To support this change, a voucher for a FREE Blue Bin will be mailed to County residents to help store recyclables. One voucher per household can be redeemed at County Waste Management Facilities until February 28, 2020, while quantities last. Broad marketing and communication to residents will occur, including the annual waste calendar, which will be mailed to households in January. The best way to track your collection week is through the Simcoe County Collects App. You can also call 1-800-263-3199 to sign up for weekly phone reminders and alerts.
For full details about this change to curbside waste collections and why it is happening now, please visit simcoe.ca/collectionschange.
These changes do not apply to the cities of Barrie and Orillia.
County of Simcoe is composed of sixteen member municipalities and provides crucial public services to County residents in addition to providing paramedic and social services to the separated cities of Barrie and Orillia. Visit www.simcoe.ca.
TIPS TO PREVENT FROZEN WATER PIPES
If your water pipes are attached to an un-insulated outside wall or are located in a crawlspace, remove the clamp from the pipes, gently pull the pipes away from the wall and wrap with foam pipe insulation. Consider insulating your crawl space.
Insulate all exposed outside water pipes with specially-designed foam pipe covers. These are available at building supply or home improvement stores. Be sure to follow installation safety instructions.
Always ensure that there is an adequate source of heat near vulnerable pipes. Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.
Open kitchen, bathroom and laundry cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. If piping is located next to exterior walls, leave the cupboard doors under your kitchen and bathroom sinks open. Please take care to remove household cleaners and other items that could harm children or pets while the cupboard doors are open.
If you’re going away, talk to your insurance company about what you can do to protect your home from frozen pipes and leaks while you’re away. Be sure to leave the thermostat set at 15 degrees or higher, and have someone check on your home every other day.
If the temperature drops to well below freezing, consider leaving a tap open enough for a stream of water to flow so there is some movement in water pipes that might be vulnerable to freezing. NOTE – only those directed to run a tap by the Town of Collingwood will be compensated for increased water use. Customers running taps without direction from the Town will be responsible for all water volume charges.
Already Frozen? Property owners are responsible for maintaining and replacing water pipes inside their home or business, and from the home or business to the property line. The Town of Collingwood is responsible for pipes beyond the property line.
If your water service does freeze, immediately notify a licensed plumber. The plumber should be capable of thawing your service to the property line. If required, call the Town of Collingwood Water Department at 705-445-1581 or email email@example.com for more information and assistance.
Thawing Indoor Plumbing The Town of Collingwood recommends you contact a licensed plumber for assistance with internal plumbing.
If you want to try and thaw household pipes yourself, here are some safety precautions and tips to follow.
Never try to thaw a pipe with an open flame or torch as this is a fire hazard.
If using a space heater, plug the heater directly into a wall outlet. Do not use an extension cord or power strip, which could overheat and result in a fire. Do not plug any other electrical devices into the same outlet as a heater. Keep space heaters three feet away from anything that can burn. Do leave heaters unattended.
Know the location of your master water shut-off valve. While the pipe was frozen, expanding ice may have cracked or broken your pipe causing it to leak when thawed. If the pipe is leaking, you will need to shut off the water in your house until the pipe is repaired.
Always be careful of the potential for electric shock in and around standing water.
Never use a combustible fueled appliance indoors to produce heat as carbon monoxide poisoning could occur.
If you have any questions or require additional information, please contact us at 705-445-1581.
Keep the pipes warm: if the pipe has frozen already, it’s susceptible to freezing again.
Keep the area around the pipes warm by opening basement, cellar or cupboard doors, and/or by insulating the pipe, and take action to prevent freezing in future years.
Watch for leaks where the pipe froze: while the pipe was frozen, expanding ice may have cracked or broken your pipe.
TOWN SEEKS PUBLIC INPUT ON NEXT STEPS FOR THE COLLINGWOOD GRAIN TERMINALS Grain Terminals White Paper on Engage Collingwood details 3 Process Options for consideration & feedback
The Town of Collingwood is moving forward with determining the future of the Grain Terminals facility, located in Collingwood’s active harbour. In doing so, the Town seeks to support a healthy, strong, and vibrant community that recognizes the value of its history and heritage, while responsibly managing for a solid fiscal future.
Town Council is deeply interested in the Community’s input on the Grain terminals, and wishes to consider local beliefs and desires for the Terminals’ future and the future of the Collingwood Waterfront.
Council has stated that a decision on the future of the Collingwood Grain Terminals must be made in the near term to keep all end states viable for implementation.
On Engage Collingwood, the Town is currently seeking input on three process options, or a hybridization of them, that will move the Town toward a Council decision on the optimal physical end state and type(s) of use.
The three process options are as follows:
The Town can “Seek Funded Proposals for Evaluation and Decision”. This option will, via a formal Expressions of Interest process, seek development partners or buyers who can bring assets to the table that will enhance the outcomes for the Town, including for the people who live, work, and play here.
The Town can carry out “Environmental Remediation of the Marine Tower, with Steering Committee review of Additional Investigation of Unknowns and Opportunities”. This option will see the Town move forward with $2M marine tower work immediately, while also creating the Terms of Reference for and selection of a steering committee, and further consulting on the community’s and potential partners’ needs and ideas.
The Town can “Seek Business Opportunities for the East End (Sailing School) Building, Top Floor above Silos and Towers”. This option would see the Town seek about $800,000 in annual income from commercial venture(s) in the east end building, the two towers, the top floor above the silos, or even the space around the terminals. This would support needs such as the initial preservation investment, bringing utilities to the site and raising the roadway, and saving for the next renovation cycle.
While information gathering and decision-making processes are underway, the Town is committed to maintaining the minimum maintenance and operations of the Terminals to ensure the Health and Safety of staff, contractors, and the limited building users.
Council and Staff had great conversations with the public at a Tuesday, December 10 Open House event. The community is encouraged to visit Engage Collingwood to view the Collingwood Grain Terminals White Paper, learn more about the next step Process Options, and provide feedback.
TOWN OF COLLINGWOOD CELEBRATES AN INNOVATIVE & CONSCIENTIOUS 2019 In 2019, The Town of Collingwood continued to deliver quality public services, supporting a healthy, strong, and vibrant community, while preparing for future growth.
The Town of Collingwood continued to experience unprecedented growth, and took innovative steps to address growing demands, including water treatment plant expansion, roads, information technology, and business attraction. Town Council, the CAO, and Staff proactively strengthened the Town’s abilities to improve good governance, openness, accessibility, accountability, and transparency.
The Town of Collingwood leveraged core strengths like our beautiful downtown, our natural environment, and our extensive waterfront to offer an affordable four-season lifestyle to residents, businesses, and visitors.
Under the direction of a new Council in its first year of the new term, the Town finalized the major asset sales of the Collingwood Regional Airport and the remaining 50 percent share of the hydro electric utility (Collus). Council looks to invest the sale proceeds in community legacy projects that will last long into Collingwood’s future. The Town also prudently invested in and supported a Judicial Inquiry, the outcomes of which will make Collingwood and all municipalities better. The Town continued to pay down debt in a fiscally responsible manner, and carried out corporate restructuring that brought about enhancement to and focus on customer service, public engagement, climate change initiatives, accountability, and transparency. The Town also collaborated with the community on the initial phases of a Strategic Plan refresh and next steps for the future of the Collingwood Grain Terminals.
Clerk Services completed Municipal School Board election requirements, reviewed the governance structure and procedural by-law, hired an Accountability Officer, introduced the Lobbyist Registry program, and launched the new international award winning municipal website and the Engage Collingwood platform.
Parks, Recreation, and Culture encouraged healthy and active lifestyles through successful management of premium trails and parks, our world-class waterfront, diverse well-being programming, and inspiring arts and culture events. The community was encouraged to be actively engaged in project planning for major enhancements at Sunset Point Park and Harbourview Park. The Collingwood Museum continued to showcase our shipbuilding legacy and celebrate the region’s Indigenous Peoples. Collingwood captured the attention of the region and beyond with many family-friendly events like the Sidelaunch Days Harbour Festival, the Shipyards Social which celebrated Collingwood’s living history, the Collingwood Art Crawl which featured 74 artists and 57 musical acts at 41 venues, and the Niibi Gatherings, a water-themed discussion and ceremony series at the Awen’ Gathering Place.
Collingwood Public Library launched new programs, new services, and a new look. The first floor now features a comfortable seating area with newspapers and magazines, and the second floor features a new teen zone with revitalized teen programming. The Library added talking-picture Wonderbooks with new selections every two months, the all-ages ComicCon, Feltro outreach programming, the Touch-A-Truck learning opportunity, and expanded programs for seniors like a genealogy club, speakers on a variety of health-related topics, author events, a knitter’s club, yoga-in-a-chair, and pole-walking.
Collingwood Fire Services provided protection from fire, life threatening emergencies, and dangerous conditions through education, prevention, rescue, suppression, and basic life support services. In 2019, Collingwood Fire Services promoted equality, diversity, and career planning with a boot camp experience for local female high school students to encourage a career in community fire services. The Collingwood Fire Department added new firefighter training materials, a portable Blow Hard Fan that clears smoke and cools structures, and a search and rescue drone that will be used to monitor hazardous scenes.
Public Works continued to proactively manage and invest in roads and infrastructure, winter maintenance, and water and sewer services in the community. In 2019, Public Works installed the Hamilton Drain Trail Crossover, sidewalks on Second Street, and paving on Heritage Drive, Ferguson Street, Park Street, Cameron Street, and Oak Street. Public Works reconstructed Napier Street including the replacement of sanitary and storm sewers, completed construction of the Transit Terminal and washroom facility on Pine Street, and purchased a new Red Cross accessible paratransit bus. Water Services repaired water mains and valves, resolved frozen services, created hydrant classification, continued the Water Transmitter project, provided hydro overbilling rebates, and began the process for expansion at the Water Treatment Plant. Wastewater Services began expansion at the Black Ash Creek and Tenth Line Sewage Pumping Stations, completed the Minnesota Sewage Pumping Station, and replaced the generator and refurbished brickwork at the Waste Water Treatment Facility.
Planning and Building Services managed unprecedented growth, while maintaining and celebrating Collingwood’s heritage. The Planning and Building Services Department now has an e-Permit Service that allows you to submit your building permit application online, and initiated first steps towards a new Official Plan that will act as a foundation for development and growth in Collingwood into the future. Permit and inspection activity in Collingwood reached record highs in 2019, while industrial and commercial permit activity showed strength as well. By-law Enforcement continued to promote a safe and livable community, supported good neighbour interactions, and prevented behaviours that undermine the quality of life in our community.
The Business Development Centre introduced a digital customer service portal, supported the Career Youth Expo, created opportunities with the ExCite Competition, the Summer Company program, and Attainable Transportation Workforce regional bus services, and hosted economy-boosting events like Collingwood Whiskylicious and Collingwood’s first Tech 5X5. The Mayor’s Advisory Team on Economic Development was formed and initiated first steps towards building a new Economic Development Action Plan that will attract and support business and diversify the tax base.
The Town of Collingwood continued to be a highly desirable municipality that is an amazing place to live, and work, and play. The Town Collingwood was recognized for its energy, creativity, and natural beauty by being ranked Ontario #1 entrepreneurship community in Canada by the Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses in 2019, recognized as a top 25 town to live in by Maclean’s Magazine, and ranked top outdoor region in Eastern Canada by Get Out There Magazine.
The Town of Collingwood looks forward to continuing with meaningful two-way communication with residents in 2020, while offering an accessible community experience that will empower all to participate in discussions, engage in activities, obtain information, provide feedback and opinion, as well as physically access facilities, events, and services. Decisions made by Council will continue to consider local beliefs and desires for the future of the Town’s finances, infrastructure, environment, and community services.