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Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Comments to Council and Letter to the Editor

During the most recent Springwater Township budget deliberations I was struck by and thoroughly disappointed by the actions of Deputy Mayor Cabral and Councillors Moore, Fisher and Alexander who, in a recorded vote, did not support staff recommendations to hire a Community Engagement/Communications Officer for the 2023. Those councillors voting against it said that this position should wait until 2024 even though CAO Schmidt and Staff clearly articulated the need and justification for the position for 2023. In my opinion, not making this hire will limit community engagement and public relations activities, due to present Staff resource limitations. Surely they must recognize that our Municipality is growing at a fast pace. Residents, new and old, require information and support as they grow community activities. How can any Councillor not recognize this? COVID has taken its toll on community events such as the weekly Elmvale Farmers Market, The Fall Fair and the Maple Syrup Festival as well as all other smaller very important community events. Surely these are, at a minimum, Township events, and need staff support which in its present form is very sparse.

I was also incensed at the motion presented by Deputy Mayor Cabral and passed by Council to create a special discretionary operating budget of $7,500 for each of the 7 councillors ($52,500 a year for four years or $210,000 for this term of Council from taxpayer dollars). These funds are for “them” to choose how to spend in their wards for “special purchases, services, events and other worthwhile causes”. This is in addition to the $1,000 each year for each councillor and $3,000 for the Mayor, which already exists for discretionary spending by them. In my opinion, this is a case of councillors getting involved in operations and not leaving this to staff who are employed to deal with operations based on an annual budget approved by Council. It was stated by councillors that it is too time consuming to come to Council for small items needed in each ward. That is what annual budget reviews are supposed to accomplish. Know your ward well enough to know what is needed for the next year and present the case at budget time for review and decision of the item(s) you want considered. Some councillors did not do this for this budget, in my opinion. I think this motion is a flagrant abuse of taxpayer dollars and is NOT being fiscally prudent as all of you claim to be. I feel it is also encroaching on operations when you are supposed to act like a board of directors.

I think that the other clear and present danger here is that the position of Mayor and Deputy Mayor, who represent “all” of the Wards, could improve their chances of reelection simply by piling this money onto certain wards leading up to the next election date. I presume that this is not something that they would ever do but the optics here are poor at best. I would like so see both of these items to be reconsidered in the next budget meeting on February 1.

written and submitted Rick Webster

 

Dear Editor,

I am writing to you to ask for your help in raising awareness for multiple myeloma, an incurable cancer also known as myeloma. Please help me get the month of March 2023 proclaimed as “Multiple Myeloma Awareness Month”.

In 2022, a record number of nine Canadian provinces and territories recognized March as Multiple Myeloma Awareness Month, and municipalities across the country similarly recognized the last Thursday in March as Multiple Myeloma Awareness Day. This year, we are aiming to achieve nationwide recognition for Multiple Myeloma Awareness Month and, we cannot do without your involvement.

I am living with multiple myeloma. On average, 11 Canadians are diagnosed with myeloma every single day, and this number has been steadily rising for over 15 years. According to a recent Statistics Canada report, the incidence of myeloma is now increasing at higher rate than any other type of cancer for males, and at the second highest rate for females.

There are some risk factors related to cancer, and myeloma is no exception. Obesity and chemical exposure are important risk factors that contribute to the increasing number of cancer cases in the country. We need to make sure more Canadians are aware of this devastating disease, so that the increasing number of new myeloma cases can be more easily detected, treated earlier, and that people living with myeloma can live longer and better lives.

In recent years, tremendous advancements have been made in research. Despite the promise offered by innovative new therapies, the stark reality of living with myeloma remains: no matter how effective any treatment is— I will eventually relapse and need a new one. When I relapse, I need to know a new treatment will be available for me and that I will have affordable access to it.

By participating in our advocacy campaign and helping us make March the Multiple Myeloma Awareness Month, we can raise awareness for this disease that has taken the lives of too many Canadians.

Help us make March 2023 Multiple Myeloma Awareness Month in all provinces and territories and give people living with myeloma hope for a brighter future. Visit myeloma.ca to learn more

Sincerely, Martha Middleton

 

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