MOCKTAIL Competition May 12th at Milton Mall

A number of my councillor collegues have entered into a MOCKTAIL Competition on Saturday May 12th, 2012 at the Milton Mall.

Yours truly along with Mayor Gord Krantz, Councillors Zeeshan Hamid, Rick Di Lorenzo, Greg Nelson, Colin Best and Cindy Lunau will be providing our best mocktails for your sampling pleasure and you end up voting for the best ones (HINT Cluett Cool-Aid) with proceeds going to the Salvation Army as part of a nationwide food bank promotion.  The way it works is simple.

You sample the Mocktails from our group (HINT Cluett Cool-Aid) and place a donation for the corresponding mix. (HINT Cluett Cool-Aid)  Then you mock the rest of the group and CHEER for Cluett Cool-Aid!  Well, dont mock them as its not their fault.

I’m kidding.  It will be a blast and hopefully we can raise some money for the Salvation Army and our local food bank in Milton.

NOW, Im sure you’re going to ask this.  What if I cant make it?  THAT’S EASY!!  You can make a donation at anytime before hand, just send me an email and I will come pick it up from you.  Its that simple.

Each vote costs $2.00 but you can donate as much as you want either that day or before hand.  The more the better as I want to make sure the rest of my friends around the council table know that Cluett Cool-Aid is the ONLY way to go.

Celebrating Stories Oct 23 2011

Ward 3 Councillor Cindy Lunau wanted to make sure she passed this information on to as many people in Milton.  Please join us at the Milton Centre for the Arts on Sunday Oct 23rd from 12-4pm  for a Celebrating Stories event.

Celebrating Stories A Family Festival (formerly known as Milton’s Book Festival for Children) is a free family literacy event dedicated to promoting Canadian talent and encouraging reading and writing.  It is a fun filled afternoon of musical entertainment and interactive sessions with authors, illustrators, and storytellers.

Some of the talent includes:

  • Joe Ellen Bogart
  • Ruth Ohi
  • Lana Button
  • Mahtab Narsimhan
  • Kevin Sylvester
  • Helaine Becker
  • Jude Johnson

This event is completly free of charge and for a schedule of times and room click http://www.celebratingstories.ca/schedule.htm

We hope to see you there!!

Council Meeting May 30 2011

The next meeting of Milton Town Coucil is on Monday May 30th starting at 7pm at Milton Town Hall.

The governing body of the Town of Milton is Town Council, consisting of the Mayor and 10 Councillors who represent Milton’s eight wards.  Milton residents elect members of Council for a four-year term of office.  You can find a link to watch the Town Council meetings here.  The meetings are also broadcast on TV Cogeco (Channel 14).

Town Council deals with:

  • Matters requiring policy direction
  • By-laws or by-law amendments
  • Responses or actions to pertinent issues

Council also makes decisions on the recommendations of Milton’s two Standing Committees of Council:

  • Administration & Planning Committee
  • Community Services Committee

You can find a link to the agenda for this meeting here.

Some of the items for discussion tonight are:

You can register to be a delegate at the meeting if you have any questions or concerns regarding these or any other item on the Town Council agenda.  Email townclerk@milton.ca for more information.

I look forward to seeing you there.  If you cant, please watch online via www.milton.ca

Will The Race Go On?

Here is an article from Christina Commisso from the Milton Canadian Champion about last Monday nights Community Services Standing Committee Meeting.

Farmer fears race will hurt business

Plans for Milton to host the premier race during June’s Canadian Road Cycling Championships are in jeopardy, following opposition from a local strawberry farm.Saturday, June 25 is the date elite riders are to take to Milton streets for grueling 157 and 180-km races that could very well determine which Canadians will be heading to the 2012 Summer Games. Among these cyclists will be Canada’s golden girl Clara Hughes, a two-sport Olympic medalist.

June 25 is also one of the busiest days for business for Springridge Farm on Bell School Line.

With road closures planned for throughout the day and a route that runs on Bell School Line — Springridge’s home for more than 50 years — owner John Hughes is worried the race will have serious implications on his business.

During Monday’s community services meeting, Hughes asked the committee to say no to the race.  “This is not a charity race, but an elite race with talk of the Olympics down the road for some. For Springridge, the strawberry season is our Olympic season.”

Hughes said the hundreds of bikes that will hit Milton streets combined with the 1,000 to 1,800 cars and anywhere between 3,000 and 5,000 strawberry pickers expected to make their way to the family-owned farm don’t make for a good mix.

“The liability exposure for all concerned is huge,” said Hughes, pointing to the poor visibility issues and crumbling infrastructure on Bell School Line.

Race Director Craig Fagan of Midweek Cycling said scrapping the Milton event all together will be “disastrously difficult.” 

“This is by far the most prestigious event. It is what determines who is going to be selected to represent Canada at the Olympics.”   He said Appleby Line is the circuit’s “key climb.”

“That’s what really sets the national champion apart. The women will be climbing that hill eight times and it really determines who’s the strongest.”

He added that riders from as far as Quebec have been spending their weekends in Milton to train for the race. The event is considered a primer for the Canadian Olympic qualifier.

Currently, the women’s race (nine circuits) is set for 10 a.m. to noon and the men’s race (14 circuits) from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The route begins at Rattlesnake Point, travels northbound on Appleby Line, east on No. 14 Side Road, south on Bell School Line, and west on Britannia Road.

Fagan said about 5,000 racers and spectators will descend on Milton to watch the race. With major artillery roads being closed to traffic on and off throughout the day, the committee said traffic snarls are certain. 

During the meeting, Councillor Colin Best suggested the race times be changed — the women’s 2.5-hour race in the early morning and the men’s 4.5-hour race in the evening.  “I have no problem with riders starting at 7 a.m. or earlier if that’s what we need to do to get things done,” said Fagan.

However, he added that four hours of prep time would be needed prior to each race, which could cause noise concerns for neighbours.

Insp. Ivan L’Ortye of Halton police, who’s coordinating police during the paid-duty event, said traffic will be moving in the same direction of the race with left turns on the circuit prohibited.

“The underlying theme is we don’t want to mix cyclists and cars. We want this to be well-choreographed,” he said. “Obviously I think there will be significant delays, but we don’t feel it’s safe to have northbound traffic on the course.”

Mayor Gord Krantz asked Fagan about possibly compensating Springridge for the potential loss of business due to the race.

However, Fagan pointed out that with events of this scale, in many cases municipalities pay for the event to come to town.

“These events tend to turn around and deliver. In Halton, that will be one-point-something million dollars coming back to the community, which we don’t get a piece of. We haven’t asked the municipality for any financial aid.”

The committee delayed voting on the cycling championships until Town staff work with organizers and Springridge to determine if a new time for the race is possible. The report will have to go council for approval before the June 25 race is permitted. 

So with the committee’s decision to delay the vote, it will provide the parties involved with the opportunity to come to a compromise with the start time to accommodate Springridge Farms regular business hours.  As John Hughes stated, that day is the farms busiest day in revenue terms and it would have a severe hit on their business.

I hope that they can come to a resolution, but still there is no doubt the traffic issues will be intense.  Other concerns brought up at the meeting by Councillor Lunau was the condition of the road.  Bell School Line hasn’t undergone a major repair since the last race in 2007.  The race organizer assured council that these are “semi-pro’s” and they know how to handle themselves on rougher terrain.  With cyclists flying down the road at speeds of “80-90 km/hr” the risk is still there for a disaster to happen.

Another issue that came up was the fact local residents were not informed of the race route during the planning stages of the event.  One area resident spoke up during the meeting letting their concerns be known and as far as I know, they plan on speaking again when the report comes before committee.

How should these “world class” races be planned in the future?  Should their routes be approved by the local municipality before they are advertised around the world?  As Mr Fagan said, people from all over will “descend” upon Milton to practice for the race, which will bring in revenue for the town.  Whether this race goes through or not, I would make a suggestion to the race organizers to pay closer attention to the local residents and possibly submit their race plans/routes BEFORE they begin their advertising campaigns.  This way it wont look like the municipality is backed into a corner to approve a race mere weeks before it begins.

I will await the updated report on negotiations and council will make its decision at that point.

To Race or Not To Race

That was the question last night at the Community Services Standing Committee meeting.

This item was the “barn burner” issue of the night as the committee discussed the upcoming Canadian Cycling Road Championship on June 25th, 2011.  The staff report along with the map of the route can be found here.  Area residents, including the owners of Springridge Farms had concerns of safety issues and lost revenue as the 25th of June is THE biggest day for the popular farm in town.

After lengthy discussions with the parties involved and the race organizers they will head back to table to find a solution that will meet everyones needs.  Councillor Huffman suggested that the starting times of each of the two races be spread further apart and begin earlier/later in order to accomodate Springridge Farms hours of operations and hopefully also address concerns raised for safety of the cyclists.

Councillor Lunau took some pictures of Bell School Line which showed some pretty heavy erosion of the road, with some patches here and there which causes a lot of concern seeing how these riders will be going anywhere from 80KM/HR to 90KM/HR (speed limit is 60…should we give them tickets?)  The organizers feel that given the experience level of the cyclists and the semi professional status, they will be able to handle it.  Time will have to see.

Committee deferred the report until we get an update which will hopefully come this week, and we can get this matter resolved to everyones satisfaction.  This is the biggest sales day for the Springridge Farms and it would be a shame to see their sales drop (as well as the frustration of their customers not being able to get in) and of couse, the safety of the cyclists involved.