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Mayor’s Mailbag – May 2023 Roundup – Beachway Free Parking Pass; Twin-City Agreements; & ‘TellCityHall’ Automated Calls

Mayor Marianne Meed Ward Mailbag

Welcome to the Mayor’s Mailbag – May 2023 roundup.

The Mayor’s Monday Mailbag is a weekly initiative Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed Ward and the Mayor’s Office has launched to share answers to questions from the public we’ve received through our main email inbox at or the Mayor’s social media platforms.

At the end of the month, we publish a roundup of those most pressing questions we’ve received in the weeks prior.

Mayor’s Mailbag – May 2023 Roundup

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“How do I get my Halton free parking passes for Burlington Beach if I don’t have a cellphone/smartphone?”


Burlington’s Beachway Park is a regional waterfront park. If you are a Halton Region resident, you are allowed up to 10 free days of parking in the Beachway Park parking lots from May to September each year. During those months, there is paid parking in effect on weekends (Saturdays and Sundays) from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. The rate is $2.50 per hour or a flat daily rate of $20.

It is recommended for Halton residents looking to take advantage of the 10 free parking pass program to fill out the online parking exemption form once they’ve arrived at the beach and parked in a legal parking spot. The exemption doesn’t guarantee a spot, but it does give residents free parking for the day.

Don’t Have a Smartphone?

Not to worry if you don’t have a smartphone! You’re also able to fill out the exemption form online before you leave the house to go to the beach, then you can go find a parking spot, and you’re set. If you don’t have access to a computer at home, you can access a public computer at your local Burlington Public Library branch. Simply ask staff when you arrive if they can assist you and remember the City webpage you need to visit is:

For more information about parking at Beachway Park, visit

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“Burlington has twin-city agreements with international cities — what are those?”


The City of Burlington has two twin-city agreements — one with Itabashi, Japan and one with Apeldoorn, The Netherlands:

  • On May 12, 1989, Mayor Roly Bird signed a twinning agreement with Mayor Keizo Kurihara of Itabashi, Japan; and
  • On May 6, 2005, Mayor Rob MacIsaac signed a twinning agreement with Mayor Godefridus Jan “Fred” de Graaf of Apeldoorn, the Netherlands.

This Saturday (May 13), the City of Burlington will be holding two free twin-city events at the Burlington Performing Arts Centre in recognition of Canada-Netherlands Friendship Day and the Sakura Festival. Please click/tap the link for more details on those events.

Apeldoorn, The Netherlands

Our nation’s special relationship with The Netherlands extends back to the liberation of The Netherlands by Canadian forces during the Second World War. We are grateful for the service of our local veterans — including those who are with us and those we have lost.

Since the end of WWII, our connection has grown into so much more over more than 7 decades. The City of Burlington and Apeldoorn, The Netherlands communities are tied together in an important twin-city mundialization relationship that officially began in 2005.

Itabashi, Japan

The Sakura trees at Spencer Smith Park were generously donated by Kan Naka-Zawa, a resident of Itabashi, Japan who considers Burlington his second home, and are a treasured tradition for our community to enjoy as we welcome spring and the season of renewal.

The cities of Burlington, Ontario and Itabashi, Japan are tied together in an important twin-city mundialization relationship that officially began more than 30 years ago, in 1989.

Our annual celebration of the gift of these Sakura trees and our ability to enjoy them year after year is a reminder of our ongoing connection and our shared appreciation for nature, our planet, and each other.

On-going International Friendships

Members of the cities of Burlington and Apeldoorn, and Burlington and Itabashi have visited one another over the years, we have stayed in touch throughout changing leaders and world events like the pandemic, and we fully embrace what mundialization is all about: the belief that learning about people of different nations, races, cultures and governments encourages connections that foster world peace and global understanding.

World events that are going on right now are a great reminder of how important it is to build strong relationships that create connections with each other all over the world. Events like the ones on May 13 help us all focus on what binds us together and what we have in common.

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“I received an automated call from ‘TellCityHall’ — are these coming from Burlington City Hall?”


If you’ve received an automated phone call recently where the call display read “TellCityHall,” it didn’t come from Burlington City Hall.

We received feedback from the public regarding these calls initially in 2019 and it appears they have been recently popping up again.

TellCityHall is a market research company based out of Edmonton, Alta., that does surveys for the private and public sector. In 2019, the company was conducting a few surveys with the public, including ones on the carbon tax and cannabis.

“Random digit dialing” is done for their surveys. Its website also mentions they serve governments and non-profits. There is no affiliation with the City of Burlington.

We thank the members of our community who have reached out to alert us of these calls.

It is important the public is always informed, particularly when it comes to digital/phone surveys.  If you have or someone you know has received a similar call from TellCityHall, please note it is not from your elected officials or staff here at the City of Burlington.

You can also help spread the word to others so that they’re aware, as well.

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