A grassroots movement has been formed in response to the Province’s Review of Regional Governments across Ontario — We Love Burlington Stop Amalgamation.
According to its Facebook page – We Love Burlington Stop Amalgamation – this group of concerned residents is “fighting for Burlington and telling the Provincial Government to STOP any Amalgamation” of the municipalities that make up our Region into a single-tier City of Halton. A similar group was first formed in Oakville and this is the Burlington chapter.
Here is an excerpt from their Facebook bio page:
“On January 15, 2019, the Province announced a Regional Government Review of 8 regional municipalities (including Halton), Simcoe County and their lower-tier municipalities to ensure they are working effectively and efficiently, and to assess whether the two-tier structures should continue or whether amalgamations are recommended.
A potential outcome is the amalgamation of Oakville, Burlington, Milton and Halton Hills into the City of Halton.
On February 13, Halton Regional Chair Gary Carr sent a letter to Premier Ford and Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark, signed by all four Halton Mayors declaring “A change to the structure in Halton by the Province would be disruptive and wasteful given the Province would be trying to fix something that is not broken.”
On February 25, Burlington City Council unanimously passed a resolution endorsing the current two-tier municipal government model in Halton and stating that Burlington residents value the distinct identity of their community and do not wish have their voices diluted within a larger and less directly accountable municipal governance structure. The other three Halton mayors passed similar resolutions.
Many believe that the review process is also seriously flawed. There is a lack of transparency with respect to the Province’s mandate and intentions; the study involves two individuals looking at 82 municipalities with vastly different circumstances, issues and challenges, in a period of only six months, which does not allow for a fulsome and detailed inquiry, assessment and analysis; and there is a lack of meaningful public consultation. A survey the Province has prepared does not go nearly far enough to inform the public and gather their feedback.
Our friends and neighbours in Oakville have begun a grassroots campaign called We Love Oakville – STOP Amalgamation. They have a website: www.weloveoakville.org with detailed information on this matter. They have a Facebook page We Love Oakville – STOP Amalgamation. Here in Burlington, we support Oakville’s efforts and have met with their citizen group and have started our own Burlington chapter: We Love Burlington – STOP Amalgamation. We will continue to work with Oakville’s group to support our mutual cause and we urge Burlington residents to get involved, write to our MPPs Jane McKenna and Effie Triantafilopoulos and Premier Ford, look at the Oakville group’s website, and spread the word.
Please share our Burlington page and we hope to have our own We Love Burlington – STOP Amalgamation lawn signs soon. Stay tuned for more details!”
I support the efforts of this grassroots movement. We don’t know where this Regional Government Review will go, but it’s important we are all proactive in telling the Province where we stand.
- Halton Regional Council unanimously passes resolution on Regional Government Review
- Resolution to protect Burlington’s identity and two-tiered municipal government system in Halton passes unanimously at City Council
- Statement from the Mayor on invitation for public consultations for Regional Government Review