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Staff Report on Burlington’s 25-Year Strategic Plan Heads to Committee of the Whole on May 13

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On Monday’s (May 13) meeting of the Committee of the Whole, a 25-year strategic work plan and four-year term work plan will be presented — here are my thoughts. To view the complete plan, please click the link: 2019-2022 Plan-CM-06-19 Appendix B.

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There are many new faces around the table at City Council and I’m excited and proud of what we are committing to accomplish for the people of Burlington over the coming four years.

The City’s long-term 25-year strategic plan reflects many of the priorities we identified in our respective campaign platforms. The plan will continue to evolve as our city changes, and our new council responds with new ideas. We are also committed to taking action in our four-year term to begin to implement the plan, where it aligns with our collective vision for Burlington.

That is why we have created a four-year work plan: to focus on what actions we can take in this term of council to deliver on the commitments we made during our respective election campaigns, many of which are captured in the strategic plan. The good news is that there is already a high degree of alignment among our individual campaign platforms, and with the elements in the 25-year Strategic Plan. This will allow us to hit the ground running with actions that benefit our residents.

The citizens of our community voted for change in the last election. They told us on the campaign trail, and through their votes, that they wanted to see limits to over-development and intensification, better traffic management, protection of our green spaces, and more respect and civility at City Hall.

In the short time we’ve been privileged to serve you, we have implemented an Interim Control Bylaw to pause development in our downtown core and around the Burlington Go Station to better evaluate the long-term vision we have for growth in this area and ensure it represents the wants and needs of our community. We launched the Roseland Private Tree Bylaw to help protect and preserve the tree canopy in one of the oldest parts of our city. We passed motions at City Council to make it clear to the Provincial Government that we would not support development in our Greenbelt, and that we are opposed to amalgamation with neighbouring municipalities. We debated the hot topic of allowing retail cannabis stores to operate in our city and voted how our constituents asked us to, with respectful debate as we reached a final decision together.

We launched the Red Tape Red Carpet Task Force to bring together business owners across all industries to identify obstacles to relocation and growth here in Burlington, and work together to remove them. We worked together to pass a new budget that provided the lowest tax increase for our residents in 8 years while still adding new services that add value to our city.

Most importantly, we have prioritized connecting with our constituents and making sure everyone feels that their voice matters. We attend community fundraisers, local sporting events, flag-raisings and proclamations, new business openings and school tours, and meet 1-on-1 with constituents every day to help engage people from every corner of our city.

Our vision for the next four years is to continue on this very path. We will focus on key priorities like the environment and climate change, transit, and the health and well-being of our residents and businesses. We’ll deliver the customer service levels you deserve and ensure every voice in our community is heard and valued. We’ll do it all while operating with integrity, transparency and respect in everything we do.

Burlington is an amazing city, and we look forward to supporting its ongoing success and evolution… together.

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Email:  mayor@burlington.ca

Constituent Assistant: Georgie Gartside
georgie.gartside@burlington.ca
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