8.10: Downtown Windsor Enhancement Strategy Yes 7-0 Consent
11.1: Fire protection and prevention act regulations proposed Yes 7-0 Regular
11.2: Wyandotte Town Centre World Marketplace – to move forward Yes 4-7 Regular
11.2: Wyandotte Town Centre World Marketplace – to refer back to administration Yes 7-0 Regular
11.3: Enhanced Capital Budget approval with addition of alley lighting language Yes 5-4 Regular
12.2: Special Meeting of ETPS Standing Committee Yes 7-0 Deferral



8.12 – Sandpoint Beach Chainlink Fence Yes 8-0 Regular
8:20 – Lublin/Icewater storm oversizing Yes 8-0 Regular
8.36 – Tecumseh Road & Forest Glade Drive Intersection Yes 6-2 Regular
11.2 – Banwell Road Development rezoning Yes 7-1 Delegation
8.18 – Hiram Walker sign amendment Yes 8-0 Delegation
8.6 – Seniors Advisory Committee Yes 8-0 Delegation
8.15 – Franklin OPA Amendment Yes 7-1 Delegation
8-13 – 1052 Drouillard zoning amendment No 3-5 Delegation
8.4 – WECHC Smoke Free Policy Yes 8-0 Delegation
11.1 – Cabana Road expropriation Yes 8-0 Regular
15.1 Chilver Crosswalk – Referral No 5-4 Notice of Motion
15.2 – Exemption from parking meter fees for 188 Ferry Street Yes 8-0 Notice of Motion


Item 8.2 – Sandpoint Beach Chainlink Fence: The City erected a large industrial chain-link fence in the water at Sandpoint Beach in response to an audit conducted by the Life Saving Society which recommended restricting access to the western portion of the beach and water due to the steep drop-off and dangerous currents.

The Capital Budget does have a project on the books to making improvements at Sandpoint Beach – including a possible “eastern shift” of the beach in order to permanently address the danger on the western portion. To date – no funding has been set aside for this project.

It has been 37 years since the last major investment in Sandpoint Beach.

Hence, I put forward a motion which was passed unanimously directing administration to bring a report back to the 2019 budget deliberations outlining opportunities for a phased approach for a long term solution at Sandponit Beach – one that would eliminate the need for a chain-link fence – including the estimated cost for any preliminary studies that would be required.


Item 8.20 – Lublin/Icewater Storm Sewer Oversizing: The City is partnering with the developers of the new streets between Little River Boulevard and Wyandotte Street in order to install over-sized storm sewer overflows in order to improve flood resiliency for the surrounding neighbourhood. This is in part a response to the flooding event of 2016 – making sure new development in East Riverside has the infrastructure necessary to protect homes in new and existing neighbourhoods.


Item 8.36 – Intersection Tecumseh Road East at Forest Glade Drive: I heard from residents that there appeared to be an increase in collisions at this intersection. Hence, I asked administration to prepare a report.

That report found that the collision rate is significantly higher than the City average – 68 collisions at the intersection and 43 total collisions at the mid-block approach – for a total of 111 collisions over a five year period. That collision rate is double the city average.

The report also states that the number of collisions have doubled at the intersection since 2014

In short – it appears that the current road infrastructure has not kept pace with new development that has taken place in the vicinity of that intersection from 2015 onwards.

There is a solution on the books in the form of the Environmental Assessment (EA) for Tecumseh Road East, which was completed in 1996 – 22 years ago. The EA provides a blue print for the infrastructure investments that are planned for this stretch of road.

I put forward the following MOTION which passed: That the completion of the Tecumseh Road East approved design in the vicinity of Forest Glade be referred to the 2019 capital budget process, with the aim of accelerating this work as a Council Priority Project.


Item 11.2 – Banwell Road Development: This is the largest development in Windsor – in terms of the scale of mixed residential and commercial development. It is transformative for East Riverside.

It brings tremendous potential in terms of improving the quality of life of existing neighbourhoods and in terms of investments for the City. Residents want to be able to take a walk around Blue Heron Lake and then take a walk to a coffee shop or a bistro or a boutique. They want a neighbourhood doctor’s office or chiropractor.

However, there are significant concerns – namely centering around flooding & traffic.

The City Engineer and the Planning Department have reassured us that construction permits will not be provided until they are satisfied that this development will not negatively impact existing neighbourhoods. At the next stage of this process – the developers will have to provide independent third-party engineering studies that speak to storm & sanitary capacity as well as a traffic impact.

At the same time, our City Engineer has stated that Administration will be pursuing a redesign and reconstruction of the Banwell and McNorton intersection – which has been a source of concern for residents for years. These improvements are welcome.

The developers themselves have demonstrated a genuine desire to work with administration and – most importantly – to listen to existing residents.

When residents stated – loud and clear – that they did not want a car was and gas bar on that corner, the developers removed those two items from their plans immediately.

The developers also organized an Open House – even though it was not a requirement of this process – because they wanted to share their vision and also to listen to resident concerns.

When administration put forward its recommendations – the developers made the necessary changes.

The one issue that eluded consensus – was the question of a mid-block access. When speaking to residents, the two key major issues raised were flooding and traffic – specifically traffic on McNorton and Leathorne, as well as traffic at the intersection of Banwell Road and McNorton.

The mid-block access on Banwell is seen as a pressure valve that would relieve some of the traffic on those two residential streets and on the intersection.

For that reason – I support the recommendations in the report which include, among them:

  • A denial of rezoning for a car wash and gas bar
  • Permission for rezoning to permit commercial and residential as per the report
  • Permission for an Official Plan Amendment that would permit a mid-block access on Banwell Road

Move the administration recommendation with one alteration that is to proceed with an OPA that would allow a right-in & right-out midblock access on Banwell Road, requiring a traffic study and options for enhanced pedestrian safeguards to be submitted by the developer at site plan control.

As well, that administration refer the intersection improvements at Banwell Road and McNorton noted by the City Engineer in the report to the 2019 budget deliberations.


City Council passed a pragmatic Capital Budget in 2018 that totals $644 million over six years.

Two-thirds of that – or $420.5M -  is dedicated to roads, transportation infrastructure and sewers.

I say pragmatic, because the Capital Budget made significant investments in priority areas like roads, sewers and transportation – while also creating new investments in other areas, for example, among the highlights:

  • $12M allocated to the Social Housing Reserve Fund – which is used among other things for capital repairs to some of the 7,900 housing units across Windsor-Essex.
  • $250,000 for the Windsor International Film Festival (WIFF)
  • Support for Downtown Farmers Market with $75,000 for an electrical box installation
  • $6.02 M for the Riverside Drive Vista Improvements Project
  • $1.1 million for alley improvements

An additional $22.8 M was allocated for the Enhanced Capital Budget for priority projects identified by the Mayor and individual City Councillors.



  1. We got the ball rolling on improvements to the intersection of Banwell Road and EC Row with a $3 million investment   – mostly design and land acquisition.  This is a good step forward on what is a massive capital works project that will require us to piece the funding together over time.
  1. Banwell Road – from Tecumseh Road to Mulberry – will finally receive street lights.  At a cost of $70,000 – this project demonstrates that oftentimes projects with the lowest costs can make the biggest impact.  Once lit up, this major arterial will be that much safer for the 19,900 cars and their passengers that traverse this road each and every day.
  1. The following ten (10) roads in Forest Glade will see rehabilitation in 2018:
  • Halpin
  • Lonsdale
  • Halstead
  • Palms
  • Dolphin
  • Alten
  • Ashland
  • Beachdale
  • Regis
  • Ryerson

These ten (10) road rehab projects are in addition to the seven (7) streets in Forest Glade that were repaired in 2017.

  1. We added one more street for rehabilitation in Forest Glade – Briarbank – which is a long street at a cost of $340,000, as it was already in the now deficient category.
  1. The intersection at Forest Glade Drive and Tecumseh Road East has $1 million earmarked for re-design and engineering.  A report is forthcoming that will highlight the increase in traffic accidents at his intersection – and the need for improvements.
  1. The following streets will see sidewalk rehabilitation in 2018:
  • Deerbrook
  • Forest Glade Drive
  • Rosebriar
  1. The intersection at Lauzon Road and McHugh will see improvements at a cost of $370,000 – an important intersection just outside the ward boundaries that are used extensively by Ward 7 residents

8. A total of $2.65M is set aside for the extension of Wyandotte Street to Jarvis

9. Lauzon Parkway is a busy regional arterial that will receive median improvements at a cost of $500,000 and also concrete panel repairs in 2018

10. The roundabout at Banwell and Mulberry received $200,000 for the design and engineering work

11. The Little River Bridge on Riverside Drive will share $2.5 M for rehabilitation with several other bridges across the City


       12. The Storm and Sanitary Master Plan will be accelerated and should be brought before City Council in the first half of 2018 – this will be the blue print for additional investments in the City’s storm and sanitary network as we move to build resiliency in the face of larger and more frequent and unpredictable storms

13. Three studies are funded to analyze pumping station capacity at Pontiac Pumping Station, East Marsh Pumping Station and St. Paul Pumping Station – all with impacts on Ward 7

14. Pontiac Pumping Station – at Little River Pollution Control Plant – will see a $2M upgrade

15. Little River Pollution Control Plant will see $10.39 M in upgrades over the next six years – a significant investment

16. $2.5M is dedicated to critical improvements to the Little River steel retaining walls

17. Blue Heron Lake will see dredging at a cost of $400,000

18. $500,000 for shared Reserve for Basement Flood Mitigation – these are for improvements that will be identified in the upcoming Storm Sewer Master Plan


        19. Elizabeth Kishkon Park – corner of Banwell & Little River Road – will see the installation of a new washroom near the popular new playground that was installed in 2016, and will also serve residents using nearby Little River Corridor Park and the trails around Blue Heron Lake, as well as Morningstar Park, Cora Greenwood Park and Little River Boulevard Park

20. Forest Glade Optimist Park will receive a splash pad with $500,000 investment in 2020 & 2021

21. Lakeview Park Marina will see $305,000 in improvements

22. The basketball courts at Forest Glade Optimist Park will see $200,000 in improvements

23. IMPORTANT:  City Council unanimously supported my motion to include the addition of trail lighting at Little River Corridor Park and the Ganatchio Trail in the Capital Budget.  Although funding still has to be identified – getting trail lighting in the budget means this is now a City Council priority.  A $500,000 placeholder was established.

24. Forest Glade Community Centre and Forest Glade Library will receive a new roof with investments totalling $228,700.

25. Forest Glade Arena will receive an upgrade to its dehumidification system

26. Bridges at Little River Corridor and Peche Island will be improved with an investment of $300,000

27. Ganatchio Trail will be among several trail systems sharing $600,000 in improvements

28. Sandpoint Beach will see some $120,000 in improvements that include, for example, the addition of paddle boats and improvement to lifeguard stations


29. Forest Glade Library will share in a $650,000 investment with several other branches for the purchase of books and e-resources


30. Mayor Dilkens brought forward an innovative initiative that will see the City invest in improvements to Peche Island including the establishment of a boat shuttle.  Peche Island is out-of-reach for many residents, and this initiative aims to connect residents to the City’s only island park.  Last summer, when partner organizations teamed up with the City to provide ferry service to the island – close to 700 people took advantage, demonstrating a significant demand on the part of residents to connect with this natural jewel in the middle of one of the busiest shipping channel in North America.  This represents an investment of $1 million.

31. Wayfinding signage and markers will be installed at Ganatchio Trail and Little River Corridor Park.  I had asked a Council Question directing administration to look into this very worthwhile initiative which will help residents and First Responders navigate this large and winding park.  This investment is $100,000.

          32. Mayor Dilkens brought forward $500,000 to fund the establishment of a new off road bike park – after the bike park at Little River Corridor Park was dismantled last year.  The location is yet to be determined – but the cycling community will receive a welcome addition shortly.  Note – the City is hosting two Open Houses on the bike park in January 25th and February 8th:

 VERDICT: A pragmatic Capital Budget that provided significant and balanced investments across the City and significant improvements for Ward 7 residents.


During the deliberations – I raised several areas within the Capital Budget that could use improvement, including:

  • Increasing the budget for the Minor Road Deficiency Rehab program, which dropped to $140,000 in 2018, which is below historic levels of $250,000 and $500,000 per year
  • Increasing funding for the Sidewalk Rehab Program and making it more consistent over time.  This budget fluctuates from a high of $2M to a low of $317,000.  A more consistent, steady budget will improve this important service
  • The Concrete Road Panel Repair program – think Lauzon Parkway – has $0 committed over the next four years.  This is a new program and I would like to see it funded earlier so as to start to tackle the 215 km of concrete arterials and collectors like Lauzon Parkway that require work
  • The average lifespan of a traffic light is 20 years.  The City has 108 signals that are 20+ years old and 56 that are 30+.  At the current funding rate of $300,000, the City is able to replace two (2) traffic lights per year.  I would like to see that program accelerated.
8.4 – Iona College – Request for Deferral Yes 10-0 Deferral
8.3 – Approval of Plan of Subdivision – Concession North of Talbot Road Yes 10-0 Consent
8.8 – Riverside Brewery Co. Demolition Yes 10-0 Consent
8.11 – CIP Plan for Windsor Freezer Services Yes 10-0 Delegation


Item 8.8 – Riverside Brewery Co. Demolition Request:  I voted YES on this item.  An independent third-party engineering report stated unequivocally that the 90+ year old building had serious structural deficiencies and failings that threatened public safety if it was allowed to remain standing.

After consultations with nearby residents, and after on-site discussions with the proponents, it was determined that the best course of action would be to demolish the building only after the proponents provided plans satisfactory to the City Planner which provides buffering from the road and landscaping elements that improve the aesthetics of the industrial site while also  addressing the resident’s concern about dust emanating from the gravel piles.


In recent Capital Budgets – there is $10 Million that has not been allocated by Administration.  In other words – that funding is available.

Every year the Mayor invites Councillors to submit a list of capital projects for their Wards for the Mayor’s consideration – above-and-beyond those recommended by Administration in the Capital Budget.

The following is a list of the projects I submitted to the Mayor – which is broken down into levels of priority: Highest, High & Medium Priority.

As you may notice – the majority are related to key infrastructure improvements (roads) in addition to safety (lighting), quality of life (parks, tennis courts) and neighbourhood beautification (gateway median enhancement).

Please keep in mind – this is not an exhaustive list of priority projects in Ward 7.  They were submitted knowing that the available funding is limited since the $10 million will be divided between the ten (10) City Wards.   Hence this list provides the Mayor with flexibility to determine what projects make the Mayor’s List submitted to City Council for consideration during budget deliberations on January 15 & 16.

I invite you to share your feedback:

Banwell Road Improvements – Tecumseh Road E. to Mulberry: Design Engineering Highest $900,000
Banwell Road Lighting – Tecumseh Road to Mulberry Highest $70,000
Washroom at Elizabeth Kishkon Park High $400,000
Greenpark Avenue – Median Improvement High $20,000
Mill & Pave  – Briarbank Drive High $340,000
Mill & Pave – Mulberry Court High $135,000
Forest Glade Tennis Courts – Repair of six (6) courts High $600,000
Sandpoint Beach – Shoreline Repair EA Medium $150,000
TOTAL $2,615,000



Banwell Road Improvements from Tecumseh Road E. to Mulberry AND Banwell Road Lighting:

Project: Design Engineering                                      Project: Banwell Road Lighting Installation
Cost: $900,000                                                            Cost: $70,000

Banwell Road is a critical arterial for one of the fastest growing residential areas of the City – Ward 7 – with approximately 19,900 cars traveling this road every day.

Residents have expressed serious Safety and Quality of Life concerns related to the lack of some basic but important infrastructure on this critical arterial which includes:

  • Lack of street lighting – this safety concern is pronounced during dark winter months and during rain or snow when it is difficult to see the road
  • Lack of sidewalks and multi-use trails for pedestrians/cyclists – parents with young schoolchildren walk the gravel shoulders to get to the bus stop on the gravel shoulder
  • The need to expand Banwell Road from two (2) lanes to four (4) lanes to handle the increasing traffic flow

This dark corridor is also home to a Nursing Home, a Children’s Day Care, numerous businesses and of course a bus stop – which accentuate the safety and accessibility concern.

Safety is one concern – but the lack of pedestrian/cycling infrastructure also prevents the use of active transportation on this key North-South corridor that could connect residents to nearby parks & recreation (e.g. Elizabeth Kishkon Park; Wildwood Park; Blue Heron Lake; Ganatchio Trail; McHugh Park; WFCU), retail (e.g. Metro grocery; Shoppers Drug Mart plaza etc.); places of worship (Banwell Community Church); schools (St. Joseph’s High School; LA Desmarais and Parkview Elementary) and health care providers (Heron Terrace; Banwell Gardens; Village of Aspen Lake).

With regards to public transit – the Banwell Road Environmental Study Report (2014) states:

“Appropriate pedestrian amenities are required on the east side of Banwell Road between Wildwood and Tecumseh Road to access the service, and on the west side owing to the amount of employment generated in this area”
It makes sense to combine the engineering design scheduled for RFP for the Banwell/Mulberry roundabout and plan the two critical projects together on this corridor.

As well – the $70,000 for the installation of street lighting would immediately address one of the major present safety concerns – the total lack of street lighting – while the design engineering moves forward.


Washroom at Elizabeth Kishkon Park:

Elizabeth Kishkon Park is a high traffic park with families and residents utilizing the newly constructed playground, the basketball courts, trails and open sports fields.  A washroom will service immediate users of Elizabeth Kishkon Park and also nearby users of the trails around Blue Heron Lake as well as Ganatchio Trail.  In short, this washroom is strategically located.

Forest Glade Tennis Courts Refurbishment:

Tennis Court

The Lou Veres Tennis Courts in Forest Glade are seriously deficient.  Tall grass grows out of long cracks throughout the courts representing a significant safety risk and reducing the quality of life that healthy courts could provide residents.  Furthermore – the entrances to the courts are too narrow to allow access for residents with disabilities.

The aim of this project is to resurface and refurbish six (6) of the nine (9) tennis courts, to restore recreational amenities, improve quality of life and to make the courts more accessible.




Median Improvement – Greenpark Boulevard


Our aim is to replicate the successful rehabilitation of the Banwell Road median for Greenpark Boulevard, which is a major gateway into the East Riverside community.

The condition of the median is poor, with about half the wells empty or containing dead trees, severe cracking of the pavement and excessive weed infiltration.  Simply – the median falls far short of City standards, does not reflect the pride-of-place of the residents of this neighbourhood, and erodes the reputation of the City.

The goal of the project is to bring this gateway median back to an acceptable standard.




Mill and Pave – Briarbank Drive & Mulberry Court:

Both streets are now deficient and a timely Mill & Pave will prolong their life cycle.



Sandpoint Beach – Shoreline Repair Environmental Assessment (EA)


The Environmental Assessment (EA) will provide a blueprint for shoreline improvements necessary to address safety & aesthetic concerns on the western side of Sandpoint Beach.

The EA is just one piece of the puzzle – but an important piece – for the eventual rehabilitation of Sandpoint Beach e.g. eastward shift and redesign of the park.

This project moves the ball forward in terms of risk mitigation, safety and the improvement of a high profile recreational amenity in the City that has a big impact on the Windsor brand.

It is a step in the right direction.


10.2 – Parking App Implementation Yes 10-0 Presentation
8.6 – Monmouth Road Parking Changes Yes 10-0 Consent
11.4 – Concession Group Canada agreement Yes 10-0 Referral
8.2. – New Windsor Public Library Sandwich Branch Yes 10-0 Delegations
11.3 – Parking Garage Improvements No 9-1 Delegation
11.1 – Sewer easement expropriation Yes 10-0 Consent
11.2 – Corporate LED lighting conversion Yes 10-0 Consent
8.7 – Dieppe Park Riverfront lighting, benches and trash improvements Yes 10-0 Consent
 Council Question: Snow Removal  Yes  10-0  CQ


Item 8.2 – New Windsor Public Library Sandwich Branch: I wholeheartedly supported and voted YES to the building of the new library branch in Sandwich Town. Not only will this investment maintain the heritage of the Old Firehall – but this new modern library will enrich the lives of residents for generations and I am confident will spur additional investment in Sandwich.

Libraries are so much more than just book exchanges – they are social spaces where residents meet and talk and collaborate. They are places where technology and innovation are made accessible to everyone. They are places of economic development where folks go to improve their skills, connect to employment and spark their careers.

8.7 – Dieppe Park Riverfront Lighting, Benches and Trash Improvement: Kudos to the Parks Department for once again bringing forward an excellent initiative – this time an investment of $685,114 to improve and replace lighting, benches and garbage receptacles in Dieppe Park.  I voted Yes.

11.3 – Parking Garage Improvements: I support improvements to the Goyeau Street and Pelissier Street parking garages – two old garages constructed in 1965 and 1979 that are showing their age and historic under-investment.   In particular, I support the roughly $300,000 in security improvements e.g. lighting, CCTV cameras.

However – I could not support the overall total price tag: $4.07 million.

Simply put – that is a significant amount of money and there are other priorities that would make substantially larger improvements to the Quality of Life of residents or the Economic Development potential of the City.

A more pragmatic approach would see the City make a more modest initial investment to immediately improve the conditions of the garage, while also setting a long term capital improvement schedule through the Off Street Parking Reserve Fund. One does that by setting monthly pass prices that are reflective of the true cost of operating and maintaining a garage.  At present – the City heavily subsidizes monthly passes and charges significantly lower rates than any comparable municipality.  This is reflected in the fact that the Off Street Parking Reserve is in a perennial deficit – and it is this Reserve Fund that should serve ongoing maintenance.

That is a more pragmatic path towards proper asset management – and one that allows us to invest funds in the short term in areas with more impact on the lives of residents than parking garages.

One further note – I am of the position that the City should consider selling one of the two garages which, as they age, will become more expensive to maintain.

Council Question – Snow Removal: Concerned that the level of snow removal was inconsistent after the first major snowfall of the year – with many streets in Ward 7 having been skipped over  – I asked the following Council Question:  “That administration review the residential snow clearing level of service policy and provide options to enhance the service along with estimating the associated enhanced costs, and include comparisons with like sized cities in Ontario”.  That Council Question was adopted by Council.


8.3 – Approve 2022 CanAM PoliceFire Games NO 9-1 Regular
8.2 – Erie Street Clock Yes 10-0 Consent
8.7 – Rezoning 3255 Jefferson Yes 10-0 Consent
8.9 – Rezoning Chapter Two Brewery Yes 10-0 Consent
8.6 – Rezoning Heritage Tire Sales Yes 10-0 Consent
8.11 – International Playing Cards Permit Yes 10-0 Consent
11.1 – Agency Payments Yes 10-0 Consent
11.2 – 2018 Interim Property Tax Yes 10-0 Consent
11.3 – Establishment of Arts Endowment Yes 10-0 Regular
11.4 –Concession Group Canada Agreement Yes 10-0


Item 8.3 – Approval for 2022 CanAm Police and Fire Games: I voted NO on spending $580,000 to host the six day competition that will draw 800 people to Windsor.

Simply put – I support Sports Tourism in instances where the City is not the sole or chief sponsor and organizer of a sporting competition.

For example – I supported the Ontario Federation of Secondary Schools Association (OFSSA) provincial championships which brought 5,000 people to Windsor and cost the City about $10,000. I also supported the Memorial Cup bid because the main sponsors and organizer was the CHL and the Windsor Spitfires. The City was one partner of many.

That is smart Sports Tourism – and the key is partnerships.

Looking at the successful bids put forward by the two previous organizers, there are two facts that stand out:

  1. The CanAm Games to be held in the Lake of the Ozarks in 2018 and 2020 is being paid for by the Tri-County Lodging Association (TCLA) which is a consortium of hotel owners. The TCLA was also the main organizer. The taxpayer was not on the hook for the cost. That is smart Sports Tourism.
  1. Windsor’s bid competitor – the City of Lethbridge – put forward $200,000 for the bid. The remaining funding was to be drawn from other partners.

There is a better way to support Sports Tourism – one where the entire financial and organizational burden of hosting the competition is not borne by the taxpayer and City staff.

8.11 – International Playing Card Heritage Alteration Permit: I enthusiastically supported this wonderful project, which will result in a modern elementary school being built that will beautifully incorporate the heritage features of the century-old International Playing Cards building.

Full marks to Director Erin Kelly and her team at the Public School Board for their determination to see this project through and for putting forward a vision that will serve generations of Windsor’s children and families – and make our City proud. Bravo.

11.3 – Establishment of Arts Endowment: I was excited to vote YES on this tremendous initiative, which is the establishment of a $2.75 million arts endowment fund.

Full marks to Mayor Dilkens for bringing this idea forward – an idea which provides a solid boost to the blooming of arts and culture in our City.

8.12 – Transit Windsor Affordable Pass Program Yes 10-0 Delegations
11.1 – Residential Rental Licensing Yes 10-0 Deferral
8.16 – Windsor Essex Community Housing Corporation – Loan Repayment Application Yes 10-0 Consent


11.1 – Residential Rental Licensing: This is one of those issues where there are lots of valid arguments on both sides – and where the decision could respectfully fall either way. After several votes that were deadlocked – 4 to 4 – a motion was put forward to defer the issue to a later date.

There appears to be a universal appreciation that there is a problem – namely, a minority of landlords who are in serious breach of bylaws and certain minimum safety standards. There is also an appreciation of the serious consequences at stake. As well, there appears to be a consensus developing around this issue that the current status quo cannot hold.

Where Council is split is on the prescription to address that particular challenge.

After careful review of best practices in other cities, my position is that before moving towards a rental licensing regime –which will add significant costs to the majority of landlords who abide by the bylaws and maintain certain standard, and which will establish an additional layer of bureaucracy – I firmly believe we should take the interim step of “beefing up” our bylaw enforcement capacity by hiring additional staff who can proactively target the problematic rental units.

After a period of time – e.g. 12 or 24 months – a report can come back and Council can review the performance of the new more robust enforcement regime.

8.10 2016 Flooding Event Follow Up Report Yes 10-0 Regular
10.1 FINA Final Report Yes 10-0 Presentation
7.2 Banning Circus Acts No 6-4 Delegation
8.33 Literary Arts Bookmark Project Yes 10-0 Delegation
11.2 & 11.3 Riverside Vista Declared Conflict of Interest 9-0 Delegation
11.6 2018 Updated Budget Timelines Yes 10-0 Consent
Special: that Integrity Commissioner investigate comments made by a City Councillor in the Media Yes 9-0 Notice of Motion
Lights at Little River Corridor Park Yes 10-0 Council Question


10.1 – FINA Final Report: Below is my summation statement on this issue before the vote:

The report provides a large number of very large numbers.

The two most meaningful to me are the ones that indicate two things:

One: that City Staff did a phenomenal job of carrying out the assignment that they were given by City Council – namely – to carry out FINA on time and on budget. They should be commended.

Two: In addition to staff – there were over 800 volunteers that demonstrated once again why our residents are amazing and why our City & Region are spectacular places to work, live and play. We are a community that comes together, that is proud of our City, and proud of our successes. And we know how to put on world class event.

Those two numbers in this report are dependable and rock solid.

Where the report raises serious doubts – is in the Economic Impact Assessment.

Specifically – numbers that claim that FINA generated $32 million in economic activity for Windsor or that FINA reached an audience of 462 million people.

Those numbers are large – and they are largely unreliable.

Those numbers are based on assumptions and multipliers that experts have warned exaggerate the economic impact.

Sports economist Victor Matheson observes that “The vast majority of independent academic studies of mega-events show the benefits [of sports events] to be a fraction of those claimed by event organizers”.

Another professor who studies Sports Tourism – Dr. Milena Parent from the University of Ottawa – was quoted in CBC Windsor stating there are “too many flaws in the methodology of economic impacts” and that the economic impact numbers are exaggerated by at least 10 times.

Finally, a University of Windsor Sports Management Professor states that economic assessments like the one presented today are often “grossly overestimated”.

The point is – we don’t need to inflate economic numbers in order to tell a positive story. And certainly there are plenty of positive stories to tell about FINA without having to rely on numbers that aren’t real.

Where it matters to have real numbers – real numbers you can count on – is when in the very near future we are trying to figure out as a community and as a City Council – what types of sporting & tourism & cultural events we want to invest in and which events bring the best Return on that Investment.

That’s where the real numbers matter.

Just one example: FINA sold 15,000 tickets over six days. The Windsor International Film Festival (WIFF) sold 22,000 tickets – or 7,000 more tickets – over the same period of time.

One way to determine the true Cost & Benefit of events like FINA – is to conduct a Value- for-Money audit from an organization like KPMG or a third-party Cost-Benefit Analysis.

The numbers may come back smaller – but they will be more reliable, and more useful as a guide for future investment.

I want to thank once again our residents, our volunteers and our administration for making our City proud during FINA.

** Councillor Francis put forward the Motion to Adopt the Recommendations. I requested a Friendly Amendment to add the following recommendation: that Administration conduct an independent third party Cost & Benefit Analysis of the FINA event. That amendment was not accepted.

7.2 – Bylaw Banning Circus Acts: I strongly support the humane treatment of all animals and in the strongest possible way condemn anyone who mistreats animals. I voted NO on this motion because the Superior Court of Ontario already ruled against a similar City of Windsor Bylaw.

11.6 – Updated Budget Timeline: Something that we pushed for this year is to split up the Budget deliberations into two nights – one for Operating and one for Budget.

We wanted to avoid a repeat of recent marathon budget nights that started at Noon and ended at 2AM.

This achieves two things:

  • It improves accessibility and transparency because residents are better able to attend budget deliberations and have their say or follow along on television
  • It improves decision-making since Councillors debate the budget and multi-million dollar items with fresh eyes and a clear mind

Process matters. Not just the outcomes. And in this case we took a big step forward improving the City’s annual Budget deliberation process.

Council Question – Lights at Little River Corridor Park: I asked administration to report back on options and costs for installing lighting at Little River Corridor Park including solar lighting. This is part of the effort to improve safety and accessibility of the Ganatchio Trail in Ward 7.