City Budget, Take Part!
Council will not be passing the budget until March 10, 2016 which means there are still opportunities to get involved. January 21 was the first round of discussions by Council. If you go to the City’s web site and look for the Council meeting agendas, you will be able to watch the discussions. Complete budget information, updates and presentations are on line at the City’s Budget page. You can follow the discussions on Twitter: @CityofLdnOnt or #LdnBudget, and at the City’s Facebook page.
Overall, the plan is for the City to approve this year’s and the next three year’s budgets with only updates on an annual basis. There is a $5 million annual contingency to deal with “surprises” like labour contracts.
An interesting feature in this year’s City budget input cycle is the budget calculator. You can adjust the numbers and see the impact. More significant is when you scroll down to what are called the Strategic Investments. You can vote on whether or not you think they are worthwhile projects. The list includes the Library’s 10 year Capital Plan, Mental Health and Addictions Strategy, Back to the River, Regenerating Public Housing, and more. The feedback is to be directed to Councillors. Take the time to participate. As always, our Councillor, Phil Squire wants to hear directly from you. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Make an appointment to visit your neighbourhood school for kindergarten registration. Orchard Park Public School can be reached at 519-452-8450. St. Thomas More Catholic School can be reached at 519 660-2793.
From the Catholic Board’s web site:
Does your child turn 4 this calendar year? Children who reach 4 years of age by December 31 of this calendar year can attend Junior Kindergarten. Children who reach 5 years of age by December 31 in any calendar year will be eligible for admission to Kindergarten in September in that calendar year.
From the Public Board’s web site:
Orchard Park Public School will offer Full Day Every Day Kindergarten in September. The deadline for registration is February 6th. The Full-Day Kindergarten Program, like the existing kindergarten program, will remain optional for 4 and 5 year old children. In Ontario kindergarten is voluntary; children are required to attend school once they turn 6 years old by December 31. You may choose to have your child attend only half days. However, it is important to note that the Full-Day Kindergarten Program is designed as a full day program.
Medway Valley Heritage Forest Environmentally Significant Area (ESA)
A generous donation has gone towards eradicating invasive and spreading periwinkle in the Medway Valley near the entrance to the Valley behind the Precious Blood Monastery. Here is a map of the area. The Upper Thames River Conservation Authority which has a contract from the City to manage the City owned ESAs has been working on eliminating this plant. Monitoring will take place over 2016 with a replanting with native plants and seeds being planned for 2017. If your property borders on the Valley, please remember not to plant invasive species like English Ivy or periwinkle in your garden. A good resource is the publication “Grow Me Instead.” And please don’t dump yard waste, particularly in big clumps, as it chokes out the natural regeneration.
We were asked to make you aware of this event scheduled for January 31, at the Market downtown. For more information, go to London Soup.
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