McKinlay Wants to Step Up in The Blue Mountains

Mayor of Blue Mountain Ellen Anderson will not be running for re-election, opening up the position to a fresh face. Deputy Mayor Duncan McKinlay, who has an 18-year career working at a youth treatment facility, is up against John McKean, a councillor in the Town of the Blue Mountains for three terms.

McKinlay was acclaimed to one-year terms as warden for both 2012 and 2013 and has seven years on the Grey County council. McKinlay says he wants to “be an advocate for ratepayers and community organizations, economic development, transportation and improving communications and community engagement.”

Do you have any strategies prepared to encourage local economic growth? Which issue should this next term’s council give to more focus to: A) Bringing in new business developments, or B) encouraging small businesses presently in operations?

My strategy is to build support by council and the community for programs which are under way now. Examples: TBM business retention and expansion program, TBM economic development advisory committee, Grey County Economic development strategy process, The SWIFT project to bring ubiquitous,high speed broad band capacity to western Ontario, The SWEA alliance efforts to focus on regional economic opportunities ,to work together to build a broad , strong economic base in Southwestern Ontario

The answer to the second questions is B) Support the retention and expansion of existing business is number one.

What do you see has been the largest challenge over the last 10 years, faced by business operators in your region?

The Economy including growth rates below forecasts and more conservative consumer behaviour.

Do you think local business taxes are at a fair rate, or should be lowered or raised? Should there be any changes in the municipal services provided to businesses, (such as garbage removal)?

Council must review services annually, to make sure that the right services are provided at good value. Services to business are very important part of this annual review.

What are three things would like to see achieved during your term as mayor?

1) An open for business culture fostered by the municipality, business organizations and the community

2) Growing communication between the municipality and the community and increased community engagement in local governance

3) Roll-out of the SWIFT project to bring fiber-optic ultra high speed to services, business and homes

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