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Terry Hickey

(The following was edited on Sept 26, 2018 to reflect earlier edits that did not appear in the original-we apologize for the oversight)

Terry Hickey is a 1972 graduate in English Literature and Classics from Trent University, and later completed Teacher’s College in Peterborough. He is married with three children, taught school for 9 years, and then moved to Toronto in 1981, where he got involved in computer hardware and software, developing TV shopping for clients in the U.S., England and Germany among other things. He moved to Port Hope in 2006, and soon after became involved in the local ratepayers group, later becoming President. When attending council meetings, which he did on on a regular basis, he thought he could do better, and first ran for council in 2014.

During that 4 year term, he was given the public works portfolio, and immediately immersed himself into all of the responsibilities of the department, attending staff meetings not as a boss, but to ask questions, and in turn be able to answer questions at council about Public Works, rather than having to defer questions. As noted in his campaign brochure,he takes pride in having spearheaded a number of successful ventures, including the replacement of the Barrett Street bridge (saving an estimated $80K alone on the removal of the old bridge by partnering with the Army Corp of Engineers), and improving the transit system after taking the time to ride the existing bus routes, and finding out for himself what was needed going forward (changing and extending routes, switching away from contracting out, using van buses, and implementing computer control.

His approach to doing better on council involves five steps:

- doing a thorough needs analysis (and if it doesn’t need fixing, leave it alone).

- formulating a plan

- developing tactics for implementation

- managing the plan

- measuring the results.

How does he propose using his five step process on the issue of Ward Street? He first visited the care facility, and came away believing it was a needed resource in the community, and that Southbridge, the owner operator, was a very reputable firm. He therefore wanted to vote against heritage designation of the site, but went along with the mayor’s call for a unanimous vote, only to ensure that Southbridge was committed to the project. Since then, he has brought forward a motion to reconsider, which he hopes will gather enough support for the planning process to begin anew.

However, this and many other issues make him believe he needs to be mayor to achieve improvements for local residents. Included in his list is getting the rural community more engaged, helping facilitate rural internet expansion though partnership with other levels of government, stimulating further growth to attract new families to the town (its not a retirement community, he stresses), improving the West Beach after PHIA rehab work is completed, and improving Via service and establishing better connection with GO train service.

He would be a full time mayor, and not just for one term, but two - to be able to see the 6-8 year PHIA project through to completion. He would bring a decentralized approach to the office, work hard to build consensus, establish solid communications with the community, and above all, show respect at all times. If elected, he says, he would be “given a basket of trust, and would try to earn it”.

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Bob Sanderson

Bob Sanderson opened the first companion animal hospital in the Port Hope area, raised his family here, and now has his grandchildren here as well. He was on council in 1979/80 (when the term of office was just two years), but with a young family and full time practice, he decided to run again. But he was active in the Rotary Club, and had several businesses in Port Hope which consisted of three restaurants and a hotel. He has divested himself of all of these in order to focus on the needs of the community and the office of Mayor.

In 2014, it was time to roll up his sleeves, participate, and not turn away from things he believes in: protecting the long term welfare of the community, and becoming a steward for the future.

Where was Port Hope before his first term? In a mess, with a divisive approach between council and staff, a divide between urban and rural areas, a financial situation that was not good, and a strategic plan with goals not well defined.

He believes things have changed, and that there is a much more collaborative approach between staff and council. Part of this he attributes to the elimination of the CAO position, which tended to create silos in administration. Now the 5 department heads work as a Board of Directors, and soon there will be six, with the pending addition of a Community Development Director. It took him until this past year to become comfortable with the change, and now he is convinced that the municipality does not need a CAO. Regarding the financial concerns, his approach was not to reduce spending, but to increase the tax base.

What about accountability? He feels that it has improved, with more goal setting and follow up measurement. Each director has functional but also leadership responsibilities. Committee of the Whole and regular council meetings have been combined into one, giving everyone more time to prepare. Rather than taking an entire month long summer recess ( and often needing to call emergency meetings to deal with issues), council now meets once in each of July and August so there is no large gap.

But, he says, the job is not done, and he wants to stay in office. He believes a solution can and must be found to the current controversy with the proposed redevelopment of 65 Ward Street into a care facility for seniors. Long Term Care facilities are not only needed in Port Hope but they must be expanded. He wants to work with Southbridge to see if there are ways the site can work that does not require the old hospital to be demolished.

In terms of a strategic plan, he is recommending the set up a working group to make recommendation for the best uses of the waterfront areas, including the east beach, west beach, the Ganaraska River, the Centre pier and the turning basin, once the remediation is finished. Previous committee recommendations from waterfront studies will need to be reviewed, and new recommendations aligned with strategic plan goals. Council has already created and funded a community improvement plan (CIP) specific to the downtown core and the next step is implementing it to support economic growth in the urban area. Regarding the requested ring road by Cameco, don’t start with a “no”, he says, but rather work to protect the goal, which is the beach and access to it, while also taking into account the needs of the community’s “model” employer.

Care and compassion have always been his strengths, and while he “may not be the best follower”, he does believe he is the best person to lead the new council, which will will have a maximum of 3 people returning (or less) so there will be a majority of new councillors and “it is not a time to switch leadership”.

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Jeff Lees

As outlined in his campaign brochure, Jeff Lees is a lifelong resident of the Municipality, and currently works with Knights Apple Den in Colborne as a shipper/receiver. His wife works with food services at Trinity College School, and their son at the Kawartha School Board as a custodian.

Jeff is now in his 21st year as councillor in Port Hope, and he holds the record for being the youngest ever to be elected, and first to be elected 6 times. He originally got into politics when Coca Cola wanted to build a warehouse in town, and council voted against it because they wanted Port Hope to stay small. Rather than just complain, his mother and a former councillor encouraged him to run and try to bring needed changes to the community.

He is most proud of all the facilities that have been built during his terms of office including the the Rec Center, and updated library. However, the forced amalgamation is looking like a mistake now, and he makes a point of never asking anyone when dealing with council business what ward they are from - he will try to help them all. Its been a challenge for council to get the tax ratio right between the two wards, since the services required by them are so different. The 75% Ward 1 and 25% Ward 2 ratio seems to be about right, and he believes that council has done a pretty good job fitting the two wards together in the one municipality.

The top priority going forward will be to monitor and manage the many issues which will result from the PHAI project, something he predicts may take up to 12 years to complete. Safety and tax levels will be the 2 top priorities.

He is strongly in favor of continuing the Port Hope Policing for Ward 1, and having rural areas policed by the OPP. Affordable housing is another concern, and here he would like to see vacant buildings turned into affordable rental units, and for council to get developers to build smaller and more affordable units, and to have Port Hope provide more lots to Habitat.

Jeff was on council when the decision was taken to eliminate the position of CAO, which he thinks has been good in terms of information flow between department heads and council members. However, he now wants to see the position reinstated, because the town has no one to control projects that involve more than one director. In his opinion, some councillors interfered in day to day operations too much, rather than just in policy setting.

Regarding 65 Ward Street, he believes council made the preliminary decision to designate the site as historical based on insufficient information, and that the process was flawed. He has changed his mind, and now maintains that the building, which he lives next to, cannot be saved after being neglected for over 20 years. If it remains designated, Southridge will likely walk away from their proposed senior’s development, losing needed bed’s for seniors, but also tax revenue. The purchase of the Lakeland property, in contrast, was a good deal, and apart from the badly needed parking, has many potential uses going forward, including housing a new activity center, a food bank, Greenwood coalition, or whatever the next council may decide.

After 21 years in office, he states that he is not finished, because he is passionate about Port Hope, and wants to see it continue to be the best place to live. Its like having a second full time job, but being busy is just what he enjoys.

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Ian Everdell

While Ian and his wife, a family physician, have lived in Port Hope for just the past two years, he pointed out that his roots in the community are deep, since his grandparents still live here, and he remembers great times with at Ganaraska Youth Theatre. He grew up in Kingston, and got his degree from Queens in biomedical computing, and later his Master’s in neuro-science, doing research in how people perceive speech. However, he discovered that academic research was not going to be of life-long interest, and he found his way into web design and other computer technology, first in Kelowna, then Toronto, and Bracebridge.

However, the move to Port Hope was by far the most welcoming and enjoyable. He and his wife have two children, aged 3 and 9 months, and most of his time is now taken up with being a parent at home - a job bigger than most people realize, he states. He would like to have the time to stay involved in community theatre (Forever Plaid was his latest on stage experience), the local curling club, and so many other community activities in Port Hope, but if he wins in the election, something will have to give.

What then led to putting his name forward as a council candidate? In a nutshell, he feels that Port Hope is a special place, and he wants to help keep it that way for the next 50 years. At the same time, he believes it is at a turning point, and planning over the next few years will be critical. Once the Port Hope Area Initiative is completed, bringing back the waterfront will be a key issue, and West Beach will be a part of that. On that note, the proposal for a Choate Street extension around the Cameco plant needs to be resolved, but he has not taken a position on it until doing further study into how both beach improvement and company interests can hopefully be accomodated. The future of the marina, central pier and yacht club all have to be resolved.

Port Hope will have to grow, and attract more young families, as well as industrial and commercial development. Part of the answer regarding affordable housing is to change the by-laws on urban density, allowing more multi-unit residential development. At the same time, it may be necessary to subsidize refurbishment of downtown apartments. He is also happy to not have the big box stores in town, yet still have them available close by. Bus service is expensive for a small number of people that use it - but at the same time he wants to see good service in a fiscally responsible way.

Regarding the Ward Street issue, he feels that there may have been bad faith shown by the Town and the developer. At this point, however, he is in favor of the hospital building being torn down, to clear the way for a long term care facility, which is badly needed in the community.

Does he have a special area of interest if he were to be elected to Council? The answer was easy - marketing and tourism, possibly involving recreation and culture as well. He would also like to see more transparency. All major council decisions need to be explained in a published document - perhaps on-line. Current council minutes are available to the public, but not quickly and easily enough. For example, the recent Lakeland purchase created 3 weeks of speculation and rumor, before anything was said.

This is not going to be a “We need change election” in Port Hope, nor one where he believes that candidates are being elected to serve the residents of either Ward 1 or 2. Both have needs that need to be addressed. And he describes himself as one who can figure things out, that he doesn’t do anything half-assed, but rather always with the high standards he sets for himself.

While not everyone will vote for him, make sure you vote, he says.

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Miles Bowman

Miles Bowman is a native of small town Saskatchewan, and went on to earn his Honors B.A. in psychology at Queen’s University in Kingston, then attended graduate school for another 7 years to complete both his M.A. and PhD in neuroscience. He started performance and business coaching in Toronto but moved the business here to Port Hope., where he and his husband have resided for the last 8 years, and they are delighted with its friendliness and wonderful small town atmosphere.

Miles has also had considerable volunteer experience, with Habitat for Humanity, Rotary, “Men who Cook”, and “Critical Mass” (a contemporary arts organization). He also did work with the University of Ontario Institute of Technology on policy and strategic planning, and in Port Hope, was a member of the Rate Payers Association.

What led to his decision to run for council? A big reason is to show his son that it matters what you do to make your community better. He wants him to be raised in a household that actively participates in and builds the community in which they live. (He lost own father when very young and it was years later that he learned how hard he had worked to make their small town better).

He feels that Port Hope has a huge opportunity ahead, with almost a blank slate to begin planning for the future of the waterfront after remediation has been completed. It has a rich pool of talent, and he would like to institute a more collaborative process to do the planning for this, so that it will not just be restored to what it now is, but to invest in what will make it even better.

There are still lots of unanswered questions about the proposed new ring road, but he has concerns about what he has seen of the preliminary proposal, in terms of reducing the amount of usable West beach and its environmental impact.

On the 65 Ward Street issue, he thinks this is an example of how council has dropped the ball, by failing to implement a historical registry at an earlier time. Now that it has been established, council can move away from retroactively telling developers what they may and may not do. As to how to deal with the Southbridge proposal to demolish the hospital building and put up a new seniors home, he feels it is important to wait until the Heritage Revew Board of Ontario has made its findings known. But he would also like to explore what 3rd options there might be, such as examining other sites for development, with tax breaks to help resolve the issue.

Youth involvement is another priority for him. There is programming in place for children and seniors, but not so much for youth. It is necessary, he states, to engage them where they are at, and that there is more to life for them besides school and parties. Information access also has to be improved, perhaps by having the Municipality do public postings on Facebook, and doing live streaming of council sessions. And concerning the matter of Port Hope not having a CAO, he thinks there are benefits to having the position, as a local policy expert, and to help staff with all of the complexities of the Municipal Act.

There is also need to talk beyond the rural and urban divide, build cultural bridges and encourage activities and events which will benefit both (such as “Cultivate” for example).

Through cooperation with the many charity groups in town, much can be done. Tree planting is one example, and “Critical Mass” another, with its efforts to bring contemporary art to town.

Councillors have to be leaders, he says, to start the conversations, but also to be a shield for staff during times of protest and disagreement. He has experience in all of the above, and will be out knocking on more doors in pursuit of his goal to be elected.

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Wendy Meadows

Wendy Meadows was born and raised in Port Hope, and graduated from High School in town. Later, she spent 6 years in Prince Edward County, before returning to Port Hope where she and her husband raised their two sons, one of whom is still in Port Hope, along with her two grandsons and mother.

She worked at St. Lawrence Flowers for 25 years, which she and her sister now own. All along, she has always been very involved in community activities, including the BIA, Chamber of Commerce (where she was also president), the Northumberland Hills Hospital Gala Committee, and various committees working to save the local police force (which they did).

But at this stage in her life, she finally has time to run for council, a goal she has had for a number of years. Her flower shop business now allows her to have every second week away, and this is a pivotal time for Port Hope council, with many important issues facing it over the next years. One of her priorities is to ensure completion of a consolidated plan for the waterfront. The ten year plan prepared in 2008, priced at over $33 Million, was unrealistic. What is needed is to start from square one, break it down into 5 year segments, and have specific action plans for each.

The plan has to be ready before the waterfront area is turned back over to the Town, with lots of public input into what kind of redevelopment is to take place. On that note, however, she points out that much of the harbourfront area is still on the flood plain, and this places severe restriction on redevelopment options, unless harbour walls are increased in height (maybe 2 feet for example). Once the environmental assessment has been completed for the West Beach, public consultation will be critical before the ring road being proposed by Cameco gets built within 10 feet of the high water mark. Both her father and grandfather worked at Cameco, and she is very mindful of the its importance to Port Hope - but the road as proposed is likely best for them, not for the community.

Long Term Health Care is another priority of hers. In that regard, the controversy over designation of 65 Ward Street is a concern. There has not been enough open communications on both sides of the issue, and there has to be a better way of coming to some resolution. However, with new health care codes coming into effect in 2025, the current building does not have a future as a care facility, and should be torn down to make way for a new structure.

Wendy noted that Mayor Sanderson has just announced council intention to increase the budget for rural road maintenance by 300%, and this should go a long way towards resolving some of the current dissatisfaction and conflict. Garbage collection is another sticking point, but believes it is more of a county rather than municipal issue.

Sustainable growth and affordable housing are other concerns for her. The solution may require a change to density and zoning regulations, and also having developers built a mix in size of houses, and more rental accommodation. At the same time, she would like to learn much more in this whole area, and fortunately, there are many excellent resources in the community, including Greenwood Coalition.

Does the Municipality need a CAO? Its an issue that needs ongoing revue. The cost savings are important, but are things falling between the cracks, and is there clear accountability? Also there has not been enough clear communication on when goals are and are not achieved.

Wendy describes herself as a person of integrity, fair minded, and open communicator, one who is now would like to be in for the long run.

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Sam Whittaker

Sam Whittaker is a 12 year resident of Port Hope. He was born in Vancouver, BC but the draw of the east had him live and work in a number of Ontario cities such as Kingston, Ottawa, Oshawa, but also Chicago for a number of years. His career background is equally diverse, having started as a school teacher, then an employee at GM in Ottawa, with Maclean Hunter as an automotive guide book publisher (Toronto & Chicago), and finally with Sony retail and then as a project manager for the construction and repair of stores in the US and Canada. At the age of 75, he has now been retired for 5 years, and is set to stay in Port Hope with his wife Elizabeth.

What motivated him to run for council ? He has a real concern for the steady population growth that is trending eastward, and while growth has to be accepted it should be done with respect for Port Hope’s special character - how comfortable a place it is to live. “A Respect for the past and build for the future.”

Taxes and budgets are a concern to him. Budgets and final fiscal statements show considerable disparities: a $200,000 budgeted deficit became a $3 million dollar surplus. It has to be better, consistent, and manageable. On the subject of revenue he suggests a push to generate a professional department within city hall to recruit businesses that would fit into Port Hope and generate tax dollars and meaningful employment for residents.

Sam suggests that PHAI’s remediation plans will in the future become more complex as they begin to move into the private residences around Port Hope. The centre pier and yacht basin will be completed in the next year. What to do.... this site is an exciting project that if done well could only be a real asset to Port Hope

Concerning 65 Ward St., he would favour of keeping the facade and/or portions of the building, to remember the importance it has in the community. The hospital built by the community of Port Hope served Canada and Port Hope in war and peace.

Regarding Ward 1 and Ward 2 he recognizes that they are distinctly different with different priorities.

However these differences are being worked out and will continue to be worked on in the future. One priority is High Speed Internet in Ward 2. Its many farms are businesses and they need access to high speed internet. Population and cost of distribution are an issue, but something has to be done.

The subject of police was brought up. As a college student, he worked for the local department in his college town (Ellensburg, Wn.) and walked a downtown police beat. The good will and information gathered was beyond measure, he says, and something that would only build good will and a significant amount of police knowledge. A policeman being able to interact with young people on the street can only build goodwill.

And communications............always an issue. People have a need to know., even if it is not always what they want to hear. More communication both ways, to Councillors and back to the residents on all concerns. Port Hope is a living community with communication a real part of what makes it all work.

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Brian Coggins

Brian Coggins was born in East York, spent a number of years in Willowdale, then Bowmanville for 13 years, before choosing Port Hope in 1987, and where he intends to stay. He retired as CGA (doing accounting and internal/external auditing) in 2007. He has been a widower for the past few years, but has 4 sons and 4 grandchildren to keep him plenty busy, when he is not volunteering for radio station 89.7 (as host of a municipal affairs program), helping out with house league baseball in the summer, and as a children’s hockey coach in the winter. But he has also been a board member of the Port Hope Ratepayers Association, and regularly attended council meetings for several years now.

And why is he running for council in Ward 2, when he is a resident of Ward 1? The answer is simply that many Ward 2 residents have encouraged him to do so, including the two current councillors for Ward 2. With his business background, willingness to listen, knowledge of council, and impartiality, he feels that it is time to switch from reporting on politics, to having others report on him if he is elected.

The issues for Ward 2, he states, have really not changed a lot over the past several years. Tax rates are too high in Ward 2, for the services being received. Some expenses could be reduced, in snow plowing and road maintenance for example. Currently, Northumberland County is responsible for the county roads, and the municipality takes care of secondary roads, with a lot of overlap in snowplowing routes, for example. He would seek to have those responsibilities realigned.

Brian is concerned about the deteriorating condition of infrastructure in ward 2, especially bridges, to the point where they are becoming a safety issue. To pay for needed work, he would like to see the municipality increase the tax base, through more business development, rather than just residential growth. Ward 2 has suitable locations, including the East side of Telephone Road. Garbage collection is a County responsibility, but he would advocate against switching to roadside pickup, as residents have spoken clearly on this issue.

He expects that the new council will have to make the final decision regarding designation of 65 Ward Street as a heritage site. At this point, he feels he does not have enough information to take a clear position, but he does recognize the urgent need for more care facilities for seniors.

One thing he would promote is a full presentation from the Ministry of Health, so that everyone is very clear on standards, and building requirements for such facilities - and could the current building be retrofitted for this? But he points out how one can preserve culture without necessarily preserving buildings.

If elected, Brian would be a councillor for all residents, not just for one ward, and strive to get rid of the “you and me” attitude. His special interest would be in Public Works and Engineering, and Planning and Development, but also keeping up with everything going on. The directors are working well together, as has council, and he is looking forward to being part of the experience going forward.

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John Bickle

John Bickle was born and schooled in Bowmanville, but has been a long time resident in Welcome. While he now has been retired for 3 years, he worked as a long-distance truck driver, and in construction as a heavy equipment operator. He was on council in 1997, and worked for months trying to secure favorable terms for rural residents when amalgamation occurred in 2000.

He thought there was agreement on budget and services, but the document that was submitted to the Ontario Government was not the one he thought had been agreed to, and “everything they fought for is disappearing”. For example, there was assurance that the municipal office would remain open as a service center - it is now a library. Taxes have increased in Ward 2 by 46% since amalgamation, much more than for residents of Ward 1, he states. What is needed is a forensic examination of all spending since amalgamation.

Roads in Ward 2 are another concern. Many have had their speed limits reduced to 50 kph, and this allowed maintenance standards on them to be reduced. Salting last year was so minimal that 7 snowplows went off the road. Money has been spent on guardrails, but they are more of a problem than a safety addition, because they interfere in farm equipment operation.

There is too much waste in municipal spending. As a heavy equipment operator he worked on several projects in the municipality, he saw how costs were driven up by frequent last minute changes. A new 6” water pipe is being installed to service 19 new homes, but it won’t work - it will be too small. Road maintenance is not being done correctly - many patched pot holes end up back in the same problem condition only weeks later. Now the County wants to close the garbage transfer site, when 90% of the rural population are in favor of it staying rather than going to roadside garbage collection. However, he would like to see services at the transfer site be extended, to include more recycling, and more brush and leaf collection (both now end up clogging ditches at the present time).

John talks about how hard he fought to retain OPP policing services, which again he thinks rural people prefer. When proposals were made to consider switching to a local police service, he could not get the detailed information he was looking for.

Concerning the municipal budget, no one can make sense of it, although he is aware that it contains items which should not be in it. For example, it contains a grant to the Capitol Theatre, something that residents in Ward 2 do not want to have to contribute to. And the set-up of council is a concern. Even though the 2 Ward council members have a double vote when it comes to Ward 2 issues, there are 4 council members from Ward 1, and the mayor casts the deciding vote, and “guess which way that usually goes”.

For 65 Ward Street, he would like to see building blueprints, to see if it is worth keeping.

What are his chances of getting elected? In 1997, he captured 70% of the vote, and many residents reportedly only voted for one candidate. He also ran for the mayor’s position in 2014.

He works hard, “uses common sense”, and would try to put hope back in Hope Township.

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Vicki Mink

Vicki was born and raised on a farm in the Durham region, and has had family in the Port Hope area all her life. Six years ago she moved to her family’s 40 acre Ward 2 rural home and property, so that she can be back in the countryside and comfort zone.

Her bachelor’s degree is from Trent University in History, but also took courses in Economics and Sociology. Later she completed a Business Admin program at Centennial College, and also in architecture. Yes, she has lots of interests, and has travelled to some 56 different countries in the world, and experienced very different lifestyles. Career wise, she has worked in Toronto, first in operations with an energy company, and currently has a job in Architecture and Building Safety in Ajax. Its a job that she enjoys, but one she can easily leave behind at the end of the day, so the timing is now right to get involved in politics, something she always fully intended to do.

And why? She is interested in her community and how it is being governed. Being on council would not be unlike running a business - it involves budgeting, financial management, and services.

A few priorities for her are building sustainable economic growth, and for Ward 2, improving cellular and internet connectivity is a necessity, not a luxury. This would involve getting more input from residents, and putting more pressure on the MP for this riding. Roads are a second – road maintenance, signage, speed control and vegetation growth are all important issues for Ward 2, and they need feasible and innovative solutions. Snow removal is also a big concern for Ward 2 residents. After a heavy snow fall it can take a few days for the crews to return to all the rural roads and do a complete clean up after they have done their initial sweep. This leaves many rural residents uncomfortable on the roads in the winter.

She also feels that Ward 2 residents don’t feel well connected to Port Hope, and part of this she believes is the misunderstanding that they are not getting enough from the tax dollars. More detailed reporting back to the community is needed. As well, there is a fear of the future, and how growth is going to be managed. However, moving forward is important, with new services, while preserving agricultural land and heritage. New technologies including solar panel proliferation, and garbage disposal challenges will keep coming, but with proper planning and communication, progress doesn’t have to be a “bad thing”.

She commented on a few specific areas that are currently under debate. For example, the Ward Street old hospital building is one she would like to see designated - after all, she is very much involved in architecture. At the same time, she understands why the developers want to start from scratch in building a new care facility for seniors. There is plenty of land in Port Hope that would be equally suitable. If it remains designated, she envisions that it could be remodeled for residential purposes, but she would need to investigate further.

The waterfront needs to be redeveloped, to accommodate commercial, recreational and tourism needs, as well as supporting the existing train station.

Although she sees herself as a creative and artistic person, she is basically very analytical and business minded, and very efficient at getting things done, including campaigning for the upcoming election. At this point, becoming councillor for Ward 2 is the goal - not as a stepping stone to other positions, but to bring her love and understanding of rural life to all of the issues in the community.

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Les Andrews

Les Andrews started his career out in computer leasing, and after coming to Cobourg in 1989, spent 24 years owning and managing three MacDonald franchise operations in this area. He has been living in Port Hope for the past 12 years, has a daughter and grandchildren living here, and a son in Oakville. For the past 4 years, he has been a councillor for Ward 1, where he was chair of the Finance Committee, and he is on the Port Hope Health Care Foundation Board, the YMCA board, and on the advisory committee with the Centre for Community Living.

What got him interested in politics? He looked at the state Port Hope was in back in 2014, and it was not, he states, a pretty picture. Tax receivables totaled about $4.5M, the town was running a deficit, and reserves were not at proper levels. With his strong financial background, he thought he could help the Town do better. During his first term, $3M of the tax arrears have been collected, expenses have been lowered by eliminating six municipal director positions and the CAO position (Port Hope is now the only municipality without one, and is managing very well, he states), and the unfunded pension liability for town staff has been reduced by about $1M, after a transfer of funds from operating surplus.

What are his priorities going forward? He feels that council and Port Hope have to focus on managing growth, which is coming. The new Mason housing development will soon be built out with over 1600 homes, the current business park is full, and further expansion will have to be carefully managed and supported, while maintaining community values. He would like to see better VIA rail service, and better connectivity to GO trains to help support this growth.

When the current Port Hope Area Initiative has been completed, the town will be left with a blank slate when it comes to the harbour area, and plans need to be made for how the pier, beach and waterfront area will be redeveloped. He believes that the Town will need a new position to head up the planning effort. Affordable housing is another concern, and part of the answer, he states, will be to change zoning densities, and allowing multiple houses on many of the large lots in town. “Time to stop studying the issue, and to get into action”, he says.

He is also very clear on the issue of the former hospital site on Ward Street. When the Southridge developers and the town Heritage Commission could not come to any voluntary agreement on the future of the site, then council needed to get involved. Initially, he did not have enough information to “not designate” the site as a heritage building. Subsequently, however, he has toured the building, and also other care facilities for seniors. Now he is totally convinced that more and better facilities are required, and that the old hospital building is not worth saving. This issue will come before council in early September, but it may also have to be taken up again by the new council after Oct. 22nd.

Les believes that Town reached a good decision to buy the former Loblaw site for $750K, down considerably from early real estate appraisals. The parking lot will provide an immediate answer to problems for the downtown area, and perhaps the building will best be put to temporary use over the next 3-5 years, with possible redevelopment after that time.

Communications are important, and if Q and A sessions were to be allowed at council meetings, he would want to see them take place before and not after decisions are taken, but the best method is still to contact councillors by email, phone, or in person, something he always welcomes.

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Tony Jenkins

Anthony has enjoyed a variety of work experiences in education and business since graduating from McMaster University and Queens with degrees in science and education. In 1976 Tony, as he is best known, began a 42 year career as a heritage building preservation contractor and consultant. He has worked throughout Canada and much of the US. His clients include private individuals, public institutions, and all levels of government. He has also travelled extensively in North America and Europe studying architectural history and preservation technologies, legislation, and administration; with particular interest in adapting historical buildings to new contemporary uses. In June Tony announced his retirement from his business and is now a candidate for Ward 1 Councillor in Port Hope.

Tony is interested and concerned about many issues, including of course the 65 Ward Street development proposal by Southbridge. He considers the World War One era hospital building to be important and valuable to the neighbourhood, the town, and the province and thus should be preserved.

Its disappointing, he says, that the municipality’s initiative to designate it has been characterized as a conflict between preservation versus long term care for seniors. The real issue is doing both, but this, he feels, is beyond the developer’s experience but not impossible to do.

Tony also sees this issue as part of a larger concern. Port Hope, with its location and unspoiled small town appeal, is next in line to experience intensive development pressure. Regulation of land use is one of the most important functions of municipal government. He fears that if Port Hope buckles under pressure from an out of town developer on the Ward Street site, that it will set a bad precedent for dealing with future development challenges.

Another issue is the apparent divide between the citizens of the two Wards. Tony lives in town (a fabulous place to live and work), but has lived rural most of his life, so he is very familiar with the sticking points, including taxes and services. He believes that what is good for either Ward is good for both, and that education is key to a better understanding and resolution of outstanding issues.

Another is social justice. Too many people don’t have proper housing, access to transportation, and means of survival. The ‘middle class’ is the majority source of the funds and the votes that maintain municipal government and thus, by rights, enjoys the majority of the benefits. However he feels that a relatively small shift in public spending favouring residents who lack secure housing and reliable transportation would be a benefit to everyone.

How would he see himself on council? He knows that there are many networks, and attempts to trade off support for one issue, in return for others. This is not how things should work - you just can’t trade votes. Mayor Sanderson is doing a good job, and if elected, his vow would be to be serve with a good heart, and be fair minded.

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Todd Attridge

Todd Attridge and his husband Steve are new to Port Hope, having moved here from Burlington just under a year ago, and Todd describes coming here as an incredible experience - people are just so kind, interested, passionate about their town, and active in the community. Living here is not spectator sport, he says.

Career wise, Todd founded a consulting company about 5 years ago, called DifferentMatters, and it specializes in helping companies develop strategic plans, solve problems, and develop leadership skills in their employees. The client base is mainly in Toronto, but also in Vancouver and multiple locations in the US. Prior to that, he was in the restaurant business for about 25 years, and served as an executive for Cara Foods in leadership development for another 5 years.

What prompted his running for council in Port Hope? Part of the reason, he explained, was a wish to get involved, and to give back to the community that has adopted him so fully. His skill set is readily transferable to politics, especially at the municipal level, and that includes not having all the answers, but being willing to listen and ask a lot of questions. As a newcomer he has no biases, and is interested only in what is best for the community, but not only for today but the next 25 years.

At the same time, he does have concern about the perceived divide between Ward 1 and 2, and the status of proportional tax equalization between the two. For example, Ward 2 residents have indicated that they do not want roadside garbage collection, and should not have to pay for these services in their tax assessments. There are, he believes, lots of talented experts in both wards that can help bring different solutions to their differing issues, but work closely together on common problems.

Another priority for him is more affordable housing, and one way to make this come about is for council to adopt new zoning by-laws to allow increased density on lots. He would like to see property owners in the downtown area encouraged to renovate existing empty space above stores for housing, which would also bring new vitality to the downtown area. At the same time, he is concerned about many small businesses being priced out of the downtown area, and again incentives, taxation, and cooperative endeavors with the BIA could make a difference.

And before the PHAI project has been completed, it is important, he states, for council to take action now to develop a comprehensive plan, and integrate the Waterfront Plan, West Beach Plan, East Beach plan, and the request by Cameco for a new ring road. The issue of 65 Ward Street needs to be addressed, he states, by looking at what is best for the community down the road, and this may well be a long term care facility. At the same time, he is very aware of how divisive this issue has become, and how some information has not been made public. Until that happens, no final decision should be made.

Does Port Hope need a CAO? Not necessarily, because of it’s size. One option would be to elevate one director position to have more overall responsibility, without creating an entirely new and costly position. He does not believe that council members should become too involved with administrative staff - their responsibility is for policy and changes in policy. Above all, his emphasis, if elected, would be on collaboration, cooperation and careful research of issues.

But if not elected this time, he is also optimistic about the quality of candidates running.

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Ken Morden

Ken Morden has an accounting and finance background, and later went on to start up his own marketing company in Toronto which he ran for 25 years. During that time, he also bought his property in Ward 2, where he and his wife, Caroline Thornton, started up a horse breeding farm about 15 years ago.

After selling his business about 7 years ago, he became a full time resident in Ward 2, and got to know and understand the unique nature of his rural neighborhood, and its issues. It was actually his wife who got him interested in politics, when she attempted to organize a group to reverse the amalgamation of the urban and rural districts. It later became the Port Hope Citizen’s Association, and he has been its Chair for the past several years.

Ken explained how he believes that there is little regard for the different make-ups of the urban and rural wards. Up to two years ago, Ward 2 residents did not have to pay taxes for services they didn’t use, including street lights, sidewalks, crossing guards and parks. However, council wanted one big happy family, and a decision was “rammed” through to have all residents, urban and rural, pay taxes for the total package of services, not just ones needed in the rural area.

Would he try and get this changed? No, he wouldn’t want to open old wounds. But going forward, don’t force things on Ward 2 that residents don’t want, and similarly for Ward 1.

He also wants to see better fiscal management by council and staff, and reduction of debt (noting that Ward 2 had none before amalgamation). He is concerned that not nearly enough monies are being paid into reserves, to fund replacement of buildings and infrastructure when and as required (only $2.5M rather than $8M per year, and this is adding up to a huge amount over the past 10-15 years).

He has made presentations to council regarding the process council uses for budgeting, which he states guarantees a tax increase every year. Much more should be done to prioritize spending, and the budgeting process changed so that it is based on what residents would like, not what all departments may be asking for. He cites the recent purchase of the Lakeland property for $750,000 as another example of how there is no control over what council does and spends, and the rational for the purchase has still not been explained.

A strategic plan was developed for Port Hope several years ago. It included 47 objectives and no timetable. To date no reviews have been done. Ken contends that it is too full of generalities to be useful.

In his survey of citizen priorities, he cites internet connectivity as a big need in rural areas, better maintenance of roads in summer and winter, and better communications with residents. The current website is deplorable - not at all user friendly.

As far as the urban areas are concerned, he would want to hear what residents want and need, and where they make sense, he would support them in council.

More business development is badly needed, to increase the tax base. But more studies are not needed - over $1M has already been spent on business development over the past 4 year, with nothing to show for the expense.

As far as the Ward Street hospital building is concerned, he doesn’t believe that a 19th century building can be upgraded to meet 21st century requirements, so keep the facade perhaps, but don’t try to preserve the whole building.

Regarding the waterfront, he would like to see a harbour commission set up to be responsible for its development after the PHAI cleanup has been completed, operating with direction from council but at arms length. In addition Ken would like to see a new MPH corporation formed to independently manage the business park, attract new business and assist existing businesses to grow.

Ken Morden’s final interview comment was that he has the ability to deliver, and that he knows how to get things done.

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Will Lambert

Will Lambert was born and raised in Scarborough, and also lived in Lindsay and Tweed before moving to Port Hope 19 years ago. He is about to retire from the Toronto Fire Services, where he is captain. His daughter and two grandchildren live in Burlington.

He mentions that he has always been politically and socially active, served as Chair of the Canadian Fire Fighter’s Museum board in Port Hope, as board member for “Beyond the Blue Box”, member of the Citizen Liaison Group for the Port Hope Area Initiative for 3 years, active with Port Hope archives, the Port Hope Estival (no longer functioning), the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario, and many other community events. With his upcoming retirement, he feels that it is time to make a bigger contribution to the Town, and being on council would allow him to do that.

Will feels that it is vitally important for council to keep a close eye on the PHAI project, to make sure it is done right. Then the Waterfront Plan has not been updated since 2009, and needs lots of public input and consultation. On that note, he feels that Mayor Sanderson has heard the urgency, resulting in the recommendation the Parks and Recreation Department set up a working group - a good first step.

But he is strongly opposed to the proposed new ring road around the Cameco plant, and is concerned about a ‘silent agreement’ with Cameo for the land swap involved, and the town’s commitment to take on responsibility for its maintenance. There was no public consultation or environmental assessment before the agreement. However, he believes that there is an escape clause in the contract which can be mediated, and a solution found that will protect the West Beach area.

Affordable housing is a big concern for him. The Municipality, he feels, needs to make more land available to Habitat for Humanity, and to insist that developers include a mix of housing in their projects to include more affordable units in the mix. There are also many vacant buildings, with owners getting up to a 30% tax break. Do away with the subsidy, he says, and offer incentives for creation of lower cost rental units.

Regarding 65 Ward Street, he is fully in favor of it being designated as a heritage site. More long term care facilities are needed, but the current proposal by Southbridge for a 160 bed facility does not meet industry standards, as the lot size is only 2.86 acres, not the required 4 acres. The Municipality needs to work with Southbridge to help find a more suitable site. As an added concern, Will points out that the Southbridge proposal for 160 beds will achieve a net gain of only 3, as both the Regency Manor and Hope St. Terrace will have to close by 2025 based on new provincial requirements.

From his frequent attendance at council sessions, including 3 presentations on behalf of the Fire Fighters Museum, he is disappointed with the disrespect and lack of professionalism he sees.

Council members need to “bury their hatchets”, and be more civil when hearing presentations from residents and businesses. There are many great volunteers in town - why do away with civic awards, he asks?

Being on council is a tough job, and often thankless. But its a job he wants. And he is also encouraged by the calibre of candidates running in this years election.

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Colleen Haley

Colleen Haley grew up in Port Credit, and later moved with her family to Peterborough. She earned her R.N. degree from Fleming College, and then spent several years working at Toronto hospitals, and did psychiatric nursing including forensics. After marriage, she and her husband moved to a 127 acre farm in Tweed, but it wasn’t long before she needed to get back to nursing, getting involved during the building of a new nursing home, and then becoming the director of patient care and administration.

Since then, she has also served as the director of Community Life Care, responsible for oversight of all CLI nursing homes in Ontario. She was also on the Community Advisory Hospital Board for 6 years, and a founding member of the Central East Infection Control Network“ following the SARS epidemic.

About 15 years ago, she moved to Port Hope, where she has been Director of Nursing, and became Executive Director for Southbridge four years ago, after their change in ownership.

When council began consideration of designating 65 Ward Street as a heritage building, this pushed her over the top, and she decided to run for council. Southbridge, she says, is an amazing company, now focused more on redeveloping existing homes so they meet provincial code. If elected, would she be in a conflict of interest when decisions are taken by council?

She’s not sure, but would consult legal opinion on the matter. There has been lots of misinformation about this project, but she is very clear that the existing building should be torn down, to make way for a new structure, which is badly needed in Port Hope. While she is interested in historical heritage preservation, she believes the Ministry of Health would not approve plans for renovation of the existing building as a Long Term Care home.

Housing in Port Hope is another concern. There is a real lack of affordable housing (her son’s family would like to live here, but they have been unable to find anything in their price range, and are still in Whitby). This is a problem that will not be solved overnight, but there has to be a plan, which includes business development as well. Accessibility has been improved, but is still a problem for many seniors because of poor sidewalks and roads, and lack of public transportation.

With her years on a farm in Tweed, Colleen feels that she is very aware of issues for Ward 2 residents, and would listen to their concerns. To date, she has not immersed herself into the PHAI project, and would want to see the whole picture before offering any comment. However, she does question the wisdom in the new ring road in the West Beach area, and believes there must be better alternatives.

Colleen emphasized that you have to listen to people, and understand the soul of the town.

Some people are not being heard at the present time. And because of an unexpectedly challenging recovery from a knee replacement, she is one of them. She can’t be out on the campaign trail right now, but in a week or two, things will be different!

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Laurie Carr

Laurie Carr spent most of her earlier years in Toronto, and found her way into the automotive business, first as a credit manager and later as controller for a collection of 7 large dealerships. From there, she moved into the printing business, again in Toronto, a move that required a whole new mindset at first, but the same business skills. Laurie moved to Port Hope in 1996 so when the time came to expand into the creative side of the printing business, she established the marketing, graphic design, videography and website building operations here, while maintaining printing operations in Toronto. She has a business partner taking care of things in Toronto, and also a business partner with her in the Port Hope office. And she also is co-owner of a local restaurant, The Social Bar + Table, which has now been in business for about 5 years.

Once in Port Hope, Laurie started getting involved in more and more municipal organizations, and in recent years, served as chair of the HBIA, chair of the Downtown Revitalization Committee, and from 2015-17 was a member of the Economic Development Task Force, for which she won a civic award.

With this background, Laurie says that running for council was the next logical step, as she now wants to sit at the “main table”.

She feels that the existing council has done a good job in terms of financial management and planning, but the new council has a number of critical responsibilities coming up, especially the PHAI Initiative. It is vitally important, she says, for the project to be properly monitored and completed, and no doubt, this will require council intervention on behalf of residents and businesses. (On that note, her own business office had to relocate, and moving turned out to be more disruptive than she ever imagined). She is also in favor of Port Hope re-hiring a Chief Administration Officer, so that directors don't have to work with 7 different voices on council.

Laurie made reference to the West Beach, and proposal for a new ring road. While formal plans have not been made public, she has concern about so much waterfront potentially being given up. But there has to be a way of working with Cameco that meets their needs as well- “follow the process”, she says.

More development is coming to the Municipality, and growth is needed in commercial and industrial expansion to increase the tax base. However, council will have to ensure that it is done on community terms, not just the developers, and include affordable housing, mixed land use, proper infrastructure, and adequate green space. She would like to see Port Hope be the greenest municipality in Ontario, and also have high speed internet services brought to rural areas.

What about 65 Ward Street? She believes that it is possible for it to be designated as a heritage site, and still developed into a long term care facility. Its disappointing that Southbridge has not been very open to accommodating recommendations from heritage architects. A stand has to be taken with developers - “if not now, what happens later?”, she asks.

With all of her business interests, will she have time for council responsibilities? She describes herself as always having been a doer, with work and sports in her youth, and later with business and volunteer activities. However, if elected, her work would be business and council.

Peter Angelo

Peter Angelo declined to participate in this project.