When the Town of Milton was planning the community we live in today, former Town CAO David Hipgrave, former Town Councillors Brad Clements and Brian Penman, Mayor Gord Krantz and I met face-to-face regularly with senior officials from Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Housing, Ontario Ministry of Health, Ontario Ministry of Education, the Regional Municipality of Halton, Halton District School Board, Halton Catholic District School Board and Conservation Halton as well as thousands of local residents and other stakeholders from 1993 to 1997 to share our Destiny Milton growth plan and other related plans for the community, in compliance with the Province’s decree that we grow.
The various provincial, regional and educational government entities committed to support the Town’s growth plan and agreed to help fund it, specifically in terms of the timely development of arterial roadways, bridges, GO Transit/other public transit, a highway interchange, a hospital expansion, schools and water and sewer allocation as the community grew.
Sadly, none of these vital infrastructure or financial requirements have kept pace with Milton’s growth imperative and, in fact, have impacted our ability to grow in a fiscally responsible, properly planned and resident-centric manner, especially in terms of providing the full range of housing types that meet all demographic and financial prerequisites (like bungalows); creating public transportation networks that fully support employment, education and quality of life requirements; and offering the full spectrum of health, emergency and social services that ensure the community is adequately supported and protected.
In late June 2019, I asked Milton Council to support a motion requesting that the Ford Government review the former Wynne/McGuinty Government’s Ontario Places To Grow Act with a particular focus on giving consideration to relaxing density requirements to enable the development of a full range of housing options (like bungalows); re-evaluating growth targets for the Town of Milton to support more strategic and thoughtful residential and commercial development; and re-thinking the Province’s current role in the financing of key education, health and transportation infrastructure within the context of what should be fiscally commensurate with its current growth decree for Milton to enable more affordable development of the overall community. That motion was seconded by Milton Ward 1 Regional Councillor Colin Best and supported by all members of Council.