Column: Priorities for the Future

In many of our communities, the future is the main topic of conversation.  Where are we going?  What will our villages look like in 10 years?  What do we want our villages to look like in 10 years?  Over the coming weeks and months, these are questions I will be asking you.  I want to know how residents of Manotick, North Gower, Richmond, Kars, etc. see their villages.  My goal is to poll residents on their priorities.  This will help me represent you better in the coming years.  I will be utilizing all methods of communication to get the best results, and I’m going to do my best to make it fun at the same time.

In the spring, I would like to hold some Open Houses throughout Rideau-Goulbourn to further discuss our future and to touch base with residents on the issues that matter most to them.

Manotick History

Ever walked down Manotick Main Street to the south end of the village and wondered why Mahogany Harbour is called Mahogany Harbour?  On Wednesday, February 23rd, local resident Jimmy Potter will explain the story of this beautiful piece of Manotick.  Theevening is presented by the Watson’s Mill and it runs from 7:30-9pm at the Carriage Shed in Dickinson Square.  Admission is $5.  Contact Watson’s Mill at 613-692-6455 for more information.

Manotick & Riverside South Co-operative Nursery Schools

An Open House will take place at the Manotick  Nursery School on March 8th from 5-7pm.  There will also be an open house for the Riverside South location.  It is scheduled for March 9th from 9-11am.  For further information, contact 613-692-2188.

OC Transpo Route Optimization

As you may have heard, OC Transpo tabled potential service changes to our newly created Transit Commission.  The purpose is to find service inefficiencies, reduce costs and restore transit sustainability.  At its current rate, by 2016, OC Transpo would account for a 5% property tax increase if no changes are made.  There are many duplicate routes and milk runs city-wide that are being addressed.  In Richmond and Munster, we have the 283.  Since December, I have been working with a local group made up of transit users to determine how to make the route more efficient with minimal impacts.  We hope to distribute a survey soon to gauge public interest in our bus route and ideas that could lead to increased ridership.  Ultimately, if you do not ride the bus, we’d like to know why you don’t and if you ride the bus, we want your thoughts on the service.  OC Transpo has identified the 283 as a route that will see changes and by being proactive, we can facilitate that change.  In response to over 20% in fare increases over the last four years, these changes will allow us to keep fares from escalating at unaffordable rates.

Barn Dance & Silent Auction

On Saturday, March 5th, the North Gower Cooperative Nursery School is hosting a Barn Dance and Silent Auction at the Alfred Taylor Recreation Centre in North Gower.  This is always a fun event with great prizes and silent auction items.  The whole event is a fundraiser for the Nursery School.  In the silent auction, you can even bid on a round of golf for two with me and A Morning’s Kurt Stoodley at the Ottawa Hunt and Golf Club!  Feel free to contact me at to get your ticket - $15.  My son went to this nursery school last year and my daughter goes this year.  In Rideau-Goulbourn, we are blessed with four great nursery schools in Manotick, North Gower, Richmond, and Munster.

City of Ottawa Civic Events Funding Program

Local not-for-profit organizations such as volunteer-based community or recreation associations are invited to apply for funding to provide one to two-day civic events with free admission that foster civic pride and develop community cohesion. These events are linked to and celebrate a civic/statutory holiday in Ontario (i.e. New Year’s Day, Family Day, Victoria Day, Canada Day, Civic Holiday, Labour Day, Thanksgiving Day), are held in a specific geographic district in Ottawa, and encompass a broad range of activities and family entertainment.

Maximum Allocation: $3,000

Application Deadline: March 23, 2011

Application forms are available at City of Ottawa Client Service Centres or online at  For more information contact 613-580-2424, ext. 26459 or e-mail


As always, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns please email me at or call me at 613-580-2491.  Don’t forget to also visit me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter.  The best way to keep up to date and informed on all issues is by visiting as this site is updated daily.