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Planned Stouffville Library Expansion for 2013-2014 at Risk

Planned Stouffville Library Expansion for 2013-2014 at Risk

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Published by: Arnold Neufeldt-Fast on Oct 27, 2012
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12/04/2012

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Planned Whitchurch-Stouffville Expansion for 2013-2014 now at riskFrom:
Arnold Neufeldt-Fast
To:
Date
: Thursday, October 25, 2012Dear Mayor and Council,I notice that the 2013 Budget Guidelines & Approval Timetable is now available online for Tuesday's Town Council Meeting, and that approval for the Town
s 2013 budget will bepostponed from January to April 2013.Mention is made of 
pre-approval for must-do 2013 capital projects,
to be identified on Dec.18, 2012. Please remember that in the2012 Capital Budget Forecast (p. 235), $600,000 is budgeted for Library expansion design in 2013. To wait with this large item until the suggesteddeliberation date of April 10 & 11, 2013 would almost surely mean postponement of theexpansion design, and scuttling the expansion until after the next municipal election (Fall 2014),which would bring on further delays.I was at the Library Board Meetings a year ago (Nov. 2011) when Councillor Hilton strategically
 
navigated the budget process to inch up the low per capita spending, and pushed for expansionplans in 2013-14 (not 2012-13) as approved by Councillors Hargrave and Bartley as well.I was at the January 24, 2012 Council Meeting when the 2012 Budget was passed and I heard
 
the words of the mayor re: the library expansion for 2014. I told people what I heard ("as longas the housing market doesn't slow"), and that we could count on a library expansion in 2014,with planning in 2013. Earlier in Fall 2011, I had brought 406 signatures to council for a library
 
expansion, and now went on record to praise the budget, mayor and council (I still have theemails).I was at the Oct. 25, 2011 Budget Public Consultation Meeting when the little boy asked for another
skateboard park
(and the
Mayor's Youth Council
reported as well). The mayor wasclearly moved by the boy's request. But the high school students? After the delegation at thatconsultation, I spoke with the youth council representative in the foyer. She noted how shetravels to the Angus Glen Library (25 min) to do her projects. (She is also interviewed andquoted in Kim Zarzour's library article in the Sun-Tribune in Feb). One year later, the planning for the skateboard park is in high-gear.After a $175,000 fundraising campaign, a further $250,000 will be found in the budget to fulfill the dream of theskateboarders. It's great that the mayor's heart goes out for sports-requests/ projects like this.After six years I now know and can accept that mayor and council do not get excited about thelibrary in the same way as for a skateboard park, arena, ball park etc. Please remember,

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