October 27, 2023 newsletter from Rawlson King, City Councillor for Rideau-Rockcliffe.
A Message from Councillor King
I did not agree with Council approving a revised business and financial plan, along with a $332.6-million debt authority regarding the redevelopment of Lansdowne Park in June 2022 during the last Council Term, since the proposed model was based upon byzantine financing that would require a tremendous amount of new tax-supported debt to pay for improvements and new development, despite previous assurances that any new redevelopment deal would be "revenue neutral" for the City.
With a new $419-million plan for Lansdowne Park before Council for approval this Term, I remain equally convinced that the latest iteration of this project will not be financially sustainable for the City due to the sizable addition of new municipal debt without a guaranteed source of revenue generation for debt servicing. I fear this factor, in combination with the requirement for a dramatic escalation in fiscal performance of the Lansdowne Park limited partnership in order to make the plan affordable is unattainable. Analysis of the new proposed model demonstrates it is even more expensive, still byzantine in its formulation, and works to scale back the City's own commitment to affordable housing by introducing a waiver of the City's own policy requiring 25 per cent of the revenue generated from the sale of public land for private residential use to go to the City’s affordable housing budget.
In the midst of a housing and homelessness emergency, I believe the $3.9 million allocated to affordable housing as proposed in the current plan is an abysmal, insignificant amount in the context of one of the most costly public work projects proposed in the City’s history. In conjunction with other challenges confronting the proposal, which includes inadequate transportation planning and transit options, along with the loss of green space, I am not inclined to support this new plan for Lansdowne Park.
I believe the use of municipal debt on this iteration of the Lansdowne Park plan represents an “opportunity cost” for the City, as more meaningful capital investments using municipal debt could be made in more high priority areas, including affordable housing and transit reliability, which are key Term of Council Priorities.
Notwithstanding my current stance on the revised proposal, I will work with my Council colleagues to determine whether improvements can be made to the current City recommendations, especially concerning affordable housing, that will be deliberated at a Joint Finance and Corporate Services and Planning and Housing Committee meeting next week.
Your Councillor in the Community
It was an honour to introduce Sarah Onyago during Volunteer Ottawa's VOscars ceremony the evening of Oct. 26. Sarah received Volunteer Ottawa's Lifetime Achievement Award for her contributions to celebrating Ottawa's rich cultural tapestry. During the event, Rideau-Rockcliffe residents Shirley Whitford won the Outstanding Senior Volunteer Award and Elizabeth Heatherington won the Mayor's Award for Volunteer Spirit. Congratulations!
I was pleased to attend an event celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Proclamation of the Republic of Türkiye on Oct. 26 with River Councillor Riley Brockington and Esra Demir, Ambassador to the Republic of Türkiye in Ottawa. The same day I also attended an art exhibit and performance at SAW Gallery.
I attended the Embassy Chef Showcase on Oct. 24 supporting the YMCA of Ottawa. The event featured food prepared by multiple diplomatic missions in Ottawa.
I attended a Project Step recognition event at City Hall on Oct. 24, hosted by Mayor Mark Sutcliffe and the United Way Eastern Ontario. Project Step is a community-wide initiative that ensures young people and their families have access to support, treatment, education, and prevention of problematic substance and technology use. Since 2007 and in the face of rising mental health challenges among young people in our community over the past three years, partner organizations have worked tirelessly to deliver addictions counselling, prevention education, and family support in every publicly funded high school and five community-based schools in Ottawa. Click here for more information about the program.
I participated in a housing roundtable on Oct. 23 organized by Ottawa-Vanier MP Mona Fortier. The event included a presentation by the three authors of the National Housing Accord, Michael Brooks, Tim Richter and Dr. Mike P. Moffatt.
Happy to have met Senator Keisal Melissa Peters, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, during a meeting on Oct. 20 with Vincentian diaspora during the Canada CARICOM Summit in Ottawa.
Rideau-Rockcliffe News, Events and Engagement Opportunities
Manor Park Child Care Centre News
Manor Park's Child Care Centre, at 1805 Gaspe Ave., has been selected as one of the 20 in Ottawa to receive the Canada Wide Early Learning and Child Child Care Expansion and Start Up Grant. For more information, please email [email protected] or visit manorpark.ca.
Drop by your local fire station Oct. 27 and 30
Throughout October 2023, Ottawa Fire Services will be distributing reflective bands and flashing lights at select fire stations throughout Ottawa. Please note that even within times listed below, should all station personnel be responding to an emergency call, items will be unavailable. Thank you for your understanding. On Oct. 27 and 30 from 4 to 6 pm, the following urban area stations in and nearby Rideau-Rockcliffe Ward 13 will be open to distribute the safety items:
Click here for more details.
City of Ottawa News, Events, Meetings and Engagement Opportunities
Vigil at Parliament Hill - Oct. 28
Light up the Darkness for the over 200 Israeli children and adults held hostage by Hamas terrorists. This vigil takes place Oct. 28 at 7:30 pm at Parliament Hill. Bring Havdalah candles, Israeli flags, and walk in groups for safety. Security will be present.
Upcoming closure of Laurier Avenue
Laurier Avenue, between Bay Street and Bronson Avenue, will be closed in both directions from 6 am on Monday, October 30 until 10 pm on Monday, November 6. The temporary closure is required to facilitate sewer replacement as part of the
Albert/Queen/Slater/Bronson reconstruction project.
Flu Vaccines are available
As of October 30, all individuals 6 months and older who live, work, or go to school in Ottawa are eligible to get their annual flu vaccine. Over 270 pharmacies across the city and some primary care providers, such as family doctors and nurse practitioner offices, offer the flu vaccine. The flu vaccine can be safely given at the same time as the COVID-19 vaccine. Ottawa Public Health (OPH) will also offer the flu vaccine to children 6 months to under 5 years of age and their families, and individuals without Ontario Health Insurance (OHIP) who are unable to access a flu vaccine through a primary care provider or pharmacy. To book an appointment or find out more about flu vaccine eligibility at OPH clinics please visit www.ottawapublichealth.ca/flu.
Register for recreation and culture winter programs
Inclusive Recreation Programming for Fall/Winter
The City of Ottawa is excited to announce that Inclusive Recreation programming for Winter 2024 will be released on October 30. These classes and activities are tailored to support individuals with disabilities of all ages take part in community recreation. Registration is currently open for Fall programs, and registration for Winter 2024 programs begins November 16. More information and a full list of programs are available for fall aquatics, non-aquatic programs, and PA days.
Reviewing Ottawa's Heritage Register: Volunteer and Outreach Opportunities
Peak leaf and yard waste season is here!
It’s officially peak leaf and yard waste season. Twice a year, in the fall and spring, waste collection operators have until 8 pm to pick up separately set out leaf and yard waste to accommodate the increased volumes of yard waste. Green, black & blue bins and garbage will continue to be picked up as usual between 7 am and 6 pm. Did you know setting out your leaf and yard waste separate from your green bin saves money because it can be composted at the Barnsdale leaf and yard composting pad at the Trail Waste Facility? Setting leaf and yard waste out separately will be required in 2026, as part of the 2026 Residential Curbside Collection Contract. To learn more about our green bin program and leaf and yard waste, visit: Ottawa.ca/greenbin.
Ottawa Public Library News
- Ottawa Public Library wants to hear from you - even if you don't have a library card! Fill out OPL’s survey here and enter to win one of one hundred $50 Visa gift cards! This information will be used to strengthen and improve OPL’s efforts to bring the valuable benefits of the Library to more people in our city. The survey will remain open until Nov. 10.
- All branches of Ottawa Public Library will be closed on Thursday, Nov. 2 for OPL’s biennial employee forum and development session. Online services are always available at BiblioOttawaLibrary.ca. Regular hours will resume Friday, November 3.
- November 2, 2023 - Joint Finance and Corporate Services and Planning and Housing Committee
- November 6, 2023 - Built Heritage Committee
- November 10, 2023 - City Council
For more information, please visit the project webpage here.
Ottawa Police News
25 Officers recognized at Badge Ceremony this week
The Ottawa Police Service hosted a Badge Ceremony on Oct. 26 at which 25 new recruits were welcomed by Chief Eric Stubbs and Ottawa Police Services Board Chair Dr. Gail Beck. Nine of the 25 new officers were born and raised in Ottawa or have close ties to the city, the province or the Maritimes. One recruit is part of the Algonquins of Pikwakanagan First Nation. Others joined OPS from as far away as Lebanon, Iran, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Philippines. They speak English, French, Polish, Croatian, Arabic, Farsi and American sign language. These newest officers have passed their provincial training at the Ontario Police College. They will be in patrol cars throughout the city, starting on Monday, October 30 with their field training officer. For more information about the newest officers, please click here.