NewsNow E-Edition January 26, 2023

Candidates were asked four to provide answers to four questions

Browse the answers below from the 2022 municipal election candidates from Grimsby.

Mayor

John Dunstall

John Dunstall

1. Why should I vote for you?

Being a good mayor, in my opinion, means taking the time to understand exactly what the community wants and needs, as well as encouraging dialogue and collaboration in order to develop a unified vision for the community. You must also create the environment in which that vision can be achieved. This includes fostering respectful relationships among all councillors, staff, and community members, as well as encouraging negotiation and collaboration so that we can move forward with decisions and policies that will allow our community to thrive. This is how I intend to make a difference and effect positive change. 

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. Please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future.

Good relationships and sound policy serve a community. Grimsby needs a leader with business acumen, interpersonal skills, and a desire to build relationships with all councillors, staff, and community members. I've spent over 50 years primarily in the hospitality industry, where I've successfully managed teams of up to 100 people. I've had the privilege of serving on Grimsby Town Council for the past eight years. The last four were especially challenging because we lacked unifying leadership. I'd like to take on the responsibility of restoring civility at council chambers, allowing council members to express themselves and disagree without losing decorum.

3. In July 2019. Council voted to initiate an $18 million civil lawsuit to make those responsible for biodigester losses accountable. Should this case be pursued?
Yes or No.
Please explain your thinking.

I have and will continue to give this issue my utmost attention. As this matter is currently the subject of pending litigation, it would be imprudent and inappropriate for me to comment further at this time. 

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Residents have been most vocal about the town's growth and how it affects their quality of life. I share the same concerns about building height, infrastructure, traffic, and parking issues. I've consistently voted against development that conflicts with the community's best interests and worked toward solutions that address issues. Our Zero Vision program is tackling traffic and speeding, we introduced NRT public transportation and approved integrated transit with the Region. As your mayor, a top priority will be to work with the community to update Grimsby's Official Plan with a focus on preserving and improving the town's standard of living.

Jeff Jordan

Jeff Jordan

1. Why should I vote for you?

My philosophy is to put resident’s views and wishes above my own.  I truly want what is best for Grimsby and make myself available at any time to hear resident concerns.  I am committed to following through the hospital build, GO, strengthening heritage protection and the responsible development of Grimsby.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. Please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future.

Due to virtual meetings during the pandemic, decorum and independent thinking of Councillors suffered.  Virtual meetings are difficult to chair when participants feel emboldened behind a screen.  I will continue to call out improper behaviour and seek to update our Procedural By-law to ensure Councillors remain respectful of their role.

3. In July 2019. Council voted to initiate an $18 million civil lawsuit to make those responsible for biodigester losses accountable. Should this case be pursued?
Yes or No.
Please explain your thinking.

Absolutely pursued. No taxpayer is comfortable with $18 million of public money being sunk into a $3.5 million project. Residents deserve accountability from the former Mayor and the affiliated parties.  We need to learn their mistakes and ensure controls are in place to avoid future egregious spending of public funds.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

In speaking with residents, their top concern is the management style being exercised by the CAO and with those who have enabled it.  With our next Council, I support full disclosure of the Third-Party Workplace Investigation Report, alongside a proper review of the CAO’s performance and future with the Town.

Ward 1

Delight Davoli

Delight Davoli

1. Why should I vote for you?

I believe that the best leaders understand that it’s never about them. Leaders must be selfless and always think about how to make the team better. When a team shares a vision, they can accomplish so much. That’s how I’ve lived my life, how we grew our business, and how we solved the “bio-digester”. Vote for someone that recognizes that there is no “I” in team.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. As a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

Good leaders often possess a combination of leadership qualities. However the most successful leaders are able to adapt to different situations, using their diverse set of skills to achieve their goals. My style is democratic. I believe that a leadership style that engages people in the process can boost morale, satisfaction and engagement. My background and experience are truly diverse, focused on problem-solving in a highly technical environment and always professional.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby’s future?

In the short-term, we continue to struggle with development. Specifically how we can fill in pockets and be compatible with the areas around them. Everything else from traffic to parking to drainage, all come with this.
In the short and long-term, climate change. We need to get prepared and have a vision that extends beyond 2026!
Many of us are overwhelmed by a flood of information. There is a lot of confusion and anxiety about what can and can’t be trusted. Council needs to lead with transparency and accountability and to leave the “I” at home.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Residents have continually expressed great concern about our Town’s reputation and vision. They feel that in the past few terms some Councillors acted without respect for the residents and their fellow Councillors. And then didn’t listen, didn’t engage and didn’t accomplish much.
Last election we asked for change. This election we want quality. Let’s raise the bar and elect 9 good people to lead us. Will you join me on this journey?

Brian Drost

Brian Drost chose not to submit answers to the four questions put to candidates nor provide any opinion for the 500 word Open Forum commentary.

Reg Freake

Reg Freake

1. Why should I vote for you?

My constituents tell me I am approachable, I listen and respond accordingly. I will continue to make myself accessible and helpful and do what’s best for Ward 1 and Grimsby. The past 4 years were very disruptive and interrupted progress on several fronts. If the voters elect a smart and progressive council, I would like to work diligently towards fixing what’s broken, build on what worked and develop a renewed vibrant strategy for Grimsby’s future. A few key areas of focus include: protection of our natural environment, appropriate responsible development, efficient use of town assets and improved management.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future?

If re-elected, I will continue to work diligently, transparently, and inclusively to promote community involvement. Most of our residents are disappointed with the poor governance and collaboration over the past term. I will work to achieve stronger partnerships with Council, Town Staff and the Community to build a more vibrant and sustainable town.
Volatility over the past term was undoubtably the BIGGEST negative impact to progress. It was counterproductive and exasperated by the COVID pandemic. We should all learn lessons from the last 4 years. We need a much higher voter turnout to achieve better results in this upcoming election.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

The simple answer is “appropriate, sustainable growth”! What do we want Grimsby to look like in 20 years? That will depend on what we do today.
The first step is to elect and hire people who have ethical aspirations, strong commitments, expertise, and leadership skills to develop a long-term attainable vision. We need to work corroboratively with all levels of the community, government, and qualified partners; and always be diligent and respectful of the source of our revenue (taxpayers) while we plan and build a world-class town which offers quality of life for our residents for today and tomorrow.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

In municipal politics, as in life, honesty is the best policy therefore I must state that the biggest concern I have heard FREQUENTLY in the community relates to the unfortunate side effects of dysfunctionality and uncooperativeness between Councillors and Town Administration. As a result of this issue, many residents, some councillors, and some town staff feel that the town’s reputation has suffered, business never got done effectively, integrity and trust was questionable, and the community’s voice was ignored. My sincere goal would be to overcome this situation with a new council AND regain the trust of our community and staff.

Kevin Ritchie

Kevin Ritchie chose not to submit answers to the four questions put to candidates nor provide any opinion for the 500 word Open Forum commentary.

Ward 2

Dylan Brethour

Dylan Brethour

1. Why should I vote for you?

The main focus I have is to bring a new point of view to council, and to ensure the voices of the community, your voices, are properly represented. 
What I bring to the table is strong interpersonal and negotiation skills from a career in sales, as well as critical thinking and problem solving skills from my work within the scientific community. My experience, skillset, and your input will allow me to make informed decisions for the better of our community.
As such, I invite all residents to contact me with their thoughts, concerns, and suggestions. 

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. As a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

I always conduct myself in a professional manner within a working environment, and can put my emotions and personal beliefs aside when necessary. With the last council it seemed that this was not always the case, leading to the real issues being overshadowed by personal quarrels at times. 
Further, I have plenty of experience mediating discussions to keep conversations relevant, which will ensure that council can make decisions efficiently and pragmatically. Being able to handle issues in such a manner will allow more time for other concerns of the community to be properly investigated.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby’s future?

To me, the most impactful matter facing Grimsby’s future is its continued growth and development. 
I think it's important to ensure that developments are designed in a way that not only grows our community, but also maintains our heritage and green space. This growth needs to be sustainable, both environmentally and economically, and include community programs such as affordable access to youth, arts, and athletic programs as well as initiatives to help small businesses thrive. 
This will allow Grimsby to maintain its small town feel while also drawing in new families as it continues to grow.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

The main concern that residents have brought forward is the possibility of overdevelopment and its impacts on the community. This includes concerns regarding the loss of green spaces, losing historic aspects of the town, and issues with road safety and traffic control. 
To deal with these concerns I think that it’s important for council to work with experts, and with plenty of input from the community, to develop a clear plan and vision for the town. As for immediate action, traffic calming measures could be implemented in areas such as near schools and on mountain accesses. 

Don Howe

Don Howe

1. Why should I vote for you?

You should vote for me, Don Howe, if you want someone who has experience, maturity, ethics, and is fiscally focused. Having seen how the current council has performed, there needs to be a change, and I bring the ability to be part of that change. I bring the willingness, determination, and hard work to make it change for the better, leaving it in a much better position for future councils.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout.
If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future?
If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

I would bring a knowledge of the working of council that has not been evident in the last four years. I would bring a respect for the important work of council and how that is arrived at. I would not be a distraction but a contributor. My vote would always be my vote and not part of a group but as member of council. I feel we need to return to a committee-based governance model to improve flow of information with staff, administration and taxpayers.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

If Grimsby wants to be the town that most of us want it to be, the direction of council must change. It must become a council that works together for the betterment, both short and long term, of Grimsby. Development and growth are inevitable but we need to ensure that Grimsby maintains the features that make it a unique and wonderful place to live in and raise a family. If things do not change, other levels of government will be watching and questioning - can Grimsby run its own business. I say we can and we can do it better.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Foremost would be the type of growth and developments being proposed for Grimsby. People are concerned about the face of the town being changed by towers, loss of green space, traffic, and parking issues. Unfortunately, the upper levels of government are mandating much of what may be built and we are forced live within those mandates. BUT we can give it a Grimsby touch; we can put Grimsby first while negotiating with builders; we can expect some wins. The charm of Grimsby is reflected in its mix of streetscapes and services provided and we need to ensure that these remain.

Carol Ricciuto

Carol Ricciuto

Why should I vote for you?
 
Although new to politics as such, my experience with the provincial and federal governments, regarding my licensing for Wildlife Rehabilitation for Raptors et al, has given me an introduction to the slow workings of the system and the internal misconceptions by each section of politics.
I have lived in Grimsby for 40+ years, been a part of the community through guiding, soccer, and education seminars on the Canadian Space Program and Birds in our Eco-System. My respect for the environment is paramount.
I want to see our town keep its identity and still flourish.
 
2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout.
If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future?
If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?
 
I have dealt with people from all walks of life in the past 27 years through my work as a wildlife rehabilitator. People react to respect given to them and, for the most part, are inherently good.
I would use this experience within the council but would not back down to intimidation nor to lies.
The previous council – at least the G5 – were only out for themselves.
I firmly believe and would fully endorse the following quote:
“A council person is a representative of all of the people, not a champion of a special interest group or a narrow perspective.”
 
3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?
 
Regaining the trust of the council for the people of Grimsby.
That being, for the past 8 years our councils have been ones of disappointment.
The last council especially.
Not all people on the council, but the majority.
And that lead to the inability to work together for the town.
Without the trust in our council to do their jobs to the best of their ability, for the town, it leads to disgruntled citizens and a town broken into factions fighting amongst themselves.
Fix the trust, calm the town and then the working together begins.
 
4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?
 
There are equally two concerns I am hearing about.
The environment and the fast building of unaffordable housing.
We’ve had developers remove orchards, vineyards and strawberry fields that once drew people from all over to our town. They build homes that only people coming from large cities can afford, leaving our young to move in with family or exit the town in favour of affordable housing.
We don’t need to become an extension of another city.
We need to slow down the building and look to the greening to make our town an example of smart growth.

Dave Sharpe

Why should I vote for you?

Municipal government decisions have the greatest influence on our daily lives. As someone who grew up here, lives, plays, and works in Grimsby, I want to see a strong, healthy, and economically vibrant community that grows responsibly while retaining its amazing character for our children and theirs. My track record speaks for itself: I've worked hard to preserve our small-town character, the environment, our natural spaces, as well as fiscal responsibility. I've strived to maintain ongoing dialogue with residents, whether through social media, phone, email, or in person, both to inform and listen to ensure I'm working toward their interests.

2. 2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

This term of council was certainly more challenging than it needed to be. While I recognize that personality clashes on council were less than ideal, I am proud of the many positive outcomes we achieved together as a council. Moving forward, we need to focus on establishing a more positive working culture. I've personally learned a lot in my four years as a councillor and I will always strive to be better. What will not change is my commitment to fulfilling the promises I made to the residents I represent, such as responsible growth and adequate parking.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

As we work toward a brighter future, with housing solutions, a vibrant downtown, the GO Train, etc, responsible planning is what’s most important. Our decisions must respect the Town's character and address the challenges that come with growth, like parking, traffic, and infrastructure like roads, sewers, and public transit. Grimsby's Downtown revitalization initiative is a perfect example. We’re investing in improvements that will make downtown more accessible and inviting, but like in chess, every change has ripple effects. As your Ward 2 councillor, I’ll continue working hard to ensure the concerns of businesses and residents are heard and taken seriously.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Parking, Traffic, and Speeding: I recently presented a resolution for a temporary fix to address parking issues downtown while we work toward long-term solutions. I've always insisted that new developments provide at least the minimum required parking. In fact, since I was elected, we haven't approved any developments with less than 100% parking. Traffic speeds on residential streets is another prominent topic. To address this, we initiated a flexible road sign program that is showing success and could be expanded to other areas. I was integral in getting that program started and will continue to work for traffic calming solutions.

Lianne Vardy

1. Why should I vote for you?

Grimsby needs forward-looking Councillors with sound judgement who will effectively and responsibly oversee its management and growth. You already know I am a strong advocate for Ward 2 and I reach out to residents in the other wards as well. You know that I’m principled and stand up for what is important to residents even in the face of efforts to the contrary. I will continue to encourage greater citizen engagement and the return of standing committees with citizen representation. My interest is in building Grimsby’s future together.

2. 2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future?
If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

Debate should always be about issues and opinions and should never be personal. I have always challenged behaviour that I found to be disrespectful or hurtful - its in my DNA. I will continue to support the mayor and fellow councillors to foster a more civil dynamic and dialogue at Council - one that is productive and resident-focused - and I remain committed to working positively with my colleagues. Grimsby residents deserve nothing less.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby’s future?

Managing growth and all it entails in a way that strengthens and sustains our community and natural resources. We have the duality of being both urban and rural.  We have limited room for expansion and are being forced by provincial legislation to intensify, even in areas where it will negatively affect existing neighbourhoods. Our infrastructure is being pressed to its limits causing problems  around traffic and parking. Costs due to the impacts of climate change on our building assets and infrastructure are increasing.  And finally, the need for greener development and protecting and increasing our tree canopy. 

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Issues surrounding growth. We need safer and slower streets and getting trucks off Mountain St.  I will advocate for speed humps and fast tracking the Bartlett extension. We need developers to help build our vision of community not just buildings and I will introduce bylaws for greener architecture and responsible/respectful growth. Wildlife is a concern on the mountain and I will press for an early consultation on hunting and bylaws that recognize the differing needs and values of those above and below the escarpment.  Expanding my Carolinian tree initiative will make a greener Grimsby and increase our tree canopy.

Ward 3

Veronica Charrois

Veronica Charrois

1. Why should I vote for you?

Having lived in Grimsby for 35 years, I’ve noticed a recent trend toward councils becoming saturated by individuals with a business-only agenda. Developers and investors have benefited, while residents who moved here for a safe, family-friendly community have been ignored. I have worked incredibly hard to improve our community from a resident capacity but can accomplish much more with a vote at Council.
I want to move towards a safe, family-friendly, and community-focused Grimsby. I am also an independent candidate, am not financially backed by anyone, and live and work in the ward I hope to represent.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

This is where my mediation training comes in handy. A new council will need to establish a basic level of trust and understanding that we are all working in the best interest of the Town. It would benefit the newly elected Council to come together to discuss their goals and vision for the Town. If we have cohesiveness and clear end-goals, then the path to get there doesn’t matter as much, as long as we get there in the end. We can disagree without it becoming a personal attack.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

The most important matter facing Grimsby’s future is the financial bleeding occurring below the surface. Despite our high taxes, we have yet to see it come back in essential items such as infrastructure improvements.
To make matters worse, we will continue to pay for the failed biodigester project and employee severances for years to come. We need a solid vision and a group of intelligent people with a genuine interest in getting this Town back on track. I’ve carefully followed and researched all of the pressing issues over this council term, and I am ready to get to work.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents, and how would you deal with it?

What I keep hearing is the frustration caused by irresponsible developments popping up in areas they are not zoned for in the Town’s Official Plan. We know that growth is to be expected, but I feel a new council can be firmer in terms of what we require of developers. I would like to see an increase in development charges and potential accountability measures to ensure they are also adequately paying for infrastructure demands and working in good faith.

Ryan Day

Ryan Day

1. Why should I vote for you?

Residents of Grimsby should vote for someone that cares as much about Grimsby’s future as they do. Someone they can rely on to answer their questions, know their concerns and get back to them. Make the right decisions for the future. Be that voice they can connect with. Someone that understands by-laws, budgets, roads, construction, development, parks, finance, procurement, inter-municipal relations and has sat on committees. Good leadership and understanding, how to work on a good team, and bring that good leadership. These are the things I can help Grimsby with while being a great Councillor to our Constituents.

2. 2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

Someone’s Conduct can affect good and bad change in any office. I would Foster good change and that comes from being respectful and listening to one another. No self-agendas. Understanding the task at hand and the concerns brought forward. We work as a team, not as an individual, using different skills and knowledge from various backgrounds so Council can collectively make it better for all of us.

3. What is the most Important matter facing Grimsby’s Future.

Grimsby is facing a time where there is much uncertainty. There are concerns about Council, development, and the overall busyness of the town. What is Grimsby going to look like in 10 years, another 4 years? The town is changing right in front of us. It’s not what it used to be and for some, it’s concerning. For others, development has opened the door for new residents to live here. So the important matter facing Grimsby’s future is what the future of Grimsby will actually look like. I believe with good decisions we can make it what we want it to be.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Development is still a top concern with residents. Building is happening everywhere, wherever there’s a space, there’s an opportunity. We need to face this with negotiation. Make sure that what is being built is what the residents want to see. Low rise heritage looking design downtown. With more homes and residents the concerns of increasing traffic on our streets is a contributing factor. For traffic and design we may need to re-evaluate and makes changes, where feasible, to keep traffic moving and our community safe.

Joanne Johnston

Joanne Johnston

1. Why should I vote for you?

Grimsby is our home and our Community.
For four years we've painfully watched a Council that is dysfunctional because of petty divisions. 
It is not about me, it's about you.
I will not be part of any G5 or G4.
Council needs to start listening to residents again, and represent their concerns.
I have proven history of being an independent Councillor.
I will always vote for what I think is in the best interest of the residents of ward 3 and Grimsby.
My character and maturity speak for themselves.
I will be your voice.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

Teamwork!
Let's stop the bullying and treat each other with respect.
I didn't always agree with my colleagues when I was on Council and that's okay.
But I always acted civilly and treated those I disagreed with with respect.
I'll work with all Council for a common end...improving our Community.
There were many new members to this Council, I,no doubt that was part of the problem.
Civility needs to be restored on Grimsby Council,
I have the experience that will bring that stability on Council..moving forward.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby’s future?

With the Province pushing intensification, managing development is important.
We must protect our heritage, Grimsby Beach, the hospital neighbourhood, and our downtown.
Growth and heritage do not need to be in conflict with each other.
Growth needs to be appropriate with neighbourhoods and not sacrifice our heritage buildings.
Heritage buildings add value to a community and should be protected.
We cannot stop growth but we can work with staff, using our Official Plan to manage growth so it reflects the type of community we want to be.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Council and their CAO are the top concern. Residents should be proud of Council, not embarrassed by their meetings,
It's all about G5 vs the G4 when it should be about residents, they just don't listen.
Who is speaking for us, the people who voted you into office.
I've seen so many good staff leave the Town of Grimsby.
Yes Grimsby is growing, it's in our best interest to attract excellent planners, engineers, and other staff to make sure we grow properly.
Council needs to listen to residents, make them the focus of decision making.

Jennifer Korstanje

Jennifer Korstanje

1. Why should I vote for you?

This October, Grimsby will elect nine residents who will have the power to make decisions that impact every resident’s life. We can choose to elect a team that acts with integrity, protects its citizens and brings value to us as constituents. As a local resident raised in Ward 3 and continuing to reside within its boundaries, I have a true understanding of how important it is to have leadership that reflects us as a community. Ward 3 deserves to have a voice protecting the safety and security of our neighbourhoods, preserves our public spaces and is proactive at having future generations inherit our heritage and the core values it teaches (such as the Co-op housing adventure)

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?
Holding public office is a privilege that is bestowed on just a handful of people entrusted to act in the public’s interest. I believe it is a sacred trust not to be broken. My behaviour inside and out of council will be one where common ground is sought, official codes of conduct are adhered to rigorously, where personal interests are set aside for public interest and where integrity, accountability and responsible government are the precedent set at Grimsby Town Council.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

Grimsby is under a lot of pressure to grow and with that comes real risks to the residents that must be carefully managed. Risks that property taxes will continue to increase at unsustainable levels pushing people out of our community, risks that user and delivery fees will increase, risks that we lose our cherished public spaces and our heritage character. It is imperative that we progress by putting residents at the heart of the decision making and I will do that with every opportunity.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Whether people are new to Grimsby or they have been here for generations, they are concerned about unsustainable tax increases, unsafe increase in traffic and public safety, preservation of public spaces and the heritage of our town that our senior generations so carefully preserved for us. Residents are also concerned about the loss of small details in our community, the simple things we have seen disappear such as the voice on the other end of the telephone in our facilities.
I would deal with this by treating the role of Councillor with the gravity it deserves, by listening to residents, leading with empathy, by doing my homework and looking for creative solutions. I will strive to earn your trust and respect by having your voice at the forefront, ensuring no one in our community gets left behind.

Duncan Storey

Duncan Storey

1. Why should I vote for you?

Grimsby is at a critical juncture in its evolution as a community and nothing is more important to me than the constituents I will represent.
Future development is inevitable, and as a multi-generational Grimsbonian, I will work to preserve our heritage while helping to sustain a community of which we can all be proud.
Grimsby residents have expressed an appetite for change, and the people are hungry. 
When Ward 3 voters cast their ballot this October, they’ll want to select a candidate that is willing to fulfill their vision.
Vote for me — because I love Grimsby as much as you.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

I will lead by example and refrain from filing Integrity Commissioner investigations for minor code of conduct violations. The IC billables are in the neighbourhood of ~$350/h and the reports end up costing ~$5,000-$25,000+ per. In 2021 IC reports cost taxpayers over $72,000, a direct result of the negative feedback loop of vindictiveness toward one another on council. 100% of the complainants chose to neglect filing an inexpensive informal complaint.
In short, I won’t partake in a costly tattle-tale culture that we witnessed over the last 4 years. 

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

If asked in September of 2019, I would have answered the obvious — overdevelopment. It should be.
I truly feel the most important matter facing Grimsbonians and Canadians alike is the division created as a result of the restrictions and intolerance surrounding the pandemic response. 
Grimsby families, friends, co-workers and beyond were torn apart. The socially accepted and overt discrimination toward our neighbours based on personal and lawful medical choices is by far the most important issue.
With cold and flu season around the corner, Grimsby’s future is faced with the possibility of more devastating restrictions for businesses and residents. 

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

By a landslide, the most common concern on the campaign trail is “The G5”. I ask “What don’t you like about the G5?” and the usual response is a variation of “they’re always in the paper”.
In my opinion, the most important issue is development and being a Grimsby lifer, I will be a strong voice on Town Council when representing the people. There are 4 open seats for new councillors and Grimsby residents to start fresh. The candidates that pledge allegiance to the mysterious and authorless “Grimsby Citizens for Responsible Governance” political influence group should cause concern for voters.

Ward 4

Jacob Baradziej

Jacob Baradziej

1. Why should I vote for you?

As a born and raised Grimsby resident, I too care deeply about Grimsby’s future. This election may be Grimsby’s most important. The next council’s policy decisions have the potential to change our town forever. Your voice needs competent representation in council chambers, capable of working efficiently to ensure the Grimsby we all know and love is preserved and improved upon.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

The current council’s theatrics needs to be replaced with professionalism and maturity. They are wasting our resources arguing minor indifferences with the integrity commissioner, and fighting losing battles with the Ontario Land Tribunal. If elected, I will work with council to resolve issues and foster a positive working environment. I will utilize negotiation over expensive legal battles when possible.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

Development & Infrastructure, We need to ensure growth is done in pace with our traffic and infrastructures threshold. With the go-train coming in the near future, and densification goals of superior governments, we need to find ways to meet these goals, and provide these amenities to Grimsby without sacrificing the heritage of our town or overloading our current infrastructure and public services.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Parking, I’m hearing a lot about parking from ward 4 residents. I would increase the minimum parking requirements for future developments, as well as look to a public-private partnership to provide public parking to Grimsby on the lake.

Nick DiFlavio

Nick DiFlavio

1. Why should I vote for you?

I believe that each of us has a civic duty to make our community better in any way we can. My service to Grimsby as a member of Council for 15+ years, as well as a lifetime of service to the community helping numerous organizations throughout West Niagara as a coach, volunteer, and board member, make me the right person for the job.
Whether they are an incumbent or a newcomer, I encourage all voters to examine each candidate’s record of service to our community. Volunteerism is where service begins, and my record of service to our community is unparalleled.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

Since my appointment to Council a few months ago, I have done my best to role-model civility and thoughtfulness during Council meetings.
As a member of Town Council I realize that we aren’t always going to be unanimous in our decisions, but the discussions should always be relevant to the question at hand and at the end of the day, we should respect each individual.
Whether in Council meetings or on social media, Grimsby’s “Friendly by Nature” slogan seems to have disappeared the last few years. I hope that we can reunite Council and start to heal the community.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

Taxation: There has been a considerable rise in property taxes and water rates over the last term of Council. We need to guarantee that seniors and lower-income earners aren’t priced out of our community by rising taxes.
Parks: While chair of planning, I championed and helped design Grimsby’s waterfront trail giving all residents access to our beautiful beaches and waterfront. I want to see this important project completed so that it can be enjoyed for generations to come.
Development: Development must be controlled and appropriate for the neighbourhood, and in line with our Official Plan and Zoning Bylaws.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

There has been a great deal of concern about the conduct of Council over the past term. I will do my best to bring back a Council that is thoughtful and civil.
There has been a severe reduction in citizen involvement. Grimsby is full of talented and experienced people. My first action as a new Council member will be bring back standing committees with laymembers. I have seen firsthand how having members of the public on committees like planning and recreation is important, and I would also move to add laymembers to finance and public works committees.

Baraa Fattal

Baraa Fattal

1. Why should I vote for you?

I have all the skills, experience, and motivation required to help our beautiful town move in the right direction!  I'm confident that I will make an immediate impact on our town and have already outlined my first 100 day plan to do so! I will work with the new council team to ensure our budget is finalized to ensure we keep the tax increase well below inflation. I will review upcoming developments to ensure that we have a controlled growth approach with proper parking and setbacks to ensure we protect the existing communities within our town!

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

With over 6 years of experience in negotiating international contracts of 1million$+,  I have grown to work extremely well in teams and achieve goals through cooperation! The shortcomings of the current council are centred around the lack of accountability and the lack of integrity. I will make sure to hold my fellow councillors accountable for their actions while also being held accountable by the wonderful residents of my ward (4). I moved to Grimsby from Mississauga to ensure I could build a prosperous future for my daughters and I will not let our beautiful town turn into another "Mississauga".

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

From speaking to residents of my ward I have learned that Grimsby is headed down a very dark path of overdevelopment. A path filled with skyrocketing crime rates, the complete decimation of our environment, the destruction of our town's economy, and the eventual loss of the beauty that Grimsby has to offer. In my first 100 days of joining the council, I will review upcoming developments to ensure we have a controlled growth approach with proper parking and setbacks. I will do everything in my power to ensure we protect the existing communities within our great town!

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

From speaking to residents of my ward (4), I have learned that their main concerns revolve around the rising crime rate, overdevelopment, and the unneeded complexity of getting permits for small home improvements (i.e. decks). I have also had residents express their concerns about the lack of diversity in the Grimsby city council. However, I was surprised to find that not a single resident of ward 4, that I had spoken to, approved of the current council. I will continue to do my best to meet with every resident of ward 4 to ensure I hear everyone's concerns! I would also like to add my contact info in case anyone would like to reach out to me, +1 (416) 824 5224 - em@baraa-co.com

Jim Howden

Jim Howden

Why should I vote for you?

I am a professional accountant and a retired senior executive of an international bank. I have been involved with many local community organizations. I understand the governance process and understand that Council sets policy and Senior Management implements it. I know how to set realistic policies for organizations and their employees.
I understand that local government cannot operate like a for-profit business where specific markets are targeted. In government, all services must be available to all residents equally and fairly. There can be no discrimination. This is important to me.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

Voters can trust me to have the qualities and competence to only engage in conduct that reflects positively on Council, the Mayor and the Town. My character traits include tolerance and self-control. Certainly, there will be no angry outbursts.
I will stress to my fellow council members that reputation is important to the implementation of good policy and bad behaviour by any member of Council reflects poorly on everyone. Employees have a choice where they can work and the importance of a properly functioning council cannot be overstated.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby’s future?

The most important matter facing Grimsby is electing a Council that is able think ahead 10 or 20 years and not get bogged down in day-to-day operational issues. The population of Grimsby has doubled over the last thirty years and evidence suggests that growth will continue. For example, there will likely be explosive growth around the proposed Go-Station.
It may be difficult for the Town to keep up with the expansion of community services to handle the growth. Grimsby needs a council that is up to this task.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

The conduct of current Council seems to be discussed frequently. Exceptions to zoning by-laws ranks as the top concern. Residents are frustrated with Councils inability to push back against re-zoning applications. If elected, I will encourage council to harden its resistance to zoning change proposals in low and medium density residential areas and to ensure our zoning by-laws are best in class. We need the ability to win at the Ontario Land Tribunal.
Speed on our residential streets is a concern. I would propose that the speed be reduced to 40km on all residential streets.

Len Stack

Len Stack

Why should I vote for you?

I will openly and honestly represent the constituents of Grimsby Ward 4 always keeping in mind their best interests and those of Grimsby at large. I am determined to provide “excellence in leadership through service and commitment” to the constituents of Ward 4. 
I am a retired educator and a past St. Catharines City Councillor Port Dalhousie Ward 6 for two terms. I come to you with the time, the energy and the experience to serve my constituents to the best of my ability. There is no better way to give back to your community than to serve on your local town Council. It is my hope that I will win your confidence and be granted the privilege to serve you.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

I am a positive minded individual and I was raised to always conduct myself in a courteous and professional manner. I believe in open dialogue and inclusive decision making. We all bring our own thoughts to the table but we must learn to always remain respectful of differences of opinion. We need to work together to discover commonalities that will assist us in fostering “good will” among us as leaders and as citizens. As leaders we have the responsibility to demonstrate positive leadership skills that will serve as role models to our community. 
These skills lead to affecting necessary changes.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby’s future?

The most important matter facing Grimsby’s future is the establishment of a Council of Leaders who acknowledge their responsibility to SERVE the citizens of Grimsby to his/her best ability. Without strong and civil leadership, it is difficult to foster growth and prosperity.
There are many vital issues facing the new Grimsby Council and the newly elected Councillors must be equipped with the intelligence and willingness to carry on debate with a respectful and congenial attitude that will result in positive decision making that will in turn benefit all the citizens of Grimsby. 
This implies establishing a leadership tone of mutual respect and tolerance for a difference of opinion.

4. 4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

It’s a little premature to respond in any depth to this question. The one concern I hear repeatedly is the lack of co-operation and effective decision making among the councillors and the inability or lack of willingness to debate issues with a strong sense of respect for differences of opinion.
As elected officials, we need to be prepared to serve our community as role models demonstrating courteous and respectful dialogue inside and outside of the Council Chambres. We do not always have to agree but a tone of mutual respect should be present at all times if effective and legitimate decision making is to take place.
Our constituents demand that their local leaders behave in a respectful manner keeping in mind that SERVICE is his/her major role as a Councillor.

Frank Trivieri

Frank Trivieri

Why should I vote for you?

I care about Grimsby we have called it home since 2000. Josie and I have had the great fortune to raise our family here. The town is rapidly growing and that growth creates challenges that need to be addressed. 
I have worked with many cultures throughout my career. Despite language or cultural differences, I was always successful communicating with clients and partners.
Communication will be the keystone to my being a councillor and I will commit to working with all parties in Grimsby to ensure it remains a place to raise a happy healthy family!

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

I have no agenda! I intend to bring a level of professionalism and curiosity to the position of councillor. I will impart and demand respectful discourse in and out of the council chamber. This is the very least we can do for Grimsby and it’s citizens.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

Ensuring that infrastructure and services are keeping up with the fast pace of growth, while working to maintain or lower taxes.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

The main issue I hear about is the disfunction in the current council. People are disappointed with the antics they have witnessed these last four years. Many feel that personal agendas are taking precedent over the business of the town.
I think “Committee of the Whole” was a big factor in this. Grimsby is rich with people who have expertise in all matters relating to operating the town successfully. I am in favour of returning to a regular council and to re-establish the committee system and working with the experts at large.
Crime also seems on the upswing. With a reasonably large NRP detachment in the town, I would like to work with them to establish prevention programs while increasing their presence in town.

Nameer Rahman

Nameer Rahman

Why should I vote for you?

I am looking to bring transparency and fiscal accountability back to city hall and directly
represent the interests of Grimsby residents. Above all, I hope to make Grimsby the best
place it can be for my family and yours. This can only be done when residents, elected
representatives and town officials are all on the same page in terms of priorities and
direction. So if you’re looking for someone who is qualified, committed and passionate for
the job at hand and who will stand up for you, then vote Nameer Rahman.

2. The last term of council was considerably volatile throughout. If you are an incumbent, please outline the impact of your role and what you may, or may not, do differently in the future? If you are a new candidate, how would your conduct affect change on the new council?

What I hope to bring to council is a principle-based approach revolving around
professionalism and maturity that focuses on the issues and their potential impacts on our
community. In addition, as someone who frequently works in environments with strongly
conflicting stakeholders, I hope to bring my ability to craft compromises as means of
bringing stability to council. That being said, ultimately for there to be stability on council, all
the elected members need to make their individual commitment to ensuring council works
as smoothly as possible and in the interest of the community.

3. What is the most important matter facing Grimsby's future?

Grimsby, faces challenges in charting out its future and striking the right balance between
developers that want to turn Grimsby into a (Burlington style) “destination” and residents
who want it to remain a “home”. It’s important that the council continue to press for the
completion of the West Lincoln Memorial Hospital as well as the long-promised Grimsby GO
station. Given the historical mismanagement of Grimsby’s assets and resources, I intend to
bring a “value for money” approach to ensure that Grimsby residents get the best “bang for
buck” for its tax dollars and expenditures.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Other than the issues around a dysfunctional council, a lot of people are still concerned
about the development in Grimsby and what it will look like in a few years. Many people feel
they have been left out of the conversation, and are instead involved on an ad-hoc basis, or
based on neighbourhood groups concerned about particular development options. Ideally
future growth plan options would be developed by town staff, but a prevailing option would
be decided by residents, giving town council the “social license” to approve/deny/fight/litigate
development options in accordance with the plan.

Regional Councillor

Wayne Fertich

Wayne Fertich

1. Why should I vote for you?

Regional Councillor is a unique position.  They represent both their community's and the Region's best interests. I have always taken the opportunity to advance Grimsby's interests.
Regional priorities in this term were the Canada Summer games, my peers electing me as the Vice Chair of the newly formed Niagara Region Transit Commission, and the vice Chair of the Public Works Committee. The importance of these roles is very advantageous for Grimsby as well as representation for the smaller municipalities.  We need to be at the table at least for the next four years.
 
2. A significant amount of our tax bill goes toward policing -- do you believe Niagara West is adequately covered by Niagara Regional Police Services?

I do believe that we are covered by the Niagara Regional Police Services adequately.  When called upon they are always available. 
 
3. Are you in favour of expanding urban boundaries in Niagara to accommodate development?

I am in favour of expanding the urban boundaries in Niagara to accommodate development.  But I am not in favour of expansion into the Green Belt or rezoning of good agricultural  lands..  The new Official Plan has taken care 
of that.  The most concerning issue with west Lincoln's expansion is to make sure the infrastructure is in place including the Bartlett extension for the traffic issues.   Municipalities MUST look at using infill lands first.
 
4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Grimsby has to do it's best to maintain and enhance its ability to be a liveable community.  we have our new Regional Official Plan which will define growth in our community.  As Vice Chair of the Niagara Region Transit Commission, I am working to deliver a seamless transportation system within our Region, and with links to Go Transit to insure easier movement. I will continue to press for the Bartlett extension up the escarpment.  We three Regional Councillors from West Niagara have convinced the Region to put aside one million dollars to begin the Environmental Assessment for the project.

Michelle Seaborn

Michelle Seaborn

1. Why should I vote for you?

My husband and I have lived on the Grimsby escarpment for 34 years and I have a strong background in agriculture and my years running the farmers market is testament to my agribusiness background. I enjoyed my eight years on Grimsby council, working on committees and boards, and the community work that came with it. I am now ready to take my experience to the regional level. I look forward to the challenges of working with a large group of like-minded people to bring the best possible outcome to Grimsby.

2. A significant amount of our tax bill goes toward policing -- do you believe Niagara West is adequately covered by Niagara Regional Police Services?

The three communities that make up Niagara West have traffic concerns (speeding, reckless driving, thefts, vandalism, heavy truck traffic on escarpment roads), personal property damage and break ins are the main complaints. The same area has fewer crimes against people than in the larger municipalities such as St. Catharines, Welland, and Niagara Falls. However, our area can be plagued with long wait times with an understaffed police force, especially on the night shifts. When lack of service interferes with human safety, then we are not adequately covered.

3. Are you in favour of expanding urban boundaries in Niagara to accommodate development?

The Region is looking to accommodate 694,000 people by 2051, about 200,000 more people than what currently live in the region. To accomplish this there needs to be initiative-taking management to ensure sufficient housing, infrastructure, public service facilities and employment opportunities. This will require higher densities to protect and enhance rural areas and infilling that compliments the existing street scape.
The Region has identified municipalities that have space for growth. Some municipalities have no choice but to expand their urban boundaries, but caution should be exercised to maintain the wetlands and natural ecosystems, preserving farmland, and preventing urban sprawl.

4. What are you hearing is the top concern of residents and how would you deal with it?

Two issues come to mind. Taxes need to be kept to minimal increases, justifiable costs. Lately residents, especially those along Mountain Street are concerned about unsafe traffic conditions leading to serious accidents due to excessive speed and heavy truck traffic. We need to revisit an alternative route which should not be the Bartlett Ave which not only destroys a huge amount of ecologically important land but runs right through an area where our seniors live. Re-routing truck traffic to Victoria may still be the best alternative for the area.

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