Delight Davoli, Ward 1, Grimsby 2022
The village that my grandparents lived in was ransacked and burned by their very own countrymen. My grandfather was sent to a Siberian concentration camp. My grandmother fled with their 2 little ones. The 3 of them eventually left behind a Europe of bullies and enablers when Canada welcomed them after the war ended.
My dad’s career took him into municipal government and he was the Director of Public Works. He often talked about his work at the supper table, with pride, passion and sometimes frustration. But he piqued my interest in local government. Eventually a large part of my professional career was in municipal accounting and auditing as well as being a partner in a public accounting practice, working with businesses and not-for-profit entities here in west Niagara.
Then came my own retirement and I began to wonder what the next chapter would be. I’ve served on several boards, including solving that most famous “bio-digester” thorn. Was there something that I could do that would bring together my family background, my interests, my professional and personal talents and make a difference in my community? And so I decided to run for Council.
What would I like to accomplish?
I believe that the best leaders understand that it’s never about them. Leaders must be selfless, not bullies, think about the larger picture and prepare for what lies over the next mountain.
We need leaders that better understand our Town’s financial situation and have a broader understanding of the local and larger economy. The decisions that a local Council makes has a direct impact on the local business community and on the residents; to the Town’s reputation, as a good place to do business and as an enjoyable place to live. We have and continue to experience huge numbers of baby boomers retiring and the related labour shortage, even with an increase in residents. And we will only get older. How do we prepare for the next move out of all these single family dwellings? Granny suites? Tiny houses? Multi-residences? Which by-laws need updating? Have we planned our recreational facilities to balance and accommodate the diversity of age groups and interests in our residents? Do our future capital plans reflect this?
Our tree canopy has decreased, the wildlife has been displaced and the world is getting warmer. More electric vehicles coming to a garage near you. As a municipality we run the very core of our water, sewer and power infrastructure. Are we prepared for changing weather events, shortages, outages, or cyber-security problems? Does our local power company have the ability to meet this increased demand? Do we encourage our builders and residents to be green in their (re)construction? To preserve, to recycle and to reuse? Should everything be new and paved? We need to prepare as it’s not tomorrow’s problem any longer.
One person alone can’t do it. It truly takes a village! Will you join me on this journey?