Thanks to all who took the time to send us your thoughts on what the Town should do at budget time. Not surprisingly, many people agreed that Emily Street and the Wellington Street Bridge were high priorities. As some pointed out St. Marys is getting bigger and roads and bridges should be in a first class condition because of heavy use in the future.
As far as stand alone issues, here are some ideas that were submitted.
Repair and annual maintenance of the Grand Trunk Trail including painting of the Emily Street bridge and the Sarnia Bridge should be a top priority.
Sidewalks should be leveled and straightened for safety reasons especially for seniors using walkers and motorized scooters.
The Town collect leaves for seniors who cannot do it. They should have a vacuum truck like they do in Mitchell and Woodstock, which only takes one driver, and this would save money over hiring a contractor to do it.
More emphasis should be placed on tourism including the Town purchasing paddle boats and canoes and hiring a student to run such a business.
The town should have a kiosk outside the Town Hall to welcome tourists in the summer. The Town should pave Queen Street between Cain and Charles Streets.
There were some who thought that the Town made the right decision in switching to the Stratford Police. One person said that the last time we had good policing in town was when we had our own police department.
However, the two big issues for people in the survey were the Hall of Fame and the Library expansion.
There were some comments that the Town should not spend an “excessive” amount for Cadzow Park.
The Hall of Fame is split between the “for” and “against”. Some see it as a great potential for tourism and should be utilized more than just at Induction Weekend. The other half see it as a waste of taxpayer’s s money with the comments that the Hall should raise their own money or let the rich athletes support it.
As far as the Library is concerned there are not too many in support of spending $5.2 million on the Library. The arguments against include changing the “structure” of the building could change the heritage nature of the building, the building is good as is and may just need improvements for accessibility or that they should share a space with the Friendship Centre or West Ward School. There were some who said that if such a large amount had to be spent, it should be done over a number of years. However, the vast amount like the Library as is and think it should not be changed.