Ontario Investing in Waterloo Region TownshipsPublished on February 03, 2020
Government Provides Additional Funding to Deliver Smarter Local Services
NEWS January 31, 2020
Ontario is providing funding to 27 joint projects that will help over 130 small and rural municipalities find better, more efficient ways to operate and serve their residents. In Waterloo Region, the Township of Wilmot has received support to lead a joint service review with the Township of Woolwich, Township of Wellesley, and the Township of North Dumfries.
KPMG LLP is undertaking a Joint Service Delivery Review on behalf of the four Townships. This first phase of a more comprehensive review will analyze what and how each municipality performs in five areas: Fire Services, Emergency Management, Library Services, IT Services and Corporate Communications. Through this project KPMG will identify opportunities for sustainable approaches on how these services are delivered, what level of service may be most appropriate and suggested priorities. The service review concludes with advice and recommendations on how to implement new, innovative and leading service delivery models.
The Provincial Government has challenged the broader public sector to find efficiencies and improve services with the overall objective of lowering costs and reducing the burden on ratepayers. The Townships are looking to balance the desire for further efficiencies with stakeholder expectations.
At the 2020 Rural Ontario Municipal Association (ROMA) conference, Steve Clark, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, announced an initial investment of up to $2.6 million through the Municipal Modernization Program to help municipalities identify opportunities for shared services and modernize service delivery.
“I’m pleased that our townships are proactively working together to find more cost-effective ways to operate and deliver better services for local taxpayers,” said Kitchener-Conestoga MPP Mike Harris. “This announcement illustrates our government’s commitment again to help small and rural communities modernize and fuel economic growth.”
Building on Ontario’s previous investment through the Municipal Modernization Program in March 2019, an additional $143 million application-based program is open to Ontario’s 405 small and rural municipalities.
This initiative will help Wilmot continue our collaborative efforts with rural partners, and could lead to further efficiencies beyond our Regional boundaries. We appreciate the support from the Province, which enables us to explore new opportunities and best practices.”
Les Armstrong, Mayor, Township of Wilmot
Thanks to the Province for providing modernization funding for our joint service delivery review. The funds allow us to explore opportunities for collaboration, partnership and innovation in the areas of fire services, emergency management, communication and information technology.
Sandy Shantz, Mayor, Township of Woolwich
Taxpayers need their local government to deliver modern, efficient services that show respect for their hard-earned dollars. The Service Modernization funding will help our rural municipalities in Wellesley Township and will help improve how we deliver services and reduce the ongoing costs of providing those services. I look forward to continuing to work together with our rural municipal partners, with the Joint Service Delivery Review to help people and businesses in communities across our Region thrive.
Joe Nowak, Mayor, Township of Wellesley
The Township of North Dumfries is excited by the possibilities that will arise through the completion of this Joint Service Delivery review with our Municipal partners in Wilmot, Woolwich and Wellesley. North Dumfries Council is committed to assessing opportunities for collaboration, sharing of resources and other tools if it leads to efficiencies and streamlining of processes.
Sue Foxton, Mayor, Township of North Dumfries
“Our government is working with our municipal partners to make life more affordable, deliver smarter government services, create a more competitive business climate and build rural Ontario together,” said Clark. “I’m pleased so many municipalities are working together on these joint projects that will help deliver more efficient services for local people and businesses in Ontario’s small and rural communities.”
- Ontario is providing up to $2.6 million for 27 joint projects through the Municipal Modernization Program. Up to $125 million is available through 2022-23 to help small and rural municipalities’ lower costs and improve services.
- In March 2019, the townships of Woolwich, Wilmot, and Wellesley received over $2.1 through the Municipal Modernization Program from the provincial government.
- Ontario is investing more than $480 million in rural, northern and public transit infrastructure projects $480 million in rural, northern and public transit infrastructure projects under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP). Under this program, the province nominated 350 rural, northern and public transit infrastructure projects to the federal government for funding, including the $3.5 million Bridge St. Bridge in Wilmot and the $1.2 Million Glasgow St. Bridge.
- In January 2020, the townships of Woolwich. Wilmot, and Wellesley received nearly $2 million in funding through the 2020 Ontario Community Infrastructure Fund Grant.