Mayor's Message - January 7, 2018

Posted on Sunday January 07, 2018

Good morning all, Bonjour !


I hope everyone is keeping warm during this deep dive in the temperatures, the weather has set the stage for all things winter and with warmer temperatures being predicted I hope you get out to the enjoy the sport of your choice.


This past week was quieter as we got ourselves back in gear from the holiday’s.  That said we did get one big item out of the gate and that is our SWIFT Fibre broadband Request For Proposals (RFP) .  The RFP was released to 28 pre-qualified telecom service providers (TSP’s) , the proposals we are seeking will allow our for the network construction portion of the project to commence.  The 28 pre-qualified bidders included larger players such as Bell and Rogers to smaller firms such as Vianet and Xplornet.   We will identify the successful TSP(s) this spring and should see Fibre being installed mid this year. 


The fibre network we are building is similar in nature to world travel.  In our area,  we travel (via highways, GO Service, bus) to get to a central collection point in Toronto (Union Station/the Airport) so we can get to our travel destination points.  In the  fibre world we also need our data to travel to a central collection point in Toronto (151 Front Street) so it can go to its final destination.  The first part of our SWIFT build and the purpose of this RFP is to accomplish 2 goals. (1) gain access to the existing fibre highways and data collection points and (2) build new fibre highways and collection points where needed.  Staying with my travel analogy , a collection point is similar to a go train sub-station, i.e. a location where we all gather and then travel as a group together.


A visual may be of help, the SWIFT RFP released sees us commence with gaining access to existing fibre and core data collection points which are identified via the red dots (Barrie/Guelph/London/Windsor/Buffalo) as well as constructing outlying aggregation collection points (the yellow dots) in places like Tobermory for example.    We will issue a second RFP this summer that will enable construction to commence to build the access points that our homes/farms/businesses will hook up to (these access points are identified via the orange dots on the map)





This October sees the municipal election occur, it is always an interesting year as people make their decisions to run, not to run, and citizens debate on whom should run and whom should not and whom they should cast a vote for.  Given it is an election year the four local municipalities thought it would be helpful to bring Doug Griffiths in to speak on his book, 13 Ways to Kill Your Community.  I have heard Doug speak while in Toronto and Anita listened to him during a session this summer in Wasaga Beach.  I can share we both thought it was time well spent. 


Doug’s findings over the course of his studies were that in rural communities and small towns, we tend to be our own worst enemies. While residents/leaders/politicians are well intentioned, we often act and hold on to attitudes that stagnate our towns. Doug has a warning list of 13 perilous undertakings,  Don’t have Quality Water, Don’t Attract Business, Ignore your Youth, Deceive Yourself About Your Real Needs or Values, Shop Elsewhere, Don’t Paint, Don’t Cooperate, Live in the Past, Ignore your Seniors, Reject Everything New, Ignore Outsiders, Become Complacent, and Don’t Take Responsibility. .  If you’re thinking of running in the election or a resident looking to better understand how your community can become stagnant if you’re not careful, please mark February 8th in your calendars to attend.  Once I have more details I will share.





When does a fun activity shift to a habit needing help? Addiction is the challenging and thought provoking topic for the 11th program of the “Our Health” series at the MCC. Join our discussion on January 30, 2018, 7:30 PM, (doors open at 7 PM) , when three panelists take “a look at the reality of addictions”. Jack Vandenberg, the manager for addiction services in Simcoe County, has played a major role in education, assessment and withdrawal management for over 40 years. Tina Brand-Lawson is a compassionate and caring frontline addiction counsellor in Midland. Andrew Hurst, a recovering addict and alcoholic, has experienced firsthand the devastating effects of addiction. He has been clean and sober for three years. Dr. Keith Rose will moderate the discussion and questions from the audience. Our seven sponsors have made free admission possible. Register now at


Community Futures –

The next four marketing Monday sessions are set to go.  This is a free series of sessions designed to help you market and manage your business.  I have attached their flyer for your perusal.





The week ahead –


A quiet one for me as Jan and I sneak away for some sun and sand!. 


Monday –

I grab breakfast with Anita and Jeff

I attend an Agenda review meeting


Tuesday –  

9 a.m. sees county council gather for the first meeting of 2018

Our Town Seniors Council meets at the arena at 10 a.m.



Town Council meets at  6:30 p.m. for an in–camera (closed) meeting with the open public session to follow. 

The agenda items can be found on the links below.

  Regular Council –


Committee of the Whole – Immediately following Council



that is all for this week, stay warm, have fun in the snow and see you in a week!



Mayor Gerry

Gerry Marshall

Warden County of Simcoe,

Mayor Town of Penetanguishene,

County (705) 726-9300 Ext. 1260

Town (705)-549-7453


This e-mail is sent to citizens of Penetanguishene for their information on my mayors personal thoughts, upcoming meetings and activities in Town.  The views expressed in the Mayor's Message do not necessarily represent the views of Council.    Agendas and minutes for Council and Committee meetings can be found in the Digital Library on the Town's website at  If you wish to be removed from the mailing list, please send an e-mail requesting removal to  and I will be happy to do so.