Mayor's Message - February 25, 2018

Posted on Sunday February 25, 2018

Hello, Bonjour


For those of us following politics, at any level, I’ll simply say we do live in interesting times.


While it is still a way’s away the Municipal election is starting to creep up.  For instance the voters list launched on February 15th.  You can go to the link below to confirm that you are on the voters’ list and that your information is accurate. The site will also allow you to correct or add names to the list. For more information, please visit


Other municipal information and dates you should be aware of include:


2018 Municipal Election

The 2018 Municipal Election will be held on Monday, October 22, 2018. This election includes the election of a Penetanguishene Council comprised of a Mayor, Deputy Mayor, and seven Councillors, as well as school board trustees.  In the 2018 Municipal Election, Penetanguishene voters will cast their ballot using the Internet or Telephone. These methods provide flexibility, which allows for a longer voting period than traditional voting. It is also more convenient, more accessible, and better enables electors to exercise their right to vote. Results will be available sooner than the previous paper ballot voting system, with complete accuracy.


Nomination Period: Tuesday, May 1, 2018 - July 27, 2018

This is the period where prospective candidates can file nomination papers to run for office. Until a candidate files nomination papers, no campaigning can take place. Each candidate is required to submit 25 supporting signatures from eligible voters with their nomination paper.


Election Day: Monday, October 22, 2018

Voters will be able to cast a ballot via the Internet or telephone during the election period until October 22 at 8:00 p.m., EST. Results will be posted on our website and social media accounts, as soon as they are available.


I encourage those with interest in local politics to consider putting your name forward for consideration in the next election.


One of things I can share with you is that should you be elected you will get to see firsthand what a dedicated staff we have in place.  Just one small example, I have not worked in an environment where I have seen such a strong commitment to continued education.  It is quite common for me to see staff crunching assignments at lunch time or staying late to study or giving up their weekends to attend educational sessions.  These unseen efforts by our town staff lend value to our town each and every day, their attention to detail, their depth of knowledge and their commitment to their profession serves all of us so very well and we are better off due to their dedication.


I thought I would share some interesting Economic tidbits about our town from the recent census that was taken.


Population ( a slight decline, with significant growth on the horizon) –

2011 = 9,111 people

2016 = 8,962 people

2031 = 11,000 people (forecasted)

Bear in mind that the population count only gives a number, what is interesting is the changes found within the age category breakdowns.  For instance, although our population count has declined, it was largely driven by changes to the number of people living in a home.  Our town is currently attracting a larger component of the population that are over 50, and as a result we see the number of people living in a home dropping. So while we are still building more new homes, those homes just have less people living them than we saw 10, 20 or 30 years ago.  The age group between 25 and 35, which historically has been decreasing, increased in 2016.  This is, I suspect, a result of good employment growth and good jobs being available for people of that age. Another sign that we are in a good and stable economy. 


Average household income (sees us earning more)

2010 = $68,926

2015 = $79,968


Average Individual Income

The average wage earner in 2016 earned $48,331 per year.


Job Trends ( sees us growing)

2014 = 4,242 jobs

2015 = 4,530 jobs

2016 = 4,471 jobs

2017 = 4,552 jobs

2018 = 4,625 jobs


2016 saw 179 businesses employing from 1- 9 people, 51 businesses employing 10 – 99 people, 5 businesses employing 100 or more people and we see 400 people being self-employed.


Where we work

1,180 of us work in town

1,700 of us work out of town

2,535 people commute to our town to work.


In terms of growth we see our manufacturing facilities be expanded and redeveloped, our employment lands being purchased, our manufacturers growing their staff complements, new homes being built, renewed interest in residential lands and new businesses opening.  Simply put growth and development is happening in all areas - residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional and interest in our Town and the opportunities we offer are increasing.


Economic impact on Residential Construction

Given our town is a net importer of 835 jobs, combined with the fact that 2,535 people commute to our town to work each day it is no surprise that we see a demand for more housing stock in our town and why there is an increase of interest in our town from a development perspective.  As our businesses continue to open, expand and grow, people employed in our town need a place to live.


The take away in all of this is that our economy is on the upswing, the census data validates this trend as does the increased interest in new home construction, our town is coming to life in many ways, a good thing.


Things to take note of

You can still support Hospice Huronia by donating the returns from your empty wine and beer bottles.  The beer stores in Elmvale, Midland and Penetanguishene are all participating until February 28th.


Saturday March 3rd We Are the Villagers presents their Annual Murder Mystery Dinner at Le Maitre D, Penetanguishene. Tickets are $100 per person and includes a three-course dinner and show. Doors open at 6 p.m. and seating is limited. To reserve tickets online for The Parting Shot: A Mardi Gras Mystery visit


Thursday March 8th the YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka Employment Service is hosting a Job Fair at Midland Cultural Centre from 1:00-4:30 p.m. Register now! Call 705-528-0845 or email Anna at


Saturday and Sunday March 17th and 18th the Wye Marsh Wildlife Centre presents the 27th Annual Sweetwater Harvest Festival: Not Your Average Maple Syrup Festival. Come out and celebrate a uniquely Canadian tradition in a distinctively Canadian landscape. Escape to a time when maple syrup was made over an open fire, experience our history and explore nature at its best. Tickets are $10 for adults, family (2 adults and 2 children) $30 and members and children under 3 are free. You can also enjoy the all-day pancake breakfast for $5 per person. The Sweetwater Festival runs from 10-4 both days.


My Week to be


Monday – I connect with Anita and CEO Jeff for our weekly update, I meet with a developer regarding proposed construction of 600 new affordable housing units in Innisfil, I attend a media update session and our Youth Council and Library Boards meet.


Tuesday – I connect with GBGH CEO Gail Hunt for an area health care update, I attend a team meeting at the County and Town CAO Jeff Lees and I head to Toronto for a meeting with the Minister of Francophone Affairs.


Wednesday – I  meet with Waypoint and Chigamik for an update on their new center in Midland,  I review the agenda for our upcoming SWIFT AGM and I spend a few hours at Lakehead University as they expand discussion on future programming and area needs.  At 6 p.m. at townhall Planning Director Andrea Betty is hosting an open house to  showcase the Final Draft of our Towns Official Plan.


Thursday -  I meet to review theCounty’s Archaeological Management Plan, I meet to discuss proposed changes to the Collingwood General Marine Hospital board membership, I attend the opening of the Winter Games in Orillia.


Friday  - I  am in Fergus for the SWIFT  AGM meeting, while Friday evening finds me at the Waypoint Gala.


That is all for today, hope your upcoming week is good one, till next week,


Mayor Gerry

Gerry Marshall

Warden County of Simcoe,

Mayor Town of Penetanguishene,

County (705) 726-9300 Ext. 1260

Town (705)-549-7453


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