Town of Aurora Official Plan

Aurora Town Council adopted the Final Draft Official Plan following extensive review and public consultation. The Official Plan is a refinement and does not represent a complete rewrite of existing policies. Some of the key changes and enhancements in the Plan include policies to promote and prioritize the provision of affordable housing and climate change resilience. As well as a focus on gentle intensification and prioritization of active transportation. The adopted plan is now pending a final approval by Regional Municipality of York.

Update on Community Partnership Grant and proposed policy revisions

Council received a report from staff that provided an update on the Community Partnership Grant, with Council also approving revisions to the current policy. The Community Partnership Grant launched earlier this year to support recreation and culture organizations, as well as individuals, that serve the Town of Aurora. Under the Community Partnership Grant 12 grants were awarded to community groups who applied for funding, totalling $56,015. Some of the policy revisions approved by Council include requiring applicants to supply the Town with budget information specific to the initiative they are requesting money for, staff-led information sessions to assist the public with the application process, and changes to the application form that requires applicants to specify how their initiative is linked to the Town’s Strategic Plan.

Motion on homelessness

A motion put forward by Councillor Rachel Gilliland and adopted by Council calls on York Region and the provincial and federal governments to increase action and supports to end homelessness in Ontario. The motion notes that the homelessness crisis is taking a devastating toll on families and communities, undermining a healthy and prosperous Ontario, and that responding to these issues has placed stress on all levels of government and non-municipal programs and services. The motion asks that governments work with the Association of Municipalities of Ontario and a broad range of community, health, and economic partners to develop, resource, and implement an action plan to end homelessness.

Additionally, the motion calls for a long-term financial commitment from governments to assist in the creation of more affordable and supportive housing for people in need, and increased investments in evidence-informed substance use prevention and mental health promotion initiatives.

Motion on community partner reserve funds policy

A motion put forward by Mayor Tom Mrakas and adopted by Council directs the Town’s Treasurer to report back with a proposed policy outlining the criteria for determining reasonable reserve amounts for community partners that receive direct financial support from the Town. The motion notes that the establishment of clear and transparent criteria for determining reasonable reserve amounts is essential to ensure financial stability and responsible fiscal practices, and that the effective management of reserves contributes to the overall financial health and resilience of the Town and its community partners. The motion notes that a well-defined policy will enhance accountability and transparency in financial matters, fostering trust among the community and various stakeholders.

Motion on community safety and inciteful speech

A motion put forward by Councillor Rachel Gilliland and adopted by Council acknowledges that residents have expressed feelings of uncertainty and safety concerns due to recent global unrest. The motion calls on all levels of government to acknowledge this uncertainty and safety concerns and look to strengthen available tools to deny inciteful speech that encourages violent extremists the ability to publicly manipulate, advocate and incite violence or physical harm. In addition, Council encourages community and diverse local leaders of faith to bring the community together to promote peace, healing and understanding.