I hope that many of you have had the chance to kick back and relax during the beautiful season we’ve had so far. I know we all enjoy the opportunity to spend time with family and friends during the sunny weather, but another benefit of the favourable skies is that big projects in our neighbourhood are progressing very well. I’m pleased to report that the McOrmond and College overpass is scheduled to open in October, as is the new north bridge and all the connecting roadways. These projects are on time and on budget and will make a big difference in getting around our part of town.
You’ve probably seen lots in the news lately about the future of waste collection in Saskatoon. There are two main reasons why this discussion is taking place.
First, Saskatoon has the distinction of a poor record among Canadian cities when it comes to keeping waste out of the landfill. Just over 20% of our waste is diverted and this compares to a cities like Edmonton that keep more than 50% of their waste away from the dump.
Thank you to everyone who shared their feedback on the issue of firepits in Saskatoon. I spoke out strongly against additional regulation and instead pushed for better enforcement of our previous bylaw which already banned many dangerous and inconsiderate activities with backyard fires. While the final vote didn’t go the way I would have liked, you can be sure that I will continue to stand up for common sense solutions at City Hall to the issues we face in Saskatoon.
In the last couple of months, Council has been debating the best way forward on taxis and ridesharing (Uber) in Saskatoon. While there are lots of complexities to the industry in Saskatoon, I believe that we need to be ready to allow ridesharing in our city when the province completes their new regulations for the industry late this fall, hopefully in time for the Christmas party season.
I sincerely hope you and your family had a restful and fun Christmas season. Despite the bitter cold we experienced over the holidays, I hope you had a chance to get out and experience some of the great winter activities in our city. From the Enchanted Forest at the Forestry Farm to the Meewasin Rink downtown, we are lucky to have great outdoor opportunities in a community that experiences all four seasons!