Kelly: ROMA rundown

The Councillor's Column

It’s good to be back after a very busy 2024 Rural Ontario Municipal Association (ROMA) Conference, held Jan. 21-22 in Toronto, where I had the opportunity to meet with four provincial ministers to advocate on behalf of Ward 5 and the rest of rural Ottawa. 

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This included a delegation in support of West Carleton Disaster Relief and their proposal for $50,000 through the Community Emergency Preparedness Grant to support their efforts to help residents during an emergency.

It also included a delegation requesting financial support for a new electronic score board at the baseball diamond in Fitzroy as well as a delegation to the Minster of Energy asking for more clarity, information, and much better public consultation process for BESS and renewable energy projects. I also visited the IESO booth with Coun. George Darouze to share the feedback on how this process needs to improve in the future. 

Finally, I took part in a joint delegation, alongside Ottawa Public Health chair Coun. Catherine Kitts and representatives from Arnprior and McNab-Braeside, with the minister of health to talk about the implications of the new funding formula on our local emergency rooms, and to explore the province’s idea of public health mergers. 

And an unplanned bonus was my meeting with Michael Nolan, chief paramedic for Renfrew County, who has been getting a lot of attention for the model he has developed over the last number of years. It has been highly successful in supporting public health and helping to prevent a lot of emergency room visits. It was great to get his take on how he’s achieving these results. 

There are many positive things to follow up on over the coming weeks. This year’s conference was a great experience, and it was a pleasure to be joined by councillors Darouze, Kitts, and Ryley Brockington. I would also like to show my appreciation to our MPP, Karen McCrimmon, for her efforts during the conference as well. Thank you to the board members and organizers of the ROMA Conference and for your advocacy on behalf of rural Ontario. I look forward to seeing you all again next year.

As always, it is a pleasure and an honour to serve as your councillor. 

To read Coun. Clarke Kelly’s entire column, click here.

To read past Coun. Clarke Kelly columns, click here.

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