Shop Locally and Build
a Stronger Community

Here’s How Shopping Locally Helps Build Stronger Communities

So often people will say to me “I’ll tithe* when I can afford it”. Yet, that is backwards! The truth is, you will afford it when you tithe. The Universe has a way of giving back with interest to those who give. But in these harsh economic times, when so many of us are in debt, it is hard to give. In her book, Harvest for Hope: A Guide to Mindful Eating, Jane Goodall suggests buying organic as a means of tithing. She points out that by spending a few dollars extra you are giving back to local farmers and also helping to sustain the earth. I thought her idea was brilliant and ­immediately proceeded to tell anyone who would listen in an effort to get the word out. When put this way, it makes great sense to choose organic. After all, we all want to give back – and when it comes to buying organic there are additional health benefits for ourselves too.
Then it occurred to me, shopping locally can also be looked at exactly the same. When you shop at the big chain stores, you may (or may not) save a few dollars, However, only thirteen dollars out of every 100 dollars spent stays in the community. The same amount spent with a local ­merchant has more than three times the impact!
Every local purchase helps to strengthen the local economy, creates good will, ­develops employment opportunities, brings a greater supply of goods and services into the town and builds a vibrant and dynamic ­community. In short, when you shop ­locally, you are helping to build a stronger community, – and you will ultimately benefit from a stronger ­community! When you shop locally you also develop valuable friendships and, again, you will ultimately benefit from doing business with people who come to know you by name!
Remember, these are the people who sponsor your children’s teams. Small businesses truly are the backbone of a thriving society.
The Villager is dedicated to ­promoting local shopping among the ­residents of  Oakville and  Burlington. Our ­magazine is made possible through the ­sponsorship of local ­businesses, a group of dedicated, creative, hard working, friendly people. Please feel confident, when you do business with them, that you are ­getting the very best service and value.
You CAN make a difference! Happy shopping.

Ward One Highlights 

Councillors O’Meara and Robertson want to extend a warm end of summer greeting to our Ward One residents.  It has been an absolutely brilliant summer and enjoying our local community was the perfect way to spend the time.  Whether it was the Lake Notes music nights held each Thursday at Bronte Heritage Park, sponsored by our Bronte BIA and RBC or the Tuesday evening Oakville Wind Orchestra series or the July Friday’s with Julian John, sponsored by Mayor Burton and the Council, music was in the air and the turn out was fabulous.  Thank you to the sponsors, organizers and musicians for their many hours of work to make sure we could enjoy our fabulous lakeside retreat.  Relaxing in the colourful Muskoka chairs and enjoying a coffee or a gelato has been the piece de resistance and will be available until Thanksgiving weekend! 

In my first term as your Councillor, I want to note some of the key decisions made by Council to address the needs of the residents of Oakville.  Oakville declared a Climate Emergency on June 24 which served to entrench the Town’s on-going commitment to address environmental initiatives.  As well, Council passed a Tow Truck Licensing By-Law that will address the fees and practices of predatory towing that has blemished the reputation of Bronte’s business community over the past year.  It will begin on January 1, 2020.  While it will not end the right of Centriller Square management to tow, it will work to protect those who inadvertently failed to read the multitude of signs to warn them they would be towed if they walk off the property.  One of my greatest highlights was the passing of a temporary three year  zoning permit for Acclaim Health’s new Dementia Care Facility at 2250 Speers Road.  This centre will house a Dementia client daycare, 8 respite beds and caregiver education and support. My father-in-law was recently diagnosed with dementia and this project has special meaning for my family as well as hundreds more in the community. 

When residents ask if I am enjoying my new position, the answer is always, “Yes, I love the fact that it is different every day and I get to learn so much.”  Although I taught Civics for years, the reality of the power of the Province on all things Municipal is one of my many “learnings”.   The Province has yet to announce whether the Amalgamation of Oakville, Burlington, Milton and Halton Hills into the City of Halton.  Potentially, this will be announced in November of this year, following the Federal election. Keep up the letter writing to your local MPP’s about staying The Town of Oakville.  Your letters do make a difference. 

Bill 108, known as the More Homes, More Choice Act, was passed on June 6, 2019.

   I recommend residents read and understand this bill, as it will potentially weaken Council (and resident) rights to determine where more density in developments can happen.  For the many in-fill developments in Ward One, this is of particular note.  Having lost a recent LPAT tribunal decision to prevent a development at 2200 Marine Drive, and with several new developments in the proposal stages, it is important to note that it is not Council’s willingness to see growth outside of the Growth hubs set by the Official Plan for Liveable Oakville.  We will continue to address your concerns about preserving the character of our established neighbourhoods and fight to retain them!  

Town and Regional Councillor, Sean O’Meara and Town Councillor Beth Robertson

Lake Notes Summer Concert Series .
Bands performed every Thursday from June through August

Enjoy the upcoming fall by walking or cycling the many trails throughout Ward One and the rest of Oakville.  Come out to Nautical Parkrun each Saturday morning at 9 to walk or run 5 k’s within the beautiful Lakeshore Woods.  Enjoy shopping locally and eat out at one of our wonderful restaurants. 

Welcome to The Villager!  Our goal is to connect you to the professionals, services, events and the BEAUTIFUL people of Oakville, Bronte and Burlington.  The information you find here is rigorously reviewed to ensure you get an excellent experience from honest, reputable people and sources.  It’s constantly being updated with the latest happenings and information so check back frequently.  Enjoy with confidence!

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