Mayoral candidate Rory Ring broke bread with a room full of hopeful Sault citizens at the Soup Kitchen Community Centre on Thursday evening as part of his campaign and platform launch.
Ring’s platform includes, lowering/freezing taxes for everyone, creating more jobs and improving quality of life.
“It really is about creating more opportunity and more jobs for our community, and that’s creating new jobs to keep our young people here,” Ring told SaultOnline. Ring also emphasized the need to attract young families as well as the need for a skilled workforce to match jobs that already exist.
But is it possible to be sustainable and create jobs while lowering or freezing taxes?
Ring acknowledges that it will require hard work but says, yes, it absolutely is possible.
“It’s about balance, it’s making sure that you’re always doing the best that you can possibly do, working smarter, working harder. And, you know, freezing taxes.”
Ring plans to learn from the best of other communities and look at how they are approaching things differently, as well as share the best the Sault has to offer. Ring believes that it is all possible and the talent exists in the community to make it happen.
Below are the key steps Ring says he would take should he become the next mayor.
Making our City Investment Ready:
- Take Action to Resolve Shortage of Serviced Industrial Land
- Fast-Track New Development
- Cut Red Tape to Support Business
- Expand our Skilled Workforce in Partnership with Stakeholders, Employment Service Providers, Sault College and Algoma University
Bring Jobs to Sault Ste. Marie:
- Work With Senior Levels of Government to Support an Environmentally Responsible Plan to Bring Noront Resources Ltd. Jobs to our City
- Leverage Local Industry to Attract Their Customers and Suppliers to Set-Up Plants and Distribution in Sault Ste. Marie
- Compete for Manufacturing Plants That Have Been Going to Other Cities
- Lobby for Decentralization of Provincial and Federal Jobs to Sault Ste. Marie
- Make the Sault a Tourist Destination Through Strategic Investment and Partnerships
Stronger Support for Local Businesses:
- Create a ‘Sault Ste. Marie First’ Purchasing Policy
- Improve Service Delivery – Create a Citizen Centred Culture
- Expand On-line Services – City Transit App / Where is my Snow Plow App
- Revitalize Downtown and offer Free Parking in Downtown (Currently the City loss is over $100,000 annually)
Four Year Tax Freeze:
- Residential Property Taxes Frozen for Term of Council
- Small Business Tax Reform
- Implement 4-Year Budget Process to Save Money
- Ensure Neighbouring Communities Pay Their Fair Share
- Reduce and Restrict Consultant Costs
Adopt Best Practices:
- Thoroughly Review Other Cities Delivery of Services
- Benchmark to Similar Communities
- Establish Key Performance Indicators to Improve Services
Quality of Life
- Enhance the Boardwalk, Marina and Hub Trail
- Replace the McMeeken Arena
- Take Action on Derelict Properties – Former Hospital, Brewery, Gateway Site and More
- Take Action on Local Housing Needs
- Improve Community Safety and Support our Police Officers, Firefighters and Paramedics
“Over the next few weeks, we’ll actually be putting a little more meat on the bones around the platform,” Ring explained. “We have the essentials of this now; we need to really drive this forward and I believe that we can do just that. More jobs, lower taxes and a quality of life – I believe it really is achievable.”