Town of Grimsby Successfully Advocates for Municipal Priorities at the 2024 ROMA Conference

The 2024 Rural Ontario Municipal Association (ROMA) Conference was held in Toronto, Ontario from January 21-23, 2024. The ROMA conference is a yearly event, which brings municipalities together to discuss best practices and share industry knowledge. The format also allows municipal representatives and ministries to meet and discuss the municipalities’ strategic priorities, advocate for local issues, and discuss program and funding partnerships.

Mayor Jeff Jordan, Councillor Jacob Baradziej, Councillor Nick DiFlavio, Councillor Lianne Vardy, Chief Administrative Officer Sarah Kim, as well as three representatives from Town staff attended the conference and participated in delegations with members of the Provincial Government, advocating for issues on behalf of the Town.

The following initiatives were discussed:

  • Establishing a Workforce Development & Alignment Group (Ministry of Education): The Town of Grimsby is in a unique position, as many educational institutions are within 50 kms of our Town’s borders, including McMaster University, Brock University, Mohawk College, and Niagara College. The Town also recognizes the skilled trade gap, and employment difficulties that currently plague many businesses. The Town spoke to the Province about developing a Workforce Development Alliance Group (WDAG) in order to strengthen education pathways, and provide opportunities to employees and employers across Ontario.
  • Oak Wilt (Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs): Oak Wilt is an invasive species that threatens all oak trees, but is particularly fatal to White Oaks. There have been confirmed cases of Oak Wilt across the Niagara Region, and the Town, along with other Local Area Municipalities, spoke to the Province about creating tool kits for municipalities, campaigns to support public education, along with money for staff training and inspection/tree removal efforts.

Overall, the Town of Grimsby had a successful 2024 ROMA Conference. Mayor Jordan noted, “We are incredibly grateful for the opportunity to advocate at the ROMA Conference and meet with different Provincial ministries. It is a privilege to voice the concerns and aspirations of our community through this platform. We are thankful for the chance to make a difference, to inspire change, and to work towards a better future for all”.

The Town’s Chief Administrative Officer, Sarah Kim, added: “It’s always exciting to be part of the ROMA conference, where leaders from various municipalities gather to share ideas and shape the future. Together, we can build stronger communities, foster innovation, and create a brighter tomorrow for all our residents”.

As information becomes available regarding grants and funding received through the upper levels of government, thanks to these advocacy efforts, the Town will share them with the community through our website, social media (Facebook and Instagram) and traditional media channels. The Town’s advocacy program is instrumental in creating positive impacts in the Grimsby community both in the short and long term.

Media Contact:

Christina Davidson
Communications Specialist
cdavidson@grimsby.ca | 905-945-9634

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