NewsNow E-Edition May 23, 2024 – View Online

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Jan Oberholzer, Lincoln, Ward 2

Jan Olberholzer, Lincoln, Ward 2

Lincoln requires councillors that are in touch with the needs of the community and can address these needs in a timely fashion. Council should represent public interest, not self-interest. Currently, 3 of 8 Lincoln councillors are connected to construction companies, which is a huge conflict of interest when holding public office. Personally, I have no ties to the construction industry. If voted into office, I will promote accountability in council decisions, push for healthy communities (walk-in clinic, more healthcare professionals) as well as sustainable development (no development on the Greenbelt, affordable housing).

The flooding of Konkle Creek that resulted in the flooding of the Golden Horseshoe Park, as well as backyards on Alyssa drive in the centre of Beamsville, is deeply concerning. Council has been slow to address this, and finally started paying attention to the matter shortly before the upcoming municipal elections. This, in turn, has delayed the development of the much needed 116 unit assisted living facility for elderly residents by more than 2 years. Another example is Prokich Park, that has now been delayed for 8 years and counting. Council needs to be more efficient in their decision-making process.

Affordable living is a growing concern for a large part of the community. 5000 Lincoln residents (24%) are 65 years of age or older. Lincoln seniors wait 4.5 years on the Affordable Housing Wait List. It took 2 years to approve a site-plan for the Beamsville Retirement Residence. New construction minimizes land footprints to maximize profits. Two or three-storey townhouses are more profitable than bungalows, reducing diversity by excluding seniors seeking to downsize, who does not need assisted living yet. Council needs to be steered towards inclusive and diverse development, at a faster pace.

Lincoln is growing at a rapid pace. Keeping up with infrastructure requirements will be a challenge. Beamsville currently has a shortage of medical professionals and no walk-in clinic, and many residents are forced to find family doctors, dentists, optometrists and other specialists outside of the town’s boundaries. Many towns attract doctors by financially incentivizing them to establish practices or walk-in clinics. Council should be pro-active and establish better health care options for its citizens to ensure a healthy future.

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