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City of Charlottetown looking for more regional co-operation

Even though it was actually implemented by the province on Dec. 23, 2017, Charlottetown Mayor Philip Brown said the Municipal Government Act (MGA) was the biggest thing to happen to the capital city in 2018. He said it has laid the ground work for much to come.
Charlottetown Mayor Philip Brown will meet with his counterparts from Stratford and Cornwall today in an effort to create more regional co-operation. - Dave Stewart

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. - Charlottetown Mayor Philip Brown will meet with his counterparts from Stratford and Cornwall today in an effort to create more regional co-operation.

The meeting will be held at noon at City Hall.

“We are looking at some commonalities amongst the three (communities),’’ said Brown. “(We’ll be looking at) issues that Stratford has and Cornwall has and ones we want to put on the table.’’

This meeting builds off a recent meeting Brown had with Premier Wade MacLauchlan in which the Charlottetown mayor pushed to have the Charlottetown Area Development Corporation (CADC) reinstated.

“I know the premier is more than interested in looking at more regional sharing of services, especially (with) water and wastewater treatment facilities.’’

Brown said Charlottetown isn’t asking to have CADC reinstated in its past form, as an agency that acted only for the capital city. He wants the city now to be part of a tri-community or capital communities’ corporation-type entity.

CADC exists now in the form of an interim board that includes three deputy ministers, as well as the chief administrative officers from Charlottetown and Cornwall, Economic Development Minister Chris Palmer and Ron Waite, the former general manager of CADC.

It exists to manage the parking garages in Charlottetown, collect the rent at Harbourside Apartments and manage the properties it hasn’t sold, such as the Charlottetown Event Grounds.

Brown said a new entity that represents the three capital area communities could push the issues of affordable and accessible housing and integrating water and wastewater treatment facilities.

The premier’s office didn’t respond to a request for comment so The Guardian asked Brown what impressions he left that meeting with.

“His thoughts are that they are doing lots on the affordable and accessible housing issue (and) they’re definitely encouraged on moving forward with regionalization on water, wastewater treatment facilities, but when it comes to the development corporation I didn’t get much of a sense of where he was going.’’

Today’s meeting with the other two mayors is part of Brown’s efforts to push the issue.

“It could be referred to or called Capital Communities Development Corporation (or) we could call it the Harbour Area Development Corporation. It has to envelop three communities — Charlottetown, Stratford and Cornwall. I’ve been beating that drum right from the beginning of the election and I’m still beating it.’’

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