We held our first post-pandemic AGM!

Toward the end of 2023 the Leaside Residents Association held our first in-person Annual General Meeting since the pandemic. We were pleased to see a good turnout of attendees, many armed with questions on a variety of local issues.

Much can be said for the convenience of virtual meetings, but they lack the directness and sense of access that getting together in the same room offers. The LRA looks forward to being able to hold more in-person neighbourhood meetings as issues arise and as public health regulations permit. 

Many of the municipal issues dealt with by the LRA also involve the provincial and federal levels of government, and vice versa. This was reflected in our AGM’s guest list: all three levels of government were well represented. Don Valley West MPP Stephanie Bowman reported from Queen’s Park. MP Rob Oliphant’s constituency office manager, Patricia LeFebour, updated the audience on federal issues affecting Don Valley West. Councillor Jaye Robinson’s Chief of Staff Rachel Van Fraassen and Manager of Stakeholder Relations and Communications Rachael Hillier also took questions from attendees. My LRA co-president Geoff Kettel updated the meeting on planning and development issues, and I gave a report on recent traffic events.

Guest speaker was David Sit, North York’s director of community planning. His replies to comments about the current planning process, and about its changes to the process which directly affect our neighbourhood, underlined that these days the province is effectively in charge. The province has rewritten the city’s zoning laws (“everything is on the table”).

How does this planning environment affect ratepayer associations like the LRA? Although it adds to the challenge of protecting local priorities, our role in preserving Leaside’s character and heritage continues.

But we can only make progress by showing that we represent your support. Your membership in itself strengthens Leaside’s voice. It also raises the odds that we will be effective.

That is why it’s so important to increase our membership numbers. If you’re already an LRA member, thank you. If you are not, please join us. It only costs $30 annually per household. And if you would be interested in sharing your professional experience, or offering your expertise, please get in touch with us!

Next meeting

The LRA board of directors meets at 7:30 p.m. on the first Wednesday of every month, at the Trace Manes building on Rumsey, just south of Leaside Library. You are welcome to join us – to depute on issues important to you, ask questions, have your say, or just listen. 

Our next monthly meeting is on February 7th. For more details and updates between now and then, or to become an LRA member, visit www.leasideresidents.ca and press the Contact Us button, or leasideresidents.ca/contact-us.

About Carol Burtin Fripp 136 Articles
Carol Burtin Fripp is Co-President of the Leaside Residents Association, and is Chair of the LRA's Traffic Committee. Over the years, she has served on numerous East York and City task forces. Now a retired television producer (TVO and CBC), she writes Leaside Life's monthly LRA column, and has created a daily international current affairs newsletter read from Newfoundland to New Zealand.