Electric buses ASAP & free as they arrive!

Let's be one of the first cities in Canada with an all-electric bus fleet!

Let's also make it free for all to use!

E-buses are coming
. Let's fast-track and lead the future! Let's prioritize and get them ASAP. The planet can't wait. Let's be leaders and show the way! Let's make them FREE as we phase them in for residents and visitors to use to explore our great City!

FREE fares will have multiple economic and social benefits. No fare anxiety and no more empty buses. Eventually, you will be able to have free 'hop-on, hop-off' service to enjoy a short or long trip to explore your city. With more people taking the free bus, less congestion on our city roads. By making it easier to be a one-car family, citizens can save $100k every 10 years by eliminating one car in their household. Condo buyers can save up to $70k by not having to buy a parking space. This makes home ownership more affordable.
Free fares will especially benefit low-income households.

Residents on bus routes will appreciate the quiet and clean air.

This will encourage people to shop and dine locally.

Employers can easier attract staff who can take transit. A win-win!

When we add electric car share and bike share partnerships, we make sustainable mobility even better.

FIrst step. Let's test free transit. 'Free-Key Friday's': free Friday transit trials to guage uptake. Take the bus to work on Fridays and have a social after work, and we will take you home for free. Friday night will be social night in the B.

"Community Engagement Officers" (formerly Bylaw) -

Mainly educational outreach

The bylaw department needs to be reinvented to be more effective. Policies that are punitive in nature don't often lead to behavioural change; they only make citizens more angry.

Our focus will be to have our Community Engagement Officers, formerly known as Bylaw Officers, engage and educate the community on our City bylaws and guidelines.

A proposed Citizen's Users Manual will also be a one-stop resource to educate residents and newcomers about our City services rules, regulations and bylaws and 'guidelines'.

"Sorry, I won't do it again" environmental citizen and business fleet engagement strategy will leverage positive edu-warnings instead of punitive ticketing. 'First ticket amnesty will be granted within 7 days for first-time vehicle idling offenders if they contact the City to request their fine be waived, having understood the value of behaviour change. A happy and engaged climate convert and citizen is the end goal! Community-Based Social Marketing 101 will be applied to other city communications strategies to reduce citizen apathy towards city hall.
We need to make working for and dealing with City Hall a more positive experience.

View Steve's presentation made to the Climate Caucus on 2021 as he was asked to share some of his ideas and innovative approaches to the 'Community Engagement Officers' concept and the need for cities to 'walk-the-talk.'

'Smart' Development is good! "
"Grow up and down!"

As we are planning new developments, let's push the boundaries to make them as modern and eco-friendly and enjoyable as possible.

Imagine living close to inviting community spaces, where people would want to gather and meet. Let's do what other cities are doing and create innovative developments that take our city into the future. Let's build smartly. With new condo developments let's build 'up and down'.

With any planned large-scale condo complexes and developments, let's preserve our greenspaces while creating inviting underground recreation and community gathering spaces like other cities, mimic the PATH in Toronto. Imagine libraries, recreation facilities, gyms, swimming pools, restaurants and retail spaces underground and close to home. No need to drive.

We will partner with developers to help create a vision and challenge the imagination to create more livable communities with rooftop gardens and more.

Business developments will be asked to consider adding outdoor gardens for employees to de-compress in a mini-nature setting. This will help them attract employees who want to work in a more welcoming workplace that is enjoyable and puts mental well-being as a priority and a value-added mix.

Nature, greenspace and experiences is the future of green development.
Developers are partners in building the city of the future.

Your 25 by 25 plan hopes to get 25% of households to have 1 EV in their driveway. How?

First of all, it's a goal & challenge. People like a challenge.

25% of households to have 1 EV by end of 2025. If you can afford it, put in a pre-order now! You have to wait 6 months to 2 years due to demand for EV's. So we want to give car buyers a 'heads up' not to wait or they will miss their opportunity and have to suffer another 10 years with another gas car. ;)

Basic EV education and awareness is not as effective as compared to adding a call-to-action. Simply telling people 'EV's are good' is just another data-point of info in their busy minds with little motivation or guidance.

My thinking is that we have to show that Burlington is in a sweet spot that makes owning and operating an EV ideal, especially for commuters. We have to show people the benefits of owning an EV, so they envision themselves in one.

I was an EV educator when I did consulting work with the EV non profit Plug'n Drive. I literally gave 100's of EV test drives and love understanding buying behaviours. My marketing psychology curiosity plus my passion for EV's can help.

There are so many benefits to driving an electric vehicle. My wife loves driving a clean EV and not having to go to gas stations anymore, especially in on cold winter days with blowing snow, to refuel. No need to touch those gas pumps or breathe in those odorous fumes to recharge.

Now, citizens can simply plug in their EV vehicles for overnight charging, spending $10-15 vs $100 in gas. The fact that Burlington Hydro is their fueling station means they are supporting their local utility and jobs.
Charging overnight uses the surplus of electricity which makes EV's such a good option in Ontario and is CLEAN! No emissions makes our community air cleaner.

Some like the cost savings. Some save $3000/yr on fuel, plus brakes, no oil changes or other maintenance. Saving $35,000 over 10 years makes owning an EV cheaper than a gas car in the long run. The bonus is saving 1/2 hour (per day) on HOV lane commuting to Burlington, makes EV's a smart choice for commuters.

So, the '25 by 25 EV challenge' is basically, a goal of 25% of driveways with 1 EV, by end of 2025.

How? Educate - show our citizens the benefits, then show them how to pre-order their EV or at least be put on the list for one for when their lease expires or it is time to buy a new car. Many go to buy a car, see the delay and end up buying a gas car again. This pre-order strategy offsets the manufacturers supply chain limitations. Refundable deposits with most dealers makes this a low-risk option to secure our citizen's choice to buy an EV.

So, the OPPORTUNITY and solution is to pre-order your EV now as demand for EV's is high and waiting lists are 6 months to 2 years!
Making EV charger installation easier with contractor education and awareness can help too.

What is the future leaders now program?

"Future leaders now" program -
The future leaders now program is a way to find the gems in the system and provide a way for them to grow and develop their skills to build their career.
The fact is we are all facing a hiring challenge. Cities are losing staff who move to more innovative cities. On top of filling the gap, let's give our staff the chance to design their future and build our city. We need to provide a vision that is exciting and let them see where they want to fit in and help develop the skills needed to do it.

This is simply a way to find, attract and encourage our most leadership-ready staff to develop their skills to help them prepare for and enter more strategic and management roles. We need new creative ideas to help move our city forwards as other innovative cities are doing.

If other cities are recruiting our best talent, we have to upgrade our employee engagement programs to try to retain them.

This idea came to me after meeting young climate-focused staff who worked at other cities in Ontario. They were passionate about climate and wanted to make the world better, but were told to 'slow down' and not to be so eager as their eagerness as would make others look bad. WE NEED to tap into that positive energy. 'WE need new ideas' is what staff tell me. The old systems need to be transformed. We need future leaders to lead the way. They have a vested interest in developing a city of the future and we should support them.

We will recommend HR to try to hire based on ambition and attitude with a focus on future career ambitions and interests. We need to develop leaders who will take our city into the future. We need to develop young leaders of the future by a mix of coaching. mentoring, project stress testing to develop skills and other opportunities. As senior managers retire, they will be involved in coaching, mentoring to blend people into a succession transition plan that is smooth, seemless, and ensures all information and resources are in place so they are able to retire, feeling good knowing their role and the city are in good hands.