Preparing Eastern Municipalities for Ontario’s Energy Future

Moderator: Jay Amer, Executive Director, Ontario East Economic Development Commission

Denise Jamal, Director, Stakeholder and Community Engagement | IESO
Ahmed Maria, Director, Transmission | IESO
Daniel Levitan, Vice President, Stakeholder Relations, Hydro One Networks
Laurie Heuff, Director, Distribution Engineering and Asset Management | Hydro Ottawa

Ontario’s electricity landscape is undergoing a fundamental transformation and is becoming increasingly decentralized, decarbonized and digitalized. This panel discussion, led by Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO), will convene a broad range of sector partners for an open discussion of issues related to reliability, affordability and sustainability. Delegates will hear about the future of Ontario’s electricity system from the perspective of the system operator, a transmitter and a local distribution company.

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Ontario’s EV Supply Chain – Driving Eastern Ontario’s Contributions and Opportunities

Moderator: Stephen Paul, President, Ontario East Economic Development Commission

Bruce Takefman, Founder & CEO, ResearchFDI
Abdul Razak Jendi, Director, Kingston Economic Development
Raed Kadri, VP Business Development & Strategic Initiatives, Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network (OVIN)
Sean Dyke, CEO, St. Thomas Economic Development Corporation

Leading experts in economic development, investment attraction and automotive innovation will provide insights and experiences on the growing EV sector in Ontario, and the opportunities for eastern Ontario communities to build on its existing supply chain in this important growth sector as a key partner in Ontario’s Driving Prosperity: The Future of Ontario’s Automotive Sector strategy that has already attracted over $16 billion in new investment to the province.

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Taking it to the Streets – the Main Streets

Moderator: Rob Hunter, Economic Development Officer, The Municipality of South Dundas

Speaker: Ramona (Ciparis) Gallagher, Main Street Matters

The ultimate goal of entrepreneurship-based economic development is to restore economic vibrancy to under-optimized main streets by reducing vacant retail spaces, attracting new businesses, and supporting existing businesses to grow. Small business has a significant impact on local community revenue generation, employment, and social impact, yet why are we not tracking their numbers and successes in our community outcomes? Surprising given that $100 spent at local independents generates $45 of local spending, compared to $14 for a big-box chain. We need mom-and-pop shops, coffee shops, and active retail spaces. Yet, most economic development investment targets big industries or entrepreneurial ‘tech’.

Based on our learning from the “My Main Street” program, while the market research data received was valuable, there was a significant lack of knowledge among business owners with respect to the local community investments, resources, and services available to them. Most had never met anyone from City Hall, let alone know what EcDev was or did.

In this session, we will review some key needs identified by local main street businesses and how Economic Development offices can make simple changes that could increase revenue, transparency and encourage social and community building by working with its existing small business owners.

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2023 Municipal Law Update

Moderator: TBA

Speaker: Tony Fleming, Partner, Cunningham Swan LLP

The courts and tribunals are constantly interpreting the law that applies to municipal governance and land use planning. When case law is considered along with changes in legislation, decision makers and staff have a daunting task to remain up to date. You need the most current information to ensure your municipality is making the right decisions and is able to take advantage of new rules. This session will focus on the latest changes to municipal legislation and the newest cases in areas of interest to municipal council and staff. Learn not just what new decisions have been handed down from the OLT and the courts, but why they are important and how your municipality can benefit.

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Permissions, Prohibitions, and Purgatory – Small Town Planning in Eastern Ontario Cottage Country

Moderator: Bonnie Ruddock, Executive Director, South Eastern Ontario Region

Elysia Ackroyd, MCIP RPP, Planner, Fotenn Planning + Design
Arya Hejazi, Planning Assistant, Township of Havelock-Belmont-Methuen
Mike Keene, MCIP RPP, Principal, Planning and Development, Fotenn Planning + Design

While navigating budding relationships with council, local developers, new and generation-long property owners, partnered firms, and a variety of other stakeholders who each respectively want planners to permit their development, prohibit others’ development, or do nothing at all, planners working together from the Township of Havelock-Belmont-Methuen and Fotenn learned lessons about the roadblocks along the way to decision-making in small towns.

In late 2020, Fotenn Planning + Design was awarded a contract with the Township of Havelock-Belmont-Methuen to provide professional planning services. The call for this work was to assist the Township’s sole planner, who in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, was facing an increased volume and complexity of work. The development pressure felt in the Township was not unique. With international travel on hold, and both remote work and housing prices rising, Ontarians sought to develop their dream homes in the cottage country surrounding the GTA. More than two years later, the desire for development in small towns has not subsided and remote work is here to stay. The challenge of accommodating for this pressure remains in municipal environments where budget is tight, and time is important. This presentation explores these challenges and shares solutions with conference attendees.

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Mayor and Members’ Roles in Economic Development

Moderator: Dave Paul

Nigel Bellchamber, Principal , Amberley Gavel Ltd.
Fred Dean, Principal , Amberley Gavel Ltd.

Fred Dean and Nigel Bellchamber will use their extensive legal and administrative experience with Councils, drawing from real life examples, to explain when and how Heads and Members of Council play very important roles in the Economic Development process, both directly and indirectly. The actions or inactions of individuals can play a significant role in attraction and retention of entrepreneurs and business enterprises. The Head of Council is in a unique position and needs to understand how they can have the greatest impact, in a variety of ways, on economic success for their community.

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Loyalist College

How Colleges Can Support Attracting Industry

Moderator: Laurie Caouette, Industry Partnership Officer, Loyalist College

Ken Doyle, Executive Director, Tech-Access Canada
Cher Powers, Business Development & Commercialization Manager, Ontario Centre of Innovation
Kurstin Salisbury, Research Coordinator, Loyalist College

Canada’s colleges have been at the forefront of innovation across all of Canada’s most important economic sectors for decades. They have the capacity, expertise and infrastructure to help both public and private enterprises tackle R&D, skills development and workforce recruitment.

R&D is one of the biggest challenges small- and medium-sized enterprises face in growing their businesses. They may not have the research expertise or financial resources to undertake R&D. That is where working with a community college can lend a much-needed hand.

Working with a college can also provide added value in your workforce development activities through corporate training and microcredentials. They are also a local source of graduates equipped to meet today’s challenges.

Our panel discussion will cover how working with a College can provide access to leading experts and leading-edge equipment, training to support innovation, and the development of ready-to-recruit talent.

We will also cover how together with a great network of partners like Ontario Centre of Innovation we can help SMEs solve their industry challenges by leveraging funding available.

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Municipality-initiated Development: Case Study – Highway 417 Industrial Park in Township of Russell

Moderator: Cyndy Phillips, Executive Director, Community Futures Development Corporation Renfrew County

Nadia De Santi, MCIP, RPP, Practice Lead, WSP
Dominique Tremblay, Director of Planning, Building, and Economic Development, Township of Russell

The Township of Russell has worked to develop and encourage the development of a concentration of complementary businesses in the Highway 417 Industrial Park. Township staff has worked with municipal Council to acquire 225 acres of land over the past five years, in a success story of convincing local governance the advantages of developing the land themselves compared to letting a private developer develop the land. This purchased land was just redesignated as part of a comprehensive review under the Provincial Policy Statement, to employment to accommodate the demand.

Some examples of the benefits of owning land are numerous. For example, the Township can select companies to which they wish to sell the land and the development process for the municipality is faster than for a private developer, resulting in focus on a faster tax return. Additionally, the Township can sell the land at a more affordable price since it is not being sold for profit. The investment is a long-term access investment on tax return and job creation.

Since 2021, the Township has sold over 100 acres of land to 13 different companies, which will generate more than 851 new jobs and an approximate additional $812,000 in municipal taxes.

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Community Engagement and Long-term Visions: Stimulants for Investments, Economic Growth and Redevelopment in Small Municipalities. The Town of Deep River Case Study

Moderator: David Wybou

Jacob Bolduc, Associate Planner, Fotenn
Rejane Padaratz, B.Arch. Urb., OPPI Candidate Member Principal, Urban Design at Fotenn Planning + Design
Sarah Marsh, OALA, BCSLA, CSLA, Associate Landscape Architect, Fotenn Planning and Design

Small Municipalities face challenges in making the most efficient use of limited budgets for improvements or miss funding opportunities due to reduced time and resources. This session will use the Deep River Downtown Streetscape and Waterfront Enhancement Strategy initiative as a case study of how small municipalities can generate implementable Urban Design Strategies and Long-Term Plans to guide future investments on public realm, with the goal to transform the area into a thriving business and tourism hub in the region.

In addition, meaningful public engagement is essential for the success and future endorsement of any project, thus a series public online surveys, open house, and in-person workshops with stakeholders, staff, council, and the project team were conducted. These long-term holistic studies can be used to timely seek funding opportunities within different levels of government, identify synergies of investment timelines and generate excitement in the residential and business communities contributing to economic growth.

As well as defining the community’s vision for the areas, the study provides creative ideas and concepts, and identifies implementation strategies allowing for a phased approach, ideal for small budgets. This is a powerful tool that Towns can use in seeking future funding and planning their mid and long-term investment plan.

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Harnessing the Bioeconomy to meet the challenges facing Eastern Ontario and Mother Earth

Moderator: Sandra Lawn

Dr. Henry Lickers, Commissioner of IJC
Jeff Passmore, Scaling Up
Doug Cleary, Clearydale Farms

Our four panelists will describe how Eastern Ontario communities are strategically placed to address the challenges of a changing climate and the resulting world-wide crises. Their knowledge of industry, agriculture, government and international affairs will be inspirational. They will describe how technical expertise, realism and concern for Seven Generations have the capacity to come together for the bioeconomy of Ontario East’s unique small urban and rural communities. We will learn more about the most advanced approaches to economic, industrial, agricultural and human development. The pandemic has taught us many things about economic development – not the least of which is “co-operation is the way to survive” and “knowledge is powerful but only when it is shared!”

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Workforce Development, Attraction and Retention in Rural Communities in Post Covid World

Moderator: Alex de Wit, Economic and Business Advisor, OMAFRA

Kelly Landriault, HR Manager, Alexandria Moulding
Jeff Poapst, Chief Manufacturing Officer, Ross Video
Lynn Saunders, Director of Human Resources, Plaintree Systems Inc.
Ruth Walker Scott, Economic Development Officer, County of Simcoe Economic Development Office

OMAFRA will be leading a panel discussion that will be talking about workforce retention and expansion strategies in the post COVID world.

Jeff Poapst – Chief Manufacturing Officer – Ross Video Limited. Jeff will speak to the strategies that Ross Video has adopted to help build and expand their workforce over the past few years with a special focus on their Eastern Ontario factory and how they offering new customized services to new and existing employees to help with attraction.

Lynn Saunders – Director of Human Resources – Plaintree Systems Inc. with Corporate Offices located in Arnprior Ontario has two diversified product lines consisting of Specialty Structures and Applied Electronics. They will speak to their experience working with refugees and new Canadians to fill their workforce needs and their continued efforts to bring new people into their community.

Alana Bissonnette – Alexandria Moulding. Alexandria Moulding is a leading moulding manufacturer and distributor of wood and wood composite mouldings in North America. They will speak to their retention strategies that have led to a significant portion of their staff being employed with Alexandria Moulding for 30+ years.

Ruth Walker Scott – Economic Development Officer – County of Simcoe Economic Development Office – Ruth will speak to the strategies and best practices and lessons learned in Simcoe County during their growth period over the past decade as more and more people moved to Simcoe who commute towards Toronto for work. These lessons learned will be presented with a focus on helping communities in Eastern Ontario expand with Ottawa, Kingston and Montreal.

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The Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus Regional Housing Plan and the Rural Housing Information System

Moderator: Melissa Marquardt, Manager of Economic Development, County of Renfrew

Charlotte Craig, Rural Housing Information System (RHIS) Data Trainer, Rural Ontario Institute (ROI)
Peter Emon, Chair, Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus
Jason St.Pierre, CEO, Eastern Ontario Regional Network

The Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus (EOWC) will present on their regional housing plan to build 28,000 housing units across the region. The bold plan includes building 7,000 affordable community rental housing units across seven years throughout eastern Ontario, as well as an additional 21,000 attainable market rate units. Through a private-public partnership model, the ‘7 in 7’ will incent units to be built in partnership with the private and non-profit sectors throughout the seven year period. Currently, the EOWC is working to develop a business case around how the ‘7 in 7’ will be successfully developed and sustainable. During the presentation, the EOWC will present the ‘7 in 7′ plan along with the process of how it has been developed, the region’s collaboration, next steps, and further details.

Through the Housing Supply Challenge, the Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus (EOWC) worked with the Rural Ontario Institute (ROI) and tech company, Itergy, to build a streamlined digital tool to fill the housing information gap – the Rural Housing Information System (RHIS). This locally driven tool supports municipalities in the planning and development of affordable housing. It also aims to support not for profit builders in overcoming information barriers regarding housing in rural communities. The RHIS is expanding to the rural municipalities of Western Ontario and is exploring partnership in the North. Come learn more about the RHIS and how it can benefit affordable housing in your community.

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Renfrew Virtual Triage & Assessment Centre (RC VTAC): An Innovative Approach to Health Care | Belleville’s Physician Recruitment

Moderator: Kelly Lemenchick, Community Development Officer at the Renfrew County Community Futures Development Corporation

Peter Emon, Warden, County of Renfrew
Michael Nolan, Paramedic Chief/Director of Emergency Services, County of Renfrew
Karen Poste, Manager of Physician Recruitment and Retention, Belleville

Patient-focused Care for Rural Ontario residents In Renfrew County, as of July 2022, approximately 30,000 or 28 per cent of our residents do not have a family doctor. When you add the planned family physician retirements in 2023, the number of unattached residents will likely jump to 35,000. The persistent challenges faced by our residents in accessing primary health care is putting the wellness and prosperity of our community in jeopardy. While physician recruitment is ongoing, it is impractical to expect that our efforts will result in 30 new doctors moving to our area (based on the average roster of 1,000 patients).

There is however, a home-grown solution that has proven to narrow the gap in health service delivery that is efficient, accessible, economical and very well received by Ontarians. In the midst of the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Renfrew County Virtual Triage and Assessment Centre (RC VTAC) became a lifeline for our residents. The program currently handles approximately 5,000 calls to VTAC per month and operators provide 2,250 physician assessments per month which prevent 1,000 Emergency Department attendances or 911 calls per month. RC VTAC callers speak with a doctor who either provides immediate treatment options over the phone or video, consults with community paramedics to arrange a same-day visit for an in-person clinical assessment, refers to another local health care service, prescribes medication or further diagnostic testing or coordinates an urgent Paramedic transfer to the nearest hospital. This is in conjunction with standard registration, testing and vaccination functions of RC VTAC. For the 20 percent of our population who do not have access to a primary care physician, RC VTAC is filling that void and has become their primary care access point for non-urgent medical needs.

This innovative service has not only reduced the demand on our 9-1-1 system, it has resulted in a drop in Paramedic calls for service, and transfers to hospital. RC VTAC is also having a significant impact on reducing hallway medicine in our hospitals. RCVTAC is a cost-effective, efficient, patient-focused model of care. It has become a lifeline for thousands of our residents, many of them seniors who do not have the resources or options to seek healthcare outside of their home communities. Perhaps one of RC VTAC’s greatest assets is its adaptability; it can literally be duplicated in any part of Ontario quickly and efficiently.

Rural Ontario, and Renfrew County in particular, is facing a health-care access challenge. The shortage of family physicians demands that we look at innovative ways of ensuring the health-care needs of all Ontarians are met. Physician recruitment will not be enough. It is impractical to expect Renfrew County to attract 30 new family doctors to meet the need today, let alone in a year from now, when our unattached patient list will be even higher.

The City of Belleville has had a long standing and very successful family physician recruitment program that is changing and adapting to remain relevant in a post-covid Ontario. Come and hear about the many lessons learned in the quest to attract family doctors to this beautiful Eastern Ontario city and hear how their new attraction policy has been a game changer for their strategy.

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What’s Out There in the Skilled Trades & Technologies: Building Ontario’s Skilled Trades and Technologies Workforce – Together

Moderator: Bob Peters, Manager of Economic Development for the City of Cornwall

Dan Cardinal, Senior Provincial Engagement Coordinator, Skills Ontario
Alysha Dominico, CEO & Co-Founder, Tangible Words

Over the last three years, the Ontario East Talent Identification Support Project (OE-TISP) has had a heavy focus on Skilled Trades. The mandate of the project was to gather all of the workforce programs and services provided in the region to secure collaboration and better spread solutions to stakeholders, employers and jobseekers. In this session, we’ll share with you how program participants were able to articulate gaps and solve them by working more closely together. One of the ways we achieved this goal was through committed partnerships with organizations like Skills Ontario.

Skills Ontario is committed to preparing Ontario’s youth for the highly skilled economy of tomorrow. We partner with school boards, colleges, small business, large companies, labour groups, municipalities and governments to provide opportunities for youth to explore and develop skills for successful careers in the skilled trades and technologies. With over 30 years of experience, Skills Ontario is a province-wide non-profit organization with a grassroots connection into the many communities we serve. Our programs represent a long-term investment in the lives of all Ontarians.

Skills Ontario is building Ontario’s skilled trades and technologies workforce. We enable and empower all youth to consider a career in the skilled trades and technologies. Through our numerous programs and initiatives we engage with students, teachers, parents, guardians and volunteers to ensure our programs connect education, experience, and employment. We are focused on growth sectors such as construction and infrastructure, technology innovation, and hospitality services.

Want to know what Skills Ontario is doing in YOUR region? Come and find out not only WHAT we are doing…but HOW we are doing it…and how YOU can get involved in making a difference in the life of Ontario’s youth!

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Tourism is big business in Eastern Ontario! Update from RTOs

Moderator: James Lynn, Senior Business Advisor, Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport

Bonnie Ruddock, Executive Director, South Eastern Ontario Region
Brenda Wood, Executive Director, Regional Tourism Organization 8
Nicole Whiting, Executive Director, Ontario’s Highlands Tourism Organization

Tourism is big business in Eastern Ontario! In 2019, total visitor spending in Regional Tourism Organizations 8, 9 & 11 which spans over the shores of Port Hope to the Renfrew Valley and the Cornwall border was over $2.4 billion. No other industry has suffered the economic impacts of the COVID pandemic like Ontario’s Tourism sector.

As we navigate beyond the pandemic, businesses, communities, and governments are planning bold new paths to recharge, rebuild and welcome back new visitors. In this session, you will hear from representatives from the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport and local tourism officials who will speak about best practices, future growth and long-term sustainability that will provide the greatest opportunities for economic success.

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Eastern Ontario Macroeconomics – Trends, Challenges & Opportunities

Moderator: Bob Peters, Manager of Economic Development for the City of Cornwall

Presenter: Sébastien Labrecque, Deputy Director and Chief Economist of the StrategyCorp Institute of Public Policy and Economy

The presentation will provide an update on the economy of Eastern Ontario to help set the stage for the OEMC. Leveraging the latest data available, we will take a look at key economic indicators to highlight recent trends and assess how the region is faring compared to the rest of the province and the country. This will enable us to identify and discuss with session attendees opportunities and challenges uncovered in the numbers. The presentation will pay special attention to data related to businesses, housing, demographics as well as inter and intraprovincial migration. A Q&A session where participants can ask their questions in English or French will follow.

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Be Your Economy’s DEI Hero: Here’s the Secret

Moderator: Kelley Lemenchick, Community Development Officer at the Renfrew County Community Futures Development Corporation

Heather Candler, Director of Economic Development, City of Belleville
Cat Fisher Andrews, Coordinator, Quinte Local Immigration Partnership
Nour Mazloum, Marketing & Communications Manager, Kingston Economic Development and Chair of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee at Economic Developers Council of Ontario

Economic developers can play a key role in amplifying inclusion in local workplaces to attract labour and boost economic success. Hear more as Kingston Economic Development, Quinte United Immigrant Services and the City of Belleville share why DEI is crucial to your local economy and how Belleville quickly and effectively developed and launched a Workplace Inclusion Charter that businesses have embraced.

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GRID: An Innovative Solution to Streamline Development Approvals through Processes that are Simple and Efficient, which aggregate Complete Property Information!

Moderator: Tara Kirkpatrick, Manager of Economic Development, United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry

Presenter: Irene Cameron , CPA, CGA, President and CEO, Geo-Registry Integrated Datachain Inc. (GRID)

In the midst of a pressing need for affordable housing and the growing demand for higher density, the real estate industry finds itself grappling with an increasingly complex web of records and data management, and an urgent need to streamline development approvals. The solution to this challenge comes in the form of Geo-Registry Integrated Datachain (GRID), an innovative blockchain based platform that promises to revolutionize the way Municipalities interact with other Stakeholders in a property.

GRID’s integrated platform seamlessly connects all involved parties, providing a one-stop solution for property-related matters. Dynamic workflows, property management and data solutions, and immutable property records combined to offer real-time insight into the evolution of a property, preserving significant records for the long term. Municipalities, developers, homeowners, and other stakeholders will experience a new era of transparency through GRID’s unifying power.

This groundbreaking platform stands as a beacon of efficiency, streamlining communication and handling outstanding issues with remarkable ease. GRID will be pro-active where necessary. For example, GRID will notify owners of outstanding work orders, to expedite corrective actions.

GRID will relieve municipal staff from responding to routine information inquiries, enabling them to focus on value-added tasks. And GRID’s processes will reduce the cost of issuing templated documents like work order certificates.

GRID brings clarity to every aspect of property development and administration. Managing complex relationships and vast volumes of data, GRID enables municipal staff to focus on what truly matters.

Furthermore, GRID’s versatile workflows extend beyond property development, encompassing sales transactions, insurance, mortgages, and much more. Its secure and shared data architecture fosters trust and transparency, ultimately reducing risk, enhancing overall efficiency, elevating accountability, and bolstering compliance.

With support from local governments and real estate boards in Eastern Ontario, GRID is set to launch early 2024. Its arrival promises to break down socio-economic barriers to market access, encouraging better stewardship of property and enriching the entire housing industry.

In a world where every moment counts, embrace GRID, and step into the future of property efficiency and innovation.

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Canada’s Immigration Advantage: Programs and Resources for Employers | OINP-Entrepreneur Success Initiative Update

Moderator: Alysha Dominico, CEO & Co-Founder, Tangible Words

Nadia Faggiani, Outreach Officer, Dedicated Service Channel, Domestic Network, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
Vikram Khurana, Chair, Toronto Business Development Centre
Sanjeev Verma, International Applications Manager, Toronto Business Development Centre

This session will include an overview of Canada’s federal economic immigration programs and learn about the practical tools and resources for employers to attract and retain foreign workers.

This session will also present a OINP-Entrepreneur Success Initiative Update. The OINP Entrepreneur Success Initiative is a two-year initiative administered by Toronto Business Development Centre and supported by Ontario’s Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development to attract talent and investment and create new opportunities in local communities.

The OINP-ESI helps prospective international entrepreneurs identify opportunities to start or buy a business in Ontario outside of the Greater Toronto Area – and it is an opportunity for Ontario business owners to sell their businesses to vetted, qualified international entrepreneurs.

TBDC acts as a matchmaker between international entrepreneurs interested in buying and Ontario business owners looking to sell – at no cost to either business owners or international entrepreneurs. TBDC has qualified international entrepreneurs looking to buy, a database of over 1300 qualified and vetted businesses outside of the GTA ready for buyers and succession planning opportunities. Vikram Khurana will share details about how the OINP-ESI can help attract investment to your communities and how municipalities can use it to drive economic growth.

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The Future of Seniors Housing: The Abbeyfield Shared Accommodation Model | The Provincial Urgency to Build More Homes: Managing Growth while achieving Community Vision: A Case Study of the Cavan Monaghan Experience

Moderator: Rhonda Keenan

Ron Black, Deputy Mayor, Township of Selwyn
JP Melville, Executive Director, Abbeyfield Canada
Scott McFadden, Council Coach,

Ron Black and JP Melville will present on The Future of Seniors Housing: The Abbeyfield Shared Accommodation Model.  Abbeyfield has been a successful model of affordable housing for moderate income seniors for over 60 years. Starting in the United Kingdom in 1957, some 800 homes around the world. Twenty houses already operate in Canada and five more conditional homes in development in Ontario. The Abbeyfield shared accommodation model is ideal for active seniors who seek a place that preserves their privacy while promoting a sense of security, community, companionship and support. Residents are each provided with a 350-450sq.ft. private space while sharing kitchen, dining and common rooms in the house. Abbeyfield houses are managed by volunteer boards of directors and involve local volunteers in residents’ activities. Each house has a unique, revenue positive business model, based on local economy and community.

A case study will be presented for Abbeyfield Lakefield (Township of Selwyn), which is a 19 unit affordable senior house that is currently in the site plan approval stage. Conference attendees will learn about how the Abbeyfield model helps address critical issues that include impacts on local economy, zoning bylaws, and the well known health care costs of seniors’ loneliness. Attendees will learn about the role of the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, ways to support not for profit housing organizations, how shared accommodation reduces long term infrastructure costs, and much more.

Scott McFadden will then present on the Provincial Urgency to Build More Homes: Managing Growth while achieving Community Vision: A Case Study of the Cavan Monaghan Experience. Growth pressures within the Greater Golden Horseshoe brought both challenges and opportunities to Cavan Monaghan. Strategically managing growth enabled them to deliver on their community vision:

  • Significant upgrades to the Water & Wastewater municipal services while limiting the financial exposure of the Capital costs to existing users.
  • Managing resident expectations, delivering moderately increased levels of service while consistently reducing Operational expenses.
  • Constructing a new Community Centre to meet current and future needs without any dependence on funding from upper levels of government or the property tax base.
  • Constructing a new Public Works Operations Centre, a new Parks & Recreation Works Yard, and a new Firehall with an EMS base, leveraging significant funds from alternative revenue sources.
  • Revitalizing community sports fields, through partnerships with local organizations.
  • Navigating annexation pressures from larger urban neighbours.
  • Utilizing MZO’s to kickstart development.
  • Generating significant revenues beyond development charges and property taxes, while bringing new businesses and jobs to the community.

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Eastern Ontario Industrial and Employment Lands

Moderator: Jay Amer, Executive Director, Ontario East Economic Development Commission

Chris King, CEO, Quinte Economic Development Commission
Stefano Sanguigni, Director, Invest Ontario
Dr. Brendan Sweeney, Managing Director, Trillium Network for Advanced Manufacturing

All communities in eastern Ontario are experiencing challenges providing serviced investment and shovel ready employment lands for attracting new investment to the region and accommodating expansion of existing companies. Ontario East members have all expressed immediate challenges in meeting the needs of investors looking for locations in eastern Ontario. Typically, any enquiries for larger serviced land tracts cannot be readily accommodated by our communities, even though there exists strong international and domestic needs in prime employment sectors.

This session will highlight the important role municipalities have in ensuring that an inventory of industrial employment lands is available for immediate and future growth opportunities with:

  • Invest Ontario – showcasing the demand, potential solutions and strategies.
  • Quinte Economic Development Commission – sharing its communities’ experiences in securing and making employment lands available for new investment.

This session will also provide an update on a recent report by Trillium Network for Advanced Manufacturing titled Ontario’s Industrial Land Shortage: Why It’s a Problem and What We Can Do About It. “The shortage of industrial land is occurring at a time of substantial interest in boosting Ontario’s manufacturing sector to support post-pandemic economic recovery and re-establish national supply chain security. Suffice to say, the timing could not be worse. The shortage of industrial land is an impediment to the growth of manufacturing in Ontario.”

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Energizing Life: Preparing Communities for a Clean Energy Future

Moderator: Chris King, CEO, Quinte Economic Development Commission

Daniel Levitan, VP of Stakeholder Relations, Hydro One
Kyle Mersky, Director of Growth, Hydro One
David Zavarise, Customer Program Manager, Hydro One

Whether you live in rural or urban Ontario, or somewhere in between, the demand for clean energy is growing. Ensuring communities big and small across Ontario have the electricity they need to drive economic growth and meet new transportation and housing needs while working to achieve net-zero and sustainability targets is key to a clean energy future. Hydro One representatives will discuss the role the utility plays in the future of electrification, specifically, its role in transmitting and distributing clean electricity across Ontario, local energy solutions and supporting municipalities and communities as they work to build a brighter and better future.

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Leveraging Government Resources: How to Navigate the Funding Landscape

Moderator: Ann-Marie Kelleher-Byers, Senior Rural Advisor, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Marc Appleby, Senior Innovation Advisor, Innovation Canada (Accelerated Growth Service)
Kent Fitzhugh, Senior Business Advisor, Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade
Cyndy Palleske, Executive Director, Community Futures Eastern Ontario (CFEO)/Southern Ontario Fund for Investing in Innovation (SOFII)
Sophia Rubimbwa, Director, Inclusivity and Community Development, FedDev Ontario

Join representatives from economic development organizations including FedDev Ontario and the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade for a program overview and panel discussion. Key stakeholders across eastern Ontario have shared their most asked questions from SMEs and communities to guide this discussion.

Learn how to source and tap into the right information and how the funding cycle works. Panelists will share how governments can partner with each other and also why communities and businesses should tap into the other host of resources outside of funding that is available.

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Employment Ontario is Transforming: Building Connections for Employers and Job Seekers

Moderator: T.J. Flynn, Investment Attraction Officer for Northumberland County

Deborah Childs, Director Contract Management Support, WCG Services SSM EO Ottawa and Eastern Collaborative Region
Sarah Haase, Director, Workforce Development, Fleming College SSM EO Muskoka-Kawarthas
Jodi O’Gorman, Managing Director, Employment Services, Serco SSM EO Kingston, Pembroke, Kitchener, Waterloo, Barrie catchment
Stephen Seller, Regional Program Manager, Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development (MLITSD)

Join us to learn about the Employment Ontario transformation and explore the strategies and collaborations from each of the area Service System Managers to strengthen local service delivery, support employer engagement strategies, partnerships and initiatives.

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Fueling the Future: Renewable Natural Gas in Eastern Ontario

Moderator: Alysha Dominico, CEO & Co-Founder, Tangible Words

Jean-Benoit Trahan, Director Eastern Region Operations, Enbridge Gas Inc.
Justin Egan, Renewable Natural Gas Specialist, Enbridge Gas Inc.
Nick Thurler, Dairy Farmer, South Dundas

Municipal landfills and manure from dairy farms are two tremendous sources of renewable natural gas. Capturing and using renewable natural gas is an important contribution to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 and best of all, its locally available here in eastern Ontario. Join this panel discussion to learn more about this viable solution to decarbonize waste.

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