Job opportunity

Special Assistant – Position Overview

The Office of Mayor Jim Watson is hiring a Special Assistant.

The ideal candidate:

  • Is highly organized, motivated, punctual, and able to work well under pressure;
  • Has strong interpersonal skills including tact, diplomacy and the ability to interact well with people;
  • Is required to work flexible hours, including evenings and weekends;
  • Will staff the Mayor at community events throughout the city;
  • Possesses a valid Ontario Driver’s License (Class “G” unrestricted);
  • Collaborates well with others and has a strong sense of accountability;
  • Is social media savvy and has a general understanding of website management;
  • Possesses excellent writing and editing skills;
  • Must have an interest in municipal affairs and the ability to engage with residents on their issues and concerns;
  • Undertakes other duties as assigned including providing general clerical support, and preparing correspondence and outreach regarding resident inquiries and various municipal issues;
  • Bilingualism (English and French) is an asset.

Please send your resume in complete confidence no later than October 28th 2019

James Armbruster, Special Assistant – Community Relations

Office of Mayor Jim Watson / Bureau du maire Jim Watson

City of Ottawa / Ville d’Ottawa

110 Laurier Ave. West / 110 ave. Laurier Ouest

Ottawa, Ontario K1P 1J1

E-mail : james.armbruster@ottawa.ca

 

We are grateful for all applications submitted. Given the high volume of applications received, we are only able to acknowledge those applicants who are retained for an interview.‎


Responses to Mayor Watson's Questionnaire to local Federal election candidates

Mayor Jim Watson's questionnaire was sent the following Ottawa region Federal elections candidates and their party leaders on September 24, 2019. Below are the unedited submitted responses:

Liberal Party of Canada

  • Chris Rodgers, Carleton
  • Karen McCrimmon, Kanata-Carleton
  • Chandra Arya, Nepean
  • Marie-France Lalonde, Orléans
  • Catherine McKenna, Ottawa Centre
  • David McGuinty, Ottawa South
  • Mona Fortier, Vanier
  • Anita Vandenbeld, Ottawa West-Nepean

 Green Party of Canada

  • Gordon Kubanek, Carleton
  • Jennifer Purdy, Kanata-Carleton
  • Jean-Luc Cooke, Nepean
  • Michelle Petersen, Orléans
  • Angela Keller-Herzog, Ottawa Centre
  • Leslie P. Schram, Ottawa South
  • Oriana Ngabirano, Vanier
  • David Stibbe, Ottawa West-Nepean

 New Democratic Party of Canada

  • Kevin Hua, Carleton
  • Melissa Coenraad, Kanata-Carleton
  • Zaff Ansari, Nepean
  • Jacqueline Wiens, Orléans
  • Emilie Taman, Ottawa Centre
  • Morgan Gay, Ottawa South
  • Stéphanie Mercier, Vanier
  • Angella MacEwen, Ottawa West-Nepean

 Conservative Party of Canada

  • Pierre Polièvre, Carleton
  • Justina McCaffrey, Kanata-Carleton
  • Brian St. Louis, Nepean
  • David Berts, Orléans
  • Carol Clemenhagen, Ottawa Centre
  • Eli Tannis, Ottawa South
  • Joel Bernard, Vanier
  • Adul Adbi, Ottawa West-Nepean

 Transit and active transportation

1. Long-term transit funding certainty provided by a permanent, direct, allocation-based federal transit funding mechanism will allow for the continual build-out of major transit expansions in urban areas, building on transformative projects currently underway. Dedicated federal transit investments through the Investing in Canada Plan total $23.2 billion over the 2018-19 to 2027-28 10-year period.

$34 billion is required over the subsequent 10-year period to maintain a consistent level of dedicated federal investment in public transit. Canadian cities, through the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, are asking the federal government to commit to these investments. If your party forms government, do you commit to the creation of this permanent fund dedicated to public transit projects?

Yes                 No

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidates Chris Rodgers, Carleton, Karen McCrimmon, Kanata-Carleton, Chandra Arya, Nepean, Marie-France Lalonde, Orléans, David McGuinty, Ottawa South, Mona Fortier, Vanier, Anita Vandenbeld, Ottawa West-Nepean

Strong public transit systems across Canada are a key part of our Climate Change plan “Clean Canada”. Making sure that people have choices in the way they get to work, go shopping, and serve their daily needs means less time spent in traffic and a cleaner environment for everyone. We want to encourage people to choose cleaner ways of getting around which is why in government, we introduced $28 billion in infrastructure for over 1,400 public transit projects across the country. For the first time, every transit system in Canada was given 10-year allocations for public transit funding to support local transit priorities, as it is doing in Ottawa with the investment of $1.15 billion in Stage 2 LRT.

The historic transit investment we have put forward has already delivered concrete results across the country providing 3,600 new buses, building and upgrading 15,000 bus stops and shelters, and upgrading over 200 transit stations. These investments are making communities better places to live, creating good middle-class jobs and ensuring that we can all spend less time commuting and more time with our families.

And we will go further. If re-elected your Liberal government will continue to help cities get the stable, predictable transit funding they need to plan the expansion and maintenance of their public transit systems by permanently investing at least $3 billion per year in public transit, on top of the federal Gas Tax Fund.  In addition, Liberal MPs Catherine McKenna and Karen McCrimmon in Ottawa have committed to ensuring the federal government is a partner in the City of Ottawa’s Electric Bus Pilot Project and in the larger goal of transitioning from diesel-fueled to electric buses.

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidate Catherine McKenna, Ottawa-Centre

Strong public transit systems across Canada are a key part of our Climate Change plan “Clean Canada”. Making sure that people have choice in the way they get to work, go shopping, and serve their daily needs means less time spent in traffic and a cleaner environment for everyone. We want to encourage people to choose cleaner ways of getting around so our government has invested $28 billion in infrastructure for public transit across the country.

And we will go further. If re-elected we will help cities get the stable, predictable funding for transit they need to be able to plan expansion and maintenance of their public transit systems by investing $3 billion per year in public transit, on top of the federal Gas Tax Fund. The City of Ottawa is planning to pilot an electric bus program with 2 buses; I will make sure the federal government works with the City to support this program.

 

Green Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

The Green Party of Canada has always been supportive of municipal mass transit infrastructure and we continue to be. As part of moving to zero-carbon transportation, cities will need good mass transit infrastructure and the federal government will need to play a significant role in funding these projects.

 

New Democratic Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

When it comes to getting around, people in Ottawa should be able to count on public transit that’s convenient and affordable. We’re committed to making the investments needed to make your commute easier, all while taking cars off the road, cutting emissions, and reducing gridlock. New Democrats understand that getting our communities moving is critical for our economy and our quality of life. That’s why we’ll put in place a permanent, direct, allocation-based funding mechanism for modern public transit across Canada for the long run. We’ll also step up investments now to help cities transition their bus fleets to electric and to expand affordable rail and bus options in all parts of the country. And for municipalities that make it a priority, a New Democrat government will work with them towards reducing fares and fare-free transit to ease commutes and make life more affordable.

 

Conservative Party of Canada

Candidates Pierre Polièvre, Carleton, Brian St. Louis, Nepean, David Berts, Orléans, Carol Clemenhagen, Ottawa Centre, Eli Tannis, Ottawa South and Joel Bernard, Vanier, did not provide a response.

Candidates Adul Adbi, Ottawa West-Nepean and Justina McCaffrey, Kanata-Carleton, provided the following response:

Thank you for reaching out with this questionnaire. The questions asked are of importance to all Ottawa residents.

As the Campaign continues the Conservative Party will continue to release exciting new pieces of the platform that will help Canadians get ahead, not just get by. My campaign and I will be more than happy to discuss the questions your questionnaire posed after the platform is out, and I look forward to continue to engage with and meet the residents of Ottawa West-Nepean over the next few weeks.

 

2. After the Stage 2 LRT project is complete, the City of Ottawa plans to extend the LRT west to Kanata/Stittsville and south to Barrhaven. Do you commit to funding 50 per cent of Ottawa’s Stage 3 LRT project?

Yes                 No

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidates Chris Rodgers, Carleton, Karen McCrimmon, Kanata-Carleton, Chandra Arya, Nepean, Marie-France Lalonde, Orléans, David McGuinty, Ottawa South, Mona Fortier, Vanier, Anita Vandenbeld, Ottawa West-Nepean

The first phase of LRT has been a huge success since its launch. It is revolutionizing the way the residents of Ottawa are moving around and, when you consider that by 2030 it will reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the city by 100 000 tonnes, it is the equivalent of taking 25 000 cars off the road. This is the single largest reduction in CO2 emissions in the city’s history.

Our government invested $1.15 billion in phase 2 of LRT to build on this success. We understand the importance of extending the LRT system via the Stage 3 project which will give residents of Stittsville and Barrhaven more convenient and cleaner options when they want to travel around Ottawa to work, shop and play.  We believe strongly in local decision making through historic investments in public transit and we will continue to support local priorities.

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidate Catherine McKenna, Ottawa-Centre

LRT has been a huge success. It is revolutionizing the way the residents of Ottawa are moving around and, when you consider that by 2030 it will reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the city by 100 000 tonnes, it is the equivalent of taking 25 000 cars off the road. Our government invested 1.1 billion in phase 2 of LRT to build on this success. I will advocate for federal support of the construction of phase 3, so that residents of Stittsville and Barrhaven have more convenient and cleaner options when they want to travel around Ottawa to work, shop and play.

 

Green Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

Through some combination of ⅓ direct funding of Stage-3 of the Ottawa LRT and the federal portion of the gas tax, Green MPs want to see the LRT complete to its full objectives - to reach deep into the suburbs. Municipalities are where investments like this make the greatest reductions in traffic congestion and increases in quality of life.

 

New Democratic Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

Expanding LRT is an important way to improve transit in Ottawa. Municipalities are already investing in making their transit systems better and more environmentally friendly – it’s time that they had a federal partner that was there to help.

New Democrats understand that getting our communities moving is critical for our economy and our quality of life. That’s why we’ll put in place a permanent, direct, allocation-based funding mechanism for modern public transit across Canada for the long run.

A New Democrat government will also modernize and expand public transit in communities across Canada, and ensure that federal transit funding flows with an emphasis on scaling up low-carbon transit projects, like zero-emissions buses and electric trains, with the goal of electrifying transit and other municipal fleets by 2030.

 

Conservative Party of Canada

Candidates Pierre Polièvre, Carleton, Brian St. Louis, Nepean, David Berts, Orléans, Carol Clemenhagen, Ottawa Centre, Eli Tannis, Ottawa South and Joel Bernard, Vanier, did not provide a response.

Candidates Adul Adbi, Ottawa West-Nepean and Justina McCaffrey, Kanata-Carleton, provided the following response:

Thank you for reaching out with this questionnaire. The questions asked are of importance to all Ottawa residents.

As the Campaign continues the Conservative Party will continue to release exciting new pieces of the platform that will help Canadians get ahead, not just get by. My campaign and I will be more than happy to discuss the questions your questionnaire posed after the platform is out, and I look forward to continue to engage with and meet the residents of Ottawa West-Nepean over the next few weeks

 

3. A recent study by Ville de Gatineau for its structuring public transit project in the city’s west end found that the Prince of Wales Bridge does not have the capacity to be the main rail link between the train systems in Ottawa and Gatineau. This presents an opportunity to convert this bridge into a pedestrian and cyclist crossing, which would cost approximately $10 million. Given that the Prince of Wales is an interprovincial bridge, do you commit to funding the full cost of the work required to make the bridge suitable for pedestrians and cyclists in the area?

Yes                 No

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidates Chris Rodgers, Carleton, Karen McCrimmon, Kanata-Carleton, Chandra Arya, Nepean, Marie-France Lalonde, Orléans, David McGuinty, Ottawa South, Mona Fortier, Vanier, Anita Vandenbeld, Ottawa West-Nepean

One of the great things about the National Capital Region is that people live, work and play on both sides of the river. We also benefit from a wide network of multi-use pathways that make it easier to walk and bike for fun or just to get around.

To make moving across the Ottawa River safe and more secure by foot or by bicycle, our Liberal government will champion repairing the Prince of Wales bridge for the use of cyclists and pedestrians and will work with all orders of government to secure the funding to make the necessary changes.

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidate Catherine McKenna, Ottawa-Centre

One of the things I love about the National Capital Region is that people live, work and play on both sides of the river. We also benefit from a wide network of multi-use pathways that make it easier to walk and bicycle for pleasure and to get around in our daily lives without increasing carbon emissions. In the last election, I promised put a bridge across the Rideau Canal at Clegg Street; today, people are using the Flora Footbridge to move back and forth across the canal without having to jump in a car, relieving traffic on the roads and reducing carbon emissions. To make moving across the Ottawa River safe and secure by foot or by bicycle, I will champion repairing for the use of cyclists and pedestrians the Prince of Wales bridge and will work with all levels of government to secure the funding necessary to make the necessary changes.

 

Green Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

Increased investments in active transportation are absolutely necessary. Working together with municipal and federal government we will work towards solutions to increase and optimize our active transportation infrastructure. The Privy Council decision on the 5th of April brought some clarity to the Prince of Wales bridge situation. It is unfortunate that a rail link could not be established between our two cities. The development of a bridge suitable for pedestrians and cyclists aligns with our priorities.

 

New Democratic Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

We will work with Ottawa and Gatineau to encourage active transportation throughout the National Capital Region. Better commutes include promoting smart community planning and active transportation like walking and biking, helping people in Ottawa make choices that are healthier and more affordable for everyone. We believe that with the right investments in infrastructure, we can encourage more Canadians to choose active transportation as their mode of transportation. That’s why a New Democrat government will work with other levels of government to support community planning and design that makes travel safe, convenient and comfortable for everyone, regardless of their mode of transportation.

 

Conservative Party of Canada

Candidates Pierre Polièvre, Carleton, Brian St. Louis, Nepean, David Berts, Orléans, Carol Clemenhagen, Ottawa Centre, Eli Tannis, Ottawa South and Joel Bernard, Vanier, did not provide a response.

Candidates Adul Adbi, Ottawa West-Nepean and Justina McCaffrey, Kanata-Carleton, provided the following response:

Thank you for reaching out with this questionnaire. The questions asked are of importance to all Ottawa residents.

As the Campaign continues the Conservative Party will continue to release exciting new pieces of the platform that will help Canadians get ahead, not just get by. My campaign and I will be more than happy to discuss the questions your questionnaire posed after the platform is out, and I look forward to continue to engage with and meet the residents of Ottawa West-Nepean over the next few weeks

 

Infrastructure 

4. Municipalities own 58 per cent of Canada’s infrastructure, yet receive only 8 per cent of the tax revenue. In its budget 2019, the federal government announced a one-time doubling of the federal gas tax transfer, which would allow cities and towns to make the necessary investments to properly maintain municipal infrastructure. Do you commit to support the proposal to double the gas tax transfers on a permanent basis and index it to the cost of living?

Yes                 No

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidates Chris Rodgers, Carleton, Karen McCrimmon, Kanata-Carleton, Chandra Arya, Nepean, Marie-France Lalonde, Orléans, David McGuinty, Ottawa South, Mona Fortier, Vanier, Anita Vandenbeld, Ottawa West-Nepean

The federal Gas Tax Fund provides predictable funding to municipalities to support a wide variety of local initiatives. Our Liberal government doubled the Gas Tax Fund in Budget 2019 as a one-time measure to address an infrastructure deficit after a decade of neglect, and ensure that projects were moving ahead in cities across Canada. We will continue to work with all orders of government to ensure that the necessary investment is there to build stronger and more resilient communities across Canada. This includes providing a permanent and ongoing investment in public transit, in addition to the federal Gas Tax Fund.

A re-elected Liberal government will also require that all provinces and territories identify and approve all of their long-term infrastructure priorities within the next two years. Funds that aren’t designated for specific projects by the end of 2021 will be reinvested directly in communities through a top-up of the federal Gas Tax Fund.

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidate Catherine McKenna, Ottawa-Centre

See Question 1.

 

Green Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

The Green Party sees municipalities as vital partners in the transition needed to avert the worst parts of climate change - we would give municipal governments a seat at the policy-making table through the Council of Canadian Governments.

We need “All hands on deck” to tackle climate change and municipal infrastructure will be a key part of our nation’s transition.

Green MPs will also institutionalize federal transfers to municipalities through the creation of a Municipal Fund, renaming the Gas Tax funds, which were delinked from gas tax revenue years ago. Ensure a doubling of current funding to ensure predictable and reliable funding to municipalities.

 

New Democratic Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

New Democrats believe that Canadians should be able to count on the federal government to sustainably and predictably invest in infrastructure to make a real difference in communities, not pad the bank accounts of investment firms as the Liberals have done with the Infrastructure Bank.

Our vision is one where communities can plan for the long term and afford to build the infrastructure they need to thrive, from roads and bridges to community centres and child-care centres, and everything in between. These investments will create good

jobs in every part of the country.

To get there, we will partner with the provinces, territories, First Nations, and municipalities to deliver reliable public infrastructure funding that puts people – not profit – first. By using Community Benefit Agreements, we will guarantee that good jobs, training, apprenticeships and support for local businesses are part of every infrastructure project.

 

Conservative Party of Canada
Candidates Pierre Polièvre, Carleton, Brian St. Louis, Nepean, David Berts, Orléans, Carol Clemenhagen, Ottawa Centre, Eli Tannis, Ottawa South and Joel Bernard, Vanier, did not provide a response.

Candidates Adul Adbi, Ottawa West-Nepean and Justina McCaffrey, Kanata-Carleton, provided the following response:

Thank you for reaching out with this questionnaire. The questions asked are of importance to all Ottawa residents.

As the Campaign continues the Conservative Party will continue to release exciting new pieces of the platform that will help Canadians get ahead, not just get by. My campaign and I will be more than happy to discuss the questions your questionnaire posed after the platform is out, and I look forward to continue to engage with and meet the residents of Ottawa West-Nepean over the next few weeks

 

Affordable Housing

5. The City of Ottawa is working towards the goals of our 2018 Ten Year Housing and Homelessness Plan. The City will continue to implement the Plan’s key initiatives through a variety of funding opportunities and programs to increase the availability and affordability of housing through new development, the provision of housing subsidies, and to ensure that people are able to access the supports they need to find and maintain housing. Will your party commit to tackling housing affordability by funding access to social and affordable housing for low-income residents? Will your party engage directly with municipalities to tackle the specific municipal context which impacts rents, home prices and income levels?

Yes                 No

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidates Chris Rodgers, Carleton, Karen McCrimmon, Kanata-Carleton, Chandra Arya, Nepean, Marie-France Lalonde, Orléans, David McGuinty, Ottawa South, Mona Fortier, Vanier, Anita Vandenbeld, Ottawa West-Nepean

We believe that all Canadians have a right to housing. That is why, in Budgets 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019, the Trudeau Government made significant new investments in housing. That is also why we introduced Canada’s first-ever National Housing Strategy, a landmark 10-year $55 billion plan to provide homes to hundreds of thousands of Canadians who need them. Our plan will build a new generation of housing in this country.

Our plan is working. In the last four years, the Trudeau Government committed more than $13 billion to specific housing projects, which will result in more than 40,000 new units, nearly 230,000 units being repaired, and hundreds of thousands of families benefiting from rental support.

Because of the National Housing Strategy, and associated investments, housing providers across the country will be able to build on these results. From 2018 to 2028, the National Housing Strategy is expected to reduce housing need for more than 500,000 families, protect affordability for 385,000 housing units, build 125,000 new homes, and repair another 300,000. This level of ambition in housing has not been seen at the federal level of government in generations.

In Ottawa alone, we've invested more than $135 million in housing, in projects like those at 70 Gloucester Ave. and the Passive House near the Catherine Street bus terminal.

But, we know there is more work to do. That is why we are committed to the implementation of the new Canada Housing Benefit— starting in 2020—, as well as Phase II of the Federal Community Housing Initiative— also starting in 2020. It is why the Trudeau Government launched the new First-Time Home Buyer Incentive in September 2019; and why we recently committed to an expansion of the initiative. The First-Time Home Buyer Incentive is a bold effort to help Canadians achieve home ownership. The Incentive allows homeowners to lower their monthly mortgage payments without increasing down payments. We also recently committed to address the impact of foreign speculation, which drives up housing costs, by putting in place a consistent national speculation and vacancy tax for non-resident, non-Canadians.

We are committed to developing a distinctions-based urban Indigenous strategy, which will help to close major infrastructure gaps in addition to other investments already being made as part of the NHS. We will co-develop this strategy in collaboration with communities, and Indigenous housing providers.

And finally, we are committed to further the progressive realization of the right to adequate housing, which thanks to our hard work over the past four years, now has the backing of federal law. This includes the appointment of a Federal Housing Advocate as well as the creation of a National Housing Council.

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidate Catherine McKenna, Ottawa-Centre

Housing affordability has been a concern of our government from when we first formed government. Every Canadian deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. Our National Housing Strategy will do just that. With an investment of $40 billion over 10 years, it will bring 530 000 Canadians out of housing need by building 100 000 new housing units and repairing or renovating 300 000 more housing units. Starting in 2020, Canadians who are renting will be benefitting from an average of $2500 a year from the Canada Housing Benefit. Our government has invested $220 million in affordable housing for Ottawa Centre.

In Budget 2019, we introduced legislation recognizing the right of Canadians to have access to adequate housing. This will make the federal government’s commitment to providing Canadians with affordable housing permanent, whichever party may be in power.

We will continue our investment in affordable housing through the National Housing Strategy for the residents of Ottawa and for all Canadians.

 

Green Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

The current government has made the rash decision to use the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (an insurer of residential mortgages) to co-own first time home buyers up to 10% of the value of their home.  The CMHCs original mandate was to use some of the excess profits from insurance premiums to fund non-market affordable/rent housing. The Green Party would restore  this mandate and give to municipalities and provinces towards affordable housing.

 

New Democratic Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

Canada is facing a housing crisis, and New Democrats believe that it’s time to help people now. We have an ambitious plan that will make a difference in every community in our country – because finding a good, affordable place to live shouldn’t be like winning the lottery. It’s time to relieve the stress and worry that people feel making it easier to affordably rent or buy a home.

A core component of our approach is enshrining the right to housing in law and starting work now with a goal of ending homelessness in Canada within a decade. In a country as wealthy as Canada, there is no excuse to leave any Canadian living in poverty without a safe roof over their head.

A major part of the long-term solution to the problem is to ensure that more social housing and affordable rental homes are built across the country. One in three Canadians is a renter. In many cities, the few affordable apartments available get snapped up quickly, and people end up living in either inadequate housing or forced to spend a huge chunk of their income on rent.

The Liberal housing plan invests 19% less in affordable housing as a proportion of GDP than the ten years previous, and is simply inadequate compared to the scale of the crisis Canadians are facing.

People need real help. That’s why a New Democrat government will create 500,000 units of quality, affordable and social housing in the next ten years, with half of that done within five years. This will be achieved by working in partnership with provinces and municipalities, building capacity for social, community, and affordable housing providers and co-ops, and meeting environmental energy efficiency goals.

This ambitious plan will create thousands of jobs in communities all across the country, and help Canadians get the affordable housing they need. Our federal investment will begin with $5 billion in additional funding in the first year and a half of a New Democrat government.

In order to kick-start the construction of co-ops, social and non-profit housing, we will also set up dedicated fast-start funds to streamline the application process and help communities get the expertise and assistance they need to get projects off the ground today, not years from now.

A New Democrat government will also spur the construction of affordable homes by waiving the federal portion of the GST/HST on the construction of new affordable rental units – a simple change that will help get new units built faster and keep them affordable for the long term.

These measures will help address the housing crisis at the source, but we also need to make sure that families who are hurting get help now. That’s why we’ll

provide immediate relief of up to $5,000 per year for families struggling to afford rent in otherwise suitable housing, while we bring forward long-term solutions to the housing affordability crisis.

 

Conservative Party of Canada

Candidates Pierre Polièvre, Carleton, Brian St. Louis, Nepean, David Berts, Orléans, Carol Clemenhagen, Ottawa Centre, Eli Tannis, Ottawa South and Joel Bernard, Vanier, did not provide a response.

Candidates Adul Adbi, Ottawa West-Nepean and Justina McCaffrey, Kanata-Carleton, provided the following response:

Thank you for reaching out with this questionnaire. The questions asked are of importance to all Ottawa residents.

As the Campaign continues the Conservative Party will continue to release exciting new pieces of the platform that will help Canadians get ahead, not just get by. My campaign and I will be more than happy to discuss the questions your questionnaire posed after the platform is out, and I look forward to continue to engage with and meet the residents of Ottawa West-Nepean over the next few weeks

 

6. In 2015, more than 25,000 Syrian refugees settled in communities across Canada, where they were welcomed with open arms. Since then, the City of Ottawa and its residents have hosted thousands of refugees and refugee claimants, which has added to existing pressures on the City’s temporary and emergency lodging resources. Do you commit to continuing to financially support the City of Ottawa in its efforts to accommodate refugee claimants?

Yes                 No

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidates Chris Rodgers, Carleton, Karen McCrimmon, Kanata-Carleton, Chandra Arya, Nepean, Marie-France Lalonde, Orléans, David McGuinty, Ottawa South, Mona Fortier, Vanier, Anita Vandenbeld, Ottawa West-Nepean

Ottawa has a proud history of supporting refugees in their time of need, and our Liberal Government’s resettling of 25 000 Syrian refugees is a story of Canadians coming together quickly and effectively to help people in need. This is what we do as a country. We are committed to helping those fleeing persecution to find a safe place to live. In Canada, we provide support to refugees through the Resettlement Assistance Program in their first few weeks in the country while they are linked up with other federal and provincial assistance programs as well as private sponsors.

When it comes to providing shelter for asylum seekers, municipalities need solutions, and above all else a provincial partner. We have now reached cost-sharing agreements with Quebec, British Columbia and Manitoba, and remain willing to work with affected provinces, including Ontario. Despite repeated requests the Ford government has simply refused to collaborate, and would rather put the politics of fear and division over meaningful solutions. In the absence of a provincial partner, we have worked with municipalities such as Ottawa and will continue to work with them to ensure they have the resources they need.

We recognize the tremendous work that officials and Mayor Watson are undertaking to provide temporary housing for those seeking Canada’s protection. This work is essential to who we are as Canadians and our country’s role on the international stage. We will continue working with everyone who helps welcome refugees to Canada.

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidate Catherine McKenna, Ottawa-Centre

The resettlement of 25 000 Syrian refugees is a story of Canadians coming together quickly and effectively to help people in need. This is what we do as a country. We are committed to helping refugees across the world find a safe place to live be that in other countries or in Canada through our commitments to the United Nations Commissioner for Refugees. In Canada, we provide support to refugees through the Resettlement Assistance Program in their first few weeks in the country while they are linked up with other federal and provincial assistance programs as well as private sponsors.

This work is essential to who we are as Canadians and our country’s role on the international stage. We will continue working with everyone who helps welcome refugees to Canada.

 

Green Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

Our Syrian friends have been enormously brave, surviving their conflict at home, and coming to a different country in search of a better life. The Green Party wants to support the integration of refugees into our society by funding language and skills training, as fluency in our official languages is imperative to ensure that they are able to join the workforce and provide for their families. Most refugees had careers in Syria, and were doctors, lawyers and engineers, whose credentials are not recognized in our country because of barriers set by professional societies. The Green Party will press professional societies to remove unnecessary barriers hindering the recognition of professional credentials of immigrants.

Canada’s multiculturalism is one of our greatest assets, we will invest to make sure no one is left behind.

 

New Democratic Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

Immigration makes Canada stronger. Welcoming new talent and energy from around the world builds our communities and boosts our economy. Canada is one of the most diverse countries in the world and we are richer and stronger for it.

Ottawa has a long and proud tradition of welcoming refugees, from Marion Dewar’s Project 4000 in 1979, to the thousands of Ottawa families who have warmly welcomed Syrian and other refugees today. As the world experiences an unprecedented refugee crisis, New Democrats will continue to provide support to make sure that those fleeing persecution and danger can find a safe home in Canada.

 

Conservative Party of Canada

Candidates Pierre Polièvre, Carleton, Brian St. Louis, Nepean, David Berts, Orléans, Carol Clemenhagen, Ottawa Centre, Eli Tannis, Ottawa South and Joel Bernard, Vanier, did not provide a response.

Candidates Adul Adbi, Ottawa West-Nepean and Justina McCaffrey, Kanata-Carleton, provided the following response:

Thank you for reaching out with this questionnaire. The questions asked are of importance to all Ottawa residents.

As the Campaign continues the Conservative Party will continue to release exciting new pieces of the platform that will help Canadians get ahead, not just get by. My campaign and I will be more than happy to discuss the questions your questionnaire posed after the platform is out, and I look forward to continue to engage with and meet the residents of Ottawa West-Nepean over the next few weeks

 

Environment and climate change

7. The National Capital Region experienced record flooding in 2017 and 2019 as well as tornadoes in 2018 that impacted residents and municipalities at considerable expense. A permanent funding source will help Ottawa fight and adapt to climate change and support to local projects that can significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Do you commit to providing a permanent, flexible, long-term increase the current funding of $2B for cities to protect residents from climate change and extreme weather events by investing in municipal adaptation projects?

Yes                 No

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidates Chris Rodgers, Carleton, Karen McCrimmon, Kanata-Carleton, Chandra Arya, Nepean, Marie-France Lalonde, Orléans, David McGuinty, Ottawa South, Mona Fortier, Vanier, Anita Vandenbeld, Ottawa West-Nepean

We are dealing with the effects of climate change every day. Here in Ottawa, we’ve recently experienced extensive flooding and powerful tornadoes. Climate change adaptation presents extra costs to both governments and individuals – we know that well.

We introduced the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation fund with an initial investment of $2 billion. We are committing to increasing this fund by $1 billion, if elected, as well as investing in other conservation and adaptation projects as part of an additional $1 billion investment in nature-based climate solutions. This will include important investments in watershed management and other steps to make our natural environment more resilient to climate change. More needs to be done.

For example, Steven MacKinnon, MP for Gatineau, along with Mayor Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin announced funding for a project to make essential improvements to the stormwater and runoff management systems in the Wabassee Creek watershed. Once completed, this work will increase the community’s flood resilience and better protect over 12,500 people. It will also reduce by 91% the number of residents who go without essential services during floods, reduce the local economic impact by 80% and save long-term recovery and replacement costs.

We will work to complete mapping of flood plains across Canada so that people will have this information when deciding to build and buy real estate. We will create a new national flood insurance pool to keep insurance affordable for those who are at high risk of flooding and we will introduce an EI Disaster Assistance Benefit – when people’s lives are hit by natural disaster and they need to take time off work, this benefit will help when they need it most.

A re-elected Liberal government would help Canadians adapt to climate change by:

  • protecting homeowners who are at high risk of flooding and don’t have adequate insurance protection, by creating a low-cost national flood insurance program;
  • helping Canadians better understand the risks they face when they buy a home, by working with provinces and territories to complete all flood maps in Canada;
  • developing a national action plan to assist homeowners with potential relocation for those at the highest risk of repeat flooding; and
  • helping Canadians whose jobs and livelihoods are affected when disaster strikes, by working with stakeholders and experts to design an E.I. Disaster Assistance Benefit.

These measures will build on four years of climate action by our government, including:

  • a new Canadian Centre for Climate Services, giving everyone better access to climate science and information.
  • In connection to the CCCS, the government has supported the creation of ClimateData.ca, a new climate data portal, which equips public health professionals, engineers, planners, and others with detailed climate change data to help Canadians understand and adapt to climate change
  • a Climate Lens to ensure that future climate impacts are considered and addressed in federally funded infrastructure projects.
  • stronger codes and standards to ensure that the buildings and infrastructure of the future can withstand the impacts of climate change.

We’re also working with Indigenous communities to better understand our changing climate through the Indigenous Community Based Climate Monitoring Program.

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidate Catherine McKenna, Ottawa-Centre

Climate change is real and we are dealing with its effects every day. Here in Ottawa, we have recently experienced extensive flooding and powerful tornados. Climate change adaptation presents extra costs to both governments and individuals – we know that well.

We introduced the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation fund with an initial investment of $2 billion. We are committing to increasing this fund by $1 billion, if elected. More needs to be done.

We will work to complete mapping of flood plains across Canada so that people will have this information when deciding to build and buy real estate. We will create a new national flood insurance pool to keep insurance affordable for those who are at high risk of flooding and we will introduce an EI Disaster Assistance Benefit – when people’s lives are hit by natural disaster and they need to take time off work, this benefit will help when they need it most.

 

Green Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

The Green Party’s plan for climate change also includes responses to the increasing number of extreme weather events. Our MPs would direct the Canada Infrastructure Bank, revamped to exclude private profit in infrastructure, to invest in climate-proofing essential infrastructure, prioritizing upgrades to drinking water and wastewater systems to protect against flooding, droughts and contamination

One small but significant change the city can make is by having compostable burlap or similar bags stocked and ready to replace the plastic sand bags we recently used.

 

New Democratic Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

Canadian families are already living with the impact of climate change – for too many, climate-related disasters like flooding have turned their lives upside down, destroying homes and neighborhoods – with no end in sight. New Democrats have a bold climate plan that will confront the climate crisis and help our communities protect themselves from the impacts of climate change, like flooding and forest fires. We won’t leave Canadians to deal with these disasters by themselves – it’s time to step up.

We’ll expand federal funding by $2.5 billion to help communities respond to disasters and strengthen infrastructure to withstand floods and other extreme weather events. We will sit down with provinces, territories and local governments to ensure that the Disaster Mitigation and Adaption Fund meets the needs of communities.

 

Conservative Party of Canada

Candidates Pierre Polièvre, Carleton, Brian St. Louis, Nepean, David Berts, Orléans, Carol Clemenhagen, Ottawa Centre, Eli Tannis, Ottawa South and Joel Bernard, Vanier, did not provide a response.

Candidates Adul Adbi, Ottawa West-Nepean and Justina McCaffrey, Kanata-Carleton, provided the following response:

Thank you for reaching out with this questionnaire. The questions asked are of importance to all Ottawa residents.

As the Campaign continues the Conservative Party will continue to release exciting new pieces of the platform that will help Canadians get ahead, not just get by. My campaign and I will be more than happy to discuss the questions your questionnaire posed after the platform is out, and I look forward to continue to engage with and meet the residents of Ottawa West-Nepean over the next few weeks

 

Public Safety

8. The City of Ottawa supports a multi-faceted strategy to combat gun violence, including a comprehensive approach that includes issues like housing, education, poverty and social infrastructure. Guns and gang related violence remains a top operational priority of the Ottawa Police Service, and Ottawa has a refocused strategy to address these issues. Is your party committed to a comprehensive strategy that includes additional funding for front line police officers to combat gun and gang violence and legislation to strengthen gun control? Will your government invest in programs and supports for youth and families at risk and other measures for building an inclusive city?

Yes                 No

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidates Chris Rodgers, Carleton, Karen McCrimmon, Kanata-Carleton, Chandra Arya, Nepean, Marie-France Lalonde, Orléans, David McGuinty, Ottawa South, Mona Fortier, Vanier, Anita Vandenbeld, Ottawa West-Nepean

Our Liberal government is committed to keeping our communities safe by strengthening Canada’s gun laws. We will ban all military-style assault rifles, supported by a two-year amnesty to facilitate a buy-back program to make sure these weapons are out of the reach of criminals. We will also work with the provinces and territories to give municipalities the ability to ban handguns should they choose to do so. To keep guns out of the hands of criminals we will make sure that the RCMP and Canadian Border Services Agency have the resources they need to detect and stop the flow of guns at our borders.

Ending gun violence doesn’t stop there. To help deal with gang violence, we are investing an additional $50 million a year over five years to help municipalities deal with the needs of communities at risk, and we will expand successful diversion programs to keep at-risk-youth out of the criminal justice system.

This is part of our proposed $400-million investment over the next four years that will go towards multiple initiatives aimed at reducing gun violence, which also includes a $200-million to begin the work next year on for the buyback for all legally purchased assault rifles.

 

Liberal Party of Canada – Candidate Catherine McKenna, Ottawa-Centre

We will start by making our gun laws stronger. We will ban all military-style assault rifles, supported by a two-year amnesty to facilitate a buy-back program to make sure these weapons are out of the reach of criminals. We will also work with the provinces and territories to give municipalities the ability to ban handguns should they choose to do so. To continue making it more difficult for criminals to get guns we will make sure that the RCMP and the Canadian Border Services Agency have the resources to detect and stop the flow of guns at our borders.

Ending gun violence doesn’t stop there. To help deal with gang violence, we are investing an additional $50 million a year for five years to help municipalities deal with the needs of communities at risk, and we will expand successful diversion programs to keep at-risk-youth out of the criminal justice system.

 

Green Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

We know cities such as Ottawa realize gun and gang violence does not come from a single source but a wide range of problems: poverty, social support systems access to weapons, etc., and . The Green Party is determined to eliminate poverty through a Guaranteed Livable Income; replacing a plethora of programs and applications with a simpler safety net. Also we would ban the sale and possession of handguns and assault guns except when stored at certified shooting ranges. Finally, we would increase funding for the CBSA and other enforcement agencies, federal and municipal.

 

New Democratic Party of Canada – All candidates

Yes

Expand youth gang prevention programs.

Everyone in Ottawa deserves to feel safe in their community. Prevention is a critical component of community safety. To that end, we will create a $100 million

fund dedicated to helping keep young people out of gangs with a boost to community programs. New Democrats also support allowing municipalities to ban handguns and cracking down on gun smuggling at the border.

 

Conservative Party of Canada

Candidates Pierre Polièvre, Carleton, Brian St. Louis, Nepean, David Berts, Orléans, Carol Clemenhagen, Ottawa Centre, Eli Tannis, Ottawa South and Joel Bernard, Vanier, did not provide a response.

Candidates Adul Adbi, Ottawa West-Nepean and Justina McCaffrey, Kanata-Carleton, provided the following response:

Thank you for reaching out with this questionnaire. The questions asked are of importance to all Ottawa residents.

As the Campaign continues the Conservative Party will continue to release exciting new pieces of the platform that will help Canadians get ahead, not just get by. My campaign and I will be more than happy to discuss the questions your questionnaire posed after the platform is out, and I look forward to continue to engage with and meet the residents of Ottawa West-Nepean over the next few weeks


Rowan and Avery Parkinson receive the Mayor’s City Builder Award

Ottawa – Mayor Jim Watson and Rideau-Rockcliffe Ward Councillor Rawlson King presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Rowan Parkinson and Avery Parkinson at City Council today, in recognition of their charitable contributions in Ottawa and beyond.

Sisters Rowan and Avery, aged 12 and 14 respectively, are Elmwood School students who are on a mission to make Ottawa a better place.

Following their grandfather’s Parkinson’s disease diagnosis, Rowan, who is now in grade nine, committed to raising awareness and funds for research into the disease.

Avery, now in grade six, was moved by the homelessness she witnessed in Ottawa. She began making hundreds of sandwiches for the residents of Shepherds of Good Hope and the Ottawa Mission.

Their idea to start a non-profit organization, called the MapleWishes Foundation, was born out of acts of empathy and generosity. MapleWishes’ motto is “Inspiring one another to leave positive and enduring footsteps in our wake.” Through their foundation, the girls fundraise, volunteer and motivate their peers to support eleven charitable causes in the Ottawa area.

Rowan and Avery have committed to raise $50,000 for the Parkinson Research Consortium at the Ottawa Hospital. Some of the other projects supported by the MapleWishes Foundation include QUAIL House, a home in Chelsea for developmentally-challenged adults, More Bees Please, which aims to help restore the bee population in the Ottawa area and Bookmarked, which builds and renews the collections of local libraries.

MapleWishes is committed to diversity and to providing a welcoming environment to Ottawa’s immigrant youth through the Ottawa Community Immigrant Services Organization Youth Program, known as YOCISO.

The Mayor’s City Builder Award is a civic honour created to recognize an individual, group or organization that, through outstanding volunteerism or exemplary action, has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to making our city a better place today and for the future. This may include lifelong service, outstanding acts of kindness, inspiring charitable work, community building or other exemplary achievements.

Individuals, groups or organizations may be nominated by members of City Council or the public.


Mayor Watson and Mayor Pedneaud-Jobin launch survey for Federal election candidates

Ottawa - Following the precedent established in 2015, Mayor Jim Watson and Gatineau Mayor Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin have jointly announced their priorities for the upcoming federal election. As mayors of two cities that make up the National Capital region, it was important that they speak with one voice when raising key issues for the next four years.

As members of Big City Mayors’ Caucus of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), both mayors also took the opportunity to talk about the leading role that cities play in the country’s economic and social development. Cities cannot fulfill this role without support from other levels of government, including the federal government.

Today, local candidates and the leaders of the federal parties will receive a letter from each city with a questionnaire covering the priorities outlined below. The responses we receive will be published on Mayor Jim Watson’s and the City of Gatineau’s website during the week of October 7, giving citizens an opportunity to consider elected officials’ responses before voting day.

The Mayors’ priorities for the upcoming federal election relate to the following four themes: Active and Public Transportation, Infrastructure, Climate Change, and Housing.

Active and Public Transportation

The Cities of Ottawa and Gatineau are experiencing significant growth, and have identified active and public transportation as one of their most important priorities. Both cities have undertaken Light Rail Transit projects to ensure the long-term availability of a transportation network that efficiently meets the commuting and travel needs of residents. In recent years, the cities of Gatineau and Ottawa have worked together to better align their transportation plans for the first time in their history.

It is therefore essential that the federal parties pledge to maintain their funding commitment to Ottawa’s Stage 2 LRT project, commit to funding Ottawa’s Stage 3 LRT and provide federal funding for the light rail project in western Gatineau. These city-building projects are not only essential for building a dynamic metropolitan region worthy of the 21st century, but also represent the preferred solution put forward by experts for solving traffic congestion while addressing global warming concerns.

Given that the planning and implementation of such complex public transportation projects require multiple years of work, we also support the FCM’s request that the next federal government establish a permanent public transportation fund.

In addition, we request that the next federal government fund the rehabilitation of the Prince of Wales Bridge into a pedestrian and cycling link. This measure would improve the alignment of the two cities’ active transportation networks.

Infrastructure

Across Canada, cities are responsible for 58 per cent of public infrastructure, yet receive only 8 per cent of overall tax revenue. In its budget 2019, the federal government announced a one-time doubling of the federal gas tax. We hope to see the federal gas tax Fund doubled permanently.

Fighting Climate Change

In recent years, Ottawa and Gatineau have experienced extreme weather events, including floods, tornadoes and torrential rains that affected residents and municipalities at considerable expense. Federal programs currently exist, but more can be done to meet the needs of cities to better adapt to climate change. We hope to see an increase in this funding and the flexibly to allow cities to identify the measures necessary for adapting to climate change.

Housing

The housing vacancy rate is at 1.6% in Ottawa and under 1% in Gatineau, a historic low. The mayors have asked for federal support to ensure that all citizens have access to adequate housing. The federal government must ensure that funding announced in the context of the National Housing Strategy makes its way into the hands of cities.

“Over the last few years, the City of Ottawa and the City of Gatineau have worked together in our efforts to align priorities that impact the Ottawa-Gatineau region as a whole, a first in the history of the two cities. It is crucial that we continue to foster collaboration and include the Federal government as an important partner in the National Capital’s development and growth.”
- Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson

“We feel the need to reiterate the importance of having a federal government that listens to cities’ needs. Our country’s development takes shape at the municipal level, and it is important that our two levels of government work toward the same goals. The same goes for the future of Canada’s National Capital Region.”
- Gatineau Mayor Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin

 

View Mayor Jim Watson's Questionnaire to Candidates

View Mayor Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin's Questionnaire to Candidates (in French only)


Ottawa’s economic mission to the Netherlands generates tourism and business opportunities

Ottawa – Ottawa’s economic mission to the Netherlands, with Mayor Jim Watson and a delegation of 20 business and tourism leaders, forged partnerships and generated opportunities in tourism, technology, security and education. The resulting partnership agreements and strategic relationships developed between Ottawa organizations and their Dutch counterparts will generate long-term benefits in investment attraction, business development and trade.

The delegates from Ottawa included representatives from Invest Ottawa, Ottawa Tourism and local technology companies. During stops in The Hague, Eindhoven, Rotterdam and Amsterdam, the delegation met with Dutch counterparts and stakeholders, signed partnership agreements advancing Ottawa’s business and tourism interests, and built on the strong bonds of cooperation and friendship that Ottawa has shared with the Netherlands since the Second World War. The delegation focused on promoting Ottawa as a destination, facilitating business development and investment, and exchanging best practices with municipal and industry leaders.

During his meeting with Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet, Mayor Watson expressed his wish for the Princess to visit Ottawa in 2020, to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Liberation of the Netherlands. Mayor Watson also met with his Dutch counterparts Mayor Pauline Krikke of The Hague and Mayor Femke Halsema of Amsterdam, to grow our cities’ friendships and discuss issues of mutual interest, like affordable housing, flood mitigation and active transportation, and opportunities for greater collaboration in tourism.

The delegation hosted signature events in both The Hague and Amsterdam, inviting Dutch leaders in tourism and business to celebrate and build on our 75 years of friendship. The events highlighted how Ottawa truly represents Canada In One City, making it the ideal place to invest, visit and study. Delegates networked with industry leaders, decision-makers and government officials.

Tourism opportunities

  • Ottawa Tourism and The Hague Convention Bureau signed The Hague to Ottawa (H2O) agreement, a memorandum of understanding between the two cities to promote one another as destinations of choice to attract new international conventions and business events. The two organizations will collaborate to open new doors for both capitals, pitching each other as gateway cities to North America and Europe.
  • The business events industry in Canada generates $33 billion annually in direct spending, directly employs more than 229,000 people and generates $19.3 billion towards Canada’s gross domestic product. In 2018, 16 per cent of events held in Ottawa were from the US or overseas, representing 9,700 delegates and 16,000 room nights for Ottawa’s hospitality sector.
  • Ottawa Tourism is hoping to leverage the partnership to help attract up to four large meetings and conventions over the coming years, particularly in the sectors of technology, security, defence and life sciences. They also hope to generate new leisure travel itineraries with tour operators.
  • Ottawa Tourism, the City of Ottawa and Destination Think! signed a three-year agreement to continue their work and grow the relationship, including hosting Destination Think!’s international forum, which will bring together the world’s most innovative destination marketers in Ottawa in 2020.
  • Frank Cuypers, Senior Strategic Consultant at Destination Think! and visiting professor on City Making at Columbia University, will be this year’s guest speaker at the Ottawa’s Economic Outlook event on November 5, 2019. Visit the event page for more information.
  • Ottawa Tourism’s President and CEO Michael Crockatt presented at both signature events, inspiring guests to visit Ottawa by highlighting the ways our city represents the people, cultures and experiences of Canada. Home to so many national cultural institutions and major festivals, our welcoming city is a unique destination for visitors, as well as a perfect setting for conferences and events.
  • Based on previous experience with similar international initiatives, the connections forged on this mission will help to secure future meetings, conventions and new leisure travel itineraries, and to generate media coverage, for an estimated future economic impact of more than $2 million.

Business development

  • Invest Ottawa and The Hague Security Delta renewed an agreement to promote bilateral trade and investment, as part of their respective soft-landing program for start-ups wishing to establish themselves in the partner market. The Hague Security Delta is one of the largest and continuously growing security networks of businesses, governments and knowledge institutes in Europe. With nearly 300 partners, it is recognized as the security port to Europe.
  • This agreement ensures that Ottawa is connected with the European leaders in security and will result in knowledge sharing, promotion and partnership opportunities for Ottawa’s security sector firms, which are always seeking new opportunities to grow abroad.
  • Ottawa-based Assent Compliance, a global leader in supply chain data management, continued its worldwide expansion by officially opening its new European headquarters in Amsterdam. This new hub strengthens the longstanding bond between Ottawa and the Netherlands and establishes Assent as a true force in the modernization of global supply chains. Despite already having many clients in Europe, this first brick-and-mortar office will give Assent a full-time presence that will play a key role in growing its footprint within the European Union.
  • Accenture is a multinational professional services company that provides services in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. They are also a key partner in the Ottawa L5 testing facilities. Accenture convened many partners, including representatives from Martello and the City of Amsterdam, to a thought-leadership session to share best practices and innovation trends in mobility, innovation and smart cities.
  • Martello Technologies Group welcomed the delegation to their Amsterdam office, where they provided a client demonstration of their IT operations analytics software. The City of Ottawa uses this software to visualize and manage the performance of its IT infrastructure through simple service-oriented dashboards. Headquartered in Ottawa – with offices in Montreal, Amsterdam, Paris, Dallas and New York – Martello provides control over complex IT systems with solutions such as SD-WAN technology, network performance management software and IT analytics software.
  • Invest Ottawa held 12 foreign direct investment meetings with Dutch companies in the connected and autonomous vehicles sector to promote the advantages of doing business, research and development in Ottawa’s world-class  ecosystem for connected and autonomous vehicles and L5 testing facilities.
  • They also met to build strategic partnerships in the sector with Brainport in Eindhoven, a business and innovation district similar to Kanata North in Ottawa. Brainport is a driver of Dutch exports and houses half of the national auto sector. This cluster presents opportunities for Ottawa to grow its relationship with companies operating in the autonomous vehicles space in the Netherlands by leveraging our Ottawa L5 autonomous vehicles cluster and test-track.
  • Invest Ottawa’s Director of Autonomous Vehicles, Kelly Daize, took the stage at both signature events in The Hague and Amsterdam to showcase the many advantages of doing business in Ottawa, including our diverse technology sector, great access to talent, low cost of doing business, superb quality of life and an accessible global network. Ottawa is especially well-equipped to collaborate on innovative and future-ready technology, with the second-highest concentration of high-tech firms and talent in North America.

Education partnership

  • The City of Ottawa, the University of Ottawa and Fontys University of Applied Sciences announced a partnership to promote academic, economic and research mobility between Ottawa and the Netherlands.
  • This agreement will establish research placements that will support the development of Ottawa’s Nightlife Economy Strategy, with Dutch students finding work placements at the City of Ottawa to conduct research and provide an external perspective on how to grow Ottawa’s nighttime economy, including the musical and cultural spaces that make our city an attractive place for young professionals.

Quotes

“This has been a very successful mission, generating partnerships that are helping us grow Ottawa’s global reputation as the Canadian destination of choice, for potential Dutch visitors as well as investors. The collaborations announced on this mission represent important access to markets and networks in the Netherlands, and the first critical step in forging lasting and prosperous relationships that will bear fruit for years to come. I want to thank every member of the delegation, who all contributed to sharing our pride in Ottawa as a welcoming and innovative world-class capital and helped us build on 75 years of friendship with the Netherlands.”
Mayor Jim Watson, City of Ottawa

“The parallels between Ottawa and the Netherlands are many and our ties our strong. From a tourism perspective, the mission was a success in building relationships with tour operators, meeting planners and travel media. We’ve signed agreements to further Ottawa’s interests in the convention sphere and in the destination development world. We look forward to building on this success in the years to come.”
Michael Crockatt, President and CEO, Ottawa Tourism

“Invest Ottawa representatives were proud to take part in this strategic mission to drive investment for our great city of Ottawa, with such a dedicated and professional group of Ottawa’s business professionals and leaders. With already established strong ties between our business communities, the mission went a long way in strengthening relationships, building new connections and exploring mutually beneficial opportunities in key sectors, including autonomous vehicles, smart cities, software and defence. Invest Ottawa is excited to build off of the mission and the new opportunities that will emerge for our next 75 years of friendship with the Netherlands.”
Michael Tremblay, President and CEO, Invest Ottawa


Building on 75 years of friendship between Ottawa and the Netherlands - Day 5

Mayor Jim Watson is leading a delegation of 20 Ottawa business and tourism leaders to the Netherlands. This five-day mission will strengthen our business and tourism relations, and build on the strong bonds of cooperation and friendship that Ottawa has shared with the Netherlands since the Second World War.

Day 5 (September 19, 2019) – Amsterdam

On the last day of the mission, Mayor Watson and the Ottawa delegation covered a lot of ground in Amsterdam to launch exciting new business ventures for fast-growing companies that joined the mission as commercial delegates.

Ottawa-based Assent Compliance(link is external), a global leader in supply chain data management, continued its worldwide expansion by officially opening its new European headquarters in Amsterdam today. This new hub in Amsterdam strengthens the longstanding bond between Ottawa and the Netherlands, and establishes Assent as a true force in the modernization of global supply chains. Despite already having several clients in Europe, this first brick-and-mortar office will provide Assent with a full-time presence that will play a key role in growing its footprint within the European Union.

Assent Compliance opening

Accenture(link is external) is a multinational professional services company that provides services in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. They are also a key partner in the Ottawa L5 testing facilities(link is external). Accenture convened many partners, including representatives from the City of Amsterdam and Martello, to a Thought-Leadership Session to share best practices and innovation trends in the areas of mobility, civic innovation and smart cities.

Martello Technologies Group (link is external)welcomed the delegation to their Amsterdam office, where they provided a demonstration of their IT operations analytics software. The City of Ottawa uses this software to visualize and manage the performance of its IT infrastructure through simple service-oriented dashboards. Headquartered in Ottawa – with offices in Montreal, Amsterdam, Paris, Dallas and New York – Martello provides control over complex IT systems with solutions such as SD-WAN technology, network performance management software, and IT analytics software.

Group picture from demonstration

Mayor Watson also met with Mayor Femke Halsema, the first woman elected as Mayor of Amsterdam. They discussed opportunities to grow our cities’ relationship and issues of mutual interest, such as tourism, affordable housing and cycling infrastructure. Like Ottawa, Amsterdam is viewed as a bustling hub of commerce that welcomes visitors from around the world and immigrants from other cultures with open arms. It is also a lovely canal-side city with a rich history and wonderful green surroundings.

picture of Mayors

Over the last five days, Mayor Watson hosted signature events in The Hague and Amsterdam, inviting Dutch leaders in tourism and business to celebrate and build on over 75 years of friendship between our two countries. The Mayor highlighted how Ottawa truly represents Canada In One City, making it the ideal place to invest, visit and study. The events shared our pride in Ottawa as a world-class capital, globally recognized as a diverse metropolitan hub, with a friendly atmosphere and magnificent natural beauty, not to mention a brand new state-of-the-art light rail transit system.

Through the course of the week, Invest Ottawa’s Director of Autonomous Vehicles, Kelly Daize, took to the stage to showcase the many advantages of doing business in Ottawa, including our diverse technology sector, great access to talent, low cost of doing business, superb quality of life, and an accessible global network. Ottawa is especially well-equipped to collaborate on innovative and future-ready technology, with the second-highest concentration of high-tech firms and talent in North America.

Ottawa Tourism’s President and CEO Michael Crockatt also inspired guests to visit Ottawa by highlighting the ways our city represents the people, cultures and experiences of Canada. Home to so many national cultural institutions and major festivals, our welcoming city is a unique destination for visitors, as well as a perfect setting for conferences and events.

Picture from event
Mayor Watson speaking

Building on 75 years of friendship between Ottawa and the Netherlands - Day 4

Mayor Jim Watson is leading a delegation of 20 Ottawa business and tourism leaders to the Netherlands. This five-day mission will strengthen our business and tourism relations, and build on the strong bonds of cooperation and friendship that Ottawa has shared with the Netherlands since the Second World War.

Day 4 (September 18, 2019) – Rotterdam and Haarlem

As Ottawa prepares its new Official Plan, our focus is to build a resilient city that is adaptable, sustainable and innovative, now and for many years to come. Rotterdam’s ambitious work on climate-proofing their city makes it an ideal place to learn and experience resilience in practice, such as the City delegation’s visit to the award-winning Water Squares(link is external), multi-use public plazas that collect storm water runoff. The City of Ottawa’s General Manager of Planning, Infrastructure and Economic Development, Stephen Willis, also met with Rotterdam’s Chief Resilience Officer, Arnoud Molenaar, to discuss the future of sustainable cities.

Picture of one of Rotterdam’s Water Squares

On the way to Amsterdam, Mayor Watson made a stop at the Rudolf Steiner College in Haarlem, a town roughly 20 minutes outside of Amsterdam. This special visit came about approximately two weeks ago when grade 9 teachers Nina and Maartje sent an email to Mayor Watson to let him know how much their students had been moved by the story of his coming out. At the time, Nina shared that every student in her class was in the process of writing him a letter expressing sentiments of pride and well wishes in his newfound freedom. Two weeks ago, Nina and Maartje were not aware of the Mayor’s upcoming travels to the Netherlands.

On Sunday, upon his arrival in The Hague, those letters were waiting for Mayor Watson at the hotel. Today, Mayor Watson happily visited Nina and Maartje’s class in Haarlem. Approximately 35 students were in attendance: mostly grade 8 students, and a few older students who are openly gay at the school. They were all very much looking forward to sharing their stories with Mayor Watson, and it made for an emotional and memorable visit.


Building on 75 years of friendship between Ottawa and the Netherlands - Day 3

Mayor Jim Watson is leading a delegation of 20 Ottawa business and tourism leaders to the Netherlands. This five-day mission will strengthen our business and tourism relations, and build on the strong bonds of cooperation and friendship that Ottawa has shared with the Netherlands since the Second World War.

Day 3 (September 17, 2019) – The Hague & Eindhoven

As the mission continued in The Hague and Eindhoven, several important partnership agreements were signed to help strengthen our business and tourism connections.

The Hague to Ottawa (H2O) agreement is an MOU between the destination marketing organizations (DMOs) in the two cities to promote one another as destinations of choice, in order to attract new international conventions and business events. Ottawa Tourism and The Hague Convention Bureau will collaborate to open new doors for both capitals, pitching each other as gateway cities to North America and Europe. The business events industry in Canada generates $33 billion annually in direct spending and employs over 229,000 Canadians. In 2018, 16 per cent of events held in Ottawa came from the US or overseas markets, representing 9,700 delegates and 16,000 room nights contributing to Ottawa’s economy.

Ottawa Tourism is hoping to leverage the partnership to help attract up to four large meetings and conventions over the coming years, with the sectors of technology, security, defence and life sciences being particularly promising. They also hope to generate new leisure travel itineraries with tour operators, and positive media coverage in the Dutch market throughout the mission.

Group photo from the signing.

Invest Ottawa and The Hague Security Delta renewed an agreement to promote bilateral trade and investment, as part of their respective soft-landing for program for start-ups wishing to establish themselves in the partner market. The Hague Security Delta is one of the largest and continuously growing security networks of businesses, governments and knowledge institutes in Europe. With nearly 300 partners, it is recognized as the security port to Europe. This agreement ensures that Ottawa is connected with the European leaders in security and will result in knowledge sharing, promotion and partnership opportunities for Ottawa’s security sector firms, which are always seeking new opportunities to grow abroad.

Group photo from the signing.

The City of Ottawa, the University of Ottawa and Fontys University of Applied Sciences announced a partnership that will promote academic, economic and research mobility between Ottawa and the Netherlands. As one of the largest universities of applied sciences in the Netherlands, Fontys offers more than 200 academic programs in economics, technology, health care, social work, sports and teacher training to over 44,000 students. This agreement will establish research placements that will support the development of Ottawa’s Nightlife Economy Strategy, with Dutch students finding work placements at the City of Ottawa to conduct research and provide an external perspective on how to grow Ottawa’s nighttime economy, including the musical and cultural spaces that make our city an attractive place for young professionals.

Group photo from the signing, including students.

Many delegates then headed to Brainport, an innovation and business acceleration district in Eindhoven. Brainport – a technology and innovation hub similar to Kanata North in Ottawa – is a driver of Dutch exports and houses half of the national auto sector. This cluster presents opportunities for Ottawa to grow its relationship with companies operating in the Autonomous Vehicles space in the Netherlands by leveraging our Ottawa L5 AV cluster and test-track.


Building on 75 years of friendship between Ottawa and the Netherlands - Day 2

Mayor Jim Watson is leading a delegation of 20 Ottawa business and tourism leaders to the Netherlands. This five-day mission will strengthen our business and tourism relations, and build on the strong bonds of cooperation and friendship that Ottawa has shared with the Netherlands since the Second World War.

Day 2 (September 16, 2019) – The Hague & Apeldoorn

On the mission’s second day in The Hague, the day started off at the Canadian Embassy in the Netherlands, where Ambassador Sabine Nölke and her team offered the Ottawa delegation a crash course on doing business in the Netherlands, and highlighted the opportunities this represented as a gateway to Northwestern Europe and the European Union.

Later that day, Mayor Watson had the pleasure of meeting Her Royal Highness, Princess Margriet, in the city of Apeldoorn. Mayor Watson expressed his wish for the Princess to visit Ottawa in 2020, to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Liberation of the Netherlands. The Mayor also proposed renaming Fairmont Park, which is in proximity to the Ottawa Civic Hospital, after Princess Margriet, to commemorate her history in Ottawa. Later this fall, the park will feature a dedicated Liberation75 tulip garden, where the City will plant 1,945 tulips, marking the year of the Liberation. The Mayor will bring forward a motion to City Council for the proposal, supported by Ward Councillor Jeff Leiper, when he returns from the mission. The City will receive comments from the public for a 10-day period, starting on September 25.

Ottawa’s special relationship with the Dutch Royal Family led to the creation one of Canada’s most popular and well-known festivals: the Canadian Tulip Festival.

The Dutch Royal Family took refuge here in Ottawa during the Second World War. In 1943, the Crown Princess Juliana gave birth to Princess Margriet at the Ottawa Civic Hospital. Following the War, the Royal Family presented Ottawa with 100,000 tulip bulbs as a sign of gratitude for its hospitality – and an additional 20,000 tulips in 1946 as a token of appreciation for Canada’s support and wartime efforts.

Canadian Tulip Festival

This tradition continues today, with the Netherlands sending 20,000 tulips each year to Ottawa as a symbol of friendship. Every spring, Ottawa welcomes tens of thousands of visitors from around the world to enjoy these beautiful tulips during the Canadian Tulip Festival. In 2020, the Netherlands will be marking the occasion by repeating the initial gift of 100,000 tulip bulbs to Canada.

The Mayor also laid a wreath at the statue De man met de twee hoeden, the twin to the Ottawa statue Man with Two Hats. The statues, created by Dutch artist Henk Visch, represent the strong ties between our countries and the crucial role that Canadian soldiers played in the liberation of the Netherlands in 1945. The Ottawa statue was gifted to our city by the Netherlands and unveiled by Princess Margriet during her visit to Ottawa in May of 2002.

The Mayor laying the wreath.

Beyond these ties, Mayor Watson also has a personal connection to the Netherlands, as his father, Beverley Watson, fought there during the Second World War. As a member of the 1st Battalion of the Royal Regiment of Canada, he fought alongside our Canadian soldiers who led the liberation of the Netherlands in 1945. These brave young men and women played a pivotal role in Northwestern Europe. The Royal Regiment is credited with liberating the city of Assen on April 13, 1945 before participating in the clearing of Groningen until April 15, some 20 days before the Netherlands was liberated from German occupation.

For his efforts, Beverley Watson was awarded the France and Germany Star, the Canadian Volunteer Service Medal and Clasp, and the 1939 to 1945 War Medal.

‘’I’m very proud of my father’s service to our nation, and it is an honour for me to visit the country where he served Canada and defended our freedom during the Second World War,’’ said Mayor Watson.


Mayor Watson meets Princess Margriet of the Netherlands, proposes park renaming in her honour

Ottawa – On the second day of Ottawa’s economic mission to the Netherlands, Mayor Jim Watson had the honour of meeting with Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet.

The Princess was born at the Ottawa Civic Hospital (now known as The Ottawa Hospital’s Civic Campus) in 1943, when the Dutch Royal Family took refuge in Ottawa during the Second World War. The Government of Canada temporarily declared a maternity suite at the Ottawa Civic Hospital to be extraterritorial jurisdiction, which meant the Princess could enjoy full Dutch citizenship and remain in the line of succession. In addition, the Dutch flag flew over Parliament’s Peace Tower in Ottawa on the day of Margriet’s birth; the only time in Canadian history a foreign flag has been accorded this honour. As the birthplace of the Princess and home of the Canadian Tulip Festival, Ottawa holds a special relationship with the Netherlands and the Royal Family.

Mayor Watson expressed his wish for the Princess to visit Ottawa in 2020, to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Liberation of the Netherlands. The Mayor also proposed renaming Fairmont Park, which is in proximity to the Ottawa Civic Hospital, after Princess Margriet, to commemorate her history in Ottawa. Later this fall, the park will feature a dedicated Liberation75 tulip garden, where the City will plant 1,945 tulips, marking the year of the Liberation. The Mayor will bring forward a motion to City Council for the proposal, supported by Ward Councillor Jeff Leiper, when he returns from the mission. The City will receive comments from the public for a 10-day period, starting on September 25.

Quote

“On behalf of the City of Ottawa, it would be an honour to welcome Princess Margriet back to her birthplace to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Liberation of the Netherlands by Canadian forces. We hope to build on our 75 years of friendship with the people of the Netherlands by commemorating Ottawa’s special connection to the Dutch Royal Family.”
Mayor Jim Watson, City of Ottawa

“The Canadian Tulip Festival is very pleased with the renaming of the park in honour of Princess Margriet and as a symbol of our longstanding friendship with the people of the Netherlands. We look forward to seeing this magnificent bed of Liberation75 tulips paint the park orange next spring, as we mark these events that unite our two countries.”
Grant Hooker, Chair, Canadian Tulip Festival

Quick facts:

  • In 1940, Nazi Germany invaded the Netherlands and the Dutch Royal Family was evacuated to London, England.
  • Her Majesty Queen Wilhelmina sent her heir, Crown Princess Juliana, and the Princess’ two daughters to Canada. They spent five years in Ottawa and became a part of the community.
  • In 1943, the Crown Princess gave birth to her third daughter, Princess Margriet, at the Ottawa Civic Hospital.
  • Immediately following the War, Crown Princess Juliana presented Ottawa with 100,000 tulip bulbs in gratitude for the hospitality provided by the city. In 1946, she sent an additional 20,000 tulip bulbs as a token of appreciation for Canada’s support and wartime efforts.
  • To this day, the Netherlands continues to send a gift of tulips each year to Ottawa as a symbol of international friendship.
  • The Canadian Tulip Festival was established in 1953 to celebrate the historic gift of tulips from the Dutch Royal Family. The Festival has commemorated this gift and its history each spring for the last 68 years.
  • The Festival, which takes place in May of each year (May 8–18, 2020), commemorates the crucial role that the Canadian Armed Forces played in the Liberation of the Netherlands and Europe, as well as the birth of Princess Margriet in Ottawa—the only royal personage ever born in Canada.
  • To commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Liberation of the Netherlands, the Canadian Tulip Festival - together with the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the National Capital Commission - have launched the Liberation75 Tulip Campaign.
  • The Campaign will result in the planting of 1.1 million Liberation75 Tulips across Canada in honour of the 1.1 million Canadians who served during the Second World War.