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Committed To Our Quality of Life

Eight years ago, I ran for mayor with the support of my wife, Karen, and based on my conviction that Puslinch is a great place to live and I can help make it even better. 

For those who don’t know me, this is my background:

I worked for 33 years at Varian Canada, a high-tech electronics and scientific instruments firm. For 24 of those years, I led teams of up to 25 people ranging in skill from clerical to PhD chemists. Eventually, I led the company’s technical field operations and was promoted to National Customer Support Manager responsible for all staffing, budgeting, and meeting the financial targets for Varian’s Canadian operations.

Since retiring, I have been a director of six non-profit corporations, including the Guelph General Hospital board of directors. Since 2015, I have been on the board of the Ontario Aggregate Resources Trust Corporation as the board representative of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario. Since 2017, I have been the Warden of Wellington County and Secretary Treasurer of the Wellington Dufferin Guelph Board of Health.

Stronger leadership was needed.

Also after retiring, I began attending Puslinch council meetings on a regular basis. That was a real eye-opener. From what I saw, and heard from staff and council, governance improvements were badly needed. Yet there seemed to be no desire to change. Transparency, openness, financial management, and response to inquiries were all lacking.

So, for me, there were three choices: live with the outdated approach, move out of Puslinch, or do something about it. 

I chose #3 and put my name forward for mayor.

Thankfully, the residents of Puslinch also felt it was time to stop living in the past and start stepping into the future. Much to my honour, I was elected with significant victories at every poll in the township.

Puslinch is in great shape.

2010 to 2018 have been excellent terms of council. Every promise was delivered. Tax increases declined steeply and have remained low. Priorities were well planned. Budgeting is now clear and detailed. Things are getting done and we have a well-thought-out vision of our future. Puslinch is in great shape.

A big commitment for me is to make sure our township gets its fair share of new revenues as multi-year talks continue around the aggregate levy. As the Chair of TAPMO (Top Aggregate Producing Municipalities in Ontario), I’m working with the Ontario Stone Sand and Gravel Association to close the gap between the current levy payments Ontario municipalities receive and the real impact on our local infrastructure. The bottom line will be more revenue for Puslinch, which we need because provincial and federal grants are declining.

Keep building on a good thing.

I'm truly grateful to the residents of Puslinch for having faith in me as mayor. I intend to once again work hard with council and staff to keep taxes under control while building assets and preserving our wonderful quality of life in Puslinch.

Dennis Lever