Town of Oakville and CUPE Local 136 settle new collective agreement

The Town of Oakville and CUPE Local 136 (the town’s outside workers) have concluded their bargaining on a three-year agreement. A memorandum of agreement was signed by the town and the union on February 22, 2016 and was ratified by the Union and Council at their respective meetings on Monday night.

The new collective agreement is in effect from February 16, 2016 to February 15, 2019 and provides members with wage increases of 1.5% per cent in each of the three years. CUPE Local 136 represents 275 full time and temporary employees who are skilled in various trades and provide key services in maintaining the town’s facilities, parks, roads and vehicles.

The town remains committed to renewing collective agreements that are fair and reasonable to employees and residents. This successful negotiations process and ratification of the collective agreement ensures the continued provision of high quality services for Oakville residents.

To view the report review the February 29, 2016 Council agenda.

Cultural Grants provide $110,000 for local arts community

Twenty-nine local organizations benefit from annual grant program
The Oakville Arts Council recently awarded a total of $110,000 in grants to 29 local not-for-profit arts and culture organizations as part of the Town of Oakville’s Cultural Grants program.

“Council is committed to supporting our vibrant arts and culture community,” Mayor Rob Burton said. “We want to ensure our arts and culture groups continue to thrive and enrich the lives of all Oakville residents.”

Administered by the Oakville Arts Council on behalf of the Town of Oakville, the Cultural Grants program assists local not-for-profit arts, heritage and culture groups with their operating and program costs.

The following recipients were selected by the Cultural Grants Review Committee.

  • ArtHouse for Children and Youth
  • ArtWorks Oakville Association
  • Burl-Oak Theatre Group
  • Canadian Music Competition-Oakville/Mississauga Chapter
  • Carousel of Nations Multicultural Association
  • Circle of Harmony Chorus
  • Halton Jazz Singers
  • Halton Mississauga Youth Orchestra
  • High Rendition Youth Jazz Band Inc.
  • Intrada Brass of Oakville
  • Joshua Creek Heritage Art Centre
  • Masterworks of Oakville Chorus and Orchestra
  • Musikay
  • Oakville Art Society
  • Oakville Camera Club
  • Oakville Chamber Orchestra
  • Oakville Chinese Network
  • Oakville Choral Society
  • Oakville Festivals of Film & Art
  • Oakville Improv Theatre Company
  • Oakville Sculptors and Woodcarvers Guild
  • Oakville Symphony
  • Oakville Wind Orchestra Inc.
  • Streetwise Actors
  • Tempus Choral Society
  • The Oakville Childrens Choir
  • The Oakville Players
  • West End Studio Theatre
  • World of Threads Festival

“These groups offer an incredible wealth of programming. Delivered through the tireless dedication of volunteers, residents of all ages are able to access art classes, exhibitions, concerts, plays and more,” said Bernadette Ward, executive director of the Oakville Arts Council. “Kudos to the Town of Oakville for understanding how vital this support is to our local arts and cultural groups.”

The town’s Cultural Grants program has helped more than 62 local arts and culture programs since 1989. For more information about the program or to learn how to apply for funding, contact the Oakville Arts Council at 905-815-5977 or visit the Oakville Arts Council website.

Town switching to high-efficiency LED streetlights

Complete light conversion, resulting in significant energy and cost savings, expected by 2017

The Town of Oakville is shining a spotlight on its environmental leadership by upgrading streetlights to high-efficiency light emitting diodes (LEDs) beginning this month.

LED streetlights use less energy and last four times longer than existing high pressure sodium light bulbs. The new lighting system will reduce the town’s annual electricity consumption for streetlights by an estimated 40 to 50 per cent. A full conversion to LED fixtures will result in an estimated $1.3 million in annual hydro and maintenance savings.

“Upgrading to LED streetlights reflects Council’s commitment to environmental leadership and sustainability,” said Oakville Mayor Rob Burton. “It’s an exciting change that will result in significant energy and cost savings for the town.”

A total project budget of $12 million is included in the 2016-2017 capital budgets and is projected to be fully offset in ten years by the savings achieved through LED conversion.

Phase one of the project will include all town-owned streetlight fixtures except decorative streetlights. Work will be completed by El-Con Construction Inc., a subsidiary of Oakville Enterprises Corporation (OEC). Crews working from bucket trucks will park underneath each streetlight to swap out the fixtures, resulting in minimal disruption to residents.

The town expects to have a total of 16,200 town-owned streetlights converted to LEDs by 2017.

For more information visit the LED streetlight conversion program page.

Steve Levinson “Selected Works” Opens at Joshua Creek Heritage Art Centre

February 26 – March 27, 2016
Opening Reception: Feb 28 from 2-5pm

In a world of technology, Steve Levinson feels strongly that there is still a place for simplicity and natural beauty in photographs. Steve’s photographs are represented in over 200 private and corporate collections, and were all taken spontaneously, printed without extensive digital manipulation.

About Steve Levinson

Besides being a professional Fine Art Photographer, Dr. Steve Levinson is a physician, psychotherapist, medical business consultant, media personality, lecturer, educator, and professional facilitator.

“Levinson has used his camera as cameras often want to be used: as creators of dreamscapes, as traps for fugitive weathers and atmospheres we can hardly see, but only sense.” — John Bentley Mays, National Post

Steve Levinson’s Exhibition at Joshua Creek Heritage Art Centre will be his seventh solo show, and will be followed by an eighth in June at the Engine Gallery in Port Hope. His most recent exhibit was in the summer of 2013 at the Art Gallery of Northumberland in Cobourg’s historic Victoria Hall, and his 2012 show, “Outer Beauty,” was a major 65-piece exhibit at the ARTA Gallery in Toronto’s prestigious Distillery District.

Steve Levinson originally took up photography in the 1970s, and won awards in his first two competitions. He later produced and exhibited a number of multi-media photographic presentations, but then put his camera aside in order to follow other artistic pursuits.

In 2001, Steve returned actively to the art of photography. Since then his images have been on view at the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Gallery at First Canadian Place, Painted City Gallery, the Art Gallery of Northumberland, the ARTA Gallery, Roche Bobois Gallery, and the Left Bank, Michel Thomas, A.K. Collings and Engine Galleries in Port Hope, Ontario. His work is represented in over 200 private collections and has been selected for private and corporate clients by a number of prominent designers such as Brian Gluckstein, Roche-Bobois Paris Design, Greta Valen, Michael Doyle, Judith Copeland, Angela Amlani, Lili Krnic, Kari Andersen Art Consultants and Aurelie Collings.

Steve is a photographic purist. Aside from adjusting the natural color saturation and contrast of his images, his photographs are just as they were captured; the images have not been achieved through digital alterations. His photographs are spontaneous, candid, and painting-like, and have been called “atmospheric, romantic, and abstract.”

Steve Levinson has an eclectic background in the performing arts. A former professional jazz dancer and choreographer, Steve has also performed as a musician, actor, wine educator, lifestyle lecturer and magician.

For years, Steve was a fixture on Canadian television and radio both locally and nationally as a writer and host of medical and lifestyle features and as a regular commentator on a wide variety of shows, including CBC Newshour, CBC’s the Journal, CTV’s Canada AM, CBC Radio’s As It Happens, Radio Noon, Metro Morning and many others. He has taught at the primary, secondary and university levels, has been a newspaper and magazine columnist and has written and hosted a number of educational videos.

Currently, Steve is in private medicine and psychotherapy practice in Port Hope, Ontario, and, prior to that, co-founded the Rosedale Clinic on Yonge St. in Toronto and served as Medical Director of the Rosedale Wellness Centre on Bloor Street. At present he is the chairman of a Continuing Medical Education group in downtown Toronto and is developing a lifestyle workshop series with an accompanying book.

Steve lives just north of Port Hope, and, at last count, had two sons, one grandson, two Wheaten Terriers, and three cute but extremely neurotic cats, one of whom Steve is convinced must be an alien.

“Some of the best work I have seen in years.” — John Reeves RCA

 “Genius!”— The Distillery Historic District Blog       

 “The selected work… has the “Wow!” Factor” — The Jury, Northumberland Art Gallery Juried Show

“Steve’s exhibition is a must-see!” — Selena Forsyth, The Port Hope Evening Guide