Oct 15, 2014
Tony Fritsch – retaining businesses a priority
It took a long time for Tony Fritsch to decide to run for a second term as ward 1 councilor. He only brought in his nomination in early September.
“The reason I took a long time to consider is I know how much work is involved. It's a bit of a mindset. I was sitting on the fence through most of the summer. I finally came to the conclusion that I wanted to commit another four years to the township,” he said.
He thinks that the township has some “pretty large challenges in front of it.”
He notes that the township has grown little over the last 10 years and low growth is projected over the next 20 years.
“Our priority is to retain the businesses we have and if possible encourage new ones. We do that now, and whenever we get a chance we connect businesses with our business advisor from the county. But the reality is that we will be facing increased costs in a community that is not growing. It only means the burden on the existing taxpayers will grow.”
A couple of the ward 1 issues that are on people’s minds are the future of the ambulance service and the Denbigh waste site.
The ambulance service was cut from 24 hours to 12 hours per day, and he thinks there will be more pressure coming from the County, once the new County Council is in place.
“I expect the ambulance will come to the table again over the next year or so, and we will be in for another fight,” he said. “As far as the Denbigh waste site is concerned, the community has been waiting for a long time for it to re-open and the ministry keeps delaying. The ministry hinted earlier this year that they may be re-opening it later in the year, so we'll see,” he said.
One of Fritsch's major efforts over the last four years has been the redevelopment of the former Denbigh school into a multi-use municipal building, which he said is now about 2/3 complete.
“I and many others have put a lot of time and work into that complex, and I don’t really consider that to be part of my council responsibilities. I do that as a volunteer, even though I report to Council on an ongoing basis. I suppose it will be a few years before that is all wrapped up. It has been a complicated process and expensive, but the building is an asset to the community now and will be more of an asset when completed,” he said.