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CITY OF KAWARTHA LAKES, Ont. – Local 855 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), representing City of Kawartha Lakes municipal workers, is mounting a public awareness campaign aimed at increasing participation in the upcoming municipal elections, and encouraging members and residents to support candidates who support public services.

Quality, reliable pubic services provided by dedicated public workers are in danger of being contracted out to profit-seeking companies,” said Lyn Edwards, president of CUPE Local 855. “Taxpayers need to ensure they elect a council that will invest in public services.”

On August 29, 2006, council awarded a $265,689 contract to a consulting firm, to compile a report regarding the “Service Delivery of the City’s Water and Wastewater Treatment Operations” with a clear goal of investigating an “alternative service delivery” model. Currently, the City’s water and wastewater treatment operations are maintained and serviced by city workers and by the Ontario Clean Water Agency (OCWA). According to city documents obtained by CUPE, the report by the consulting firm is to be completed no later than December 1, 2006, so that a preferred operating model can be in place no later than January 1, 2008.

Some municipal services, including snowplowing of municipal owned facilities, maintenance of social housing buildings, collections in the provincial offences department and parking enforcement have already been contracted out. “We have seen time and time again that contracted services are more costly and less accountable,” said Edwards.

CUPE 855, along with the Lindsay & District Labour Council, is hosting an all-mayoral candidates meeting at Lindsay Collegiate and Vocational Institute, 260 Kent Street West, in Lindsay, on October 12th, at 7:00 pm. “We are encouraging residents and our members to ask mayoral candidates what their plans are to protect public services and what they will do to stop the contracting out of water and wastewater operations,” said Edwards. “The new council will be in office for four years, and we need to make sure they will protect our reliable and directly accountable public services.”


For further information, please contact:

Lyn Edwards
President, CUPE Local 855

Garry Kelly
Vice President, Lindsay and District Labour Council

Alison Davidson
CUPE National Representative

James Chai
CUPE Communications