Jeremy Williams running again for mayor

October 6, 2022   ·   0 Comments

By Sam Odrowski

Orangeville mayor candidate, Jeremy Williams says he’s running on the “the boring stuff.”

Roads, infrastructure, parks, safe communities, planning for the future – while “boring”, Williams says it needs to be the focus of Orangeville council.

Williams served as councillor for four years prior to his 2014-2018 term as Orangeville mayor.

He was unsuccessful in his bid for re-election in 2018, receiving 1,477 votes, while Mayor Sandy Brown received 3,413.

Having served on council for eight years, Williams said his experience and involvement in community activities makes him well suited for the role.

“I consider Orangeville more than just a place to live, it’s part of who I am. It’s hugely important, and I want to make sure that the people that are council have the abilities [needed] and are there for the right reasons,” he said.

Williams noted the past four years of private life have been very enjoyable, earning more money, having more free time, and spending more time with family, but he felt compelled to run.

“I just didn’t feel like the choices that were being offered are ones that were the best for Orangeville,” he remarked. “Ultimately, it’s up to the people of Orangeville to decide, it’s not up to me, it’s up to the voters, and if they think that I have something that’s valuable, if I can offer something that provides strength to our next council then I hope that they would support me.”

When reflecting back on achievements during his time as mayor from 2014-2018, Williams said it is the “boring stuff” that was probably missed by most residents.

He said he had a five-year plan to set up Orangeville for the future, building up capital reserves, funding for future infrastructure, reducing town debt, paying off years of accumulated deficits and combining road work projects to get better purchasing power.
“Previous to my role as mayor, we had often approved the financial budget at the last minute, which meant we couldn’t get vendors… scrambling for contractors, and then the prices would be higher,” Williams explained.

He said under his leadership, council took a “problematic and troubled police services” and settled it down, got it under control.

This progress has been undone, he says, with the disbanding of the Orangeville Police Service and transition to Ontario Provincial Police.

William said he believes the sale of the Orangeville Railway is another mistake.

He told the Citizen, in private meetings with a couple council members, he found an investor who wanted to revitalize the railway and make it a financially sound asset from a tourism perspective.

“Furthermore, I’d also had discussions with the mayors south of here, and had I been elected, we would have had a different ownership arrangement,” he said. “The tax issue would have been mitigated completely.” 

However, none of this came to fruition.

If elected, Williams said more public engagement would take place with issues that are important to the community.

He also shared that one of his main priorities is planning and positioning Orangeville well for the next several decades.

“Orangeville council could use somebody that has that kind of long-term thinking,” Williams said. “It’s time to plan for the future, to know where we’re headed in the next 10, 100, 200 years.”

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