Making Pasadena an attractive place for people to raise families is foremost on the mind of the town council and Mayor Gary Bishop believes the town will continue to grow and prosper moving forward.
Housing starts in the town have been steady with an average of 20 new homes being built every year over the past six years, with five new ones in 2017 he’s happy to report.
The numbers show people find the town an attractive place to live with an eight per cent increase in population growth and Bishop believes this is exciting when most small communities around Newfoundland and Labrador have been dealing with a declining population.
“That’s a very positive trend for our community,” he said Friday.
The Western Star chatted with Bishop about his vision for 2018. Here is a look at some of the top things the Pasadena town council will be focused on in the new year:
10-year municipal town plan
2018 is the year the town’s municipal town plan, the blueprint for the vision of the future, has to be renewed and the town is already working toward a plan that will shape the future.
Bishop said public consultations will be scheduled in the new year to provide residents with a say in what the town focuses on doing for the next decade when it comes to everything from land use to environmental issues to current regulations.
It’s a big step in what council can bring to fruition over the next 10 years to help grow the economy and give residents a clean and safe community they can be proud of.
As of July 31, waste management fees will be going up 278 per cent with the average cost per household jumping from $57 to $164.
The town, according to the mayor, didn’t have to increase taxes in the 2018 budget to address the increase and money has been set aside for education sessions with the public with regards to things like recycling and composting.
The town will also continue providing subsidies for residents who use compost bins for backyard useage.
“It’s a big date for everybody,” he said.
Three-year capital works plan
Making improvements to the town through capital works is high on the priority list for Pasadena in 2018.
One of the improvements the mayor is happy about is that the 10 lift stations in place for pumping sewage were once all underground but now they are above ground which makes it convenient and safe to do all the readings from above ground.
The recapping of a handful of streets in the town is also scheduled to take place in 2018, but council hasn’t made a decision on what ones will be done just yet.
Improvements to Tipping Drive
Talks with the provincial government’s Works and Service Transportation will continue in the New Year with council hoping to get some maintenance work carried out on the Tipping Pond and Main Street area of town, which happens to be the responsibility of the province.
The mayor is hoping there will be at least water service provided to the Tipping Drive area because there isn’t any access right now.
Pasadena Place, a $10-million project, is the gem in the town when it comes to providing recreational opportunities for young and old alike.
Mayor Bishop said the recreation facility exceeded everybody’s expectations in 2017 and a beehive of activity was great to see.
He said the town will be focused on creating more revenues in 2018 to cover the costs of building the facility and he believes it’s a big piece of the puzzle when it comes to attracting people to the town.
An investment of $25,000 towards beautification will be spent in 2018 and work on the softball diamonds, like fencing, is part of the plan to improve recreation facilities in the new year.