By Charlie Senack, Manotick Messenger
Rideau-Goulbourn Councillor Scott Moffatt has been elected for his third term, and already has lots of ideas on how to make Ottawa a better city.
First elected in 2010, Moffatt, the father of four, said council has changed a lot in the past three terms. When he was first elected, five of the newbie elects were under the age of 40 — paving the way to a younger and more inclusive council.
He was officially sworn in to his third term on December 3 alongside seven new councillors and 15 other incumbents.
Making roads and traffic a number one priority, Moffatt would like to work heavily on planning policy — especially with setting the transportation phase master plan.
“One of the issues will always be roads (and) it will always be infrastructure renewal,” Moffatt said. “Whether that’s parks or buildings or roads but obviously roads come up so often.”
Phase one of light trail transit is expected to open in the first quarter of 2019, but it won’t play a big role for areas like Manotick and Riverside South until 2022 or 2023. That’s when the Trillium line is expected to be expanded out to Limebank road and the airport.
“You can’t get out to the suburbs without starting from the centre,” the three-term councillor said. “Getting light rail out to Moodie Drive, Baseline Station, down to Riverside South, this will have a much more significant impact on residents.”
One of the biggest decisions council will have to face in the coming weeks is whether to opt in or opt out of private cannabis sales. Moffatt says their is no reason to opt, and says it won’t encourage youth to try it.
What Moffatt would like to see, however, is the municipalities have more control over how the private stores would operate.
“Personally, I’d love to have more of a role when it comes to zoning,” he said. “We had some concerns around the payday loan lenders and we developed a policy where we can restrict where they are or how many are in the same place. I think it would be nice to have that same ability with pot shops. I get that we don’t but that doesn’t mean that we can’t ask (the provincial government) for it.”
Moffatt was sworn in alongside his new neighbor Carol Anne Meehan in Gloucester South-Nepean, and Osgoode councillor George Darouze who is serving his second term.