Standards & Poor’s City of Guelph Credit Rating August 29 2014

Staff memo.

Earlier this morning, Standards & Poor’s Rating Services (S&P) reaffirmed Guelph’s credit rating at AA+ with a stable outlook. According to S&P’s Ratings Direct Research Update report the rating reflects Guelph’s, “very strong economic fundamentals, budgetary flexibility, exceptional liquidity position and low debt burden.” The credit rating also reflects S&P’s view that Guelph demonstrates strong financial management; as particularly evidenced by its very low level of contingent liabilities (e.g. post -employment benefit obligations), low debt levels and strong liquidity (i.e. ability to pay its obligations) which fare much better than many municipalities in Ontario.

Per regulatory reporting requirements, the City cannot post revised ratings until the credit rating agency releases them publicly which has now just occurred. Staff will bring forward a report next week providing further detail for Council’s information.

The current rating comes on the heels of two successive credit rating upgrades for the City of Guelph and is very welcome news that confirms that we continue to strengthen our financial position. For comparative purposes, the Province of Ontario’s current credit rating is

AA– for long-term debt and A-1+ for short term credit with a recent downgrade to reflect a negative outlook so it must borrow at much higher rates and risks lower economic investment and development interest.

I personally wish to thank staff and senior management in the Finance & Enterprise service area as well as our other service area partners for their tremendous accomplishments here and over the last two years that is clearly achieving results. I also would like to compliment Council for its continued commitment to and support of sound financial policies and audit practices that have greatly contributed to this very strong rating.

As background, S&P (Standards & Poor’s website) has offices in 23 countries and a history that dates back more than 150 years and is known to investors worldwide as a leader of financial-market intelligence. Today, S&P strives to provide investors who want to make better informed investment decisions with market intelligence in the form of credit ratings, indices, investment research and risk evaluations and solutions.


Filed under City Policy

#HappyMaking Pianos coming September 4

DGBA press release.


Once again, downtown streets will come alive with the sound of music when the #HappyMaking pianos are rolled out on September 4th.

Until the end of September, twelve pianos will be scattered throughout the downtown core outside of the following businesses and organizations: Grey Rock Clothing Co., Thomas Video, Budds, Shakti, TD Canada Trust, Wyndham Art Supplies, River Run Centre, Guelph Community Health Centre and the main branch of the Guelph Public Library. Flour Barrel will have a piano inside the store for shoppers to enjoy. Guelph Transit will host two pianos, one at Platform #12 and the other in the transit shelter near the fountain in St. George’s Square.

The brain child of Ian Findlay, the #HappyMaking project started with a simple idea in July 2013. Findlay, owner of Thomas Video on Baker Street, placed a piano on the sidewalk outside of his business and encouraged passersby not only to play the instrument, but also to decorate it with markers. The response was so positive that Findlay decided to partner with the Downtown Guelph Business Association and the Guelph Arts Council to place eight pianos around downtown for the month of September.

Speaking about the project to the Guelph Mercury in September of last year, Findlay said, “It’s been an overwhelming success. I think part of its charm is just the simplicity of it. It’s just simply putting something that you don’t normally see outside on the sidewalks, out to play.”

The pianos will be available and free-of-charge for anyone to play every day starting September 4th, although they will be locked and covered overnight. On September 30th, the pianos will be rolled away for seasonal storage at the Sleeman Centre.

Play. Tweet. Share. #HappyMaking

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Filed under Community, Going Downtown, Having fun

Councillors Piper & Hofland #ALSIcebucketChallenge

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Filed under Community, Having fun

Canadian Public Works Association Elects City of Guelph’s Kealy Dedman, P Eng., as President

Press release.

The Canadian Public Works Association (CPWA) Board of Directors has unanimously elected City of Guelph’s City Engineer Kealy Dedman, P Eng., to serve as President of CPWA for a two-year term (August 2014–August 2016). CPWA serves as the voice of public works in Canada and its 2,200 members represent all aspects of public works across Canada.

CPWA President Kealy Dedman, P Eng.

In the President’s role, Ms. Dedman will represent CPWA and its members on national public works and infrastructure issues with the Government in Ottawa and will work collaboratively with other stakeholder groups on issues of national concern. She will lead an eight-member Board of Directors that represents CPWA Chapters and their members throughout the provinces. Ms. Dedman is currently the General Manager, Engineering Services/City Engineer for the City of Guelph, and has previously served as Director of Engineering Services for the City of Cambridge. She also has held engineering positions with the City of Mississauga in Ontario, and started her career as a water resources engineer with Phillips Engineering in Burlington in 1997. In addition to her civil engineering credentials, she also recently earned a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Western Ontario (2014), and a Bachelor’s degree in Biology. Continue reading

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Ward 2 Townhall: Info regarding overnight parking & winter control

From AVH

Winter parking discussion with City of Guelph public works officials regarding snow removal.

Where: Evergreen Centre on Woolwich St.

Date: Tuesday September 16

Time: 7pm

Hope to see everyone there.

Thank you, Councillors VanHellemond & Findlay



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Filed under Parking that car, Traffic Management, Weather

With thanks….

More from amazing Guelphites.

Thank you for your service over your eight years in that capacity. Having
become a little bit acquainted with you through eMerge Guelph activities, I have
some sense of the significant value of the contributions you make.

Thanks also for the personal sacrifices that your service must have demanded,
from you and likely from your family as well. PJ


*Sorry to hear about your decision not to run for Council but congratulations as well on the decision! DK


Was just advised you announced last night your decision not to seek re-election. I know from earlier conversations you were struggling for a number of reasons whether to run again. I’m sure you have made the best decision for you and your family. There will be many accolades regarding your dedication and service to the community. I will simply say ‘thank you’ as a resident of Guelph. Best wishes in whatever your next ‘adventure’ may bring. DM


Hi Ian, just recently heard your news.

I wanted to thank you for your significant contributions to The Elliott Community. It has been my genuine pleasure working with you through the Board and I wish you all the best.

Here’s to your continued success wherever your journey takes you!

All the best TW


Hi Ian – just wanted to say I was sorry to hear you are not running but wanted to thank you for all of your good work. I know the pressures you are/were under and you don’t get enough thanks for such a strong community commitment.

Be well my friend. PC

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Best wishes

From the good folks of Guelph.

I have to say I always thought I’d get to vote for you as Mayor

This is a sad day for Guelph…but hopefully a great day for you and your family

…as a new door of possibilities and a whole new adventure unfold.


Hi Ian: While sad to hear that you are departing your City role which means your role on the library board, I congratulate you on making such a large change for yourself and your family. It takes courage, especially when you have been successful and good at serving in a public role. Wishing you the best as you discover what life after the City will mean for you….. JM


I know you have your reasons, but your voice will be a huge loss for this city TD


Just read about your decision not to run again. It’s too bad for the city. While I didn’t always agree with your decisions, you brought a thoughtful researched view to the table.

Thanks for your contribution to our city. PQ


I hadn’t heard this news. Ian, your insight into the mysterious ways of city hall, your humour, and your dedication to the GPL will be missed. But maybe not. WIll you consider joining the board? KS


I just read on-line (I am up in Kincardine) that you will not be seeking  re-election and wish to give you my best in your future endeavours. I feel that  you have much to be proud of during your two terms and know that you will be  missed around the council seat. There were many times that you took interest in
my concerns and responded to my emails and that was much appreciated.LP


Ian, thank you for all that you have contributed – to GPL and to the city as a whole.  We have been truly lucky to have your skill and perspective at the table.  I look forward to see what adventures you take on next. AM


I am sincerely appreciative of your work on City Council over these many years  and for your commitment to our community.

That said, I am really going to miss you at the table and am sad that you are  not running again.

Thank you for your faith and support. I am grateful. AP


‎Notwithstanding your decision not to run for council next term I will miss your presence around the horseshoe and at City Hall. MA


just read the news I’m sorry I won’t be working with you on the Elliott Board in the future, really enjoyed your company.

I know we’ll be seeing you around Guelph downtown.

Best of luck in your future endeavors SW

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