Michael F. Blair is now a candidate for Mayor of Collingwood in the upcoming 2018 Municipal Election.
Who is Michael Blair?
This is a question being asked by many as Mr. Blair is a newcomer to the Collingwood political scene. He may not be a household name in Collingwood at the moment but his name is well known throughout Canadian business circles.
Michael Blair describes himself as being a retired senior executive and corporate director with extensive boardroom experience.
Here is a partial list of Michael Blair’s business accomplishments.
Mr. Blair is currently a member of the Board of Trustees of Dominion Citrus Income Fund, a public trust engaged in wholesale distribution of fresh fruits and vegetables with annual sales of approximately $70 million.
From 2014 to 2016 he was Chairman of the Board of DATA Group Ltd., a $300 million printing and data management business listed on the TSX.
From 1989 to 2011 he was Chief Executive Officer and a director of Automodular Corporation, a public company that supplies sub-assembly and sequencing services to automotive assemblers.
From 1990 to 1995 Mr. Blair was the Chairman (and Founder) of Pharmx Rexall Drug Stores Ltd. Rexall is a chain of retail drug stores in Ontario, sold to Katz Group in 1996.
From 1968 to 1974, Blair was a Fighter Pilot with the Royal Canadian Air Force, logging 2,000 flying hours on various types including CF 101 Voodoo and T-33 Silver Star aircraft.
And of course, like so many people who first visit and eventually move to Collingwood, Michael Blair is into fitness and enjoys skiing and playing tennis.
So why has Michael Blair entered the race for Mayor?
He believes he can make a meaningful contribution.
“I am running for Mayor simply to make a contribution to this wonderful Town. I have many years of senior level administration and financial expertise and believe I can be helpful.”
Blair has put forward a few simple ideas and principles that he recommends for study and consideration by Collingwood Council:
1. Absolute and complete transparency in all municipal dealings with full prior disclosure of all actual or potential conflicts of interest, or facts that would create an appearance of conflict.
2. Standard language for all contracts with the Town that require vendors to disclose any financial relationships they have with members of Council or their relatives or others in a position of influence in respect of the Town.
3. A five year freeze on property taxes with a study of ways to reduce property taxes without compromising the Town’s financial integrity.
4. A mechanism to license and regulate short term rentals such as AirBnB, which could increase Town revenues while easier to enforce than the current ban, and give property owners more opportunity to realize value for their property.
5. A long term plan to expand the availability of serviced industrial lands.
With the July 27th nomination deadline fast approaching, we now have a three way race in Collingwood for the position of Mayor in the upcoming Municipal Election. Michael F. Blair has joined current Collingwood Deputy Mayor Brian Saunderson and retired OPP Detachment Commander John Trude as candidates for the Mayor’s Chair.
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