United Way Spirit Award - December 2000
The Town of Richmond Hill was selected by the United Way of York Region to receive a Spirit Award. Similar to the awards which were received in 1998 and 1999, the Town received a Spirit Award for exemplifying the true meaning of teamwork, leadership and community giving. For their part during the 2000 campaign, Town staff raised $23,000 for the United Way of York Region, about $6,000 more than the previous year. The staff fundraising campaign was aimed at helping to raise funds and awareness for the United Way and ran for approximately two weeks. The monies raised will benefit 39 local United Way charities. The Town's 2000 campaign was launched by two Richmond Hill firefighters rappelling down the side of the Town's municipal office building. Following that a variety of staff events and activities were organized in support of the campaign including a bagel breakfast, chicken wing eating contest and Halloween chili luncheon, along with a special Head Shaving ceremony. As an added incentive draw tickets were also sold for sporting events and a chance to name a Richmond Hill street. Prizes for the draws were donated by a number of local companies and supporters. In addition to draw ticket sales, staff were also encouraged to make individual contributions through the Town's payroll deduction plan.
Communities in Bloom
In September 2000, the Town of Richmond Hill received a 4-Bloom rating, the highest rating possible, from the judges of the Provincial Communities in Bloom 2000 program. To earn a 4-Bloom rating, a municipality must achieve 800 out of a possible 1000 points in eight different categories. In addition, the Town also won a special award as the first runner-up in landscaping and received high marks in community participation and heritage preservation. The Town plans to compete nationally in 2001.
FCM-CH2M Hill Sustainable Community Award - Clean Air Initiatives The Town of Richmond Hill was the recipient of the first-ever FCM-CH2M Hill Sustainable Community Award on June 1, 2000. As part of the award, the Town received $2,500 to be used to advance other sustainable development objectives in the community. Richmond Hill was among 51 submissions and six winners of the award. The Town was selected for the award, which is sponsored by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and a private company CH2M Hill, based on its Clean Air Initiatives. What distinguished the Town from other entrants was the fact that its Clean Air Initiatives are part of sustainable economic, social and environmental policies and because many of the initiatives have been implemented already.
The Town's Clean Air Initiatives program was developed out of concern for the growing number of "Smog Alerts" being issued in the Greater Toronto Area over the past five years. Richmond Hill Council adopted the "Clean Air Initiatives - Corporate Policies and Measures Action Plan" in July 1998, which was designed to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and thus improve the quality of life for residents and further set an example for the community and other municipalities. The plan includes corporate policies that set guidelines for staff to use vehicles less often, and in the event that a "Smog Alert" is issued, the plan outlines procedures to cut down on activities that contribute to the formation of greenhouse gas emissions and also provide improved working conditions for staff during "Smog Alerts."
The Town's program encourages staff to drive less often by offering a ride-share program, where employees share rides to and from work; teleworking, which allows qualified staff to work from home using computer technology; and facilities with change room/showers for staff who bicycle to work. The plan also deals with long-term goals such as the implementation of parking management policies, the development of a Town Master Plan for on/off-road pedestrian/cyclists, ongoing land use planning, and revising the Town's Official Plan. Recently, the Clean Air Initiatives program was expanded beyond staff to include the participation of a local elementary school and will include local businesses in the near future. article in Sustainable Communities section of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities' Website
Best of Class
In June 2000, the Town won "Best of Class" for its Roaring News newsletter. The award was presented in Dallas, Texas by the American Economic Development Council.
Welcome Wagon Special Recognition Award
Richmond Hill received a Special Recognition Award from Welcome Wagon for being an Outstanding Community in 1999. Only two other communities in Canada received the award that year.
Sustainable Community Award
The Town of Richmond Hill has been recognized with an award for its ongoing work in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The Town's Clean Air Initiatives program received the first-ever national FCM-CH2M Hill Sustainable Community Award 2000.
The Town was selected for the award, which is sponsored by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and a private company CH2M Hill, based on its Clean Air Initiatives. Clean Air Initiatives were developed by the Town to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and thus improve the quality of life for residents and further set an example for the community and other municipalities.
To learn more about the Town's efforts or how you can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions please contact George Flint, Chair, Clean Air Initiatives Team at (905) 771-8830 ext. 2455.