VOCO Update
by Lynne Boldt

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May 17, 2002

      Well, as I'm sure most of you are aware by now, the Amalgamation Awareness Conference is "in the books". I'd like to thank the numerous individuals that contributed to its' success including, but by no means limited to, the owners and staff of Lakeview Banquet Hall, the members of our Community that graciously donated gifts for the lucky draws, the representatives from outside Victoria County that travelled 2, 3 and even 4+ hours to attend that day, our own Victoria County residents, and of course the many reps from VOCO that put together yet another successful function.

      The information exchanged that day with guests - journalist, Joe Cooper; author, Ruth Cohen; and NDP MPP Michael Prue certainly opened the doors even wider for future exchanges, efforts and plans. The written submissions from the provincial Liberal party assuring Victoria County residents a future referendum were also welcome news. The feedback since the Conference continues to come in regularly and reconfirms that the people not only wish to be heard, they demand to be acknowledged and agree that their concerns will be addressed. Cold and uncaring form letters and "one size fits all" responses are just not acceptable any longer! Congratulations and thank you to everyone on the overall success of the Conference.

      VOCO's "Postcard Campaign", once again geared to the attention of our local 'representative' Chris Hodgson is now underway. Postcards are arriving through the mail on a regular basis. In case you are looking for one, any member of VOCO's Steering Committee have them, they are available at all VOCO meetings or you may obtain one from the website at www.geocities.com/vocomail. Members of the community will have them available at various locations throughout the County in the coming weeks as well - watch for details on specific dates and locations coming soon. As was done with the petition of over 11,000 signatures, these messages will be personally delivered to the Minister of Municipal Affairs at Queen's Park on an ongoing basis. (Anyone feeling like a trip to a REAL city???)

      The news and information from Blackriver/Matheson has also created interest in this neck of the woods, as it is an area that has now been allowed to de-amalgamate - compliments of our MPP's signature and some 32 pages of court documents, which we are in the process of reviewing. Another extremely generous donation has resulted in the availability of a 24' x 8' billboard, erected in a prominent location in the midst of our "city". Slogan suggestions for the billboard are welcome from citizens in Victoria County and may be submitted to info@voconews.com. You may also phone your suggestion to (705) 887-4797.

      And finally, as always, everyone is invited and welcome to attend any of the VOCO general meetings and bring along your questions, concerns and comments! The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, May 23rd at The Full Cup Cafe in Bobcaygeon. Please note that meetings will now begin 1/2 hr. earlier, getting underway at 7:00pm. The journey of a lifetime is completed one step at a time...

Reprinted with permission from The Promoter

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