Part One: Join AIMS for lunch with urban visionary Mayor John Norquist of Milwaukee

Rising taxes. Decaying infrastructure and services. Fraying of the urban fabric and quality of life. People as diverse as the TD Bank, former Finance Minister Paul Martin and Canada’s mayors are saying that there is a crisis in our cities, but everyone seems to think that the solution is more money, more spending by senior governments, more jurisdictional entanglement. Isn’t there a mayor out there who has a story to tell about rolling up his sleeves and solving his own city’s problems by self-reliance, creative thinking, innovative approaches, more thoughtful service delivery and fiscal discipline?

The answer is yes. Milwaukee Mayor John Norquist is seen as one of America’s leading lights in reforming city governments and he will be in Halifax to share his remarkable experience at an AIMS Luncheon, Friday September 26th.

Mayor Norquist’s presentation “You Can’t Build a City on Pity” outlines an impressive record of streamlining city government, improving public safety and spurring job growth in Milwaukee. A leading “New Democrat” with a high national profile in the United States and internationally, Norquist is revolutionizing conventional thinking about urban issues as diverse as encouraging more urban parking space to the transformation of welfare into work-based income. Under his leadership, Milwaukee city government has become more efficient and less costly for city taxpayers and now in his fourth term, Norquist continues to be widely regarded as a leading figure in the reform of city government in the United States.

As part if its ongoing initiative on Canada’s Cities and National Urban Strategy, AIMS and its partners Corporate Research Associates, Deloitte Touche and the Greater Halifax Partnership welcome John Norquist, Mayor of Milwaukee to Halifax to speak with public and private sector opinion leaders and the public September 26, 2003. Tickets are $60 per person or $500 for a table of ten.


Part Two: Custodians, Not Miners: Lessons from the west coast’s experience with property rights in the fishery

AIMS brings leading thinkers to Atlantic Canada to discuss the regions most important issues. The latest example is famous B.C. fisheries analyst Laura Jones, who is about to release a powerful new book outlining the case for property rights-style management in the fisheries. If the British Columbia experience is any guide, Atlantic fisheries can avoid further ecological and economic disasters by more broadly adopting of this style of management. Jones says fishery workers are virtually unanimous in their opinion that individual transferable quotas (ITQs) have improved their livelihood and in some cases, saved their fisheries from catastrophe. In their own words, property rights changed them from mere miners of the resource to custodians of the fish. Laura Jones visited Halifax over the summer.

AIMS has been at the forefront in providing research and analysis on the issue of property rights fishery management. For more on this issue, please visit the AIMS website for the following publications.


Part Three: Employment Insurance Causes Unemployment? How can that be?

In his latest newspaper column, AIMS President Brian Lee Crowley responds to the Canadian Labour Congress’s latest call to make EI easier to get by arguing that all too often EI is a cause of unemployment, not a solution to it. He writes:

Paying people not to work when this region faces shortages of workers defies reason. It is not lack of work that has sidelined many of our unemployed, but rather a settled habit of expecting to be paid not to work for part of the year. In fact, Human Resource Development Canada has tried in the past to place repeat EI recipients in fulltime work and to top up their wages to ensure no loss of income compared to EI. They had to cancel those experiments because no one would participate. The reason? Many do not consider themselves “unemployed” when they’re on EI. Benefits are just part of their annual income.


Part Four: Common Sense Revolution architect Mike Harris to speak at AIMS luncheon in October

Throughout his years in public life, former Ontario Premier Mike Harris has strongly favoured tax cuts and support of small business. His government set higher standards for schools, teachers and students; action was taken to modernize healthcare and legislation passed to make government more accountable and efficient. Harris was one of only two Ontario premiers to introduce legislation reducing the size of the legislature and the first premier in a century whose government balanced the provincial budget three years in a row. AIMS and its partners Corporate Research Associates, Deloitte Touche and the Greater Halifax Partnership welcome Mike Harris to outlines his vision of Canada at and Luncheon in Halifax on October 22, 2003.

To find out more about sponsorship opportunities available at this event, please contact Jordi Morgan, Director of Communications and Development, at 902 446-3532

Part Five: Drug research is expensive but it saves lives. Is Canada paying its share?

Drug companies will invest in finding the next miracle treatment only if they can recoup their expenses. The search for disease-defeating and life-prolonging drugs is hugely expensive but this is the investment necessary to save lives. Industry estimates that it costs around $1-billion to develop each major new drug; unfortunately, many kinds of public policy undermine innovation in prescription drug research. In a commentary carried in various US newspapers and the well-regarded web forum, AIMS President Brian Lee Crowley argues that research won’t occur unless someone is willing to pay for it and up to this point, that someone has been the American consumer.


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