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A newly minted regional council will elect York chair Thursday

With a $2.2 billion budget in 2018, the Regional Municipality of York’s new 21-member regional council will soon get down to work on such things as approving York Regional Police's 2019 budget request, and more

It’s a busy week for swearing-in ceremonies, as the Regional Municipality of York’s new 21-member regional council gets set to take its oath of elected office on Dec. 6.

One of the newly minted members’ first official duties Thursday night is to elect a new chairperson, who is the head of council and acts as the CEO of the municipal corporation, and may vote on matters in the event of a tie. 

The members of regional council themselves are elected in what is known as a "double direct" form of election. In this type of system, those elected as mayor or regional councillor for an area municipality earn a seat on both local council and regional council for four years. 

Chair and CEO Wayne Emmerson is currently serving his first four-year term, which runs 2014 to 2018.

York Regional Council is the political body that sets policies, direction and budgets for the nine municipalities that make up York Region. It’s the second tier or regional level of government, in addition to the local government, and is responsible for such things as funding York Regional Police and York Regional Transit/Viva. The Region managed a $2.2 billion budget in 2018.

A new, 400,000-plus-square-foot administrative headquarters is now under construction beside its current facility on Yonge Street in Newmarket. Once completed, the $212-million Administrative Centre Annex will offer a variety of public services, including public health clinics, Ontario Works, provincial offences act courts, social services and more.

The Regional Municipality of York consists of nine local cities and towns and provides a variety of programs and services to 1.2 million residents and 51,000 businesses with 620,000 employees.

The ceremony and inaugural meeting of regional council will be held  Thursday, Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. in the York Region Administrative Centre Council Chambers, 17250 Yonge St. Members of the public are welcome to attend.

Here are the regional council members to be sworn in for the 2018 to 2022 term:

Chairperson and CEO to be elected by regional council members.


Tom Mrakas, Mayor

East Gwillimbury

Virginia Hackson, Mayor


Margaret Quirk, Mayor

Robert Grossi, Regional Councillor


Steve Pellegrini, Mayor


Frank Scarpitti, Mayor

Don Hamilton, Regional Councillor

Jack Heath, Regional Councillor

Joe Li, Regional Councillor

Jim Jones, Regional Councillor


John Taylor, Mayor

Tom Vegh, Regional Councillor

Richmond Hill

David Barrow, Mayor

Joe DiPaola, Regional Councillor

Carmine Perrelli, Regional Councillor


Maurizio Bevilacqua, Mayor

Mario Ferri, Regional Councillor

Gino Rosati, Regional Councillor

Linda Jackson, Regional Councillor


Iain Lovatt, Mayor

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Kim Champion

About the Author: Kim Champion

Kim Champion is a veteran journalist and editor who covers Newmarket and issues that impact York Region.
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