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Matera in the news and in the minds of Toronto Council

Matera in the news and in the minds of Toronto Council

Matera in the news and in the minds of Toronto Council

by The Honourable Joe Volpe, Publisher

TORONTO – He left the meeting quite impressed, enthusiastic and optimistic, so said Deputy Mayor, Vincent Crisanti to the Corriere Canadese after he met with a delegation from the Basilicata Cultural Society on the proposed Twinning with Matera.

The delegation, composed of members of the Executive (Pat Tremamunno, Sam Primucci, Dan Montesano, Antonio Locantore, Paul Petrozza, Phil Gravina) and lead by Frank Miele, met with Councillor Crisanti to work on “next steps” to make the goal happen.

“I will bring the proposal to the appropriate officials for analysis and report for the Economic Development Committee”, indicated Mr. Crisanti. “I really was impressed with the professionalism of the presentation and the opportunity presented to Toronto”, he added.

He was confident that the Economic Development Committee would be equally impressed by the potential connection particularly as it relates to the interchange on cultural and artistic development. Tourism and infrastructure projects also played a significant part in the discussions.

“It is an opportunity that we need to nurture and develop, added the Deputy Mayor. ”While I am supportive and confident that others on Council will respond similarly, we are at early stages still”, he cautioned.

Matera, a historic and ancient city in Basilicata (Southern Italy) Is a World Heritage Site named by the European Union as the Cultural Capital of Europe for 2019. It is an Artist’s and Filmaker’s paradise.

Frank Miele remarked that the meeting was “uplifting” and encouraging. “The City seemed genuinely interested and impressed with what Matera has to offer from an artistic and cinematic perspective. Culture is the new economic driver of Toronto. A partnership (whose shape is yet to be determined) between Matera and Toronto has all of the earmarks of a successful Union”, he said, barely suppressing his delight.

“The next steps are really in the hands of the officials who have to dig deep in the data and present workable models that will work for both sides”, he added.

It is important to note that the support of Councillor Michael Thompson, who Chairs the Economic Development Committee, is important and at this stage seemingly there.

Sam Primucci, who lead the delegation to Matera in August found the meeting to be positive, “more than the perfunctory courtesy meeting; one that promised serious next steps grounded in administrative workloads, assigned tasks and realistic objectives and timelines.”

It was an impression shared by Dan Montesano, another member of that August delegation received in Matera by all the senior political figures of the Provincial and National authorities.

“I’m am excited by the fact that Toronto City Council will have a closed look at what could be ’a jewel in the crown’ of formal relation that Toronto has with municipalities around the globe.”

(Thursday 22 September 2016)

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