Some of the locations that open up on Friday.

News 100 blueBy Staff

June 15th, 2020



The rules that will apply to the opening that begins on Friday will dribble out from the province – setting out just what will be in place in terms of social distancing, mask wearing and what the retail and hospitality sectors will be expected to do.

Still a lot to be learned – stay tuned – here is what we know so far.

select personal care services with the proper health and safety measures in place, including tattoo parlours, barber shops, hair salons and beauty salons;

shopping malls under existing restrictions, including food services reopening for take-out and outdoor dining only;

tour and guide services, such as bike and walking, bus and boat tours, as well as tasting and tours for wineries, breweries and distilleries;

water recreational facilities such as outdoor splash pads and wading pools, and all swimming pools;

beach access and additional camping at Ontario Parks;

camping at private campgrounds;

outdoor-only recreational facilities and training for outdoor team sports, with limits to enable physical distancing;

drive-in and drive-through venues for theatres, concerts, animal attractions and cultural appreciation, such as art installations; and
film and television production activities, with limits to enable physical distancing.

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Is forgiving any interest due on tax arrears good policy or a dumb idea financially ? The city isn't exactly flush with cash these days

SwP thumbnail graphicBy Pepper Parr

June 15th, 2020



The retail and hospitality sectors have been bleeding badly – they needed every break they could get.

For many rent and the hydro bill were the biggest nuts they had to deal with.

Many residents were finding that they were not always able to make the rent and city taxes were something they just had to put on hold.

The city jiggled the due dates on property taxes for the resident section which was a help.

Mayor Marianne Meed Ward put forward a motion at a Standing Committee last week asking staff to set out what things would look like under different tax relief scenarios.

One was to set aside the policy of charging people interest on their outstanding taxes.

The Mayor argued that it just didn’t seem fare for those who were struggling to get by during the pandemic to have to pay interest on overdue tax payments. It was like holding people down financially and insisting on collecting interest on overdue taxes just so that the city could meet its financial commitments.

A little on the altruistic side but that’s part of where this Mayor comes from.

What happens then with the taxes owed the city by the two large shopping venue – Burlington Centre and Mapleview Mall.

The public learned last week that the two locations had not remitted taxes since mid-March but were expected to do so by the end of the month.

What if they decide it is just good business to hold on paying taxes and use the cash available to get their operations up to speed and pay whatever interest was due.

During the 2008 recession Burlington had a city Councillor who did just that – why shouldn’t the malls do the same thing.

Would the city forgive the interest for the large commercial operators or is this proposal to apply to everyone – the big corporate interests, the small business operations and residents?

Are there any unintended consequences lurking in that proposal.

Can’t see this one riding all that well on the stomach of the Director of Finance.

Finally, did the public have the right to know that the malls were late on their tax payments – or more correctly that they had taken advantage of a program the city put in place?

Related news story.

Tax collection dates shifted to ease the financial strain.

Pepper - Gazette shirt - no smile





Salt with Pepper is the musings, reflections and opinions of the publisher of the Burlington Gazette, an online newspaper that was formed in 2010 and is a member of the National Newsmedia Council.

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Regional Health Unit reports on data up to the 14th.

covid virusBy Pepper Parr

June 15th, 2020



A large part f the reason the Provincial government decided to open things up for the Region of Halton was the numbers that came out of the Public Health Unit work.

The numbers are pretty good. Data up to end of day on June 14, 2020 was released this morning.

Cases over time

COVID-19 cases among Halton residents to date (708 confirmed + 79 probable)

COVID-19 cases currently active among Halton residents (89 confirmed + 13 probable)

Figure 1


Fig 2

Figures 1 and 2 show the 787 COVID-19 cases among Halton residents reported by end of the day on June 14. All cases have been graphed according to their episode date, which is used to estimate the date that symptoms began. Figure 1 shows the number of new cases per day, while Figure 2 shows how cases have accumulated over time. Counts for the past 14 days should be interpreted with caution (indicated using the grey shaded area on the graph), since there is a delay between when a person becomes infected and when they develop symptoms, get tested and are reported as a case. Please note the large increase on April 11 is due to expanded testing and identification of COVID-19 among asymptomatic individuals at Mountainview Residence.

Individuals who are lab-confirmed cases are shown in green. Individuals who are probable cases are shown in orange. Probable cases are individuals presumed to have COVID-19 because they have symptoms of COVID-19 and are travelers returning from an affected area, have had close contact with a confirmed case and/or lived/worked in a facility experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak, or have indeterminate test results.


Fig 3

For each day, Figure 3 shows the average number of new confirmed COVID-19 cases over the past seven days, including only those cases that are not staff or residents/patients associated with an outbreak in an institutional or congregate care setting. Cases have been graphed according to their collection date, which is the date that a sample was taken from them to be tested for COVID-19. The graph suggests that the average number of new cases per day was highest in late March/early April, with another increase in mid-May. Counts for recent days should be interpreted with caution (indicated using the grey shaded area on the graph), since there is a delay between when a person is tested and when their test results are reported to Public Health and entered into the system.

Case demographics

cases were residents or patients of an institution experiencing an outbreak (10% of all cases)

cases work in health care (14% of all cases)


Fig 4

Figure 4 shows that by end of the day on June 14, the most COVID-19 cases were among Halton residents aged 40-59 (with 283 cases, or 36%). 441 cases (56%) were female.

Figure 4 shows that by end of the day on June 14, the most COVID-19 cases were among Halton residents aged 40-59 (with 283 cases, or 36%). 441 cases (56%) were female.

Fig 5

Figure 5: COVID-19 cases, by municipality of residence, Halton Region, 2020

Figure 5 shows that by end of the day on June 14, the greatest number of COVID-19 cases were among residents of Oakville (with 265 cases, or 34%). Two cases with municipality information pending are not shown. Please note this figure shows counts, and therefore does not take into account the different population sizes or age structures of the four municipalities. Counts in municipalities can also be inflated by outbreaks that have occurred within institutions in their boundaries.

Case exposure source

Fig 6Figure 6 shows the percentage of COVID-19 cases by primary exposure category for Halton’s four municipalities and for Halton overall. For Halton overall, by end of day on June 14, 312 cases (40%) had contact with a confirmed case that was believed to be the source of their infection. 234 COVID-19 cases (30%) had no known travel or contact history, and therefore were believed to have acquired the virus within Ontario, making them community cases. 131 (17%) were residents/patients or staff associated with an outbreak in an institutional or congregate care setting. 99 cases (13%) had a history of travel that was believed to have been the source of their infection. Information on exposure source was pending for the remaining 11 cases (1%). These proportions vary by municipality. It is important to note that cases can have multiple exposures, and these data reflect only their primary exposure category based on information gathered during case investigation.

Case and contact follow-up

Fig 7

Figure 7 shows that 98% of Halton cases reported over the past seven days (June 8-14)

Fig 8

Figure 8: Percentage of COVID-19 community contacts reached by Public Health within one day of being reported, Halton Region, contacts identified Jun. 8-Jun. 14, 2020

Figure 7 shows that 98% of Halton cases reported over the past seven days (June 8-14) were reached by Halton Public Health within one day of being reported, which exceeds the provincial goal of 90%. Similarly, Figure 8 shows that Halton Public Health reached 100% of contacts identified over the past seven days (June 8-14) within one day, compared to the provincial goal of 90%.

Case outcomes

cases who have ever been hospitalized to date (15 listed as currently in hospital)


cases who are recovered/resolved

cases who have died to date (11 of the deceased were residents or patients of an institution experiencing an outbreak).
* Please note that the total number of deaths has decreased from 25 to 24 as there was a reporting error to Public Health that has now been corrected.

Institutional outbreaks

confirmed institutional outbreaks of COVID-19 reported to Halton Region Public Health to date (1 is ongoing)

Figure 9: COVID-19 institutional outbreaks, by date outbreak was declared, Halton Region, Mar. 1-Jun. 14, 2020

Fig 9Figure 9 shows the 19 confirmed outbreaks of COVID-19 in Halton institutions reported by end of the day on June 14. Institutions are defined as long-term care homes, retirement homes and hospitals. 18 of the outbreaks have resolved, and one is ongoing. Among the 19 confirmed institutional outbreaks reported to date, 11 (58%) have been in long-term care homes, seven (37%) have been in retirement homes and one has been in a hospital (5%).

Lab testing

Halton residents were tested for COVID-19 within the past seven days of available data (May 31-June 6).

Halton residents are known to have been tested for COVID-19 to date.

of Halton cases reported in the past week to Public Health had been tested for COVID-19 within the past two days. This is an indicator of current lab reporting timeliness.

Comparison to Ontario

total confirmed COVID-19 cases reported in Ontario to date

Figure 10: Age-specific rates of COVID-19 (per 10,000 population), Halton Region and Ontario, 2020

Fig 10Figure 10 shows age-specific rates of COVID-19 for Halton and Ontario. Rates take into account the population size of each age group to make it possible to compare between different areas. Halton’s age-specific rates are currently significantly different from the provincial rates for all age groups except youth aged 0-19. For example, Halton has 36.4 cases per 10,000 residents aged 80+, which is statistically significantly lower than the 84.1 cases per 10,000 residents aged 80+ in Ontario overall. It is important to note that these rates will fluctuate as numbers increase throughout the pandemic and that differences between age groups may reflect differences in the likelihood of developing symptoms and being tested.

Data limitations and data sources:

Halton case data: integrated Public Health Information System (iPHIS), extracted at 7:00 AM on June 15, 2020, to reflect data entered by the end of the day on June 14, 2020

Halton lab data: Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences, Number of individuals who were confirmed positive for COVID-19, COVID-19 Testing Period: 15 Jan 2020 to 6 June 2020. Received on June 8, 2020.

Ontario case count overall: Public Health Ontario, Epidemiologic Summary, COVID-19 in Ontario: January 15, 2020 to June 14, 2020, posted on June 15, 2020 to

Denominators for Halton and Ontario age-specific rates: Population projections [2020], IntelliHEALTH Ontario, extracted on April 8, 2020.

Data notes
All cases of diseases of public health significance diagnosed in Ontario are entered into iPHIS by local public health units. iPHIS is the Integrated Public Health Information System. It is a dynamic disease reporting system which allows ongoing updates to data previously entered. As a result, data extracted from iPHIS represent a snapshot at the time of extraction and may differ from previous or subsequent reports as data are updated.

The data only represent cases reported to public health and recorded in iPHIS. As a result, all counts will be subject to varying degrees of underreporting due to a variety of factors, such as disease awareness and medical care seeking behaviours, which may depend on severity of illness, clinical practice, changes in laboratory testing, and reporting behaviours.

Cases are included if their “diagnosing health unit” in iPHIS is Halton Region, which means counts include only individuals whose primary residence is in Halton Region. The case may not necessarily have been managed by Halton Region, if they were temporarily residing elsewhere during their case management period. Cases managed by Halton Region who normally live elsewhere but who were managed by Halton Region staff because they were temporarily residing in Halton during their case management period have not been included.

Cases for which the Disposition Status in iPHIS was reported as ENTERED IN ERROR, DOES NOT MEET DEFINITION, DUPLICATE-DO NOT USE, or any variation on these values have been excluded.

Cases are considered “currently active” if they are open in iPHIS.

Figures 1 and 2 distinguish between lab-confirmed and probable cases. Probable cases are defined as epi-linked cases, which means they are presumed to have COVID-19 because they have symptoms compatible with COVID-19 and have travelled to an affected area; have had close contact with a confirmed case; and/or lived in or worked in a facility known to be experiencing an outbreak of COVID-19; or have indeterminate test results. All other figures and numbers include both confirmed and probable cases combined.

Figures 1 and 2 use episode date, which is a field that is intended to approximate the symptom onset date for each case. It is calculated hierarchically, using symptom onset date if available; when it is not available, specimen collection date is used; if neither symptom onset nor specimen collection date are available, the lab test date is used; and finally, if none of these other dates are available, the date the case was reported to Public Health is used.

In subsequent reports, counts in Figures 1-3 may increase as cases are added from past dates as individuals become symptomatic, get tested, and their results are reported to Halton Region Public Health, as well as any past results are added due to delayed data entry or new arrival of lab results.

Cases are considered to be patients or residents of an institution experiencing an outbreak if they are linked to a confirmed Halton institutional outbreak in iPHIS, and they are not known to be a staff person at the institution.

Cases are considered to work in health care if they are known to have an occupation that involves caring for patients, e.g. physician, nurse, occupational therapist, recreational therapist, chiropractor, paramedic, midwife, orderly, etc. Individuals who work in health care settings but do not provide direct care to patients (e.g. managers, cleaning staff) have not been included.

Exposure type is determined by examining the exposure and risk factor fields from iPHIS to determine whether a case travelled, was a resident/patient or staff member in an institution or congregate care setting experiencing an outbreak, was a contact of a case or neither. A hierarchy has been applied as follows: Travel-related > Associated with institutional or congregate care setting outbreak > Close contact of a confirmed case > Neither (indicating community acquisition) > Information pending. It is important to note that cases can have multiple exposures, and these data reflect only their primary exposure category. Numbers are relatively low, and differences between municipalities have not been assessed for statistical significance. Known cases reflect only individuals who were prioritized for testing, which means that differences between municipalities are currently difficult to ascribe to other factors.

Case outcomes (hospitalizations, recovered/resolved, deaths) reflect the latest available information reported to Halton Region Public Health and recorded in iPHIS by the extraction time.

Cases are considered to have been reached within 24 hours if their investigation start date and case reported dates in iPHIS are no more than one day apart.

Contacts are manually tracked to determine if they were reached within one day. Any contacts referred to Public Health Ontario for follow up have not been included.

Institutional outbreaks include outbreaks of COVID-19 in settings such as long-term care homes, retirement homes, hospitals and prisons.

Lab testing data reflects only lab tests that have been assigned to Halton Region based on the methodology used by the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences. There are several known limitations associated with this data which result in the numbers being underestimates:
• The unit of analysis is the tested individual. Once an individual is confirmed positive, subsequent tests for that individual are excluded from the daily totals;
• The COVID-19 test results were captured in the Ontario Laboratories Information System (OLIS). The testing date represents the date of specimen collection: “observation date” in OLIS. Due to the time required for transportation and processing of specimens, it takes six days for approximately 95% of results to be finalized and reported for a given testing date. Some laboratories did not report all or part of their COVID-19 test results to OLIS. Unconsented test results were excluded;
• Daily counts less than six suppressed;
• The location of tested individuals was based upon the test recipient’s postal code (and corresponding PHU) recorded in the OHIP Registered Persons Database (RPDB) for those residing outside a long-term care (LTC) facility, and the LTC address on the OLIS test requisition for specimens collected from LTC facilities. These address assignments lead to misclassification of PHU in approximately 14% of individuals.

For daily Halton case tables and up-to-date information about how to protect yourself and others, please visit

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Mayor prepared to give up $1.65 million in possible revenue from late tax penalties.

Budget 2020 redBy Pepper Parr

June 15th, 2020



On June 22, City Council will consider a motion brought forward by Mayor Marianne Meed Ward at committee last week, to get options for cancelling penalty and interest on late tax payments until the end of the year or some earlier time frame.

Meed Ward hands out frnt city hall

Mayor Marianne Meed Ward in a celebratory mood.

The cost of eliminating penalty and interest is $1.65 million. Oakville has already made this decision, Halton Hills hasn’t and Milton is offering an application program to defer penalty and interest.

The City of Burlington is looking at a potential year-end negative shortfall of $3.2 million due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mayor Meed Ward thanked staff for “doing everything they have done and making the tough decisions to bring that negative shortfall down from an initial $18 million hole through a combination of cost control, reserves meant for fluctuations in revenue like we are experiencing with COVID-19, and other measures.”

Committee unanimously approved a motion to direct the City’s chief financial officer to come back in September 2020 to present at Corporate Service and Strategy Standing Committee (CSSRA) a 2021 Budget Framework Report with budget timelines as we look to approve that budget in Q1 2021.

“We know times are difficult for many residents and businesses who are having difficulty paying their taxes” said Meed Ward.  “We need to explore ways to assist.”

The City has already cancelled penalty and interest on tax until June 30, and also delayed the dates of the next installments to Aug. 20 and Oct. 20. Final tax bills will be mailed out in July.

Property taxes are the most important revenue source for the city to ensure we continue to provide essential services for residents of the City of Burlington during these challenging circumstances. Taxpayers are encouraged to make payments where possible during these unique times.

Meed Ward explained that: “For this reason, myself and fellow mayors across Ontario and Canada continue to urge the federal and provincial governments to step up and provide relief funding for municipalities. I encourage you to reach out to your MPs and MPPs and let them know your City needs financial relief so that you can continue to make use of the services and programming you need in Burlington.

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Reader clearly doesn't understand what media does and doesn't do.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

June 20th, 2020



We received the following over the weekend.

We removed the name of both the writer and the organization that she was writing about.

Home For Sale Real Estate Sign and Beautiful New House.

“Please investigate xxxxxx reak estate Burlington disrupting established neighbourhoods, intimidating residents and building huge two story houses with six foot wooden fences over looking smaller one story homes, planting “neighbours” working as real estate agents living in old neighbourhoods. This company is invasive and needs to stop its present activity.

“Can Burlington Gazette research the above to see who and the corporation in Burlington is allowing the above to take place. How can a resident once again take control of private property. I said no to the six foot fence but the owner builder went ahead anyway! I want to have a neighbour(s)!!! There is no privacy in my back yard or my house because this new two story house is so close.

“Do not use my name, my email address or any identifying indication of this writer in your online write-ups or published articles.”

This is not Burlington at its best.

There is nothing to investigate but there is a citizen who doesn’t have the courage of her convictions.  We get several of these a week.  There are readers who don’t understand what media does and doesn’t do.

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Burlington to open up to Stage 2 on Friday

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

June 15th, 2020



Premier Dog Ford will announce later today that the following parts of the province will move to Stage 2 on Friday, June 19, 2020 at 12:01 a.m.

Lakeshore looking east to Brant north side

You will be hard pressed to get a seat this weekend – city moves to Stage 2 – things open up.

Informed by public health advice and workplace safety guidance, and supported by the collective efforts of businesses, workers and families to limit the potential spread of the virus, the latest public health unit regions allowed to move into Stage 2 on Friday, June 19, 2020 at 12:01 a.m. are:

• Durham Region Health Department;
• Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit;
Halton Region Health Department;
• Hamilton Public Health Services;
• Lambton Health Unit;
• Niagara Region Public Health Department; and
• York Region Public Health Services.

These regions are in addition to the 24 public health regions that entered Stage 2 on June 12, 2020. Before opening, business owners need to review the workplace safety guidelines and public health  advice.

“Thanks to the collective efforts of our frontline health care workers and the people in these regions to stop the spread of COVID-19, more businesses will be able to open their doors and thousands of people will be able to go back to work and put food on the table,” said Premier Ford. “With the public health trends improving day by day across the province, I am hopeful all regions of Ontario will enter Stage 2 very soon. But we must remain on our guard to prevent any potential surge or secondary wave by continuing to follow the sound advice of our public health officials.”

The following regions will remain in Stage 1 under ongoing assessment until trends of key public health indicators demonstrate readiness to move into Stage 2:

  • Peel Public Health;
  • Toronto Public Health; and
  • Windsor-Essex County Health Unit.

“Opening more regions of Ontario is another positive sign that we are making steady progress in our collective efforts to contain this deadly virus,” said Minister Elliott. “As many more Ontarians begin to work, shop and interact with others, it’s never been more important that we continue to follow public health advice, especially physical distancing with anyone outside of our social circle, so we can soon successfully and safely move into Stage 3.”

Public health remains the government’s top priority. All Ontarians must continue to follow public health advice, including practising physical distancing, wearing a face covering if physical distancing is a challenge, washing hands frequently and thoroughly, and avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth. If you think you have COVID-19 or have been in contact with someone who has COVID‑19, get tested.

The Chief Medical Officer of Health and health experts will continue to closely monitor the evolving situation to advise when public health restrictions can be gradually loosened or if they need to be tightened.

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City hall has been adapting on a daily, sometimes hourly basis as the rules from the province change.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

June 15th, 2020



Audit Jones - said no

Sheila M. Jones, Executive Director, Strategy, Accountability

In a report to Council Sheila M. Jones, Executive Director, Strategy, Accountability, explained that “the need to re-design and to be agile to respond to the time-sensitive nature of some decisions, this report serves as a template for bringing decisions and information to the Corporate Services, Strategy, Risk and Accountability (CSSRA) Committee. As such, it is beneficial to provide an overview of how and what is expected in this report format.”

Jones was talking about the Service Redesign that gets upgraded almost every day. By service she means the services the city delivers to the citizens of the city – something that went through a radical change when the province declared a State of Emergency and used the power behind that legislation to order that municipalities limit severely the opportunities the members of the public have to congregate the city found itself having to lay off most of the part time staff and move most of the full time staff out of city hall and have them work from hone using ZOOM and their cell phones as their method of communicating.

In the early stages, mid March to near the end of April it was hectic and a close to 24/7 operation.

There wasn’t much news coming out of city hall, some city Councillors felt very much out of the loop.

City Manager Tim Commisso was living a constant round of meetings with the email volume almost unmanageable. The Gazette was able to get through to Commisso on a few occasions.

As the calendar rolled into May we began to see some stability and staff were a little more comfortable with the way they now had to do business.

The public wasn’t really aware with what senior city staff had to deal with – the change was relentless – they rarely knew was was coming at them next.

There were serious financial pressures building up – huge drops in revenue and expenses piling up at the same time.

Parks were closed; schools were closed. The streets were open and the public was asked to yes get out for some exercise but don’t congregate while out for a walk and stay at least six feet away from other people.

Pharmaceuticals were not rationed but all you could get was a one month supply. You had to keep your dog on a leash – which turned out to be very difficult to enforce.

The number of new Covid19 infections in Burlington are the lowest in the Region and the deaths at Long Term Care facilities were low – relative to the rest of the province.

Commisso had to not only manage his own time and energy but he had to keep a very close eye on his senior team to ensure that they are at least coping.

Tim Commisso - finger up hard eyesIn an interview with the Gazette Commisso said “I have a conversation with each of them frequently on how they are doing personally and listen very closely for signs that the stress might be getting to them.”

Commisso doesn’t talk about how he is coping. At times he does sound a little tired and he surely must wonder if taking on the task of serving as city Mayor was the smartest career move he ever made.

Burlington is now waiting hopefully for the province to announce that the GTAH – Greater Toronto Area including Hamilton can move into phase 2 which will allow, hopefully, some restaurants to open, and for more in the way of city services to be opened.

The Summer Camp program for kids was cancelled and Parks and Recreation is working through some ideas for what they will be able to offer once the province moves the city into Phase 2.

Thus the reporting template that Jones introduced on how the Emergency Coordination Group is going to get updates to Council.

It has been a hectic three months for this group of people; many have been pushed to the limit and worked well beyond an 8 hour day.

Vacations are coming up – Commisso knows that his people need that time off – but vacations are dependent on when the need to constantly adjust the programs being offered slows down a little.

Getting into Phase 2 is essential – limiting the number of Covid19 infections is vital.

And at this time in this world vital trumps essential.

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Photographer reports that things were pretty dead on Brant Street on Saturday

News 100 yellowBy Staff

June 13th, 2020



We are pretty certain that Don Smith was not really offering curb side pick up – the sign could perhaps have been revised.

Smith Funeral Home curb side

Sign outside the Smith Funeral Home on Brant Street

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Black Lives didn't seem to matter on Saturday

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

June 13th, 2020



The Black Lives didn’t seem to matter all that much on a nice sunny Saturday afternoon when they had announced that they were going to protest what they saw as unacceptable social behavior to the Black community.

Civic sq June 13

Civic Square was barren – not a protester in sight.

This battle between Kelly’s Bake Shop and the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement had been boiling for a bit – taking up all kinds of oxygen on social media sites.

A protest demonstration had been promoted for Saturday afternoon at 4:00 pm

Kelly’s public relations people said they understood the protest event was not going to take place – saying that information came from the police.

police cruiser second

Police cruiser parked across the street from city hall.

police camera cruiser

Police cruiser with camera mounted to allow for 360 crowd capture.

The police didn’t give out any information but they did plan to have a presence at whatever event took place.  Two cruisers were parked adjacent to city hall and another was driving around the area.

Turns out no one showed up – and no one said that no one would be showing up.

store closed sign

Sign on the Kelly’s Bake Shop front door: No cup cakes – not even take out for the BLM crowd

Kelly Childs wasn’t at all sure there wasn’t going to be a crowd – she closed up shop at 2:00 pm.

Much ado about nothing – but there is an issue here that does need to be fully addressed.

Related news stories:

Black Lives Matter hold march – 5000 take part

BLM announce a protest event at Civic Square

Kelly’s Bake Shop PR firms says it wont take place

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Is it or isn't it? Kelly's PR flack says police 'removed' the planned protest this afternoon - police say they can't and didn't do any such thing.

News 100 blueBy Staff

June 13th, 2020 – 1:34 pm



We received the following about half an hour ago:

This is Emily Ward on behalf of Kelly’s Bake Shoppe. The team has read your article and would have liked the opportunity to contribute to the conversation.

protest-poster-690x314To begin with, to our knowledge, the protest has been removed as per the local police force. In addition, when Kelly’s Bake Shoppe heard about the protest, they reached out to the parties to set up a peaceful Q&A where voices could be heard and answers provided. This offer was not followed up on by the group to date.

As a journalist, I would implore you to seek both sides of the story in an unbiased manner as spreading misconceptions doesn’t help the movement or positive change, which Kelly’s Bake Shoppe is committed to.

Please let me know if you would like to schedule a follow up interview to provide your readers with more information about the recent events.

We took a pass on the opportunity to talk to the public relations representative.  In the past we have experienced either significant spin around a story we were following up on or were given much less than the truth.

We did check in with the Burlington division of the Halton Regional Police where Sgt Bishop advised us that they were aware of the event, which they expect to be peaceful – but they will have police officers in the area.

I asked if the police had cancelled the event.  Sgt Bishop say “that is not within our purview”.

Related news story:

Protest announcement


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Canadian Armed Forces will be on Provincial highways next week

News 100 blueBy Staff

June 13th, 2020



If you happen to be on both highways 400 and 401 between June 14th and June 17th and you see a large number of Armed Forces vehicles – relax.

These are troops returning to Kingston from a training exercise at Camp Borden North West of Toronto close to Alliston.

English/Anglais VL2011-0086-5 5 May 2011 Convoys from 2 Battalion, Royal 22e Régiment (2 R22R), set out to assist residents of the Montérégie region of Quebec who are struggling to cope with rising flood waters. Operation LOTUS(E) 1-11 is the Canadian Forces (CF) joint response led by Canada Command and conducted through Joint Task Force East (JTFE) to the floods in Montérégie, Québec. The domestic humanitarian relief mission incorporates Canadian Forces Army, Navy and Air Force assets to deliver much needed assistance to communities affected by these floods. In coordination with the Federal Government of Canada and the Provincial Government of Québec, approximately 500 members from the Land Domestic Task Force, based in Valcartier, along with approximately 100 reservists from the Territorial Battle Group, based in Montreal, are deployed in the affected areas. They are engaged in multiple tasks, including: protection of infrastructure by placing sandbags, assistance in the evacuation of people in the affected areas and the conduct of safety patrols. Photo: Cpl Kate Duggan, Imagery Section, Valcartier Garrison © 2011 DND-MDN Canada Français/French VL2011-0086-5 5 mai 2011 Les convois du 2e Bataillon du Royal 22e Régiment (2 R22R) partent pour aller soutenir les sinistrés de la région de la Montérégie, qui sont aux prises avec des inondations. L’opération LOTUS(E) 1-11 est l’intervention interarmées des Forces canadiennes (FC) dirigée par le Commandement Canada et menée par l’entremise de la Force opérationnelle interarmées (Est) à la suite des inondations en Montérégie, au Québec. La mission nationale d’aide humanitaire comprend des éléments de l’Armée de terre, de la Marine et de la Force aérienne afin de fournir l’aide dont on grandement besoin les collectivités touchées par ces inondations. En collaboration avec le gouvernement du Canada et le gouvernement du Québec, quelque 550 membres de la Force opérationnelle terrestre, basée à Valcartier, et environ 1

Canadian Armed Forces troop movements

Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members from Canadian Forces Joint Operational Support Group (CFJOSG) will conduct a road move, returning to their home unit at CFB Kingston, between June 14 and June 17.

While at CFB Borden, the team practiced opening a theatre of operations by building a tented camp during a pandemic environment. The camp is designed to house 250 people with all necessary real-life support capabilities.

The public is advised that vehicles will carry tentage, generators, ablutions, cots/furniture, and kitchens. The CAF is committed to creating and sustaining well-trained, well-equipped, and well-led units to meet a diversity of challenges in any environment around the world.

Drivers and pedestrians are asked to remain patient and show their support to the troops on the road as our soldiers make their way back to Kingston.

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Your social circle can now be up to ten people - which ten?

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

June 13th, 2020



This could become just a little awkward. Embarrassing as well

The province has said we can make our get close and comfortable circle which the province calls our bubble – also known as a social circle.

We were limited to five people – at first we all had to live in the same house.

No one followed it all the tightly – the Premier broke that rule when it was convenient for him

The province, despite the fact that the number of new infections each day is nowhere near being flat, as decided that we can now have social circles of up to ten people – with some rules.

You can only belong to one circle and you have to swear the equivalent of a loyalty oath that you won’t wonder into a different circle.

5 point social circle

Only a bureaucrat that has worked for the government too long could write rules like this.

Here are the rules.

How do you decide who will be in your circle – Is Mom a given?

Yes to Mom

Is Mom on the list ? How do you manage that issue?

Close friends who aren’t family but they are great conversationalists and they always bring really good wine.

People that had a habit of dropping by can be managed – the “boy” who brings his laundry home when he visits – along with the girlfriend that you don’t particularly approve of.

Do you now have a solution to that problem?

What do you do for your damaged ego when you don’t get included in a bubble you thought you were already a part of?


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There will be a Parks and Recreation program - rules are not yet known.

News 100 yellowBy Pepper Parr

June 12th, 2020



There will be something in the way of a summer program if and when the province decides to let Burlington move to Stage 2 of the re-opening of the province.

Kids in splash pad

Splash pads will be open.

Splash pads will open – not all of them.

Mountainside - ice rink with chnage rooms BEST

Some rinks will be open – Appleby and Aldershot will not be opened – nor will Skyway

Some of the ice rinks will be open but only for groups that have the permission of their Sports organization. The one expected to make the most use is the figure skating people.

The Parks and Recreation people need to be assured that there will be at least 40 hours of ice time rented, preferably 60 before they begin to make ice – a process that will take two weeks.

Nelson swimming pool

Outdoor pools will be open

Outdoor pools will be opened – subject to whatever the province puts in place in terms of rules and approval from the Regional Public Health Unit.

Mayor Meed Ward said she would like to see at least one indoor pool made available.

There will be something in the way of a Summer Camp program – here as well – the city is waiting for the rules.

How many children can there be in any one camp; where will the camps be held. At this point the Standing Committee that met virtually on Thursday has more questions than answers.

It did give the Parks and Recreation people an additional $300,000 to spend – that was on top of the $500,000 that was already in the budget.

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Kelley's Bake Shop to be the focus of a BLM protest on Saturday

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

June 11th, 2020



This was just not Kelly Childs week and it doesn’t look as if it is going to get any better.

A couple of days of serious critical comment on how the Kelly’s Bake Shop reacted to the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement that exists in Burlington and the demonstration they held recently has resulted in a demonstration in Civic Square on Saturday from 4:00 to 7:00 pm

protest posterThe lead up to this can be understood in the back and forth on Instagram and Facebook.

Pretty ugly

blm pieceSeen as a superb marketer Keely Childs may have come against an issue she cannot skate around.

Kelly statementSocial media reaction to her reported views on the Black Lives Matter movement have been vicious.

Try as she might, it doesn’t appear that Ms Childs has been able to come up with a response that will satisfy the BLM people

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Is the rainbow going to be on Burlington Street - looks as if they are trying to sneak it in at night.

News 100 blueBy Staff

June 12, 2020



Lakeshore Road at Burlington Avenue will be reduced to one lane in each direction (half the road will be closed at time) from June 15 to June 16 between the hours of 9 p.m. and 7 a.m.,

The lane restrictions are to allow for the installation of a multi-coloured pedestrian crosswalk.

Work will be completed during nighttime hours.

Lane reductions will be in place for the duration of this work. Priority will be provided to emergency services as required.

Kearns at Rainbow crossing

Ward 2 Councillor Lisa Kearns posing beside a rainbow painted cross walk – she just might be getting one in her ward. The city media release just says multicolored.

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Police Investigating Body Found in Lake Ontario in Burlington

Crime 100By Staff

June 12th, 2020



The Halton Regional Police service is investigating the discovery of a body in Lake Ontario, in the area of Burloak Waterfront Park (Burlington).

Police presence in the area can be expected as the investigation is ongoing. There is no risk to public safety.

Crime stoppers logoAnyone with information is asked to contact the 3 District Staff Sergeant at 905-825-4777 ext 2310.

Tips can also be submitted anonymously to Crime Stoppers. “See something? Hear something? Know something? Contact Crime Stoppers” at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at

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Council getting a look at a lot of bad financial news - they have to depend on what the federal government is going to come through with

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

June 11th, 2020



It has been a tough week for members of Council.

They have been dealing with normal day to day business; looking at some fascinating tools related to win and shadow studies and trying to get a handle on just what the lock down is doing to the local economy.

Burlington Hydro reported on how much of a financial hit they have taken.  Their numbers are not that bad – and they have only cut off service to one location for non-payment.

The Tourism people talked about the vacancy rates.

tourism Pam Belgrade

The data was obtained from a screen shot of material that was shown to members of council who were meeting in a virtual session.

And the finance people are looking at where we are likely to be financially when this is all over – and at the same time casting an eye on what the 2021 budget might look like.

losses graph

This graph sets out the revenue lost from the shut down of programs and fees tat were not paid

savings mitigation graph

This graph shows what the city has done to offset as much of the revenue loss as possible.

Director of Finance Joan Ford produced two graphs that set out what the financial picture looks like.  The biggest financial draw has been for transit where there is no revenue and a lot of expense.


Neither mall has paid their taxes – the city is expecting them to be caught up by the end of June.

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Metrolinx updates public on what they are dong to keep the GO trains safe from a health perspective

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

June 11th, 2020



At some point people will begin going back to work.

Will they drive?

That will plug the roads and highways.

Will they take transit? Would you?

The risk is certainly there.

Metrolinx has published a video on what they are doing to make the GO train service safe and clean enough to ride.

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Region releases data on where Covid infections are highest - Orchard wins that prize for Burlington

News 100 redBy Staff

June 11th, 2020



Halton Region released data on where Covid19 infections are located by neighbourhood.

Number of infections per 100,000 population. Data is based on the 2016 census.
Rate-of-cases-by-neighbourhood-June6Acton (Ac) 5.7
Aldershot (Al) 7.6
Central Burlington (CB) 5.9
Central East Burlington (CEB) 6.5
Central West Burlington (CWB) 3.6
East Milton (EM) 15.6
Escarpment (E) 12
Glen Abbey (GA) 11.4
Lower East Milton (LEM) 17.2
North Bronte Oakville (NBO) 11.2
North Burlington (NB) 4.8
North Central Oakville (NCO) 24.0
North East Oakville (NEO) 9.7
North Georgetown (NG) 14.1
River Oaks (RO) 8.2
Rural North Halton (RNH) 11.6
South Central Burlington (SCB) 6.3
South Central Milton (SCM) 15.0
South Central Oakville (SCO) 12.7
South East Burlington (SEB) 8.4
South East Oakville (SEO) 8.9
South Georgetown (SG) 11.3
South West Oakville (SWO) 10.3
The Orchard (TO) 9.8
Upper East Milton (UEM) 11.2
Upper Glen Abbey (UGA) 17.8
West Milton (WM) 25.7

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Planners wanted $1 million +; developer thought he could slide by for $9,000 - a majority went for the developer.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

June 10th, 2020



It was an arm-wrestling contest worth watching – except you couldn’t see the contestants.

With city council meetings now viral – we don’t get to see the players – we can hear them though.

Yesterday, Dana Anderson, of MHBS, a planning consulting firm, was before council delegating for an extension to the development application the Emshie interests had before the city.

Street and lot GArden Trails

The original plan of sub-division for what has been named Garden Trails looked something like this. Conservation Halton had some issues.

The problem with the application is that it came out of an Ontario Municipal Board hearing in 1958 when Tony Millington and Associates was representing the Emshie people.

It had languished for years – with as much as five years passing with nothing being done.

The city planners had issued a number of extensions – they felt the one had reached the end of the line. They asked council to force Emshih to file a new application, partly because all the technical reports would have to be updated.

In the Staff Report planners concluded that:

Staff must confirm that the draft approved lot configuration is able to achieve compliance with the current policies. Given this uncertainty, it is not appropriate to grant an extension request for the draft approved plans. Staff are of the opinion that the current proposal should be reviewed against current policies, regulations and standards as part of a new application.

The policy framework has changed substantially since draft plan approval in 2001, and given the ecological significance of the lands, it is important that current standards and regulations are considered and maintained. It is not appropriate to assess the proposal using outdated policy framework given that the applicant has not actively been working toward clearing conditions. In the opinion of staff, these requirements are not minor and should not be considered as part of an extension request; but rather, be more appropriately comprehensively reviewed as part of a new plan of subdivision application.

Dana Anderson planner

Dana Anderson – MBHS

The problem was that – creating a new development application file carried fees that approach 1 million dollars – whereas staying with the current application the fees would come in at around $12,000.

You can see what the issue was – Council spent more than half an hour debating that one with the Mayor saying that if the planners have to do the same amount of work on the extension as they would have to do on a new file – then she wanted them to be paid for the work they were going to have to do.

Councillors Stolte and Nisan agreed with the Mayor but the other four felt that Emshie should be give some time to do what they could to get the issues resolved.

Councillors Galbraith, Kearns, Sharman and Bentivegna voted for an extension to not later than December 31st.

The planners left the meeting feeling they were being taken – the city manager wasn’t happy.

When this gets to a Council meeting one of the four who voted for the extension might flip.

While discussing the fees involved we learned that the city take a bundle, the Conservation Authority takes a bundle and the Region takes a bundle – then they all take an additional fee per house built.

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