Premier Ford: 'the vengeful little ‘man of all the people’ with a healthy disrespect for democracy.

 

Rivers 100x100By Ray Rivers

July 29th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

“I stand with Mayor Tory… that is a direct affront on democracy… That is tin pot dictator stuff.” (Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi – Friday July 27, 2018))

Is anyone really surprised? Doug Ford is showing his real colours – the vengeful little ‘man of all the people’ with a healthy disrespect for democracy, the political process, and the people within it. Friday was the last day for municipal nominations and without any public discussion or forewarning, King Ford decided to cut the size of Toronto’s city council by almost 50%. Of course this caught everyone by surprise, and especially those candidates who had already submitted their nomination papers for wards which now no longer exist.

doug-ford hard face

Ontario Premier Doug Ford

Ford apparently has the power to do pretty much what he wants. But everyone is asking why this wasn’t part of the PC election campaign. Its’ common knowledge that he and his late brother, the former mayor, had long harboured an ambition to punish City Council, and/or its mayor. After all Mayor Tory beat Ford in the last election.

Still if that was in the cards, why didn’t Ford nation mention the intention to downsize City Hall during the campaign. Our new Mr. ‘Create-a-Crisis’ is also cancelling elections for regional chair in Peel, in an attempt to contain former PC leader Patrick Brown, who was in the running. After all, once Brown wins his defamation law suit against CTV, he’ll be coming after Ford.

So Mr. ‘Wreck-it-Ralph’ is on the move. At least everyone understood from what existed of his piecemeal campaign that Ford was going to kill the province’s market-based climate change plan, scrap sex-education in schools and shut down Ontario’s renewable energy programs. It was an incredibly wrong-headed, in fact bone-headed, set of promises, if for no other reason than Ford and his team had yet to invent plausible alternatives to these purposeful policies.

Now Ontario taxpayers will be subjected to a long, divisive and costly legal battle with the federal government, which will implement it’s own carbon tax here this year. And that will be more costly than the one Ford has just cancelled. And nobody with half a brain expects the courts to side with Ford, particularly as how the feds will be returning all of the money collected back to Ontario’s households.

Schools will go back to teaching a 1998 version of sex-education, which predates the emergence of the real dangers of sexual predation on the internet, gender issues and the topic of consent, as an eleventh-hour stop gap promise to Wreck-it Ralph’s party’s religious-right wing. In the end, of course, the government will likely just repackage the current sex-ed curriculum and re-implement it. After all, education is neither liberal nor conservative – it is just education. And this poly-boo-hoo over sex-ed was just about winning the election.

toronto_smog

A smog day in Toronto – most people thought these were a thing of the past – are there smog days ahead of us?

And ending the expansion of our renewable energy systems will condemn us to even greater reliance on climate-changing natural gas, and/or a return to imports of US coal fired electricity to meet Ontario’s emerging need for electricity. Importing US power in US dollars will be costly, though the biggest price will be deteriorating air quality, as we possibly move back to the era of smog days. Note that there were no smog days in the last year (2015) of phasing out coal burning compared to 53 a decade earlier.

Ford’s claim that he’ll be saving Ontario families $260 or so by killing cap and trade is as laughable as his assertion that it’ll only cost $5 million to do so. Has anyone seen buck-a-bottle beer yet or noticed that the pump prices have fallen by anything like the dime he promised? I’m looking forward to my 20% income tax rebate and another 12% off my hydro bill.

Ford with Tory

Toronto Mayor John Tory on the left in conversation with Ontario Premier Doug Ford.

He says he’s gutting TO’s city hall, making Toronto the most under represented city in Ontario, in order to save the city $25 million dollars. But the city will need to hire more staff to deal with the additional demand of now twice as many residents per Councillor. And that means that the costs will likely increase. And while we understand Ford’s disregard for Toronto’s politicians, does he really want to replace them with more bureaucrats? Doesn’t this remind everyone of how Mike Harris forced amalgamation on Toronto to supposedly save taxpayers money?

It’s easier to tear down than to build up again. And while Ford told us a bit about what he would be doing, he kept secret all the other plans he must have had, like reducing democracy in Toronto. Perhaps he hadn’t been warned by his entourage about how the public might react to such a draconian measure? Or perhaps downsizing was just a spontaneous thought that hit him when he read that municipal office nominations were closing on Friday?

Smog minimize use

The sign says it all.

Ford came to his position as party leader in a hurry and Ontario voters, at least 40% of them, were also in an almost inexplicable hurry to get rid of the Liberals. So Ontario voters might have been a little hasty. And there is little comfort for those who ignore those time-worn adages like haste makes waste, don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater, and you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. The truth is that when you put garbage in a refrigerator it won’t take long until the fridge begins to smell like a garbage can.

And speaking of garbage, that was one of Ontario’s new premier’s claims to fame. As one-time Councillor he and his bro, Mayor Rob, dragged the rest of Toronto’s Council, fighting and screaming, into privatizing garbage collection. Oh, and there’s another adage which applies to the last provincial election: ‘garbage in… garbage out’.

Rivers hand to faceRay Rivers writes regularly on both federal and provincial politics, applying his more than 25 years as a federal bureaucrat to his thinking.  Rivers was once a candidate for provincial office in Burlington.  He was the founder of the Burlington citizen committee on sustainability at a time when climate warming was a hotly debated subject.     Tweet @rayzrivers

 

 

Background links:

Ford on Carbon Tax –    Carbon Taxes –    Climate Change

Ford’s Toronto –    More Toronto –    Smog Days –    Ford’s Powers

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A totally cock-a-mammy idea from people that should know better. Get a grip on reality folks.

SwP thumbnail graphicBy Pepper Parr

July 13th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

A candidate for one of the city council seats sent us a proposal that had come to his attention via ECoB: Engaged Citizens of Burlington that he felt council should consider.

The proposal is to use some of the community benefit money that would be a part of the process if the 409 project proceeds to move the Kelly’s Bake Shop from its current Brant street location to an empty city lot at John and Caroline, allowing Kelly’s Bake Shoppe to remain in the downtown core.

Ford + two others at Kellys

Kelly’s Bake Shop has become a destination for many. A condo development threatens the existence of the buisness.

While the sentiment is nice – this idea is fraught with problems.

First, John Street north of Caroline is not actually a street – it is a lane way and there might be issues over what can be built on a lane way.

Second, City Manager James Ridge brought to council’s attention that any rental the city might do would have to be at market rates – the Municipal Act requires him to do that.

Third, should the city be in the business of favouring a specific commercial operation? This is not the purpose of municipal governments. It opens the door for all kinds of cronyism – and if Ridge is against anything, his stomach would turn if he saw that happening on his watch.

The desire to do something for the cupcake store is based on an emotional concern – that’s not what city hall is about.

Kellys - her with cup cakes-edit

Kelly Child’s is a very talented marketer – trying to convince a city to give her special treatment.

It is the Gazette’s understanding that Kelly Child’s has yet to meet with the Economic Development Corporation; that organization is in place to work with commercial operations that need help.

What Kelly Child’s has done is play the “crying in public” card for sympathy and support.  This is a business situation and we are talking about public money – be very careful.

The candidate said he has “spoken to Kelly Childs and confirmed that this is a proposal she would be happy to consider.”

I’ll bet she would be happy to consider the proposal.

The candidate, who we have deliberately not identified; (we don’t want to embarrass him any more than he has embarrassed himself by promoting a totally cock-a-mammy idea), said he “believes this is an excellent and inventive idea worthy of full and urgent examination by Council and Staff, and I will be supporting that examination.

John looking south - empty lot

John Street at Caroline looking south – a proposed new location for Kelly’s Bake Shop. The building on the property has been demolished

“Kelly’s Bake Shoppe is a Burlington success story that may become a Canada-wide and international success story. Burlington should do everything it can both to protect the heritage property and recognise the tenant’s special contribution to the downtown.

“I believe that this is a proposal well worth getting out to your readers today.”

Hmmm … is this what we want on city council?

Salt with Pepper is a column reflecting the opinions, views, observations and musings of the Gazette publisher.

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Dorothy Borovich named the 2018 Distinguished Philanthropist of the Year Award.

News 100 yellowBy Pepper Parr

July 12th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Burlington Foundation has announced that one of Burlington’s finest Everyday Community Heroes is being honoured with the 2018 Distinguished Philanthropist of the Year Award.

Dorothy Borovich will be honoured at Burlington Foundation’s People Power 2018 celebration of giving event on October 18.

Dorothy Borovitch

Dorothy Borovich in her physiotherapy clinic.

“Dorothy’s contributions to the Burlington community have had an incredible, positive impact in countless ways,” says Colleen Mulholland, President and CEO, Burlington Foundation. “A tireless giver, volunteer and leader, Dorothy consistently demonstrates a caring and generous commitment to our city, particularly in the areas of youth, police services and health and wellness.”

The Distinguished Philanthropist of the Year award presented by Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life offers the chance to publicly honour and thank a noted philanthropist for their positive impact on Burlington and surrounding communities. This year’s award recognizes and celebrates an Everyday Community Hero and Dorothy is the first female in Burlington to receive the stand-alone award since it was established in 2009.

Dorothy has been actively involved as a volunteer in Burlington for more than 20 years and was a member of the Burlington Foundation Board of Directors from 2002-2005. She also founded the Crystal Ball which continues to be a significant source of funding for Joseph Brant Hospital.

Dorothy’s extraordinary work has been instrumental in establishing a variety of endowment funds with the Burlington Foundation to support youth, police services, and health and wellness.

Shiel + Borovitch

Dorothy Borovitch with Shiel Patel during a 2014 flood fundraising event

She is co-founder of Youthfest, a group that established a fund and holds an annual event that connects youth to meaningful volunteer opportunities. As a committee member of Community Cares Halton, she was one of several leaders who created a fund and established the Halton Heroes Gala in support of police officers and their families who have been injured or killed in the line of duty. After being diagnosed with breast cancer, she established Healthy Reflections Canada and a fund that supports treatment for women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer and are financially challenged.

Borovich was named the Citizen of the Year for 2016.

“I’m honored to receive this award from the Burlington Foundation. As a business owner since 1990 and Physiotherapist for over 30 years, it’s been a privilege to assist our clients in improving their quality of life,” says Dorothy Borovich. “As part of our business philosophy, civic duty is a responsibility that contributes to the health of our community. I’m blessed to work in a profession that I absolutely love. It provides me with the ability to give back and meet some incredible people along the way. For me, it’s the greatest gift!”

Our relationship with Ms Borovich is a personal one. Adjusting to a hip replacement wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be – I needed some help in learning to walk properly. I asked my friend Ron Foxcroft to refer me to someone – she is standing right over there said Foxcroft who pointed to Dorothy during a 2014 Flood Fund Raising event.

She kept me on a basketball court much longer than I expected said Foxcroft who refereed basket ball games around the world. “The knees could only take so much damage. Dorothy kept me in business as a referee.

My own therapy went well – the only downside was reading her handwriting – seems everyone in the medical field has their own unique chicken scrawl. The hands on instructions were great – when Dorothy tells you to bend – you bend.

 

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New support group for Burlington Mothers - meets in a coffee shop.

News 100 yellowBy Pepper Parr

May 24th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

Heidi Rand has two children.

She gave birth to one on Hwy 407.

She is one of two women who formed a support group for new mothers in Burlington.

Is there a connection between the two – certainly is Heide Rand is a going concern and appears to be one of those people that makes things happen.

Two momsThe first of what she calls West end Moms took place earlier this week. Heidi lived overseas in England where she raised her first child, Jackson, for his first two years. Moving back to Canada she noticed a huge difference in the mother culture here- mothers have less access to social groups for new moms and children to bond and socialize or to just get out of the house and meet other mothers going through the same struggles and milestones.

Heidi worked closely with her friend, Laura Kennedy.  Together they  started the group together. As a new and first time mom, Laura also felt the need for a stronger social network of moms in Burlington. Together we hope to bring mommy’s together, give them a platform to connect and provide exciting and stimulating events for little ones.

Heidi seems to be one of those natural news makers. A teacher by profession she was bombing down Hwy. 407 just after midnight with her husband Joe on her way to the Credit Valley hospital. The Burlington mother-to-be felt her water break and a head appear just two contractions later.

Group photo MomsAn anxious situation had just become harrowing. Joe was torn between focusing on the road and worrying about his wife and child; Heidi delivered her own baby girl in what felt like an eternity but in reality lasted less than two minutes.

Born in the wee hours of the morning near the Bronte Rd. exit in Oakville, seven-pound, eight-ounce Mila was healthy and in the care of Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital.

“It felt so incredibly surreal,” Heidi said. “My head was in two places. One, I’m thinking, ‘Is this really happening in my car?’ But then, your instincts kick in and you’re literally doing everything you can to keep your baby safe.

Group + Heidi

The mothers gathered around tables in the coffee shop while children scrambled after their toys. Heidi Rand is seated on the left.

It was a miracle . . . she’s safe, healthy and happy.”

Joe, the husband was much more than a spectator.

After gathering all the clothing he could find to keep Mila warm — including the shirt off his back — he used his shoelace to tie off the umbilical cord, following advice from a Halton paramedic who coached him over the phone.

Moms signContacts social media suggested the child be named Shoelace or Lacey. This is the couple’s second baby, joining 20-month-old Jackson, whose delivery — by stark contrast — lasted roughly 36 hours.

Several of the Mothers were out with their child for the first time since the child was born; “just being able to get out and chat with other mother’s and relax is something I really appreciate” said one of the group.

There were Mothers from the east side of Oakville in the room as well as a Mother who was walking by and saw the sign on the sidewalk outside the Lakeshore Coffee Shop.

The West End Moms social media pages arebelow:

https://m.facebook.com/groups/437033276703185

https://www.instagram.com/westendmoms

 

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Pool schedules and fees - useful just as soon as summer arrives

News 100 yellowBy Staff

May 15th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The summer months are nearing, or so they say, and with them, comes the opening of spray pads on Saturday, May 19 and some pools on Friday, June 29; and all will be open June 30.

Mountainside-271x138

Mountainside pool

The Nelson and Mountainside Outdoor Pool and Splash Parks, are set up so that residents can bring a lunch and Play and Stay for the Day from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Splash parks have more elaborate play features, are paired with outdoor pools and have an admission fee to enter.

Spray pads are free to use and not associated with outdoor pools.

Outdoor Pool and Splash Park changes for 2018:

Nelson-271x138

Nelson pool

Nelson Outdoor Pool and Splash Park will open for pre-season from June 2 to 29

• Nelson Outdoor Pool will be closed for a sporting event on June 17 and July 7 and 8. On July 7 & 8 there will be free swimming at Centennial pool.

• Nelson and Mountainside Outdoor Pools and Splash Parks

Daily unlimited access to recreational swimming from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
 Super Value for Summer Seasonal Memberships are on sale for $32.40 plus tax
A Day Pass is $4.40 plus tax
Twilight rate is in effect after 5 p.m. $3.05 plus tax

• Outdoor Early Bird Lap Swims at Mountainside Pool on Mondays and Wednesdays from 6:30 to 8:30 a.m.

• Outdoor Evening Lap Swims at Nelson on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays from 7 to 8 p.m.

Full schedules for all spray pads, pools and splash parks can be found at Burlington.ca/dropintoplay.Splash pad LaSalle - swimming

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Halton Region providing enhanced yard waste collection services - Saturday May 12 to Sunday May 13

News 100 greenBy Staff

May 8th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Cleaning up from that wind storm creates a problem for some people. What do they do with all the waste that they now have?

The Region is going to provide enhanced yard waste collection services.
Halton Region will provide extra yard waste collection this weekend, from Saturday May 12 to Sunday May 13.

Residents are asked to place debris at the curbside by 7 a.m. on Saturday May 12. Crews will collect material throughout the weekend.

Curb side wastePlease remember the following before placing yard waste or brush piles at the curbside:

• Curbside piles are to be arranged neatly with branches no wider than 3 inches in diameter and branches no longer than 6 feet.

• There is no limit to the amount of over-sized brush or yard waste bags that can be placed at the curbside.

• Over-sized brush collection services are only for households that currently receive yard waste collection from Halton Region.

Halton residents may also dispose their yard waste free of charge at the Halton Waste Management Site starting Tuesday, May 8 up to and including Sunday, June 3. The site is located at 5400 Regional Road 25 in Milton. Regular fees will continue to apply to commercial contractors.

Residents are reminded to place all spoiled food in the Green Cart and to ensure that all plastic material and glass jars are rinsed and dry before placing in the Blue Box.

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500 native trees will get planted - while 9000 trees just across the road are at serious risk.

eventsgreen 100x100By Staff

May 5th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

If the weather holds Conservation Halton could get the 100 community volunteers it needs to help plant 500 native trees and shrubs at Bayview Park on King Road; a part of the city where the Jefferson Salamander crosses the road to mate in the spring.

Bayview looking over the Bay

The view of th Bay and the Skyway bridge from Bayview Park.

The park is in between two of the cell quarries where shale is mined for the manufacturing of brick. It has astounding views of the Bay and the Skyway bridge. It is home to a rifle club; the space where model airplane enthusiasts send the models climbing into the sky and an enclosed dog run.

Full TEC site

At the bottom of the photograph is the location of the now closed city dump. To the right of that is the western cell of the quarry with the brick manufacturing plant below. Then Bayview Park where there is a rifle range, a Dog Run and space for the model airplane people. On the eastern side of King Road there is the Centre cell of the quarry. To the left of the red marker is a forested area where the brick manufacturer wants to begin mining for shale in the eastern cell – that’s where the 900 tress are going o have to be cut down.

Registration and check-in for the tree planters will begin at 9 am. Light refreshments will be available – coffee, juice, water and a continental breakfast. Volunteers are reminded to dress according to the weather, wear waterproof boots and bring a shovel.

The Tyandaga people, who live two quarry cells to the east of Bayview Park are delighted to learn that more trees are going to be planted – what they fear is that the 9000 trees around the most easterly quarry will get cut down. In a letter to the Mayor the Tyandaga Coalition people said:

“We are pleased to read that the City of Burlington is partnering with Conservation Halton and CootesToEscarpment in a “Trees for Watershed” Health” tree planting event that is, ironically, just across the road from where Meridian Brick intends to destroy 9,000 trees of the diminishing Carolinian forest.

Excavation equipment 1

Excavation equipment like this will operate yards away from the homes on West Haven Drive once the eastern cell of the three cell quarry begins to be mined for shale.

“Why is that we yet again need to request our City’s participation in coming to a resolution on this matter? A request the Tyandaga Environmental Coalition (www.tecburlington.com) has repeatedly brought to your attention since September 2015. We have constantly and consistently asked you and the City to be part of a solution that is to the benefit of ALL but once again you prefer to take the political photo- op rather than make the hard decision to stand by your own statement – “more than ever, sustainability and green initiatives need to be our priorities,”. Your inaction on the Meridian Brick quarry development matter is very concerning.

“What proactive and sustainable measures will you take beyond telling us that this is not a City matter. Surely the fact that, to our knowledge, there have been no official Air Quality measurements by the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) and the Ministery of Natural Resources and Forestry ( MNRF) is of concern to you and the City, especially when you consider the numerous ‘heavy’ industries that surround the tax- paying residents of the Tyandaga and Aldershot areas, and beyond.

“Without this Air Quality information what guarantee can you assure the residents with respect to their health and well-being?

Now is the time to show us that you will help all who “live, work and play” in our City and live up to your many talks of a greener and healthier Burlington when you said: – “we want to create a sustainable and healthy Burlington for our children, grandchildren and great grandchildren”.

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30,000 hospital beds over the next decade - really? There were 35,194 acute-care beds in 1990.

Rivers 100x100By Ray Rivers

May 3rd, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Although Doug Ford has slipped a tad in the polls he is still very much in majority territory. So what would a Ford government mean for the health of our health system. Ford claims he’ll add 30,000 hospital beds over the next decade – two and half terms in office.

How does anyone come up with a figure like that? I guess if you want people to believe something you make it sound spectacular. I’m not saying he won’t or doesn’t intend to live up to that promise of creating more beds and bed spaces. But does he even know how many beds are in service today?

Hospital-Beds-MarketThe Ontario Hospital Association likes to share a wealth of statistics with its clients. There are 145 hospitals in the province, employing 200,000 people. They do over 350,000 in-patient surgeries and 1.2 million out-patient surgeries and treat 6.3 million emergency patient visits each year. But nobody is saying anything about how many beds are in service. That may be because the number of beds is only one, and not the best measure of how a health care system is performing.

Aren’t doctors telling patients these days that they need to avoid staying in a hospital any longer than absolutely necessary – that the last place you want to be when you’re sick is in a hospital bed if you can avoid it. These places are crawling with infections with scary sounding names like strep and MRSA. There are horror stories of some patients coming home sicker than when they went in.

It’s everywhere yet our healthcare system generally does a good job. Oh sure health care, especially among seniors, is such a common topic that when you ask ten people about the quality of delivery you’ll get eleven different opinions, depending on the day. But a recent Conference Board study of health care systems overall among 30 global jurisdictions places Ontario seventh.

platypus

Perhaps Australia gets help from the lowly (duck billed) platypus, the milk of which research indicates may have properties that protect against infections.

Only B.C. which placed third, scored better among Canadian jurisdictions. Ontario scored better than the Canadian average and beat all but four European nations each of which spend considerably more than we do, and Australia. Perhaps Australia gets help from the lowly (duck billed) platypus, the milk of which research indicates may have properties that protect against infections resistant to antibiotics (MSRA).

Moreover, according to the Fraser Institute, Ontario has the lowest hospital wait times in the country, almost a third less than New Brunswick. And yes, those times have increased since 1993, as have all of those in Canada, but so have the demands of an aging population.

we

Former Premier of Ontario Mike Harris

1993 was only two years before Mike Harris’ Common Sense Revolution in which Harris promised to leave health care untouched by his cost-cutting surgical knife. But that wasn’t what happened. As he closed hospitals and cut staff, wait times grew to the highest in Canada. It is not an exaggeration to say that some patients were literally dying in the corridors waiting to get into heart surgery, Others had to be transported to the USA for radiotherapy or an MRI, as we recall.

Back then Globe and Mail columnist John Ibbitson went through journalistic perdition trying to get the Harris government to simply tell him the number of operable hospital beds. It turns out that there had been 35,194 acute-care hospital beds in Ontario in 1990.

But a decade later, after only five years into Harris’ revolution, bed numbers had fallen to 21,805, a decline of 38 per cent. “Chronic-care beds declined by 32 per cent over the decade, from 11,436 to 7,787. During that time, Ontario’s population grew by 1.3 million (9 per cent) and its mean age increased by a year and a half, to 36.9 years”.

So it may be a little hard to take Doug Ford seriously with his 30,000 bed promise, while also hearing him promise to bring back Harris-like cuts of overall government spending by six billion dollars. Everybody knows that when it comes to cutting, the most vulnerable area and biggest target is health care. We’ve seen this movie before.

Ontario has the best health care system in Canada given the reviews on overall quality and wait times. But it is also the most efficient in Canada with the lowest per capita cost in the country. It could always be better of course, but it could also be a lot worse.

Ford Doug

Doug Ford – wants to be the next Premier of Ontario

Doug Ford may well become our next premier. But before he wins the support of Ontario voters he needs to do more than just pick a number (30,000 beds) out of the air. The truth is that the Liberals have done a good job in restoring and managing the health care system over the last decade and a half. In fact, the full implementation of pharmacare and other provisions presented in the last budget will make it even better.

Ford needs to convince the province’s voters, particularly its senior citizens and parents of young children who are the heaviest users of our health care system, that he can do at least as well. He needs to convince us that he is not going to pull another Mike Harris on us.

Rivers hand to faceRay Rivers writes regularly on both federal and provincial politics, applying his more than 25 years as a federal bureaucrat to his thinking.  Rivers was once a candidate for provincial office in Burlington.  He was the founder of the Burlington citizen committee on sustainability at a time when climate warming was a hotly debated subject.     Tweet @rayzrivers

Background links:

Ford Leading Polls –   Conference Board Report –    Frazer Institute Report

Spending Pre Capita –    International Health Costs –    Hospital Details

Ford Promises –    Ibbitson

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Region shells out $2.3 million for community programs through Investment Fund.

News 100 redBy Staff

April 19th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Regional Council approved more than $2.3 million in funding for community programs through the Halton Region Community Investment Fund (HRCIF).

The HRCIF provides funding to non-profit social service and community health initiatives that support the health, safety and well-being of Halton residents. Funding is provided in one, two or three year grants, supporting programs that address mental health, prevent homelessness, support older adults, children and youth, and enhance food security.

By supporting our non-profit partners to improve access to services, Halton Region is able to have a direct and tangible impact on our residents’ quality of life. Halton Regional Chair Gary Carr. “A key priority of the Halton Region Strategic Action Plan, 2015-2018, is to increase the investment in the HRCIF, and Council is achieving this by increasing the funding from $702,691 in 2012 to more than $2.3 million today.”

Since 2012, the number of projects funded has more than doubled, from 25 to 55 currently.

The following programs will receive funding from the HRCIF in 2018:

• Canadian Mental Health Association Halton Region Branch to provide free walk-in counselling.

• CNIB to help blind and partially-sighted older adults adapt to their sight loss.

• Central West Specialized Developmental Services to provide workshops on healthy sexuality to vulnerable clients and to provide training for community service workers.

• Community Living Burlington to support the Autism Job Club to provide pre-employment skills development to clients with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

• Distress Centre Halton to expand a telephone check-in program to support people with mental health issues.

• Elizabeth Fry Society of Peel-Halton to provide case management to individuals participating in the Halton Drug Treatment Court.

Food for Life

Food for Life refrigerated storage house – and a load of food ready to be delivered.

• Food for Life to support food collection and distribution to community agencies and partners serving Halton residents that have difficulty affording food.

• Food4Kids Halton to provide food to children who have limited or no food during weekends.

• Halton Children’s Aid Society to provide service navigation support for youth aged 14-24 in Halton Hills.

• Halton Food Council to support community garden programming in assisted housing communities.

• Halton Multicultural Council to support vulnerable refugee clients with a settlement plan, information and wrap around support.

• Kerr Street Mission to help train and mentor volunteers to support people in distress, isolated seniors and at-risk youth.

• Kerr Street Mission to provide a walk-in cooler/freezer that will increase access to fresh food for clients and expand partnership programs.

• Licensed to Learn to support one-on-one, peer-led tutoring programs for low income and at-risk children.

• Milton Transitional Housing to increase availability of bridge accommodation and supportive one-to-one counseling to people in housing crisis.

• Mississauga Furniture Bank to purchase a delivery truck to provide furniture and household goods to low income and vulnerable clients in Halton.

• Oak Park Neighbourhood Centre to support a network of service providers working collaboratively to reduce barriers and improve quality of life for people with complex needs.

• Open Doors at St. Christopher’s – Feeding Halton to support the expansion of the Fresh Food Markets which provide local food at a discount to individuals with low incomes.

• Reach Out Centre for Kids (ROCK) to provide gender-diverse and trans-specific programs and peer support for children, youth and their families.

• Resiliency 4 Recovery – The Anglican Church of the Incarnation to expand recovery support programs for youth living with mental health, substance misuse challenges and other vulnerabilities. Funds will also support adults 30+ who are dealing with opioid misuse challenges.

• Schizophrenia Society of Ontario to train frontline staff at two local mental health organizations in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy related to psychosis.

• S.E.N.A.C.A. Seniors Day Program Halton Inc. to provide a therapeutic art program for physically and cognitively-impaired older adults.

• STRIDE (Supported Training and Rehabilitation in Diverse Environments) to develop and implement a workshop series to help people who have experienced an absence due to a mental health issue return to work.

• Support & Housing Halton to purchase a passenger van to transport clients to appointments, food banks, employment and other group activities.

• The Bridge from Prison to Community (Hamilton) to establish a reintegration program in Halton to work one-on-one with ex-offenders and their families.

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City declares extreme weather event, will ticket or tow vehicles parked on streets

News 100 redBy Staff

April 14th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The City of Burlington has declared an extreme weather event and is asking drivers not to park on the street from 9 a.m. Saturday until Monday morning as the city manages the impacts of potentially dangerous conditions caused by freezing rain today and Sunday.

det

Vehicles parked on residential roads could be ticketed or towed—at the owner’s expense—to allow equipment to safely navigate the narrow streets.

All vehicles parked on the street must be removed and parking exemptions are void. Keeping streets clear of vehicles will help city equipment clear the roads of ice or snow and manage local flooding.

Vehicles parked on residential roads could be ticketed or towed—at the owner’s expense—to allow equipment to safely navigate the narrow streets.

If you notice a vehicle parked on your street this weekend, kindly ask the owner to remove the vehicle or call Halton Regional Police Service at 905-878-5511. Ask for dispatch and police will send a parking officer.
Residents are asked for their patience as the city manages extreme weather impacts on 1,900 km of roads and 850 km of sidewalks.

During extreme weather, the city will provide updates at 9 a.m., 4 p.m. and 11 p.m.

Trees 2 church not damaged

Wind damage to tress s may be severe.

Power outages are possible during freezing rain conditions. If there is power outage in your area, please contact Burlington Hydro at www.burlingtonhydro.com or call 1-877-310-4937.

Please only call 911 if you are injured or are in immediate danger.

Fallen limbs or trees can be reported to rpf@burlington.ca.

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Karina Gould will be at the Seniors' Centre on the Burlington 25th - will she have the baby with her?

News 100 yellowBy Staff

April 10th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

It is a typical political event. The MP chit chats with people and announces grants or hands out appreciation certificates

KarinaFamily + Oliver

Karina Gould with her husband and newborn son Oliver.

Burlington MP Karina Gould and member of the federal cabinet will be holding her 2nd Annual Volunteer Appreciation Reception on Wednesday, April 25th, 2018 from 7pm to 9pm at the Burlington Seniors Centre, Auditorium B, located at 2285 New Street.

The big question is – will she bring the new baby?

Politicians are usually expected to kiss every baby thrust into their arms.

Gould will have her own – with her?

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Do you know what a probate is? It isn't a medical procedure but the hospital foundation would like o explain it to you.

eventspink 100x100By Staff

April 10th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The Joseph Brant Hospital Foundation is inviting people to a presentation with Jim Sweetlove, retired lawyer, Ross & McBride LLP.

Jim Sweetlove

Jim Sweetlove, retired lawyer.

Sweetlove will be answering some of the most common estate questions including:

Foundation logo• Why is estate planning so important?
• What happens without a written will?
• What is probate and how does it work?
• What are powers of attorney and how do they work?
• What are the benefits of leaving a charitable bequest to a charity in my will?

The events take place at the Art Gallery of Burlington, Shoreline Room on Tuesday, April 17
Refreshments at 2:00 pm; Presentation at 2:30 pm

Please RSVP to Amanda Martin by phone at 905-632-3737 ext. 2041 or by email to amartin@josephbranthospital.ca.

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Beer and cider to be available in three more Burlington locations.

News 100 yellowBy Staff

April 10th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Beer is now being sold in the following supermarket locations:Beer in supermarkets

Longo Brothers Fruit Markets, 2900 Walker’s Line
Walmart, 4515 Dundas St.
Walmart, 2065 Fairview St.

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‘Should We Unplug Our Kids?' - Statements on Screen Time for Children

eventsblue 100x100By Staff

April 6th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

How much time should your children spend before a screen?

And how do you get them away from that screen when they have been in front of one for far too long?

screen-time-and-students-banner

The problem –

The Community & Parent Partners for Kids (C.A.P.P. for KIDS) is presenting the event that begns at 7:00 pm and runs to 8:30 p.m. at the New Street Education Centre (3250 New St., Burlington). There will be community displays from 6:45-7 p.m.

Parents are invited to attend the free evening presentation on Tuesday, April 10, 2018 aimed at addressing the appropriate amount of screen time for young people in a society increasingly dominated by technology.

Called ‘Should We Unplug Our Kids? Reflections on the revised Canadian Paediatric Society Position Statement on Screen Time for Children’, the presentation will highlight the current trends, research and recommendations related to screen time.

screen time asleep

How much screen time is appropriate – and how does a parent come up with rules that work?

Child experts Maria Ramos and Linda Bell will lead the presentation. Both are experienced Pediatric Speech-Language Pathologists with advanced skills in facilitating the development of language and emergent literacy in preschool children. Their role includes coaching parents and service providers as well as offering community presentations on a variety of related topics.

C.A.P.P. for KIDS is a partnership between Halton Region, Halton District School Board, Halton Catholic District School Board, Reach Out Centre for Kids (ROCK), Our Kids Network, Halton Regional Police Service, Ontario Early Years, Burlington Public Library, City of Burlington, and the Halton Multicultural Council.

For more information about this event, email mailto:capp4kids@gmail.com.

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What happens when two English guys hang out in a Smart car and listen to Queen?

eventsblue 100x100By Pepper Parr

April 3rd, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

James Burchill has a style that is unique. Basically he is a communicator and has come up with a format that he calls Smart Car Coffee Confidential. He takes people out for a drive in his little Smart Car and has a conversation – stopping along the way for a cup of takeout coffee.

He has interviewed VIP’s, sports people, people who do the darndiest things for a living.

Burchill, besides being a shameless self-promoter, is a Brit – something he is quietly proud about.

Burchill + Queen

Two Brits – watch for what they do during a Coffee Confidential on Friday.

In a forthcoming Coffee Confidential he is out with Paul Coppcut, who toils away at “personal brand development”. What makes this video such a hoot is that the two of them are nutso about Queen. Not THE Queen but the musical royalty Queen.

The two of them sit in the car shaking their heads like a couple of bobble head dolls yucking it up.
Burchill asks: “What happens when two English guys hang out in a Smart car and listen to Queen?”  Then you get to see what two English guys can do when the music gets to them.

A short short clip of just what these two Brits do when the music is turned on is RIGHT HERE. The full Coffee Confidential will run on Friday.

Brighten up your day – supposed to rain later this afternoon and this evening.

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MP McMahon announces new provincial funding of $11.2 million for the Joseph Brant Hospital.

News 100 redBy Staff

March 24th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The Joseph Brant Hospital will be getting $11.2 million in new provincial government funding that will be added to Joseph Brant Hospital’s budget for 2018/19.

McMahon - First public as Minister

Burlington MP Eleanor McMahon is also the chair of the Treasury Board.

Members of the provincial legislature have been fanning out across the province making funding announcements on increases in funding for hospitals.  Burlington MPP Eleanor McMahon was at Joseph Brant Hospital yesterday to outline how this major increase in hospital funding will provide better access to care, reduce wait times, address capacity issues and better meet the needs of Burlington’s changing population.

This overall increase of 4.6 per cent across the province is on top of the 3.2 per cent provided last year — allowing hospitals to invest with more precision in the care and supports that address the specific needs of their patients and community.

An architects rendering of the new entrance to the Joseph Brant Hospital whch will now face the lake. The entrance will be off LAkeshore Road with the new parking lot just to the west of the hospital.

McMahon said “Patients and families across Ontario will also directly benefit from this increased funding with the expansion of essential services to reduce wait times and priority procedures such as cardiac care, critical care, chemotherapy, treatment for strokes, hip and knee replacements, and medical imaging.”

McMahon added in her media release that the is responding to rapid economic change by bringing in a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25, and 65 or over, through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.

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Rivers: Health care in Ontario - is it meeting the needs? Would a different government make it better?

Rivers 100x100By Ray Rivers

March 5th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Keeping ourselves healthy is important. Part of that involves getting well again should we get sick. Enter single payer health insurance – the only efficient way to deliver health care. John Robarts gave us OHIP back in the late sixties with a little help from the federal government. Then Bill Davis added a senior’s drug plan in 1972.

ohipplusLast year the Kathleen Wynne government introduced OHIP+, a pharmacare program to ensure that no child got left behind because of affordability. And that perhaps prompted the federal Liberals to decide the time was right for a national universal plan. In any case it was an obvious choice for Mr. Trudeau to ask Ontario’s health minister, Eric Hoskins, to head up a consultative process with the provinces, territories, health experts and communities on how best to proceed.

Canadians have one of the better health care systems anywhere, and it will only get better with the addition of a single payer drug plan. Oh sure Americans like to talk about our waiting lists for elective surgery, but at least all residents here have access to care. And if we were to double our health budget, the equivalent of what Americans pay per capita, those waiting lines would be a lot shorter. But most importantly, we sail past the US when it comes to health outcomes. We have lower infant mortality, are generally healthier and we outlive them.

Coal fired generating plant - Nanticoke

The last coal fired generating plant in Ontario

The Liberal government in Ontario started to phase out dirty coal electricity plants soon after coming to power in the early 2000s. Between 2006 and 2015 smog-causing nitrogen dioxide emissions dropped by 32 per cent, sulphur dioxide by 48 per cent, carbon monoxide by 53 per cent, and fine particulate matter by 25 per cent. Despite population growth and an increase in the number of motor vehicles on Ontario’s roadways, the air above our cities, like Toronto, is cleaner than we’ve seen in our lifetimes.

According to the Ministry of Environment…“There were no smog advisories issued in 2015, compared with 2005 when there were 53 smog days. Based on the Air Quality Health Index, the province’s air quality was rated in the low risk category for 90 per cent of the year in 2015.”

And Ontario’s carbon ‘cap-and-trade’ system, which started last year, will continue to deliver that kind of good news.

The province estimates that improved air quality is saving over $4 billion annually in health care costs. But then the provincial auditor general estimates that moving to green energy has cost almost forty billion over the past decade or so. That would be a wash – except that these are all mostly hypothetical numbers, the kind accountants and economists like to fiddle with as they make their political arguments. What matters most is whether our quality of life has improved and whether we can afford this improvement in air quality in the face of increases we’ve seen in the cost of hydro.

smoking - public place

Smoking in public is getting harder and harder to do – unfortunately it is the younger people taking up the habit.

The Liberal government also fought an uphill battle banning smoking in public places and restricting toxic lawn pesticides. We all understand the health benefits of not smoking, though pesticides are less well understood when it comes to their relationship to diseases like asthma and cancer. But a recent Conference Board report recognizes Ontario with the lowest rate of respiratory mortality in Canada, despite having the most concentrated population.

OHIP+ is estimated to cost roughly half a billion dollars a year. And the province claims to be running a balanced budget even without the kind of without additional federal finding we might expect coming out of the new federal initiative. The provincial NDP have yet to release their election platform though Andrea Horwath, supportive of OHIP+, has mused about implementing a universal program.

None of the PC leadership contenders have committed to continuing the OHIP+ program, let alone any expansion of it. The platform passed by the party last November does speak to continuation of the Liberal initiated program, but the candidates have been careful to avoid adopting a platform which also contains plans for a $4 billion dollar carbon tax.

That is troubling on a number of fronts, particularly since at least a couple of the candidates have talked about also killing the cap-and-trade program which reduces other air borne pollutants associated with the combustion of fossil fuels in addition to CO2. In fact the preoccupation of the these candidates is with the conflicting goals of tax cuts and debt reduction.

Cookie_jar_overturn

The current cap and trade CO2 emissions program pumps tens of millions into the provincial economy. If cancelled where would funds for health care come from?

And that means that money will need to be found elsewhere to satisfy these goals, most likely in the most expensive part of the budget – health care. There already was a financial hole in the Patrick Brown platform – right smack dab in health care. So it would not be unrealistic to expect Ontario to opt out of any national universal pharmacare program should the PC’s win the election later this year, and maybe even shelve OHIP+.

It’s politics too, as we witnessed by the confrontational attitudes permeating the last PC candidates debate. Why would a Tory government in Ontario agree to anything a Liberal federal government wants to do. Even if, in the case of a carbon tax, the money stays in the province. In Brown’s platform the money would have been returned in lower income tax rates for the middle classes – revenue neutral.

we

The Harris government took millions and millions out of education and health care – it took decades to restore those services.

We have seen this movie before. It was the late ‘90s and Ontario took Mike Harris at his word, having come to office with a promise not to touch health care, and then desperately looking at the health budget to pay for his income tax cuts. He closed hospitals, fired nurses, and threw the entire system into chaos.

Ontario moved to the back of the line in health care, owning the longest surgery wait times in Canada. Gurneys stacked up in hospital corridors as we watched our loved ones suffer in despair. Heart patients were literally dying waiting for surgery and cancer patients had to be bused to Buffalo for radiation treatment. Let us never go back to those days.

Rivers hand to faceRay Rivers writes weekly on both federal and provincial politics, applying his more than 25 years as a federal bureaucrat to his thinking.  Rivers was once a candidate for provincial office in Burlington.  He was the founder of the Burlington citizen committee on sustainability at a time when climate warming was a hotly debated subject.     Tweet @rayzrivers

 

 

Background links:

OHIP+

Health Report Card –    Canada’s Rank –    Cost Effective Care

OHIP+ Details –    Hoskins –    Ontario’s Plans –    Conference Board

Ontario Climate Change –    Canada vs USA –   OHIP+

Ontario’s Cap and Trade

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Chilly Half and Frosty 5K Road Temporary Closures on March 4th

eventspink 100x100By Staff

March 1st, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

Coolsaet crossing the Half Chilly Marathon December 2014It may turn out to be a sloppy run on Sunday when the March 4, 2018 the Chilly Half Marathon and Frosty 5k Run take place in support of cancer care at Joseph Brant Hospital.

If the weather forecast holds the roads could be recovering from a lot of snowé

Minor traffic delays can be expected.

Road Closures

6 a.m. to 3 p.m.
• Brant Street from Ontario Street to Elgin Street
• James Street from John Street to Brant Street

9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
• Brant Street, Lakeshore Road to Elgin Street (access to Bunton’s Wharf via Locust Street)

9:45 to 10:30 a.m.
• Lakeshore Road, Brant Street to Eastport Drive

9:45 a.m. to 2 p.m.
• Lakeshore Road, Brant Street to just west of Burloak Drive (access to Old Lakeshore Road from the west maintained with delays)

Lane Use
The three traffic lanes on Lakeshore Road will be separated by two lines of cones from Burloak Drive to Maple Avenue: north lane emergency vehicles, centre lane westbound runners and south lane eastbound runners.

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Babysitter charged with Sexual Assault, Sexual Interference and Invitation to Sexual Touching offences that took place between 1996 – 1998,

Crime 100By Staff

February 14th, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

HRPS crestAn investigation conducted by the Halton Regional Police Service – Child Abuse and Sexual Assault Unit (C.A.S.A.), resulted in the arrest Frances Maureen McNeil (55 years), of St. Catharines on February 13th, 2018 and charged with: Sexual Assault, Sexual Interference and Invitation to Sexual Touching

McNeil was a babysitter in her home in the City of Burlington between 1996 – 1998, and was known to babysit children within her neighbourhood.

At the time of the offences, the female was known by the name Maureen Crawley

The accused was held for a bail hearing.

Anyone who may have any additional information pertaining to this investigation is asked to contact D/Cst. Matt Cunnington of the Halton Regional Police Service Child Abuse and Sexual Assault Unit at 905-465-8978.
Tips can also be submitted to Crime Stoppers “See Something? Hear Something? Know Something?” Contact “Crime Stoppers” at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.ca

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Conservation Authority advises it expects up to 25 mm of rain the fall in the watershed which will increase the flow into the creeks. Be cautious.

News 100 greenBy Staff

January 23, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Water statement Feb 28Conservation Halton advises that as of 11:30 PM January 22nd, rain gauges throughout the watershed have recorded rainfall totals up to 15 mm over the last 24 hours.

The weather system currently passing through the watershed may bring an additional 10 mm of rain overnight prior to ending Tuesday morning. These rainfall amounts combined with saturated ground conditions will result in elevated water levels and increased flows in local creeks.

Creek - rushing water

With as much as 25 mm of rain in the past 24 hours the flow pf water in the watershed creeks will be higher and faster. Caution.

Further, milder temperatures and melting ice may contribute to blockages at bridges and culverts and produce localized flooding concerns in low lying areas.

Widespread flooding is not currently anticipated. Our reservoirs are currently at winter holding levels which allows for larger storage capacity for circumstances of this nature.

Conservation Halton is asking all residents and children to keep a safe distance from all watercourses and structures such as bridges, culverts and dams. Elevated water levels, fast flowing water, and slippery conditions along stream banks continue to make these locations extremely dangerous. Please alert children in your care of these imminent dangers.

Conservation Halton will continue to monitor stream and weather conditions and will issue an update to this Watershed Condition Statement –Water Safety message as conditions warrant.

This Watershed Condition Statement will be in effect through Wednesday January 24, 2018.

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