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

News 100 redBy Staff

April 14th, 2018



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.


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 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

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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



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

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Some online city services will not available - Monday April 9, 9 pm to 10 p.m.

notices100x100By Staff

April 9th, 2018

They are making improvements

city hall with flag polesThe city will be doing some maintenance to add a new service for our Marriage License online applications.

While we are making changes, please note that some online services will not be available on Monday, April 9 from 9 to 10 p.m.:

• Online business license renewal
• Online Property information requests


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Take identification if you want to read the one copy of the latest draft Official Plan at the Library.

News 100 redBy Staff

March 29th, 2018


This is funny – were it not so sad.

A regular Gazette reader got a notice from city hall advising her that a revised draft Official Plan was now available – and that copies were available at the library.

Official-Plan-Binder_ImageOur citizen skipped along to the library to review a copy.

We will let her tell you what happened when she go to the library:

Yesterday I received an email from the City telling me that the Revised New Official Plan was available for residents to see. I understood this to be that I could get a copy of the revisions, at any City Library, City Hall, etc.

Today when I as at Burlington Central Library, I was told that there was one (1) copy that I could look at and I would have to provide I.D. Why would anyone need to provide identification to look at this document? Are printed copies available?

Now that is citizen engagement!

There was a time when city hall at least talked about citizen engagement.  They created a xxx

In 2010 the then Mayor, Cam Jackson set up a task force to report on how well city hall was engaging with its citizens. The report, Shape Burlington, was written by the late John Boich and former Mayor Walter Mulkewich; – read the report for that full story.

Relevant background links:

A Charter Action Team was created to put the Community Engagement Plan into action.

Shape Burlington

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MetroToronto po;oce work withthe Regional police to arrest males who robbed Scotia bank branches at gunpoint.

Crime 100By Staff

February 27, 2018



Early in the month branches of Scotia bank were being robbed; one in Burlington, another in Milton.

Police believed the robberies were linked and began doing what police do: investigate

Police have identified four suspects and laid multiple charges following several bank robberies across the Greater Toronto Region (GTA).

On February 1, 2018, at approximately 7:50 p.m., the Halton Regional Police Service (HRPS) was called to a Scotiabank located at 4519 Dundas Street, Burlington, following a report of an armed robbery. Three male suspects, one of whom was armed, obtained a quantity of cash and exited the bank, travelling southbound on foot. Two bank employees were assaulted and sustained minor injuries during the robbery.

On February 9, 2018, at approximately 8:00 p.m., HRPS was called to a Scotiabank located at 880 Main Street East, Milton, following a report of an armed robbery. Two masked male suspects, one of whom was armed, entered the bank shortly before closing and obtained a quantity of cash. A bank employee, who attempted to intervene, was assaulted by one of the suspects and sustained minor injuries.

On February 14, 2018 HRPS investigators began surveillance of persons of interest, who were suspected of being involved in the Milton and Burlington robberies. During this time, investigators observed a group of individuals in the area of a Scotiabank at the intersection of Rathburn Road and Renforth Drive, Toronto.

Police continued to monitor these individuals, who were observed to be engaging in activity consistent with a potential robbery of the financial institution. In the interest of public safety, police contacted the bank and ensured bank staff and clients were moved to a safe location and the doors of the bank were secured.

As two of the persons prepared to commit the bank robbery, plainclothes HRPS investigators were able to arrest them prior to entering the bank.

Based on the events that took place in the City of Toronto on February 14, 2018 the following individuals were charged by the Toronto Police Service:

Gareth BAUGH (19) of the City of Toronto

• Robbery
• Disguise with Intent to commit an indictable offence
Jazmyn ELIAS-WEIBL (18) of the City of Mississauga
• Robbery
• Disguise with Intent to commit an indictable offence

Young Offender (identity protected under the Youth Criminal Justice Act)

Disguise with Intent to commit and indictable offence

Duraiappah HRPS Deputy chief

Deputy Chief Nishan Duraiappah

Deputy Chief Nishan Duraiappah: “Robberies such as these have a deep impact on the involved bank employees, innocent bystanders and even their families. The blatant disregard for victims that these arrested persons demonstrated represent some of the greatest risk to community safety. Our investigators have worked tirelessly with partnering police agencies to identify and arrest them. We’re pleased to have put an end to these violent robberies.”

On February 15, 2018 HRPS investigators and K-9 services continued their investigation by executing a Criminal Code Search Warrant at the residence of Gareth BAUGH. Investigators seized a quantity of cash, a replica firearm and several pieces of clothing linked to the armed robberies throughout the GTA.

On February 22, 2018 HRPS investigators and Tactical Rescue Unit prepared to execute a Criminal Code Search Warrant at the Milton residence of the accused from a previous bank robbery in Milton. When arriving, police observed the suspect departing his home with several associates. A traffic stop was conducted and the male suspect was taken into custody without incident. A search of the vehicle led to the seizure of several thousand dollars in Canadian currency.

On February 23, 2018, in the early morning, HRPS investigators and Tactical Rescue Unit executed a Criminal Code Search Warrant at the residence of the accused. During this search, a quantity of illegal drugs was seized along with various items of clothing believed to be linked to the robbery in Milton and other robberies throughout the GTA. A loaded .22 caliber handgun was also seized by police.
Based on the results of the search warrant from February 23, 2018 the following individual was charged by the Halton Regional Police Service:

Tyriq BROOKS (19) of the Town of Milton

• Robbery with a Firearm
• Point Firearm
• Wear Disguise with Intent
• Possession of a restricted firearm
• Possession of a weapon for the dangerous purpose
• Careless use of a firearm
• Possession of a controlled substance
• Fail to comply with recognizance (3 counts)

There are also outstanding arrest warrants for the accused from several police services in the province for Human Trafficking related charges.

The HRPS Criminal Investigations Bureau is in the process of linking the above individual(s) to the robberies in Milton and Burlington. It is anticipated that several criminal charges are pending.

Anonymous tips can be forwarded to Crime Stoppers; “See Something, Hear Something, Know Something — Contact Crime Stoppers” at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS), through the web at or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637 (crimes).

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Heather Lareau is ticked - Meridian made her personal email address public. Ouch!

News 100 greenBy Staff

February 27th, 2018



Fernand Coderre and Heather Lareau

Fernand Coderre and Heather Lareau half a football field away from where Meridian wants to mine shale.

Heather Lareau is ticked – and Heather is not a woman one wants trifle with. She is a West Haven Drive resident whose home is one of those “too close for comfort” residences that is half a football field away from where Meridian Brick wants to begin mining for the shale that goes into the manufacturing of brick.

Meridian recently sent out a Newsletter that had her personal email as part of the content. Ouch!

We will let Ms Lareau vent on this one.

“It is unfortunate that my personal email has been shared with the community at large. However, since you have made this a public forum, as a “private” citizen and resident of Tyandaga, I would like to make some brief personal comments regarding your Newsletter where you make everything appear just peachy, for a lack of a better term. (Not to make matters worse, I have blind copied all the recipients from your email in order to protect their privacy)

“I would like to start with you statement regarding our health concerns.

TEC Excavation equipment

Imagine this thing digging away half a football field from your house – early in the morning?

“The airborne emissions assessed from the facility were crystalline silica and particulate matter; specifically respirable, inhalable and total particulate matter and covered three time periods, a one year scenario, with the Centre Quarry only, a six–to-15-year scenario involving the Centre and East Quarries, and a 16–to-25 -year scenario affecting the East Quarry only. They are predicted to be less than accepted health-based benchmarks, even under worst-case conditions.

“A predication is a forecast of what should happen, not what could happen. Each Phase of the quarry brings the dust and noise closer to the residential area. Should there be an easterly wind, then WE predict there will be more dust and more noise and more health concerns.


There are three quarries – the one on the left and the one in the center are close to being depleted. The quarry on the right is the one that concerns the West Haven residents.

“Considering that you will eventually be excavating within a 1/2 of football field (50 m) from Westhaven Drive, combined with easterly winds which you don’t account for, your company is certainly underplaying the impact from the dust that we will continuously inhale and have to deal with on a daily basis. There are many families with young children in this area as well already compromised seniors who will be exposed to this dust on a daily basis. This said it affects ALL whether we work, live, go to school or play in the area

“You also say you will be monitoring the dust with a monitoring system which will produce reports for various government agencies and residents. Unless you place a monitor within 50 metres (1/2 a football field) of the operating quarry how will you know what level of dust we are dealing with? From what we have discovered, the closest fixed air monitoring system is 4 km away from the quarry. How accurate can this be?
“Will the public receive daily reports of the level of dust? Or will we have to fight for this information on a continuous basis?

“If the levels exceed the regulatory benchmark, does that mean you will immediately stop excavation. What would your next step be? Less excavation? Cover the quarry with a tarp? Increase your set-back?

“If the dust exceeds the acceptable level you say you will mitigate. What is your mitigation plan and what does that mean?

“Your comments regarding Salamanders. You state the area you are about to commence clear-cutting is not conducive to salamander habitat. Considering in the spring and fall, salamanders make their way across the neighbourhood into people’s swimming pools, (from an area not conducive to salamander habitat), this to us indicates the possibility of the endangered type salamanders

He isn't exactly pretty but nevertheless plays an important role in the local environment. Comes in different colours as well.

The Jefferson salamander: He isn’t exactly pretty but nevertheless plays an important role in the local environment. Comes in different colours as well.

existing in all areas of the future east quarry. One photograph taken by a resident in their pool, the salamander clearly appeared to be the dusky salamander; which is also on the endangered species list. Tail clippings from another drowned salamander was confirmed to be the asexual female type Jefferson Salamander

“Progressive Rehabilitation. You say you are taking earth from where you clear-cut and fill in where you have already excavated. How is this progressive? It will take decades, well beyond our life-time to rehabilitate this land to its current state. Bottom line, the Carolinian Forest is gone. If the West and central quarry is any indication of what your rehabilitation looks like, the chance of ever seeing a forest during our life-time is impossible and probably won’t exist for generations to come. Is this what we are bequeathing to our future generations? I promise to tell my great grandchildren how at one time Burlington was called Burlington Green and that the environment of this city was at one time lush and healthy.

“Noise is a great concern to this neighbourhood. Half of a football field, which again is only 50 feet (same as your original described setback). Having an operating quarry within 50 feet of home and schools will have a PREDICTABLE negative impact on the health of every resident on WHD and beyond. Please read the article from The Hamilton Spectator last week that stated constant noise can cause cardiac and mental health issues.
“Last point I would like to make is that all your studies and reports that you are referring to are produced by and paid for by YOU, Meridian. If you stand behind your results, please allow a peer review of all of your studies.
“I challenge the Mayor and Councillors to step up and do something to support and protect the tax paying citizens of Burlington. I have heard many times this is a Provincial Matter. Then represent us at the provincial level. You will have more influence than the many residents of Burlington who are spending their hard earned money and all their spare time trying to preserve the environment in YOUR city. Walk the talk.

TEC Nov 16-17 crowd

The Tyandaga Environmental Coalition (TEC) is not just a bunch of cranky seniors – it is a broadly based group of people who turn out for meetings and support the cost of the legal challenges.

“I also challenge you, Meridian/Aldershot quarry to truly be a good neighbour and stay as far away as possible from the residential area. Half a football field away now or 30 years from now is inconceivable to this community. The destruction of 35 acres of forest and 9,000 trees certainly does not support an environmentally conscious sustainable program. I concur with all the environmentally concerned people of this city that the loss of the greenspace and the wildlife who habitat within, is heartbreaking. However, the protection of the health of the residents in this development MUST BE a priority as well.

“I encourage Meridian to consider other options for the complete Aldershot quarry while retaining the existing greenspace.”

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Place the order the day before online and pick up the groceries at the GO station the following day

News 100 yellowBy Staff

February 27th, 2018



When MetroLinx announced that internet access would be available throughout their network the Gazette didn’t see that as a big deal. They were just catching up to what many other transportation operations were doing.

We didn’t expect the other shoe to fall so quickly.

Loblaws, part of the George Weston operation, battling a price fixing matter, announced today that with internet access available to the tens of thousands of GO train commuters they would soon be able to use their cell phones to log into the Loblaws app and place food orders that they will be able to pick up at the GO station when they get off the train

Busy consumers will soon have one more way to avoid going to the grocery store as Canadian retailers ramp up their e-commerce offerings in an apparent effort to beat tech titan Amazon, which recently entered the country’s grocery market.

A Loblaws store is seen in Montreal on March 9, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz ORG XMIT: CPT603

Loblaws and Fortinos locations will be the pick up point for GO train commuters who decide to use the new service,

Loblaw Companies Ltd. announced Monday it will launch a new service in the spring that allows commuters to order groceries online and pick them up at one of five Go Transit stations in the Greater Toronto Area the next day. None of the Burlington GO stations are part of the pilot operation.

Jeremy Pee, the company’s senior vice-president of e-commerce said “This is a logical extension of our increasingly popular e-commerce services, and the growing customer appeal for ordering groceries online and picking them up when it’s most convenient.”

The company partnered with Metrolinx, an Ontario government agency that co-ordinates and integrates transportation modes in the GTA and Hamilton area.


Somewhere in this GO station people will be able to pick up groceries they ordered on line. Lot of logistics to get worked out – will people be able to drive their car right up to the pick up point?

The partnership will initially start with stations in Bronte, Oakville, Rouge Hill, Whitby and Clarkson, with plans to expand to additional sites in the region.

Groceries will come from nearby Fortinos or Loblaws stores, and will be waiting in a special delivery truck, in lockers or in an enclosed kiosk.

The service is an extension of the company’s click-and-collect offering as it allows customers who travel on Go Transit a pick-up option that doesn’t require them to adjust their daily commute,

Loblaw launched click-and-collect in 2014 and now offers the online order, in-store pick up service at 300 of its stores. The company is rolling out that service at a rapid clip, with about one new store offering click-and-collect every day.

Amazing what competition will do. Why Burlington isn’t included in the first phase of the new service wasn’t explained. Apparently we are not as demographically svelte as Oakville. That hurts!

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15 mm of precipitation starting overnight with an additional 5 mm possible on Sunday will swell the 13 creeks in Burlington - be cautious.

News 100 greenBy Staff

February 24, 2018



Conservation Halton advises that the weather office is forecasting upwards of 15 mm of precipitation starting overnight with an additional 5 mm possible on Sunday.

Watershed notice March 24-17Based on the forecasted rainfall, increased flows and water levels in our creeks throughout Halton will remain higher than normal for the next several days. In addition, remaining 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 holding water above their normal operating and will continue to release water over the next week as they are brought back within regular operating levels for this time of year.

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 February 28th, 2018.

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Snow event declared by the city - all cars have to be off the street by 7 am Wednesday.

notices100x100By Staff

February 6th, 2018



Get your car off the street – the city has declared Wednesday February 7, a “snow event”, beginning at 7 a.m.

All snow plows and salt trucks will be dispatched throughout the city.

Environment Canada is forecasting 10 cm of snow to fall Wednesday, Feb. 7.

As of 7 a.m., all vehicles parked on the street must be removed and parking exemptions are void. Failure to remove vehicles from residential roads could result in being ticketed or possibly towed to allow snow plows and other heavy machinery to safely navigate the narrow streets.

Cars will be towed at the owner’s expense.

Snow plows - tandem on Fairview

Tandem snow plows on Fairview

If residents notice a vehicle on their street, they are encouraged to kindly ask the owner to remove the vehicle or call Parking Control during business hours at 905-335-7816 (Monday to Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.) or after-hours, Halton Regional Police Service at 905-878-5511. (Ask for “dispatch” and police will send a parking officer).

Residents are also asked for their patience as clearing all 1,900 km of roads can take up to 24 hours and 850 km of sidewalks can take up to 72 hours to clear.

Mark Adam, Manager of Road Operations said: “During a declared snow event, there is no parking allowed on the street and all exemptions are cancelled. Our crews need to get through our narrow residential streets or else we can’t complete the plowing.

“The city thanks all the residents in advance for their cooperation and patience during our snow clearing operations.”

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Roads and sidewalks got tender loving care overnight from the snow removal people

notices100x100By Staff

February 4th, 2018



There is a marked improvement on the quality of the snow removal being done by the city.

Snow on street - lady - walkerReporting on what has been done and where problems exist are much better and when there is a problem the city moves very quickly to resolve the problem.

Snow Update: February 4, 2018 11:00pm

Salters are currently out across the city.

Sidewalk salting will begin overnight.

Staff will continue to monitor road and weather conditions.

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City of Burlington to declare a ‘Snow Event’ beginning midnight, Jan. 30, 2018 - a 'snow event' is not something out of the Parks and Recreation department.

notices100x100By Staff

January 30th, 2018


The City of Burlington is declaring Jan. 30, 2018 a “snow event”, beginning at midnight. All snow plows and salt trucks will be dispatched throughout the city.

Environment Canada is forecasting 15 cm of snow to fall between Monday, Jan. 29 and Tuesday, Jan. 30.

As of midnight, and during the snow event, all vehicles parked on the street must be removed and parking exemptions are void. Failure to remove vehicles from residential roads could result in being ticketed or possibly towed to allow snow plows and other heavy machinery to safely navigate the narrow streets.

Cars will be towed at the owner’s expense.

If residents notice a vehicle on their street, they are encouraged to kindly ask the owner to remove the vehicle or call Parking Control during business hours at 905-335-7816 (Monday to Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.) or after-hours, Halton Regional Police Service at 905-878-5511. (Ask for “dispatch” and police will send a parking officer).

Snow - trucksResidents are also asked for their patience as clearing all 1,900 km of roads can take up to 24 hours and 850 km of sidewalks can take up to 72 hours to clear.

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

Mark Adam, Manager of Road Operations explains that “the city wants to ensure the safety of our drivers and pedestrians. Our biggest challenge is getting through the neighbourhoods, particularly in Alton Village and the Orchard.

“Our plows can’t get past many of the parked cars so we can’t plow your street properly or at all. Please, put your cars in a driveway or make arrangements to get them off the street. We appreciate your co-operation.”

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Angela Coughlan Pool - Service Disruption

notices100x100By Staff

January 18th, 2018


Angela Coughlan Pool – Service Disruption

Angela Coughlan Leisure Swim on Thursday January 18 from 5:30-7:30pm has been cancelled due to a maintenance issue.

Angela Coughlan Pool

Angela Coughlan Pool

For alternative swim opportunities, please visit

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Conservation issues weather conditions notice - rising water in the creek system.

News 100 blueBy Staff

January 12, 2018



Flood conditions - yellowWith weather all over the map we plan for what we are told the weather is going to be during the day and know that it will probably change significantly before the end of the day.

A major dump of show on the weekend and rain three days later that washes much of the snow away.

One day you could have worn shorts and sat out on a patio and the next day you need those mitts.

The recent rain has added to the water flooding into the creeks creating safety concerns.

The Conservation Authority has issued a Watershed Conditions Statement advising that Environment Canada is forecasting rainfall that will continue into Friday. Expected amounts will range between 10 to 20 mm with higher amounts possible in localized areas.

Kids near winter water

Not what you want children to be doing – especially if they are unsupervised. Caution.

Based on the forecast of mild temperatures and rainfall, combined with the partial melt of our existing snowpack, we may experience an increase in flows and water levels in our creeks throughout Halton. In addition, the snowpack melt 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 stay off ice covered bodies of water and 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.

This Watershed Condition Statement will be in effect through to Saturday January 13, 2018.

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Senior with dementia missing in Aldershot found.

Newsflash 100By Staff

January 4th, 2018



The Halton regional Police Service are pleased to report that the missing elderly female (Margaret McCormick) has been found in the City of Burlington.

At 6:45 pm, police located the missing female in a wooded area  south of Highway 403 and east of Highway 6.   Train personnel from CN rail reported observing a person near railway tracks in that area and provided a location for police to continue searching. 

The missing female was carried out of the wooded area to an ambulance and is being treated for hypothermia.  She was conscious at that time while being treated.  She will be taken to hospital for further treatment.

Halton Police are trying to locate an elderly female who suffers from dementia; she walked away from a senior residence in Burlington (Aldershot) this afternoon at approximately 2:30pm.

Missing Jan 4-18

Margaret McCormick – missing in Aldershot

The missing person is not dressed appropriately for the current outdoor temperature.

She has been identified as Margaret McCormick (78 yrs) and is described at female, white, 5′ 2″, very thin build, blond/silvery shoulder length hair, hat with a green stripe all around it, blue sweater, blue jeans, red mittens, boots and was seen carrying a white garbage bag.

Police are urgently requesting the public assistance in locating this party with exceptionally cold weather expected.

Residents are asked to check their properties and out buildings in the chance she has tried to seek shelter from the weather.

Anyone with information on this party’s whereabouts is asked to contact the on duty staff Sgt at 905 825 4747 ext 2310.

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Doing the homework and really understanding the complex development issues in the downtown core are appears to be a problem. ECoB is trying to bring about a change in the way the city manages all this.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

December 15th, 2017



There are almost as many views on what Burlington should be doing in terms of its growth as there are people in the city.

ECOB Dec 13 #3

Citizens listening to the concerns community groups have over how developments in their neighbourhoods are handled by the Planning Department. The meeting was organized by the Engaged Citizens of Burlington – ECoB

When Lisa Kearns, one of the ECoB organizers,  stood at the lectern in the Burlington Baptist Church she told the 150+ audience that they had to do their homework and then hoisted a three in loose-leaf binder up and told the audience the information they need is out there – but you do have to work to find it and then offered to share what she had with anyone interested. We didn’t see anyone asking to borrow the binder.

Many of the people involved in what is a complex subject are reluctant to identify themselves publicly. One of those wrote in and said: “Seems that this group is questioning the “Urban Growth Centre” designation in Downtown Burlington. The answer is really, really simple – all people have to do is go back to and look at the original Places to Grow document from 2006 – Schedule 2. The designation is right there. No municipal approval is required. The Province says “this is it” now “do it”. All of this talk about evidentiary materials is a complete waste of time.

The province has $50 billion worth of transit and transportation plans it believes we need - just $16 billion of that is funded. Transit is not free but will we re-elect a government that insists we pay for it?

“People must also consider “The Big Move” which designates the mobility hub in the downtown as an “Anchor Mobility Hub”. Anchor Mobility Hubs are focal points with the potential to transform urban structure and improve transit. In other words … big changes are expected.

“There is an Appendix B which indicates that the downtown mobility hub is expected to accommodate 2,900 boarding per day. The question should be “why is the City not planning for this?” not is it really a hub.

“This same Appendix B includes a population target for the downtown anchor hub of greater than 25,000 people and jobs by 2031. The City is not even close to being able to accommodate this target.

“Most importantly, some people selectively ignore the fact that City Council unanimously approved its Strategic Plan that identifies the downtown as an area where intensification and redevelopment is to be directed.”

Click to view report

Joe Gaetan, a frequent contributor to the Gazette explains that the 2017 Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, was prepared and approved under the Places to Grow Act, 2005 to take effect on July 1, 2017.
Section 2, entitled, Where and How to Grow, contains S, 2.2 Policies for Where and How to Grow, and S 2.2.3 entitled, Urban Growth Centres and contains the following:

“Urban growth centres will be planned to achieve, by 2031 or earlier, a minimum density target of:

b)400 residents and jobs combined per hectare for each of the urban growth centres in the City of Toronto;

200 residents and jobs combined per hectare for each of the Downtown Brampton, Downtown Burlington, Downtown Hamilton, Downtown Milton, Markham Centre, Downtown Mississauga, Newmarket Centre, Midtown Oakville, Downtown Oshawa, Downtown Pickering, Richmond Hill Centre/Langstaff Gateway, Vaughan Metropolitan Centre, Downtown Kitchener, and Uptown Waterloo urban growth centres;”

Oakville took an approach that attached more importance to Employment and Commerce. Their Livable Oakville committee produced a very detailed report – something Burlington might want t56o at least review.


The Sims building across from city hall is the only office building in the core of the city – the city of Burlington is the largest tenant.

Burlington has never succeeded in attracting commercial operations into the downtown core – parking space wasn’t possible – thus the major concentrations of corporate offices are along the north and south corridors.

“The Burlington Official Plan appears to be mostly silent on job creation or preservation of work land or spaces.

“This should be a concern to all and one more reason why our Official Plan process must be stopped in its tracks.”

Background material:

Where to download a copy of the Places to Grow legislation.

The Big Move – what it is and where to get a copy of the document.


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Major organizational moves by the city manager seem to be out of focus.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

December 15th, 2017


We received the following this morning:

The article published in this morning’s Gazette titled “Major organizational moves by the city manager seem to be out of focus” is wholly inaccurate for the following reasons:

Parks & Recreation has NOT been merged into Roads, Parks & Forestry (RPF). Parks & Recreation continues to be a separate department headed by Chris Glenn

There has been no reorganization undertaken by the city manager, except the creation of a deputy city manager position and changes to department names only.

Council was fully briefed and aware of the creation of a deputy city manager position, to say so otherwise in incorrect.

Mary Lou Tanner will continue to lead the Official Plan and the Mobility Hub initiatives as deputy city manager; a competition to hire a new Director of Planning will begin in January.

Ms Tanner’s appointment as the deputy city manager was in no way a demotion and as previously stated was a result of a comprehensive internal competition

On November 9th, the City Manager, James Ridge announced a renaming of departments at city hall and moving responsibilities into the newly named departments under the people who were to head them up.

The renaming of the departments in the city was to more accurately reflect the services that are provided to residents.

News anal BLACKAs of Jan. 1, 2018 Roads and Parks Maintenance will become the Roads, Parks and Forestry Department; with Mary Battaglia as lead.

Planning and Building will become the Department of City Building – Planning, Building and Culture with Mary Lou Tanner as lead.

Then on December 9th, Ridge announced that he had appointed Mary Lou Tanner as the deputy city manager after a comprehensive internal competition.

There is something about this picture that is out of focus.

If it was a “comprehensive internal competition”, and we will take the city manager’s word that it was – the competition had to be announced, those wanting to go after the job had to prepare their application, fine tune it, submit it and then let the Director of Human Resources and the City Manager review what they had.

The Director of Human Resources may well have been one of the applicants for the new position; we will let that slide.


Newly minted Deputy City Manager Mary Lou Tanner

Re-org November 9th, Tanner made deputy city manager December 9th – All this got done in less than a month?

What does the appointing of Tanner as Deputy City Manager do to the absolutely critical work being done on the planning side?

As of the 21st of this month the city doesn’t have a Planner. Tanner, the woman who was doing the job is now the “city’s representative for all Agencies, Boards and Commissions; acting in an advisory and liaison capacity for each organization and helping plan and coordinate major capital projects.”

Not much in the way of executive authority there

“Being responsible for the diversity and inclusivity portfolio; ensuring a strategy is developed, and implemented across the organization for all services and programs.”

Important but not the same level of influence as the Director of Planning

“Overseeing the Project Management Office, ensuring the priorities of this office are aligned with the Strategic Plan and corporate work plans and work with the Senior Leadership team to identify and establish priorities across the organization.”

James Ridge

City Manager James Ridge – now has a Deputy to aid the important work he does,

Tanner was a part of the Senior Leadership Team – now she “works with them”.  Will Tanner have any clout? Will she be making decisions or does everything she does slide up to the desk of the City Manager?

There is going to be a “transition plan including an acting Director of City Building will be announced in the near future; however in the meantime Tanner will continue to lead the work on the completion of the city’s new Official Plan.”

How much of this were the city Councillors fully aware of?  The City Manager is responsible for the administration of all city staff and serves at the pleasure of city council. Is Council pleased?

The time line for the approval of the Official Plan has been stretched out to April of 2018 from the original end of January 2018 date.

None of this looks very encouraging – we are changing horses in the middle of a fast flowing stream.


Chris Glenn

Director of Parks and Recreation Chris Glenn

There some additional concerns.  Parks and Recreation is now merged in intro Roads Parks and Forestry under the direction of Mary Battaglia who is a Director. She now has Chris Glenn, also a Director working under her?

Transportation doesn’t seem to have a home at a time when there are several significant studies being done on just how people are going to get around the city given all the intensification that is to take place.
Where does Capital Works fit into the new organization?

On Friday, the 8th of December we had occasion to be at the Fire department following up part on a news story and met with a deputy fire chief who advised us that the Fire Chief was still on the site of the blaze that shut down the Paletta operation in the south-east of the city.

That’s where a Fire Chief is supposed to be – where the problems are. The fire was basically out – with some hot spots that needed a close watch to ensure that they didn’t flare up.

city hall with flag poles

Is the apparent senior staff reorganization a good one or is it a picture out of focus.

The city has a problem – getting the new Official Plan in place and helping the citizens understand the mobility hubs. It is seen as a “hot spot” to hundreds of informed and involved people in Burlington. This is not a time to have senior staff fully immersed in the work they are in place to do.

Being made Deputy City Manager doesn’t look like a promotion – looks like the City Manager just got someone out of the way

And that is very troubling.

Links to related news stories:

Appointment of Deputy city manager.

Renaming of city departments.

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A CHILD’S CHRISTMAS IN WALES to be read at St. George’s Church Lowville

eventsgreen 100x100By Staff

December 11th, 2017



The Lowville Festival, Burlington’s festival of all the arts for the artist in all of us, is presenting a special Yuletide concert in collaboration with St. George’s Church Lowville.



A CHILD’S CHRISTMAS IN WALES, the beloved recollections of fabled Welsh poet Dylan Thomas, will be the featured work in a fundraising concert that will feature songs and stories of the festive season in Wales and around the globe.

The main artists in the concert- legendary Toronto publicist and actor Vivienne Muhling; soprano Gaynor Jones, formerly of the Canadian Opera Company; Robert Missen, Founder and Co-Artistic Director of the Lowville Festival; and pianist David Low, one of the region’s most distinguished keyboard artists- have been performing Welsh-themed concerts in Toronto and region for several years. Both Ms. Muhling and Ms. Jones hail from Wales.

This concert will be launched on Tuesday December 12th at the Performing Arts Lodge in downtown Toronto. In addition to the Thomas work, there will be a selection of Welsh and other nations’ hymns, songs and carols, as well as readings from other Thomas poems, and a special rendition by Lowville Festival Co-Artistic Director Robert Missen of A Visit from St. Nicholas, better known as ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas.

St Georges Anglican Church

St Georges Anglican Church

For the December 17th concert, which will take place in the seasonally bedecked sanctuary of St. George’s Anglican Church, a beautiful Edwardian stone edifice in north Lowville, this quartet will be joined by a number of local performers, including Lowville Festival Founder and Co- Artistic Director Lorretta Bailey, the well-known Canadian musical theatre performer; and Major 7th Band, a Lowville ensemble with a Celtic flair, which has come to prominence in the last short while. A couple of Special Guest Artists will be announced shortly.

All of the artists are donating their services to the concert. Proceeds will benefit both the Lowville Festival, which will be presented on June 8-10, 2018, and St. George’s Anglican Church.

The Festival has been delighted to collaborate with St. George’s on a number of Festival events since the Festival’s inception in 2015.

For more information and tickets contact Robert Missen at 905-632-6047.

Or by phone at 905-632-6047

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Parts of Longmeadow Road to be closed December 6th for sewer repairs

notices100x100By Staff

December 5th, 2017



A part of Longmeadow Road will be closed on December 6, 2017

Longmeadow Road, between Deerwood Drive and Winding Way, will be closed on Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for emergency sewer work.

Signs and barricades will be up and through traffic will be detoured on Deerwood Drive. Access to homes where the work is being done will be maintained at all times.

road barriers Longmeadow

Be prepared to deal with road barriers on parts of Longmeadow.

For more information, contact Florin Patrau at 905-335-7671, ext. 7838

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Tyandaga residents listen to report after report and learn that the brick company plans to begin cutting trees this winter.

News 100 greenBy Pepper Parr

December 4th, 2017



TEC stop quarry expansion Jul17It was a meeting where no one got what they wanted – the gap between the Meridian Brick company and the TEC  – Tyandaga Environmental Coalition was far too wide.

Meridian Brick was not giving an inch and the residents remained steadfast; they wanted their homes protected from what they were certain was going to be environmental and health damage.

It was a lengthy meeting – more than two and a half hours during which the brick company went through report after report on the progress of various issues – noise, human health, PM and silica monitoring, a species at risk report, an Archaeological study and a Salamander study. Most, but not all, delivered by people who could not have been more boring.

The evening was moderated by a brick company representative who would not let the microphone out if his hands. It was humiliating to those people who stood to speak.

The company continually talks of “ Being a good neighbour” which they say means “doing our part to keep you informed about what’s happening with Aldershot East, the third phase of the Aldershot Quarry.” Drives the residents crazy.

Aerial of the site with house location shown

The red line is the boundary for the third quarry that Meridian Brick wants to prepare for excavation work – which will require the clearing of all the trees.

During the meeting the company let it be known that they were very close to doing a clear cut of the wooded area in the eastern part of the property – which is yards away from the homes on West Haven Drive.

The residents pressed for a date – not a word from the company – who are just issuing reports that are mind numbing while city and provincial elected officials stand by muttering but doing nothing.

The MPP, doesn’t seem to be able to get the meeting the TEC people want with the Minister of NAtural Resources and Forestry and the Mayor has yet to realize that he can actually do something.

It was a depressing meeting.

Excavation equipment 1

How do you lesson the noise from a piece of equipment like this?

Excavation equipment 2

Expect a lot of noise from this equipment.

There was a report on managing the noise – the audience was assured that there was a plan for that as well.  How they are going to manage noise from the heavy duty excavation equipment will be interesting.

In one of the presentations the audience was told that two documents govern pits and quarry operations: the license and a site plan.

Many feel that the license issued in 1972 doesn’t reflect the environmental changes that have taken place since 1972.

The requirement for a site plan put this right smack in the middle of the city’s domain. The whole Air Park mess was about the need to file a site plan.

The city hasn’t said a word about whether or not Meridian Brick is in compliance with the site plan requirement. Watch for some push from the environmental lawyer representing the West Haven residents.

Meridian Brick has set out a timeline for the excavation work they plan to do. There was the hint that they were saying to the residents that they didn’t have to worry – a lot of the work was 10, 12, 15 and 20 years out.

Most of the residents will have moved on – this isn’t a young family community.

Westhaven looking toward lake

West Haven looking toward lake.

And while that may be true – the value of any homes that are put on the market is going to be a lot less than the value today. An appraiser report suggests that values decline by between 10% to as high as 40% when a quarry is opened close by. The maps in this story show just how close that quarry is to the high end homes.

Activities in the north corner will not take place until late in the site’s life – approximately 15 to 20 years in the future.

The entire east quarry site will be progressively rehabilitated and reforested as the site is extracted.

Meridian Brick said the complete initial mitigation plan will be completed in the fall of 2017.

An access corridor to the west area of the site and initial tree clearing is to begin in 2017/2018 winter.

In 2019 to 2023 site preparation stripping of stage 1 and continuing rehabilitation of the center quarry.

2023-2033 – Stage 2 preparation and excavation.

2033-2038— Stage 3preparation and excavation.

East and center quarrysa linked

Map shows the link between the center quarry that is being worked now and the eastern site that the company wants to begin working in 2018.

The Archeological study that was done to determine if there was any land that was used by the aboriginal community. There was some evidence found, enough to call for further study – but not enough to be able to say that there actually was an aboriginal community on the property.

Interesting however is the mention that the report has t6o be sent to the Minister of Tourism and Culture and Sport who happens to be none of the than Burlington’s MPP Eleanor McMahon. The rport read out to the audience says: “This report is submitted to the Minister of Tourism and Culture and Sport as a condition of licensing in accordance with Part VI of the Ontario Heritage Act, RSO1990, c 0.18.

McMahon - First public as Minister

Minister McMahon has a duty to approve at least one of the reports that Meridian Brick issued. No comment from her office so far.

“The report is reviewed to ensure that it complies with the standards and guidelines that are issued by the Minister, and that the archaeological field work and report recommendations ensure the conservation, preservation and protection of the cultural heritage of Ontario. When all matters relating to archaeological sites within the project area of a development proposal have been addressed to the satisfaction of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture and Sport, a letter will be issued by the ministry stating that there are no further concerns with regard to alterations to archaeological sites by the proposed development.”

Is the Minister going to issue such a letter – without meeting with the TEC people?

There are issues that the TEC people can follow up on – but they do so at their expense. So far the city hasn’t lifted a finger in the way of support for the residents.

They are hoeing rough ground over on West Haven Drive.

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Eva Amos can't wait for New Street to be returned to what she felt it should have been all along.

News 100 yellowBy Staff

November 28, 2017



Eva Amos is pleased and happy knowing that she did her bit to prevent the New Street diet from becoming a fact that would have changed the way traffic moved along one of the more important roadways in the city.

“My biggest complaint” said Amos “was with the stats. The comment I kept hearing over and over again was there was an increase of 33% in cyclists from 60 pre diet to 80 post.

New street - being rebuilt“Do 80 cyclists warrant changing the road configuration for 15,000 to 20,000 drivers?” This is now. What will the vehicular traffic be when all the intensification is complete. Had there been 10 cyclist’s pre diet and then 20 post would we say the cyclists have doubled?

“Also there was little mention of the cyclists on the sidewalk. How many were actually on the road or crossing from the Centennial path?”

“I guess the numbers made a difference – our numbers. The 3282 signatures on the online petition with accompanying comments. The 675 signatures on a hard copy of a petition.

Articles in the papers, letters to the editors and the calls to Council members made a difference. And the hour long television feature on The Issue helped.

“Maybe numbers in the end did win out.”, said Amos

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