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No apology from council regarding Polutnik, says Port Hope mayor

Despite a direct public appeal to council from a resident asking for an apology, Port Hope Mayor Bob Sanderson said no, but expect some changes to the code of conduct. Port Hope residents looking for an apology from its council regarding the behaviour of one of its councillors won’t get one, the mayor said Thursday. Mayor Bob Sanderson said council has done its job and there is no need for any public apologies to those people affected by the actions of former councillor Robert Polutnik. It is up Polutnik to make his own apologies, Sanderson said. “You won’t see council offering anything,” he said. Continue Reading →

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Tour of new Venture 13 building keeps councillors, media up to date on progress

Media and Cobourg town councillors were given a tour of the new Venture 13 space on Friday while it is undergoing renovations as part of a public information campaign to keep residents up to date as the $2 million project progresses, said Communications Officer Ashley Purdy. Here is a photo gallery of the tour. Venture 13 is the town’s new entrepreneurial incubator to draw new and small business to the area. More to come… Continue Reading →

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Future of Transition House hangs in balance as county pulls funding

Cobourg Mayor predicts closure of 24-hour emergency shelter after county council expedites new housing program
The future of one of two 24-hour emergency shelters for homeless people in Northumberland County is hanging in the balance after County council has pulled its funding. Meanwhile, Cobourg Mayor Gil Brocanier predicted in an interview Wednesday that Transition House will likely close after the cut in financial support. Transition House board of directors vice-chair Bridget Jokitalo said Friday a letter from the County arrived last week notifying them of a change in funding. While she was unable to provide details about the amount of money, she said it was enough to create a serious situation for the board and the future of the shelter. “It is very precarious,” she said, adding she would not comment any further until the board meets shortly to decide what’s next. Continue Reading →

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A proposed five to eight percent tax increase in Cramahe Township

By Mandy Martin
CRAMAHE TWP. — Expect a 5-8% tax increase in Cramahe Twp. taxes this year. At present, the municipality is planning to raise $5,878,810 to operate in 2018, nearly 13% more than in 2017. While the total value of properties on which taxes are levied has increased nearly 2% this year, so has the need to provide more services, cover the increase in the cost of living, energy, etc, Cramahe Treasurer Nicole Leach-Bihun noted at Cramahe Twp. Continue Reading →

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New contributor to Consider This, welcoming former blogger Ben Burd

It is wonderful to announce Ben Burd agreed to come out of retirement to contribute some items from Cobourg council meetings. The Burd Report was the first blog in Cobourg to address local news and issues, but the site was recently retired. Ben, a former Cobourg councillor, NDP candidate and local activist, expressed an interest in providing notes on meetings from his winter home in Mexico to help fill any gaps in local news coverage. His pieces will fall under the title, Ben’s Bits. This is part of Consider This initiative to provide a platform for local news from alternative sources. Continue Reading →

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Protocols for extreme cold to protect homeless being proposed in Cobourg

Cobourg council is expected to introduce protocols Monday to deal with homeless people facing extreme cold, a top bureaucrat said Friday. Chief Administrative Officer Stephen Peacock said he is taking a request to the general government committee to create a policy to provide assistance for homeless people during times of frigid temperatures similar to those experienced since the new year. It will be up to Deputy Mayor John Henderson to make a recommendation that staff draft a procedure similar to those in other municipalities to respond when particular conditions exist threatening extreme cold in the winter. “It makes sense to have something we can use,” he said. Currently, the Town designates six places as warming and cooling centres during extreme weather, but there are no specific rules. Continue Reading →

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Homeless face extreme cold with few alternatives at night

As some of this winter’s coldest nights have taken place in West Northumberland over the past week, the only refuge for homeless people is the Cobourg Police Station’s warming centre, according to a public health nurse for the region. Kristina Nairn, the social determinants of health nurse for the Kawartha Pine Ridge District Health Unit in Port Hope, said the closure of the Transition House in Cobourg had left a hole in the local system to help homeless people during the extreme cold, especially at night. Some warming centres are open during the daytime across the region, giving homeless people a place where they can go to find shelter from the frigid temperatures. West Northumberland was under an extreme cold alert on Jan. 4 with temperatures plunging to -35 degrees. Continue Reading →

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New early years program launches next month across county

Starting in January, Northumberland County begins its transformation of the Ontario Early Years program in the hopes of bringing more diverse services to more children and their parents. But for some, it is a sad departure from a much-loved model at the local YMCA. The reasons for the changes are simple: the Ontario government no longer wishes to run the program, at the same time, it hopes to expand the services for young children and their parents, making it more localized. It will direct the program by providing guidelines, mandates, and some money, but leave it to the local municipalities to execute it. It is a lofty goal for the program, which started 14 years ago in 2003. Continue Reading →

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In Cramahe Township 17 of 20 bridges need repair

By Mandy Martin

CRAMAHE TWP. — Of the 20 Cramahe Twp.-owned bridges inspected for structural safety this year, 17 are identified as requiring some form of repair, rehabilitation and/or replacement by D.M. Mills, the engineering firm contracted by the municipality for $3,200 to do the inspections. The engineering firm suggested Cramahe schedule the estimated $2,277,000 of 16 recommended repairs over a 10-year period, with the highest priority items first. Top priority is the replacement of the Bailey Road bridge at an estimated cost of $495,000, followed by $48,000 of guide rail improvements of the Dawson Road bridge. Following the Bailey and Dawson Road projects by priority and estimated cost are:
• replacing Dingman Road bridge, $585,000;
• concrete patch, waterproof, pave, install guide rails and address settlement connections for Ontario St. Continue Reading →

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