Art in Victoria Hall

At the next Committee of the Whole meeting, Council will be asked to approve a Policy for Public Art in Victoria Hall.  Intended for public areas only (not employee working areas), Council asked for the development of a policy when Marie Dressler Foundation Chair Rick Miller asked why a picture of Marie Dressler was removed from the Citizen’s Forum at the request of the Victoria Hall Volunteers (see link below).  It seemed there were two reasons for their objection: Marie was not connected with Victoria Hall and the Citizen’s Forum was their meeting room!  The implication is that the policy should restrict art to be related to Victoria Hall, especially in the Citizen’s Forum, but the new policy does not… Read complete articleArt in Victoria Hall

The Passing Scene – Thinking Out Loud!

Recently, I had medical incident that, in the last week of August, took me to the pride of the county, Northumberland Hills Hospital (NHH), where I was seen quickly and treated – and then referred to a Cobourg specialist who referred me to the Kawartha Cardiology Clinic in Peterborough; which, in turn, referred me back to NHH, having scheduled another cardiac exam on January 23rd 2019. Or five months since my initial appointment. Now, I’m not a young lad any more, except in spirit, though I like to think I present as a sprightly older person, notwithstanding the the cane I am now carrying (just in case). Heck, just a couple of years ago I was cycling over 1500 kilometers… Read complete articleThe Passing Scene – Thinking Out Loud!

Asset Management Planning

All Ontario Municipalities must have an Asset Management Policy in place by July 1, 2019 and an Asset Management Plan for core municipal infrastructure assets by July 1, 2021 and for all assets by July 1, 2023.  Cobourg has had a basic Asset Management Plan for some time (using GIS) but it does not yet have a “policy” – this would spell out which assets are included, when to use it, how it aligns with financial planning, who is responsible for it and how residents can provide input to it.  At Council’s next Committee of the Whole meeting, Melanie Chatten, G.I.S. Coordinator of the Town of Cobourg, will provide an update on progress in improving the plan.  Previously, Cobourg’s Asset Management… Read complete articleAsset Management Planning

House Prices Steady, New Development Approved

Since my last report in May, house prices in both Toronto and Cobourg have been steady although the Real Estate people will point out that prices in August 2018 were 19% higher than August 2017 (see chart below).  Inventory is below average but there is no frenzy happening like there was in the spring of 2017.  Listings and sales are relatively slow – sales are down 30% from this time last year. However, they are better than earlier in the year. In August, the average price in Toronto was $765k and the average in West Northumberland (mostly Cobourg) was $479K.  This is significantly up from 2 years ago when it was around $360K and way up from 9 years ago… Read complete articleHouse Prices Steady, New Development Approved

Another High Tech company at Venture 13

A Silicon Valley company that started in Northumberland (Warkworth), moved to Cobourg and then to Palo Alto has now decided to occupy a space in the VentureZone in the Venture 13 facility.  The product is a personal flying vehicle called the Black-Fly that works like a drone – electrically powered and capable of vertical take-off and landing.  It qualifies as an ultralight aircraft in the US and Canada and has a range of 25 to 40 miles (depending on jurisdiction).  Funding was initially helped by Northumberland CFDC in 2012 but they moved to Silicon Valley in 2014.  The first flight of the high tech aircraft happened in Northumberland on October 5, 2011 but it was first publicly demonstrated in Palo… Read complete articleAnother High Tech company at Venture 13

Pilot Project for Recycling glass

Starting September 25th and continuing until the end of February, 2019, two groups of 100 homes in the East end of Cobourg will participate in a pilot project to determine the parameters and viability of recycling glass in separate bins.  Yellow bins will be issued to these homes and they will be asked to use them for the bottles or jars now put in with other recyclables. This is separate and additional to the planned twin bins for recyclables and separate collection of organic waste planned to be implemented 1 Sept 2019 (see link below).  The pilot project is required so that the Waste Management people at the County can learn just what the volume would be and whether it is… Read complete articlePilot Project for Recycling glass

Affordable Housing on George Street

At the back of the house at 513 George Street (on the corner with Princess Street) is a garage that has been damaged by fire and now the owners are planning to rebuild it but with the addition of a small apartment on top. Nancy Lashley and Lawrence Foster have asked for a zoning variance to allow them to add this – it’s called a “Coach House”.  Note that because it’s so small it would have to be an affordable rental apartment.  Also, it was only in January 2017 that the Zoning By-law was amended to permit coach house dwellings (Bylaw number 013-2017 – see links below to download from Town web site).  At the Council meeting on September 10,… Read complete articleAffordable Housing on George Street

Shelter Valley donates to S.O.N.G.

In closing down the Shelter Valley Folk Festival organization, a home was needed for the $10,000 remaining cash of the registered charity. In an email today, the remaining organizers of the festival announced that this money would go to the Sounds of the Next Generation  (S.O.N.G.) organization whose “charitable objects are very much in line with the festival’s.”  The Festival started in 2004 and while it was operating, it was quite popular with fans coming from a distance.  The fifteen or so performers were generally very good but after a spat in 2015 with the Henkels who owned the land where the Festival was held, there was a lot of turmoil and eventually the Festival had to close down due… Read complete articleShelter Valley donates to S.O.N.G.