More from January 14 Council Meeting

In addition to the surprise change in vote by Deputy Mayor Suzanne Séguin about opting-in on Cannabis retail stores, there were some other surprising moves made – notably by Councillor Emily Chorley.  Debbie Davis submitted a petition “on behalf of concerned parents from Terry Fox Public School, regarding amendments to the No Parking Restrictions on Riddell Street and the end of White Street.”  As expected, staff recommended that Council direct the petition to Public Works Staff for a report back to Council.   But unexpectedly, Emily successfully moved that a timely report be made given that there were many items that have been on unfinished business for many months.  Her motion specified a limit of 3 months.  Another surprise was a Notice… Read complete articleMore from January 14 Council Meeting

Update on Cannabis Opt-in Decision

Tonight was the first regular council meeting of the new council and they had a full plate.  But first, they had photographer Ted Amsden (no longer Poet Laureate) take photos of the Council and a second one of Council and senior staff.  Thanks to his setup, I managed to get one of him with the council and staff – see below.  Mandy Robinson then gave a presentation on the history of Town criers and how they were important in distributing news from the monarch.  Her presentation was followed by reports on some transactions for businesses coming to Lucas Point, an agreement on the draft procedural bylaw to go to the public meeting on January 28, some routine motions and then… Read complete articleUpdate on Cannabis Opt-in Decision

Highland Games wants Town’s Money

On Monday (January 14 at 6:00 pm), the Town of Cobourg is holding a public Meeting to solicit input on the 2019 budget.  On the spot submissions will be accepted as well as written submissions in advance.  One of these is by Edgar Carman, President of the Cobourg Highland Games Society – he wants $9000 in a cash grant plus a $3984 in-kind grant.  It’s not clear to me why Edgar is going this route instead of the Community Grant process which required applications by October 31st.  He points to the big tourism benefit which brings “over 1,000 competitors and vendors plus the attendees from across Ontario and Northern United States. They fill the local hotels, motels. There is a… Read complete articleHighland Games wants Town’s Money

Councillors were Busy at their First Meeting of 2019

At their first Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday, in addition to discussing a report on the election, debating and deciding on a new Council meeting procedure and on whether to have retail Cannabis stores in Cobourg (see links below), Council also heard a delegation on Christmas lights, discussed business carried over from 2018 and decided on whether to re-hire the same Integrity commissioner.  Bruce Moore made a presentation that asked to “Make Victoria Park Great Again” by restoring Christmas lights there.  He said that it was supposed to be a temporary move and it was now time to move them back [They were moved in 2015].  He said that new technology could avoid damage to trees if that… Read complete articleCouncillors were Busy at their First Meeting of 2019

Revisions to Draft Council Procedural By-Law

As reported earlier (see link below), at Monday’s Committee of the whole meeting, Council was asked to approve a draft revised procedure for council meetings.  The intent was to present it to a public meeting on January 28 looking for input.  But Emily Chorley spoke for several on Council who wanted immediate changes – in particular, items that dealt with delegations and a question and answer period.  Emily said that the proposed procedure was “moving in the wrong direction” and she would be putting forward 20 amendments to the document.  She suggested that Council’s consideration of the document should be postponed until after the public meeting but Deputy Mayor Suzanne Séguin pushed ahead with a line by line review of… Read complete articleRevisions to Draft Council Procedural By-Law

Cobourg to Opt-in to Cannabis Retail stores

At tonight’s Committee of the Whole meeting, Council voted 4 to 3 to “opt-in” to allowing retail Cannabis stores.  This has yet to be confirmed with a by-law at next Monday’s regular meeting but it’s unusual for councillors to change their vote.  There was a considerable debate after the staff motion was read by Deputy Mayor Suzanne Séguin which recommended “opting out”.  John Henderson was strongly in favour of opt-out since not only could we opt in later but we could learn from other similar sized municipalities who had opted in.  Brian Darling pointed to the strong majority in the survey who had no concerns – 78.5% vs 21.5% of 3,458 participating. He felt that we need to act now… Read complete articleCobourg to Opt-in to Cannabis Retail stores

Capitol Announces Replacement for Antonio

With Cobourg reviewing the Cultural scene with the development of a Cultural plan, one item of interest is what’s happening with the Capitol Theatre in Port Hope.  In October 2018, the Capitol Board announced that Executive Director Antonio Sarmiento would be leaving on December 31 and would be replaced by two Directors: an Artistic Director and a Managing Director.  Olga Cwiek, Board Chair of the Capitol Theatre has now announced that these will be Susan Ferley as Artistic Director and Mike Forrester as Managing Director.  As announced in October, they will focus on making the Capitol a non-profit community theatre – with apparently more emphasis on “community”. Both Susan and Mike have a wealth of talent and experience in theatre in… Read complete articleCapitol Announces Replacement for Antonio

Report on Voting at Municipal Election

At the Committee of the Whole meeting on January 7, Town Clerk Brent Larmer will present a report on the recent Municipal election including statistics and possible changes for the next election in 2022.  At the time, there were a few reports of difficulties and Brent has addressed these in his report.  Improvements suggested include upgrading voter list accuracy, expanding the number of days for voting, removing telephone voting but adding additional Voter Help Centres (in person voting locations) and improved communications.  The turnout was low at 43.6% although it was better than the Provincial average of 37.7%. But overall, Brent declared the 2018 Municipal Election a success since it “demonstrated convenience, efficiency, accessibility and a cost benefit to the… Read complete articleReport on Voting at Municipal Election