Community Grants for 2021

Council today had a long session to review the 2021 budget – and it’s not yet finished.  It will continue tomorrow, Friday.  There were long sessions on the Fire Department and Police and some other smaller departments but each year, one group of decisions gets attention out of proportion to the amount of money involved – and that’s the Community Grants.  In the last few years the total awarded to those who applied has been limited to $50k but this year is unusual and most Councillors were keen to keep the increase to a minimum.  Councillor Adam Bureau worked with Deputy Mayor Suzanne Séguin to decide on recommended awards but before he could get going, Councillor Brian Darling moved to reduce all cash grants to zero but keep in-kind grants.  His motion was defeated but although the total requested was less than $50K, the total of grants approved was only $28,681.

Each request was considered individually – see  approved list below. There was a separate motion for each grant – Council amended some and approved amounts per the table below.  The list shown is not final – Council must approve the budget as a whole but the amounts are not likely to change since Council did vote to approve each one individually. Each motion also specified what the money would be used for.  You can get more detail from the Video at the 5:05:20 mark (see links below).

Approved Community Grants
(Updated to show in kind)

Organization 2021 request 2021 Approved
Cobourg and District Historical Society (in kind) $1,517 $1,517
Cobourg Ecology Garden $2,314 $2,314
Cobourg Lawn Bowling Club (in kind) $5,500 $5,500
Cobourg Museum Foundation (in kind) $8,300 $4,300
Community Care Northumberland $10,000 $2,000
La Jeunesse Choirs $5,000 $2,000
Les Amis $3,000 $2,000
Northumberland 89.7 FM (split – some n kind) $2,300 $1,300
Northumberland New Ventures $4,000 $750
S.O.N.G.  Sounds of the Next Generation $2,500 $2,000
Victoria Hall Volunteers (split – some in kind) $5,000 $5,000

Stay tuned for reports about the rest of the two days of meetings.

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21 Comments
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Informed
22 January 2021 1:26 pm

Lawn bowling isnt a service required during a pandemic. Divert all funds from there to commuity care. Perhaps some findraising efforts can be done this summer to assist with whats needed at the lawn bowling club . Of course due diligence should be done to see why there are so many extra funds required by community care but it should be fairly obvious.

Informed
Reply to  John Draper
22 January 2021 6:22 pm

Thanks for the clarification

JimT
Reply to  Informed
22 January 2021 9:33 pm

 Be very careful about asking “why there are so many extra funds required by community care…”. It might leave some readers here “breathless” and attract a torrent of downvotes for merely addressing a point on a particular budget item.

Informed
Reply to  JimT
23 January 2021 8:24 am

Im not worried about down votes. I actually support community care. Understanding why they need a big increase will hopefully enable them to receive more funds.

JimT
Reply to  Informed
23 January 2021 12:09 pm

I certainly support the concept of Community Care, it’s just the petty knee-jerk reactions that annoy me if anyone even raises a point about such things to encourage discussion.

Last edited 3 months ago by JimT
cornbread
22 January 2021 10:50 am

Very simple solution to the problem…reduce the grant for low cost housing by $8,000 and apply it to Community Care..or has Cobourg realized that LC Housing is a county responsibility and dropped the original $250,000 budget item.

Mrs. J.
22 January 2021 9:14 am

I’m VERY disheartened to see, especially during this time of a pandemic, money not being FULLY given as requested by Community Care! OF COURSE they are asking for more this year, than in the past, because they are very much in demand during these trying times. Just consider the cost of PPE alone, for these caring, amazing folks that are putting themselves out there, in harm’s way, to give assistance to the sick, disabled, frail, alone, and needy folks. I, personally, found myself relying on Community Care in the recent past, and unless you’re in a situation that has benefitted from their unselfish services, you probably are not aware of just how totally vital they are in our community!
In my humble opinion, those musical, historical, museum, Victoria Hall volunteers, etc. groups, are all niceties to have in a community, BUT right now there are far more pressing NEEDS for oh so many folks!
Shame on our Town Council, for not getting our town’s priorities straight during these times of Covid19!

Constance Mealing
Reply to  Mrs. J.
22 January 2021 9:59 am

I totally agree. My husbands last days at home would not have been possible without their dedication. Also they were invaluable to me after three surgeries in one month then three months recovery. They were unfailing in their help which I so badly needed.

Karen
Reply to  Mrs. J.
22 January 2021 10:14 am

I fully agree, although I am lucky that I have not required this service, I am fully aware of their need in the community and should have been granted the full 10,000. A comment to this could have been applied that it was a one time increase so that next year it would be fully assessed again. Shame on our elected officials for not recognizing this need.

Liz
Reply to  Karen
22 January 2021 6:42 pm

Perhaps we could all go to the Ecology Garden, steeple our fingers, close our eyes and go OMMM….. sometimes these things are decided by political connection of representatives than actual purpose and need. With medical staff tied up with COVID 19 people needing other most needed services you would think community care would be a no brainer for the grant especially as grant requests were well under budget.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Liz
23 January 2021 12:26 am

Perhaps we could all go to the Ecology Garden, steeple our fingers, close our eyes and go OMMM….. sometimes these things are decided by political connection of representatives than actual purpose and need.” 

AND

Get a load of this; Sometimes these things are not decided by political connection of representatives, but by actual purpose and need. The Cobourg Ecology Garden Committee since its founding 25 years ago has been informing Cobourg of the benefit of respecting our organic environment by example. It has been the recipient of much talent. Rory Quigley, Cobourg Arborist, provided an afternoon of talk and questions for the community. Secondary students earned their credits at the garden, including classes of environmental students on special projects. The Garden received in-kind services, such as using Public Works to establish the accessibility path, or add bicycle hookups and extend Hibernia sidewalk to the Garden for the benefit of the seniors in Legion Village who previously had to go out onto the street to visit the boardwalk. Successive Ecology Garden Committees have been scrupulous in their relationship with the Town of Cobourg.

To characterize the many people who have volunteered to enhance and enrich the Cobourg Ecology Garden as those who steeple fingers, close their eyes and go OMMM is very unhelpful and condescending.

Liz
Reply to  Wally Keeler
23 January 2021 7:11 am

Wally you have taken it the wrong way altogether. It is a sad state that there is so little increase in community care at a time when medical staff are very, very busy.

I recall when my father was dying. Although he had premade application for entry into the veteran’s hospital he would have certainly preferred to die at home but the care options he required were not possible. Despite the care my father passed not long after refusing to eat as in that quality of life he only wished to die.

Sometimes the only thing one can do is close ones eyes seek peace and say a quiet prayer. In mentioning the Ecology Garden I was thinking of a place of peace for such a sad task when you are unable to provide the level of care a person needs. I am reluctant to reveal this to you as you have written some very biting comments to me describing me more or less as a monster with no feelings or thoughts of people’s suffering hopefully you will not send a biting comment on this reply.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Liz
23 January 2021 9:35 am

I absolutely reject your accusation.

beach lover
Reply to  Mrs. J.
22 January 2021 10:38 am

It does seem odd that lawn bowling merited 5k while Community Care just 2k especially since it’s required year-round not just seasonally.

Fact Checker
Reply to  beach lover
22 January 2021 2:05 pm

Beach Lover
Agree that Community Care merits more than $2K for the service that they provide. However, as John D noted above, Lawn Bowling received an in-kind grant….no cash, as did the Historical Society and others.

Barb
Reply to  Mrs. J.
22 January 2021 12:01 pm

I agree! I have had to use them upon occassion myself!! They are NEEDED!

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Mrs. J.
22 January 2021 1:41 pm

Mrs. J., I agree regarding Community Care.

I’m unsure of the other groups but the Historical Society did not get any money. Their approved “grant” was to have several evening meetings in an otherwise vacant room in Victoria Hall. With the pandemic it is doubtful that they will be able to have a physical meeting this year so they actually received absolutely nothing.

You can register for the Historical Society’s next virtual meeting by visiting https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_kYRynGz7T1eWVPwuX4D9mg

Last edited 3 months ago by Ken Strauss
Wally Keeler
21 January 2021 11:51 pm

I’m pleased that the Cobourg Ecology Garden has maintained its status. It acts as both concierge to the west beach and as sentry. This year it will be celebrating the 25th anniversary of its founding by Minnie Pennell.

I am curious about Community Care Northumberland that merited a drop from 10K to 2K.

JimT
Reply to  Wally Keeler
22 January 2021 12:15 am

In 2020, Community Care Northumberland asked for $2,000 and got $2,000.

The real question would seem to be why they asked for 5x as much this year.

https://www.cobourgblog.com/news-2020/council-chooses-community-grants-for-2020

Lyle
Reply to  JimT
22 January 2021 12:02 pm

Sometimes thing written leaves me breathless, could be the reason is the current COVID CRISIS