Residents Request Grants for 2022

The main item on the Agenda for Monday’s Special Council meeting was for citizens to convince Council that their request for a Community grant should be approved.  When  applications closed on October 31, 26 requests for a community Grant had been received – totalling $91,926.  Last year, 11 organizations received a total of $28,681 and Deputy Mayor Suzanne Séguin indicated that she expected that less than $30K should be approved this time.  All organizations were invited to present their case to Council but only 14 did so – the total of those presenting came to $42,076.  The full list is provided below.  In 2020, a total of $49,575 was approved for 26 organizations.  At the same meeting, Council also accepted input on the proposed budget but few had anything to say.

There was no discussion about any grant requests by organizations who did not make a presentation and neither copies nor descriptions of their applications were provided. Therefore, it’s not clear what their chances of approval are.

Summary of Applications

  Description Presented to Council 2021 Approved 2022 Request
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northumberland   No 0 5,000
Cobourg & District Historical Society In kind, use of rooms at Victoria Hall Yes 1,517 2,328
Cobourg Ecology Garden Fixed costs & maintenance – “it’s a Town Park” Yes 2,314 2,299
Cobourg Highland Games   No 0 13,100
Cobourg Lawn Bowling Club Passes for free parking – this benefit brings visitors to Town Yes 5,500 5,500
Cobourg Museum Foundation – Capital Grant   No 0 3,600
Cobourg Museum Foundation – Property Taxes Has been regularly approved No 4,300 4,400
Community Care Northumberland Donation – lots of trips for Cobourg Residents Yes 2,000 5,000
Film Access Northumberland (Eye2Eye) Cost of use of Victoria Hall Yes 0 3,000
Horizon of Friendship Supporting Migrant workers – 24 live in Cobourg Yes 0 1,000
La Jeunesse Choirs   No 2,000 2,000
Les Amis Supporting world-class concerts – some in Victoria Hall Yes 2,000 3,000
Northumberland 89.7 FM – Small Town Radio Summer Concerts – in-kind use of bandshell Yes 1,300 1,300
Northumberland Festival of the Arts For Events in Victoria Hall Yes 0 4.360
Northumberland Hills Studio Tour   No 0 1,000
Northumberland Oral Health Coalition Volunteer group supporting dental health Yes 0 500
Northumberland Orchestra   No 0 5,000
Northumberland New Ventures Band Beginner players – low cost concerts Yes 750 1,000
Oriana Singers   No 0 3,000
OSGA 55+ Games   No 0 250
PARN (your community AIDS Resource Network)   No 0 2,000
Song – Sounds of The Next Generation   No 2,000 2,500
Sustainable Cobourg Wants partnership with Town – provide expertise Yes 0 5,000
The Rose Quest Personal Care Initiative Provides personal hygiene products to people who cannot afford them. Yes 0 3,000
Victoria Hall Volunteers Volunteer group fundraising to maintain and improve Victoria Hall Yes 5,000 4,789
Victorian Operetta Society   No 0 8,000

A subjective observation would be that all organizations seemed worthy.  No doubt with this in mind, Deputy Mayor Suzanne Séguin remarked that decisions would be guided by the Town’s Community Grants Policy – notably, would the grant provide a significant value of arts, culture or social well being to a wide segment of the citizens of Cobourg. See link below to download this policy.

The presentations are all available with the Agenda on the Town’s web site – see the link below.

A decision on who will get the grants will be made during Budget deliberations later this month.

At the beginning of the meeting Council heard two presentations:

  1. A request for permanent outdoor PickleBall courts;
  2. Ted Williams was concerned about the cost and priority of some waterfront projects plus he wanted a one-time adjustment of the Town’s accounting to make it possible for the Marina and the campground to be always self-supporting from now on. (His presentations are included on the Town’s Agenda for the meeting – see link below).

Hope Bergeron also made a written submission asking for the fixed route bus service to be brought back.


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Ken Strauss
2 years ago

In many cases the reporting of the requested community grants does not clearly distinguish between actual cash awards and requests to use town facilities without charge. For example, the Cobourg and District Historical Society requested free usage of meeting rooms in Victoria Hall which incurs no additional cost to the town. Is the request from the Victorian Operetta Society similar or do they want actual funding? What about The Rose Quest Personal Care Initiative? What about Northumberland Oral Health Coalition? What about Oriana Singers? What about…? Grants with associated costs require thoughtful discussion but why not approve all grants that have no actual cost yet provide benefits to residents?

Last edited 2 years ago by Ken Strauss
Reply to  Ken Strauss
2 years ago

One of the best comments yet…the Town gives a free cost room to a registered group for a meeting…yes, yes, yes. It didn’t cost taxpayers anything as long as the users set up the room and clean it up after use.

George Taylor
2 years ago

suprised to see that some made the cut & others did not?
big brothers big sisters
highland games
cobourg museum foundation (at the new old folks home)
oral health (us older folk NEED that)
and other cultural organiations? (the feel good town)
maybe give less money than the asking?
ALSO the County should provide toward these groups to take some of the expense off of Cobourg taxpayers? afterall us folks in the rural areas use the facilities.

George Taylor
Reply to  John Draper
2 years ago

Sorry, i did not realise this. BUT my point WAS rather than not grant any money, was to maybee grant a leser amount?

2 years ago

I hope Town Council follows up on Ms. Bergeron’s comments and observations about true individual autonomy and value of regular transit routes and bus stops; and, her practical experience with what she describes as a trip hazard on public sidewalks, the inserted bubble indicators at street corners which are intended to help accessibility and not hamper it. I will also suggest that Council reach out to local organizations who help seniors and others, like the GAIN Team, to learn more about cognitive and physical impairments and how to make safe travel between destinations intuitive and better for all when using public streets and services. People who can still manage on their own count on reliability, and with a little bit of help and consideration can continue to enjoy personal independence. Especially when driving a personal vehicle is no longer an option.

Reply to  MiriamM
2 years ago

I agree with Ms. Bergeron’s comments re on-call bus service in Cobourg:
(starts on page 23)

The web site used for booking transit is badly designed and difficult to use. Booking a return trip by cell phone is even less helpful.

One woman I spoke to pointed out that she has to phone in and book her trip to work every morning, and the bus will be available at widely different times, depending on demand.

Better to know that the bus will be at its usual place at the same time every time – that is, the “old” way of doing it – in my opinion.

Last edited 2 years ago by JimT
Reply to  JimT
2 years ago

I agree with this regular route system…however, all I ever see in town is large empty busses increasing our town’s carbon footprint. Smaller busses please…less cost, more efficient.

Reply to  MiriamM
2 years ago

Those blister-like bumps, also known as truncated domes and detectible warning pavers, are a part of tactile paving — paving that can be felt. It helps visually impaired pedestrians detect when they are about to leave the sidewalk and enter the street” – taken from a quick search. It is interesting that a legally blind person, Ms. Bergeron, finds them more of a hinderance than a help. Perhaps more research should have been done in the design.

Reply to  Kevin
2 years ago

The truncated domes on the sidewalks are perilous when coated with snow and ice.