Holdco – Should their finances be Public?

Holdco is the holding company for Lakefront Utilities and Lakefront Utility Services Inc. which provide water and electricity to Cobourg and is owned by the Towns of Cobourg (most shares) and Cramahe (one share).  Although Holdco issued annual reports in 2017 and 2016 for the previous years, these reports have minimal financial information.  It may be possible to obtain their financial reports but they do not make it easy and I have not yet seen a report for 2017. Personally, I have not been able to find any Holdco Financial reports online. In addition, they have had esoteric battles with the Cobourg Taxpayers Association (CTA) over details of their activity.  But they do pay a dividend to Cobourg each year –… Read complete articleHoldco – Should their finances be Public?

Downtown Vitalization – What do Candidates think?

Vitalization of Cobourg’s Downtown has been a project since before the last election.  In 2014 a Billboard was erected at the corner of Division and King that outlined plans into the future.  Although there has been a lot of activity, the issue is still the subject of advisory committees like the Downtown Coalition Advisory Committee as well as the Downtown Business Improvement Area (DBIA) committee (composed of downtown merchants).  At one point, the town even issued a newsletter providing progress reports (see Link below).  More recently, the Community Improvement Program (CIP) has been providing money to applicants to spruce up their buildings.  It’s not clear exactly what Council can do to help since it’s not in the business of operating stores or… Read complete articleDowntown Vitalization – What do Candidates think?

Tourism – Municipal Candidates’ Positions

The second “leading question” asked of all candidates in the upcoming election was “Tourists – Are they good for Cobourg?”  Many of the Policies and decisions made by Cobourg’s Council encourage visitors to Cobourg.  There are Town staff whose job it is to cater to Tourists; the Town has a web site that provides information for Tourists yet not all Downtown merchants and citizens see a benefit. Although the DBIA organizes many events downtown, it could be argued that these are intended to attract residents to Downtown and not necessarily visitors.  Tourists spend money in Cobourg but they also cost for more policing, garbage collection and they create crowds.  Is it worth it?  Should Tourists be encouraged?  Each Candidate gives their… Read complete articleTourism – Municipal Candidates’ Positions

West Harbour – Candidates give their positions

On August 31, all candidates in the upcoming Municipal election were asked seven leading questions on hot topics – this is the first in a series of posts giving their answers (see link below for other questions and more about the candidates).  Candidates were asked to keep their responses short; if they did not, their submitted text has been abbreviated. The first question on the list asked about the West Harbour. The recent Waterfront study made recommendations about the harbour including expansion of the Marina into the West Harbour.  The issue has been the subject of a lot of discussion in the Town (as judged by comments on this blog) and by Councillors.  The position of those running for election varies… Read complete articleWest Harbour – Candidates give their positions

Meet the Municipal Candidates

The Northumberland Central Chamber of Commerce has picked up the ball and will be holding an all-candidate meeting at the Best Western on October 10.  The format will be similar to the one used in 2014 and once again will be called Speed Campaigning (see photo below of Larry Sherwin’s table in 2014).  The idea is that all candidates (including for English Public School Board Trustee) will sit at tables and citizens will have five minutes to ask them direct questions before the candidate rotates to another table.  With 9 candidates for Council, 2 for deputy Mayor and 4 for English Public School Board Trustee, that means at least 15 tables.  Attendance is limited to 125 people and they want… Read complete articleMeet the Municipal Candidates

All Candidates’ Debate cancelled

Up until now, there had been only one All-Candidates meeting/debate scheduled and that was by a joint effort of the CTA and Northumberland 89.7 on October 10 – but now it has been cancelled.  The radio station issued a statement that there was a disagreement on format but the CTA (Cobourg Taxpayers Association) said that the problem was that some Candidates did not want to participate if it was organized by the CTA.  It seems that the venue has been reserved and paid for and it is hoped that another organization will take over and hold the much needed forum for Candidates to air their platforms. Although the Mayor has been acclaimed, there are still important contests for Deputy Mayor… Read complete articleAll Candidates’ Debate cancelled

Some Surprises in Nominations for Cobourg Council

Nominations for the next term of Council have now closed and it looks like John Henderson will be acclaimed Mayor since no-one has filed to run against him.  Randy Curtis had filed to run as a Councillor but at the last minute, he changed his nomination so that now he will be running for Deputy Mayor against Suzanne Séguin. There are nine candidates running for the five Council positions.  Of the current councillors, only Aaron Burchat and Brian Darling will be running again.  This will be the first time for Suzanne and Aaron to be elected since they were both appointed when there were vacancies on the Council.  School Board Trustees will also be up for election with four candidates… Read complete articleSome Surprises in Nominations for Cobourg Council

The Passing Scene – A Man’s Job?  Why?

Back in the olden days – well, the olden days of 1837 – one Ebeneezer Perry proudly accepted the chain of office as the very first Mayor of Cobourg, no doubt a splendid occasion. The very first, according to Cobourg 1797-1948 by Edwin Guillet which, interestingly, was produced by the Business and Professional Women’s Club of Cobourg under the direction of one Margaret Pewtriss. Perry came into office in 1834, slightly behind W. Lyon Mackenzie in Toronto, and ahead of John Scott in Ottawa in 1855 and Hamilton’s Colin Ferrie in 1847. Not bad for a small town. Going over the list of people who have held that office since its creation is like taking a journey through Cobourg’s history, a… Read complete articleThe Passing Scene – A Man’s Job?  Why?