Many Old Municipal Documents No Longer Available Online

At the beginning of this year (January 1), legislation passed in 2005 required new standards for accessibility for web sites provided by Ontario municipalities (amongst others). This means that online documents must meet standards that were not previously mandatory.  But Northumberland County and probably the Town of Cobourg have thousands of documents that don’t meet those standards.  Since this is a significant amount of work, the county has taken these documents off-line as has the Town although for a different stated reason.   That means that the public can only access most bylaws or earlier agendas and minutes by emailed request (details below).  The County is asking the Province to change the legislation and the Town is saying that the issue… Read complete articleMany Old Municipal Documents No Longer Available Online

Tim Hortons Coming to East End

The owners of the property at the northeast corner of King Street East and Brook Road North first applied for approval to develop the property in 2014 and despite getting approval, never proceeded to build.  But in April 2020, another application was made and has worked its way through planning with several changes.  I reported on one version in August 2020 – see link below – but the final site plan was up for approval at the Committee of the Whole Council meeting on January 25.  Council approved the application.  Development will be in two phases with a gas bar and Tim Hortons in the first phase.  The plan includes two spaces for Electrical Vehicle chargers and a second phase… Read complete articleTim Hortons Coming to East End

Budget Meeting – part three

A lot of ground was covered in the two days of budget meetings – but at around 6:00 pm on the second day, Council came in under their target as reported earlier. The first day included presentations by the Police even though the only thing Council could do was to reject the entire budget.  It was pre-approved by the Police board in closed session and only open to the public once it was approved. But at the budget meeting, the Police presentation was all about how the Police make a contribution to the Town both financially and with partnerships. More on this below. The Fire Department Chief and Deputy Chief, the Library CEO, the AGN Executive Director and Town staff… Read complete articleBudget Meeting – part three

Budget Meeting – Beach and Events

The budget meeting last Thursday and Friday covered a lot of ground – budgets for all departments were reviewed so staff and councillors talked about many issues and provided a lot of insight into what is being planned for 2021.  For example, what’s happening because of the pandemic; what projects will go ahead; will Tourism be encouraged?  As several Councillors said, it’s too early to decide whether the Beach should be open or how it should be managed but this certainly is an important subject.  Although budgets decide on money allocation, Council budget decisions also point to what staff should spend their time on.  Below are some of the things that Council and Staff mentioned and decided and help us understand… Read complete articleBudget Meeting – Beach and Events

Cobourg Council Meet 2021 Budget Target

After a marathon two full days of a special Council Meeting to review the 2021 budget line by line, Council managed to reduce the draft budget sufficiently to more than meet the 0 to 1% target set by Deputy Mayor Suzanne Séguin.  All Councillors contributed but Councillor Brian Darling made the most suggestions for reductions – although some were only to start a discussion.  There were many decisions made and a lot of information provided so it won’t be possible to give a full report in one post (besides, I’m tired!)  But stay tuned over the next week for reports on the highlights – e.g. what to do about the beach, the CCC and the Concert Hall.  Below is the… Read complete articleCobourg Council Meet 2021 Budget Target

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… Read complete articleCommunity Grants for 2021

CAO report on Progress with Strategic Plan

Unlike many corporate five year plans which gather dust, Cobourg’s four year Strategic Plan is actively used to direct Staff.  Each staff memo to Council references the relevant action in the Strategic Plan and once a year the CAO is asked to provide an update on progress.  So at the next Committee of the Whole meeting (C.O.W. on January 25), CAO Tracey Vaughan will present the update for 2020 – that is, what got done in 2020 and what remains to be done.  See the links below for the full report – 21 pages – plus a cover memo complete with a summary.  This post will try to extract highlights – those items that I think are of most interest…. Read complete articleCAO report on Progress with Strategic Plan

Motel Plans Expansion

The Holiday Inn Hotel planned up near the Home Depot is still stuck in the planning stage but another hotel (actually motel) has now applied for Site Plan approval to add a 50 room expansion to their existing 16 rooms.  The budget motel at 1144 Division Street was originally called Motel 401 but after a scandal involving the owner a few years ago, there was a change of owner and a name change to Studio One.   The current Motel is a single story building facing south and facing a park-like strip of land.  The expansion will occupy that green-space and will be three storeys.  The fact that there is this application to expand has to tell us that the owner… Read complete articleMotel Plans Expansion