Town Hall Meeting – mostly about the Beach

Communication is good and in these difficult times the only way to have a Town Hall meeting is online.  Using Zoom, MPP David Piccini and Mayor John Henderson co-hosted a meeting tonight for Cobourg residents to ask anything about Covid-19.  I counted 20 questions and up to 71 participants and, no surprise, most questions (12) were about the Beach closure with the majority in favour of closure or if not, wanted assurance that social distancing could be enforced.  There were also questions about wearing of masks and a couple of other items – see below.  Mayor Henderson referred most questions to the decision making that will come out of the Council meeting on June 29.  I did not hear any… Read complete articleTown Hall Meeting – mostly about the Beach

Nurses Campaign for Equity

In late 2019, the Provincial Government passed a law that limited salary increases for workers in the Public sector to 1% per year for three years.   Not too terrible (more below) but it exempted Firefighters and Police officers which are predominantly male while Nurses who are predominantly female are not exempt.  Given their role in the current fight against the pandemic, Nurses are not happy and the Ontario Nurses Association (ONA) LOCAL 105 decided to have a day of action.  They campaigned outside the Port Hope Office of MPP David Piccini and their spokesperson Sarah Cowin had a meeting with David.  I counted about 16 demonstrators although some were representing Gay Pride – I’m not sure what the connection is…. Read complete articleNurses Campaign for Equity

Province Opens Up – Partially

Today, Premier Ford announced that starting this Friday, June 12, the Province will loosen Covid-19 restrictions. Social gatherings of 10 are now permitted instead of 5 and now allowed to open will be Churches (subject to limits) restaurants (outdoor patios only), hair salons (subject to limits), swimming pools and more (details below).  But this does not apply to all of Ontario; a notable exception is the GTA plus a few other locations.  The HKPR District Health Unit which includes Cobourg is included in the loosened rules.  In all cases physical distancing apply. This is in line with the Province’s plan to move to Stage 2 on a regional basis (see link below for a description of Stage 2). As we’ve… Read complete articleProvince Opens Up – Partially

MPP David Piccini briefs Cobourg Council

At the regular Council meeting on Monday, MPP David Piccini reported on what was happening with a number of Provincial programs and how they affected Cobourg.  As shown on the recently approved budget, the Province provides close to $1M of Cobourg’s revenue – much of that is jointly with the Federal Government which provides another $1.6M.  The big items are Cobourg’s request for funding for Harbour repairs plus the ongoing hope of funding for the Victoria Square Project which has been on hold for a few years pending such funding.  David also reported on a number of smaller grants plus he spoke briefly about the Provincial Project to improve MPAC which provides all property assessments in the Province – these… Read complete articleMPP David Piccini briefs Cobourg Council

GO Bus Service to Cobourg

For at least 15 years, local residents have been lobbying for an extension of the Go Bus/Train service to Port Hope and Cobourg (see links below).  In 2015, Mayors from Clarington, Port Hope, Cobourg and others got together to commission a study and subsequently the Province announced that the train would be extended to Bowmanville.  But the hope of lobbyists is that the Go Bus service which currently terminates in Newcastle would continue on to Port Hope and Cobourg’s Northumberland Mall. To do this, they must first convince Metrolinx that there is a viable business case. This recently stepped into high gear when Northumberland County added a goal to its current Strategic Plan to “Advocate for extension of GO Transit… Read complete articleGO Bus Service to Cobourg

Northumberland Ontario Health Team Announced

On June 6, 2019, the Provincial Connecting Care Act came into force.  This governs a complete revision to how Health Care is managed in Ontario. The biggest change for Northumberland will be that the role of LHINs will be much reduced and replaced by Ontario Health Teams (OHTs) which will be overseen by a new agency Ontario Health.  Today, Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health announced the approval of the Northumberland Ontario Health Team.  The idea is that the OHTs will manage and ensure integration of all health services in a geographic area – in this case Northumberland.  Or as MPP David Piccini puts it in a Press Release: “Through an Ontario Health Team, patients will experience easier transitions… Read complete articleNorthumberland Ontario Health Team Announced

MPP Piccini Announces New Funding for NHH

At an announcement this morning at the Northumberland Hills Hospital (NHH), MPP David Piccini announced $3.79 Million in new annual funding for the Hospital.  The formula has been revised so that this will continue in future years.  Bob Sanderson, Warden Northumberland County said: “By rectifying an historical inequity in hospital funding formulas, the Province is ensuring that the dedicated staff, physicians and volunteers of NHH have the support they need to continue delivering excellent care to local residents.”  NHH CEO Linda Davis was clearly happy with the change and said that “this announcement is a turning point in the evolution of Northumberland Hills Hospital” and  “We know all too well what our priority needs are. We have – until now… Read complete articleMPP Piccini Announces New Funding for NHH

Pre-emptive Upgrade at West End of King Street

The community at the West end of King Street (including Pebble Beach) has only one entrance/exit; if it were to be blocked – for example by a collapsed culvert – it would be an emergency and a million or so would need to be spent to quickly restore access plus the damage would need to be fixed for another million or so.  It makes sense therefore to spend the money now and make sure the access is reliable and not likely to collapse.  This logic appealed to the Provincial Government when they looked at applications for infrastructure funds so they approved spending $1.5M of which $1.24M will come from the Province and $250K from the Town.  As Mayor John Henderson… Read complete articlePre-emptive Upgrade at West End of King Street