Should water bottles be banned?

At Monday’s Council meeting Petra Hartwig and Gigi Ludorf-Weaver asked Council to do three things: 1) declare that water and sanitation services are fundamental human rights, 2) ban bottled water in municipal facilities and municipal events and 3) install outside water bottle filling stations strategically placed around the Town. Councillor Nicole Beatty showed support by drinking from a flask and Mayor John Henderson pointed out that Victoria Hall had already replaced two drinking fountains with bottle filling stations. Petra and Gigi were primarily representing the Blue Communities Organization but were also representing the Northumberland Chapter of the Council of Canadians, Sustainable Cobourg and Blue Dot.  Petra and Gigi pointed to the enormous profits made by water bottlers who anyway often… Read complete articleShould water bottles be banned?

County Plans Expansion of Affordable Housing

Northumberland County has the responsibility of providing affordable housing and currently owns and operates 344 social housing units.  But there is a problem, the waitlist for RGI (Rent Geared to Income) housing is currently “nearly 700 households … in Cobourg”.  A newly developed Affordable Housing Strategy points to 4 goals and 44 actions to solve the problem and will be presented at the County Council meeting on March 20.  Also at that meeting, Council will be asked to approve a project to add 22 units to the existing 18 at their current Elgin Street property.  These duplex houses are now 50 years old so it’s proposed to re-develop the complex into higher density.  Because of the need to rezone and… Read complete articleCounty Plans Expansion of Affordable Housing

Housing in Cobourg, 2019

During the last municipal election campaign, councillors heard that there was a lot of support for affordable housing.  Responding to this, the Town’s budget now has a line item of $250,000 to support housing even though it’s really a county responsibility.  There are two ways people provide housing for themselves: renting and buying a house, and both are a concern.  The rental vacancy rate in Cobourg is 0.3% and the average price of a home in Cobourg is now $455,000, up from $300,000 just four years ago.  According to the Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, “affordable” rents must be no more than 80% of average market rents.  In Northumberland in 2018, the average rent for a two bedroom… Read complete articleHousing in Cobourg, 2019

First New Year Baby at NHH

Cobourg Blog News does not usually report on news of births but excuse me if I make an exception.  Northumberland Hills Hospital has a reputation of being excellent at what they do and making parents happy about the birthing experience has to fit that.  For some reason, being the first baby to be born in a New Year is somehow special but in this case it seems to be more than that.  Lindsey Drake-Shalapata (mom) and Alex Shalapata (dad) are from Oshawa and had such a good experience the first time they had a baby born at NHH that they came back again. The announcement from the Hospital said that the baby was born “just a few hours after midnight… Read complete articleFirst New Year Baby at NHH

Christmas in 2018

My thanks to everyone who has expressed appreciation for my work at this news source – it does help to keep me going.  Most of you are subscribers to my emails – that list is now about 960 – and some of you have heard about this service from the Northumberland Hub.  A group of journalists led by John Miller and Rob Washburn are trying to educate people in Northumberland about all the sites (like this one) who provide news. (More at Northumberland Hub – link below). A lot has happened locally in 2018 and there will be more interesting stuff happening in 2019 but in between we have Christmas which is a season where everyone (hopefully) chills out and stops worrying… Read complete articleChristmas in 2018

Big Success for Habitat – Fund-raising Goal Exceeded

On November 22, Habitat for Humanity Northumberland launched a campaign to raise $20,000 to build local affordable homes in Northumberland County.  Since it’s their 20th anniversary, they set the goal to raise $20K for their 20th in 20 days, ending on December 11th.  They announced yesterday that this campaign had raised $35,000 – easily beating their goal.  As well as their lead sponsor (Spoolon) who made a significant contribution, they had 10 “day sponsors” who contributed $1000 each and 3 “half day sponsors” who contributed $500 each.  There was also a raffle held in conjunction with the Gingerbread Festival which raised $700 and of course a number of people donated to make the campaign a big success.  This included the… Read complete articleBig Success for Habitat – Fund-raising Goal Exceeded

News Sources in Cobourg

With the closing of Northumberland Today and with Northumberland News only published once a week, Cobourg residents are looking for alternative sources of daily local news.  About 160 people came to a public meeting on 20 March 2018 and a group was subsequently formed to try to do something about it.  The result has been Northumberland Hub – a web site that provides links to the latest local news reports.  The intent is to help people find online news sources. Although local news is now covered quite well, it’s more scattered and you have to work at getting all the same information. The situation with traditional newspapers seems to get worse each year with many of them moving online and… Read complete articleNews Sources in Cobourg

The Passing Scene: The Ignored, Dark Secret

Over the years I have developed a routine when it comes time to write this column; with an early publication week deadline, I start working on the idea I’ve been mulling over in my head, oh, from about the previous Wednesday or Thursday, with a writing target of two days later. But this week, not feeling 100%, I procrastinated, tossing ideas around before rejecting one or the other …. almost passing over the ever growing story of sexual assault at Toronto’ s all-boys, Saint Michael’s School. Having been raised in the English school system of segregating male and female students, with all its attendant stunted social growth, stories about sexual assault by teachers on male students was fairly commonplace, reported… Read complete articleThe Passing Scene: The Ignored, Dark Secret