To the Editor,
This year marks the 51st anniversary of the partnership of Kin Canada and the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Association to raise funds in support of Cystic Fibrosis research.
Today, because of the investment in research, children with Cystic Fibrosis are living longer, productive lives as a result of vital CF research as patient care.
In 2014, Kin Canada raised $1.2 Million nationally. Over the past 51 years, a total of $42 Million has been raised as our commitment, and we are more confident than ever that a cure or control will be found in our lifetime.
Locally, the Kinsmen Club of Uxbridge will once again be holding Tag Day Fundraisers on Friday, May 8, and Saturday, May 9 at several local Uxbridge businesses.
In addition to the Club members past and present and supported by many dedicated community volunteers who are fully involved with this important cause, the Kinsmen would welcome any other volunteers age 16 and over who can contribute two hours of their time to help complete a full roster of canvassers for this important cause.
If you are able to offer help for Tag Days, please contact Kin Campaign Chair Jim Campbell, at 905-852-6086.
Kinsmen Club of Uxbridge
As the high school teachers strike in Durham Region enters its second week, there appears to be no end in sight for the job action, and still no concrete explanation as to why schools continue to be shut down.
Both sides - the school board and province on one side, and the teacher’s union on the other - seem to be blaming each other, with neither side ultimately saying much of anything.
The logical explanation is that a lot of the matter is boiling down to money. For more than a year, the Liberals have been saying that there is no money in the budget for public sector wage increases. And they were true to their word when the 2015 provincial budget was tabled last week.
Ironically, it was union support - particularly from teachers - that helped to push the Liberals to a majority government during last year’s election. It now appears that they have gotten exactly what was promised to them, and a result, have walked off the job.
At times for much of the past decade, It has been easy for the residents of Ontario to criticize the provincial government for going back on what they say. But this time, they have delivered exactly what they promised.
Although, to be fair, the public doesn’t know for certain if that is the case, since more than a week into the strike no one has said anything of consequence.
Well, almost no one.
The elementary and Catholic school boards have both spoken up in the past week, saying that they will soon be in a position to join their high school counterparts in Durham, Rainbow and possibly as of May 4, Peel on the picket lines.
To the Editor,
I have lived on Lake Scugog for past nine years and have been fishing it for much longer. Living on the lake has made me have a vested interest in protecting the lake, and was the main reason why I got involved with the Scugog Lake Stewards about three years ago. At this time, I noticed a drastic decline in the number of walleye I was catching and was invited to attend a presentation by Mike Rawson, who is with the MNRF and is in charge of the Kawartha Lakes Fisheries Assessment Unit. It was not a surprise to find that his data indicated what I had already expected, that there had been a drastic decline of walleye over the past decade.
I wrote a letter to the Fisheries Management Zone 17 in September, 2012, asking for the winter fishing for walleye to be closed so the population would have a chance to recover. It is the only lake in the Kawarthas that allows ice fishing for walleye and one of only three places in the entire Zone, (one section of the Trent and Crowe Lake are the others). I was invited to attend a few FMZ17 meetings and it was agreed that something needed to be done in order to help the Lake Scugog walleye population recover.
After a lengthy process I was happy to receive an email indicating that a posting was added to the Environmental Registry regarding proposed changes for Lake Scugog. I invite anyone interested in protecting the walleye population on Lake Scugog to view the posting, by visiting www.ontario.ca/environmentalregistry and search for 012-3903. The posting outlines some background information, the proposed options and as well provides information on how to comment on the proposed options. The fact sheet provides more background information on the walleye population in Lake Scugog as well as outlines the proposed options and how to comment.
As well, to provide anglers and other interested individuals with an opportunity to review information for walleye in Lake Scugog, a public meeting has been scheduled for: Tuesday, April 28, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. for an Open House, with a short presentation at 7 p.m. in the Rotary Room at the Scugog Memorial Public Library, 231 Water St., in Port Perry.
If anyone is looking for further information, please contact by e-mail: FishPTBO@ontario.ca or by phone: 705-755-2001.
Amid much hoopla, the Ontario Liberals presented a plan last week that claims to open up sales of beer across the province. However, it’s a plan that does little to offer more competition and choice for consumers.
The new guidelines put even more control in the government’s hands over who gets to sell beer, when they sell it and how much they charge.
Some power has shifted away from the three major foreign brewers that own the Beer Store. Instead, the province will have even more control over the sale of alcohol, adding several unnecessary layers of bureaucracy to the business of beer.
The government was touting the fact that as many as 450 grocery stores will be able to sell beer under this plan. However, that won’t happen for many years since the current plan is for up to 150 grocery stores to carry beer by May 1, 2017. As well, the beer will be sold at urban grocery stores, leaving retailers in small communities left out of the party.
Also left out of the party is anything even resembling competition since the prices will be the same at grocery stores as at the Beer Store. As well, there will be limits on how much beer an individual store can sell, and as is the current case at LCBO outlets, nothing larger than a six-pack will be sold. There’s nothing the government seems to love more than throwing money at consultants for studies, and this plan has that too, with the LCBO conducting a pilot study at 10 stores to gauge how viable the sale of 12-packs would be.
The Liberals squandered the chance for real change in favour of the status quo, and as always it’s the consumer paying the price for greed and shortsightedness.
To the Editor,
I wanted to take the time to remind the residents in this area just how lucky you are compared to those of us in Toronto.
A family member recently had a child at the New Life Centre at the Port Perry Hospital, so needless to say, a trip to see the new arrival was in order!
First of all, you should be beyond pleased with your hospital. For one, we didn’t need a map or complex directions to find our way around. Even if we did, everyone was so cheerful and friendly, it was almost a shame that we didn’t, since I’m sure the staff would have gone out of their way to assist us. We have nothing but good things to say about the ladies at the gift shop too!
But, the real kicker was when we went to leave and we found out that it would only cost us four dollars to park - total. Not for 15 minutes, not for an hour - four dollars flat!
This would never happen in Toronto, unfortunately we spent some time at Sunnybrook not too long ago, and it was outrageous! I hope eventually the government will do something, because parking fees at hospitals have been out of hand for far too long. Luckily, there is some decency left in the world, we just had to drive to Port Perry to be able to find it.
Dorothy Morris, Toronto
Every trip slightly south of North Durham reveals more and more work being done on the expansion of Hwy. 407, with 65 more kilometres of toll highways on their way.
With the government finally doing what it should have all along, and recently announcing a further $1.2 Billion to fund a further 23 km extension of Hwy. 407, from Harmony Rd. to Hwy. 35/115, the good news keeps coming for residents of not just this area, but the province as a whole.
The money eventually generated by tolls from this highway will actually flow back into public coffers for badly-needed infrastructure repairs and transit projects. Unlike the 407 as it currently exists, which was leased to an international conglomerate for 99 years in an all-time plunder under the watch of former Premier Mike Harris. In the years that have passed, the province has missed out billions of dollars in squandered funds.
Hopefully, this trend of toll highway construction can continue, not only to help alleviate gridlock on the “free” highways but to fund other projects that are badly needed after decades of under-funding by all branches of government.
Traffic is the bane of many people’s existence, and any steps taken to lessen that burden should be applauded, either through tolls, or expanded HOV lanes. In highway driving, you get what you pay for, and the gridlock on most other highways in this province proves this point on a daily basis.
The sting of the Harris government’s short sighted deal to abandon the 407 shouldn’t stop future toll highway projects from succeeding where the province once so spectacularly failed.
To the Editor,
I have just packed up all the returned kits and banked the money from donations to the Heart and Stroke Foundation. The Person to Person campaign in Scugog Township was incredibly successful in spite of the extreme cold throughout February.
We have raised over $19,000 going door to door; hoping each door would be opened. With many online donations still to be tabulated, we are sure to reach our goal of $20,000! Thank you canvassers who bundled up and headed into the icy wind to reach your neighbour's front door.
Thank you neighbours for opening that door to the worst wintery blast in years and giving so generously. I have requested Heart Month be moved to July next year.
Scugog Township P2P Campaign
Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada
Ontario’s taxpayer-funded $100,000 club includes more than 100,000 members for the first time ever.
The annual ‘sunshine list’ of six-figures-and-up earners on the provincial payroll included 111,440 people last year, marking a 13.9 per cent increase.
Many become outraged each year with the thought of ever-climbing public sector salaries, including annual paycheques of more than $1 Million in some cases.
For your frustration - the former chief financial officer of Ontario Power Generation, Donn Hanbidge, was fired after a 2013 auditor general’s report which highlighted problems within the utility. Still, Mr. Hanbidge received a tidy sum of $1.208 Million, including severance.
Created in 1996 as a government effort for transparency and culpability, the sunshine list is growing at a staggering rate. With money tight all-over, let’s consider why. Perhaps in some cases, the sunshine list warrants another look, before the pitchforks and torches come out.
Inflation is a major factor in why the sunshine list continues to swell, and why it might not be fair to the names it highlights. The symbolic $100,000 figure, from almost a generation ago, is worth $145,046 today, according to the Ontario consumer price index. Conversely, $100,000 today is the equivalent of $70,260 in 1996. If the threshold had kept pace with inflation, there would be 19,260 public servants on the list this year - the number who cleared $145,046.
Another issue is that we learn the salary and taxable benefits of each employee, but not the hours or conditions they worked in. If a rough count of hours worked was included, it would be easier for the public to tell who cashed in just for showing up time to time - and who slaved away to earn their pay.
If the sunshine list is an effort in honesty, let’s make it go both ways.