Scugog Council and senior staff attended a Strategic Planning session at Nestleton Waters Inn on January 17th - 18th, 2019. Previously, such meetings had been held in the Fire Hall Training Room, or in Council Chambers, with light refreshments and a sandwich platter for lunch. Senior staff with administrative and/or human resources experience previously acted as session leads, rather than contracted professional facilitators, as was the case this time, thereby minimizing any costs to the taxpayer.
These sessions are meant to be a high-level overview where the new Council’s vision and goals are set for their term. It was clear the public had not been expected to attend, nor were the local press in attendance.
Nestleton Waters Inn is a successful wedding and meeting venue currently operating under a Temporary Use Zoning By-law, which will expire in 2020. The charge for rental of the main floor of the estate is $500 per day, plus meals.
Durham Region Council held a similar planning meeting at the Inn in 2015, when Bobbie Drew was on the Strategic Planning Steering Committee. The budget for that one-day meeting was reported as being $2000. Scugog’s costs have not yet been revealed.
The owner of the Inn is now the Scugog Ward 4 Councillor. When asked on January 17th who was funding the Scugog planning meetings, she replied that she didn’t know.
Councillors must disclose any pecuniary interests, and are expected to perform their duties in a manner that promotes public confidence and that will bear close public scrutiny.
Spending taxpayers’ dollars on a self-indulgent “retreat” for seven Council members and over a dozen senior staff cannot be justified. Strategic planning kits and even a “Dummies” book are available for about $30.
The cost and the chosen venue for January’s meetings represented poor judgement.
Ray Smith, Port Perry
Our prices are down at the pumps it is true,
more prosperous trippers, much road rage's through.
Tuition is falling for all those in need,
so it seems help is happnin’ cause money’s bin freed.
The pumps are supplying some cash for the bus,
so transit is growing and this was a must.
A wise use of taxes builds hope in this case,
where past jokers just used up what stared in their face.
Some values were brought back, they protect our young kin,
from companions of Wynnfall and where they have bin.
Yet police are in peril 'cause manpower's down,
single cops are patrolling city crime in each town.
As doobies are carried in public from stores,
they can act as excuses for using much more,
disguising the reefer as government brand,
the counterfeit business will grow in demand.
Old dealers will work on the look of their stash,
so supplies can be filled up from neighbourhood cache.
As a burdened police force will try to discern
with laws for the “needful” whose health has been burned.
A wise use of taxes could help in this case,
$10,000's a token for what stares us in the face.
The gift to each region, to whitewash the cost
of drugs now permitted, communities loss.
It stands as an insult to value of life,
intoxicants increased to grow the tax might.
Let's use a percentage, like used from the gas,
to grow the police force and save someone's ... uh, behind.
Thank you to everyone who have called all levels of government about this issue.
I am so happy and must congratulate the council for doing this survey, allowing our citizens in the township to talk about things their not happy with. I would only hope it will be published, including all the items people felt important enough to bring to light and hopefully, will be discussed and corrected were possible.
I hope everyone had a great January and families got to talk and share thoughts and dreams of future expectations of this new council.
This one mega farmer is still ripping and tearing perfect woodlots and protected watersheds apart, with no regard to rules or common sense. This township and regional councils need to stop rubber stamping these severances at least until they clean up their act to begin with, while we as a community assess the damage done so far. Take a drive from Port Perry to the east and see the damage.
Kawartha Conservation says they must actually prioritize which infractions are the worst and try to deal with them. How do you fix destroyed tree lines and altered water coarses or bring back nature destroyed, by this ONE farmer. Hardly a fence row left or clump of trees in sight where this Corp has reached across and wiped out the neighbour. Another house severed and more money in their pocket to take out the next section.
I’m not after the responsible, love-of-the-planet-farmers who have expanded in a polite way, and I hope they understand the stance I’m taking. It’s for their kids, grand kids and neighbours future in farming that I’m really thinking about now. Everyone seems blinded by houses covering all the good land but should really be thinking, who’s going to control all the farmland, with natural and carbon sensitive acres of marsh, streams, lakes and forests that will be our saviour some day.
My hope is Doug Ford will stop this carnage and help the smaller farmer have a fair chance to protect these lands, before all the land is gone. Please contact Lindsey Park our area MPP by calling 905-697-1501 or emaling her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The government can easily change this policy back, Amendment 172, and save these hobby farms from becoming homeless and helpless. Anyone wanting to sell their little farms or properties with sensitive acreage, please be patient and take care and ask who the buyer is and maybe pause to think, “will they care for my piece of paradise”. Many of you have nurtured and protected this piece of ground for years, as our forefathers did.
We can find you a young farmer or buyer with a conscience. In the end the money it sells for will be fair and equal to all others. If you’re selling, you control the pace of the sale and all offers should literally be on the table. So you know everything is proper and both offers are being treated the same and equally.
Anyway if you feel so inclined please make any and every level of government aware of your thoughts again, so we as a community can grow together without having a huge property master in our future. We can make this a diverse and soft agriculture area for all, which includes simple things like grassed fence rows and preserving all viable trees, which will stop torrents of water full of soil and chemical heading to our lake system, wildlife and fish stock sanctuaries.
We shouldn’t ham string our farmers but we must demand common-sense sustainable practices as commonplace from the mega farm.
(Save our Farms Today) SOFT
Thank you. David Malcolm
Shortpause@gmail.com or Text me at 9054420086
“What we do for ourselves dies with us but what we do for others will be remembered forever.”
Happy 2019 to the residents of Scugog. This is my first Mayor’s Message and I am excited to bring you Township news and information. We hope that this avenue provides an additional way to engage with residents.
The 2019-2022 term of council is off to a great start. We have an enthusiastic group that is hitting the ground running with work. The Council is a good mix of new and seasoned representatives who ran positive campaigns and this group has already proven they are comfortable in expressing their views, while having productive and respectful debates on the issues coming forward.
During the election, staff were hard at work continuing to deliver services, projects and initiatives. To continue the path forward, an updated Strategic Plan will be developed. I and members of Council and staff will participate in a two-day strategic planning workshop to set the priorities, objectives and initiatives over the next term of council.
The Strategic Planning Sessions will review all ideas and wishes from Council, current strategies, projects and initiatives as well as the results of our survey to formulate a strategy and priority playbook. I would like to thank all those who participated in our Speak up Scugog and Cannabis Retail Public Outreach surveys and phone poll. Collectively we heard from over 1200 residents for feedback. Taking the time to fill out a survey and provide your opinion helps us, as we make decisions.
The full Strategic Plan will be drafted for Council approval, at the end of February. Once approved for release, staff will conduct a public information session to introduce the proposed strategy and provide one final opportunity for public input.
Some of the ongoing priority work will continue in the following areas:
Meet and work with our friends the Missisaugas of Scugog Island First Nation to reach a fire protection and road maintenance agreement that works for everyone.
Continue the Environmental Assessment application process and fundraising work for the Lake Scugog Enhancement Project which includes dredging the lake and engineered wetland.
Continue the advocacy work to obtain financial stability for Scugog by seeking provincial compensation and funding, to offset the growth constraints of the Greenbelt and Oak Ridges Moraine.
Make a decision by the provincial deadline, January 22nd regarding retail cannabis stores in Scugog.
I’m looking forward to continuing my visits of community groups throughout the next few months. I wish you much health and happiness in 2019.
~Mayor Bobbie Drew
Operation Scugog was enthusiastically supported by our great community and surrounding area this past Christmas, helping 91 families and 127 singles and couples have a merrier holiday season.
A special thank you once again to our “Hoodie Elf”, Sandy O’Hare and her Facebook friends, for donating a total of 165 new hoodies as well as hand knit items, socks, shirts, sweaters and a winter coat. Drop off locations for food, toys and hoodies were supported by BMO, Canadian Tire, Emmerson Insurance, Focus on Scugog, Foodland, Gus Brown, McDonald’s, PP Print, Royal Bank, Scotia Bank, Shoppers Drug Mart, Vos Independent and Walmart. Thank you also to Herrington’s, Foodland, McDonald’s and Vos for accepting cash donations on behalf of Operation Scugog.
Hamper Day at Victory Christian Centre ran like a well-oiled machine thanks to our many volunteers. Thanks to McDonald’s and Hanks for donating coffee, muffins and donuts. A delicious lunch was provided by Port Perry United Church for our volunteers.
All the volunteers that make up Operation Scugog would like to say a huge thank you to those who adopted families, as well as to those groups, individuals and businesses that donated food, gifts, gift cards, money and time to support our Hamper Day. You were instrumental in making the 2018 Christmas Campaign a huge success.
Operation Scugog Christmas Campaign Coorinator
Letter to the Editor,
I respectfully, strongly, disagree with the Caped Cearnsader’s “Pool project can wait” column, in the Standard last week. I believe we urgently need a recreational centre complex to serve active residents, young and old, and act as a centre for our community. Badminton, indoor lawn bowling, basketball, swimming, pickleball, bocce, etc… We should not force our youth and residents to be active outside of Scugog.
Rather than proceed with a “pool at significant cost to the Township,” per the Caped Cearnsader, let’s try an innovative approach, already used in many other municipalities. Let’s define our rec-centre requirements and then let a citizen led group explore, in consultation with the township, the public/private partnerships that can make it happen sooner rather than later. All with minimizing the capital outlay of the municipality. Let’s be creative and think outside the box!
Ivo Finotti, Port Perry
What a great response we had for our 23rd Animated Bakersville Gingerbread Display at the library during the Holiday Season! Thank you to everyone who participated by making a creation; we had 80 wonderful entries of varying styles and skills making it the best village to date. We had thousands of visitors from all over the province and other countries, who had nothing but praise and admiration for this incredible community effort. Our local Press, such as The Standard Newspaper, who were wonderful with all of the support, printing our releases in a timely manner and as well, CHEX/Global TV’s interview and exposure of the village, put us into everyone’s living room. This village wouldn’t be possible without the wonderful support of our library’s administration and its staff. We greatly appreciate the financial support that we have received in the past from Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation; this allowed us to get our banner from Sue’s Signs and have Landon from Landon’s Tree service install it, braving the harsh elements. Local grocery stores pitched in as Vos Independent took care of the processing of the pictures for the visual boards and Food Basics supplied gingerbread cookies for our opening day. Thank you again to the Hvidsten family who have continued to give us space within the Scugog Focus building for ongoing storage of our accessories associated with the village. The Township of Scugog and BIA were helpful with regards to approving signage for us, and Jake Lusted pitched in this year displaying our signs on the Rotary Train during the parade. It takes a community to make this village happen and we are very grateful to everyone!
Thanks again to Master Train Engineer Alan Locke and conductor Neil Bradley, who kept the village train on its track and Brianne Mercer for being our fabulous social media queen and publicist – again, great work! Thanks also to our patient families who never mentioned how many dinners were late because of our pre-occupation with everything gingerbread.
“The Village People”
and Janis King
Hi everybody, Happy New Year; and for those who celebrate various Orthodox dates of Christmas, as we do in our household, Merry Christmas!!
As I've mentioned before, in our household Christmas is celebrated from December 5th all the way to January 13th.
You see, my wife's father was Hungarian, and so she is half Hun, the rest is mostly Irish with a bit of French thrown in. Well to me, she's Hun-ey. So, we start to celebrate by decorating, singing carols, and baking Christmas treats around the 5th of December. It's great to get a jump on all that stuff, not to mention having an early reminder of gift preparation, you know buying or making something personal.
Then there's the obvious December 25th date to celebrate Christ's birth and all. The one most everyone in our culture gets involved in, one way or another.
Then, in addition, my natural father was Ukrainian, so I am half Uke, the rest is mostly Brit, and my adopted Mohawk Dad's influence rests in there as well. Man we're all such a wonderful blend of people aren't we!
So we celebrate the Ukrainian date for Christmas, which starts unofficially on its Christmas eve, January 6th. Christmas day is the 7th and the whole thing lasts until January 13th.
It may seem like a bit much, to some, but it creates a season of gratefulness to our Lord, and that we appreciate. It lasts into and over shadows our Western New Year’s celebration and the resolutions that go with it.
The one thing reinforced through all of this, for us, is the idea of persistence in starting anew, of not growing weary of intending to do well, regardless of the things that try to challenge that. Now, I hope you get my meaning here, I'm not just talking about starting again, down the same path of habits and discarded will power. Really, what new inner resources do we have we didn’t have before, to master an old expectation. Oh sure, a new resolve here and a new attempt there, here a new, there a new, every where a new new, Old MacDonald, oops, I digress. Man... the force of habit eh.
Let's try to put this thought together. Just think, stubbornness, with it's dig-in-your-heals and refusal-to-look-again manner, when turned positive, is persistence, focus and a force for good. Weariness turned inside out, is willingness, reflection and rest. If we throw off the discouraging weight of old expectations and let ourselves 'realize' maybe there's a bigger puzzle we fit in, those expectations don’t really fit, and therefore are good ones to let go, this may end that weariness. When we allow re-evaluation of the way we do things, change is inevitable. Change is not a dirty word, not when the goal is life affirming, life engaging, and life embracing.
Life itself, is the greatest gift God has given, because it is a sharing of Himself, an invitation to always start again, afresh, anew. Then to ensure the purging of those things that would sap our lives, He offers us an additional option to our puzzled Inner life. In my experiences and of those who have given God access to their hearts to live there, God's new kind of life is of multidimensional proportions. Initially it starts with, starting ANEW and excepting Him into our hearts to rule there. He then teaches us with compassion and firmness like a good father does. He then leads in baby steps so we can get to know how to engage Him, as we read His Word and listen to His Spirit nudge, prompt and direct us gently, instructing us how to live from a life flowing from Life itself. Not our lost pieces, from our puzzled idea of life, but from the actual One who emanates and sustains all our lives, if we will but acknowledge His actual place in them. This Life brings in with it new capacities for willingness, for approaching life through new eyes, and attitudes that just may help a goal finally be achieved in 'anew' way, and may help others along their way.
So this new year, lets try starting anew instead of starting again. Lets avoid the old pitfalls and allow God to guide us in a new way to live.
Happy New Year
& Merry Orthodox Christmas
Happy New Year!
The start of a new calendar year is a time for everyone to embark on exciting opportunities, overcome challenges, and set new goals; the Township of Uxbridge is also doing this.
Council has been working hard to set the 2019/2020 Budget. Once this is passed, towards the end of January, we can embark on some new projects and initiatives, as well as continuing the great work staff is already doing.
Through collaboration, Council hit the ground running and is planning to tackle a number of leading issues for residents, over the next 4 years. We will soon complete our strategic planning for 2019 and beyond. We hope to see further plans for a new Uxpool and other recreation facilities developed at the Fields of Uxbridge. We plan to implement solutions to make our roads safer to travel upon. We want to keep our already well-maintained infrastructure in good shape, and repair and replace the infrastructure that requires upkeep. This, of course, means ensuring the Brock St. Culvert replacement project is well-managed and successfully completed with as little disruption as possible.
I, and my fellow Councillors, look forward to working with our dedicated volunteers, on Boards and Committee’s of Council, on new projects and ways to improve our community.
Make it your New Year’s resolution to stay informed, through our social media or website, or through the local paper and radio station, about the projects and plans the Township will undertake on behalf of our community. Reach out to your Ward Councillor, if you have a question or a concern. Together, we can accomplish a lot in the next year, and through this term of Council.
We will have challenges, but that is part of growth. I am very much looking forward to the challenges and growth we will experience in 2019. On behalf of the Township of Uxbridge Council, I wish you all the best for the New Year ahead.
Dave Barton, Mayor
Well, the snows back, a little. It’s a nice dusting of traditional flavour for Christmas time. Unless you’re one who likes to ski or snowmobile, then I suppose you may be praying for a little more. Regardless of the weather, the main thing is mobility, especially so family can gather together, and invest in memories.
Being that winter never officially starts until the 21st, Christmas time is a perfect time to invest in winter items for your loved ones. I know my wife needs a new winter coat, oops spoiler alert! Honey, I was just kidding I got you something else, maybe snow-tires. Shhh, maybe she won’t read this article. Oh, who am I kidding, she’s the general manger of the whole place!
Gift giving, it’s kind of an art isn’t it? I mean, you're serious about the ones you love, well I guess that’s implied in the word; Love. So is it style, comfort, or protection from the elements that’s most important aspect here, or is it some other elusive thing she cares about, nothing really to do with the item, but rather how she feels about that aspect or you. So what’s to consider when buying that special gift. A good guideline comes from a practice I learned from an incredible book I have. It was written by a family and relationship counsellor, Gary Chapman, and is called “The Five Love Languages” and it is a book I would recommend to anyone who wants to understand how to solve those relating puzzles.
Without revealing too much of the book, let me try to get its basic premise across: Let’s say, you get a sweater for your dog, because you like the way they look, but your dog is a long-haired dog, probably not a good fit. Or what if your cat prefers canned tuna cat food, but you can’t stand the smell of it, so you get chicken flavour instead, and the cat refuses to eat it. Do you blame the cat for its preference, or yourself for trying to change the animal. Some breeds will get nauseous, eating certain types of food.
Now let’s take this to getting gifts for people. First, not everyone sees gift giving as a language of love sharing. Maybe they’ve been used to pay-off guilt by others in a person’s life, or to distract them from troubling issues, or they’ve gained competitive ground by the scorekeeper in your life, tainting the connection with gifts as an expression of Love. If this is the case, then the gift you give could be very important.
So for a man, maybe, instead of purchasing a gift, set something up. Like a day out, involving things she likes, it doesn’t have to cost much, but should include small details showing you have been listening to her life, not just her words, but her life. This kind of thing can reach her because you are spending time, or holding her hand, to support her as you walk through the snow. Go slow though.
You could tell her you want her to talk, and really surprise her by listening as you walk or sit together, without trying to fix things: just listen and let her know you could see it her way too, if you were her, she’ll feel less alone. This can give her the strength she needs to deal in life, and that’s all the fix she might need. You may even discover she has new hopes and dreams you never knew about her. Your gift to her could wind up being a gift to you as well, as it opens your eyes to her undiscovered life inside.
A gift from a woman might be if you spent time to clean up his work area in the garage or in the basement. As long as there are no ‘Keep Out’ signs, this still has to be done with care. If you do a total sweep out, throw nothing away. I know, but resist the urge, it is his personal space and many men resent this area being “invaded”. Remember, this is a gift to his mindset, not an effort to fix or comment on his messiness, just like the man listening not fixing a woman when she talks. Maybe, have one box for sawdust and rags, another for small bits and cut-offs of things, and another with all the tools you truly don’t know the place for, or try to put the main ones back where he had them so he can find them easily. Then ask him where the rest go and what you can throw out. The main thing with many men is, they can’t focus to restart a job half done, if the area has been too disturbed, unless you have everything at arm's length to recover their momentum. Sharing you are doing this so he has more room to do whatever he wants in this space, is important. This can help it be received as the wonderful consideration that it is intended to be. After this is done get him a cup of coffee, maybe with some eggnog in it, to make it Christmas, and clear out.
What I’ve touched on here are some other types of gifts you can give those you love, that may reach their heart the way they read love. Not everybody appreciates purchased gifts the same way; it is important to show you understand and appreciate the receiver of your gift the way they really are. God knows this, considering Christmas is God offering the gift of ‘Joy to the World’ and ‘Peace on Earth’ in each heart, truly something we all need. So let’s examine the motive for our gift giving this year and give what someone really needs. It will be a memory not forgotten. Giving, truly, from the heart involves giving, truly, to the heart.
and Merry Christmas.