Transition House Licensed

In February of this year, Council passed a By-Law which required Emergency Care establishments like Transition House to be licensed.  This applies to both the current Transition house on Chapel Street and their new location at 310 Division Street.  Without any public announcement, the Town’s web site indicates that Transition House is now licensed.  The licence is for one year: valid from July 17, 2024 to July 17, 2025.  Presumably when Transition House moves in September, the licence will transfer to that location.  The licence requirements are quite stringent but do not cover costs to the Town – Transition House serves the entire county but is located in Cobourg. Summarized below are some of the requirements which Transition House must… Read complete articleTransition House Licensed

Police Board meeting – 16 July 2024

In the first Police Board meeting streamed from the Council Chambers on July 16, we learned several things: there is now a “Citizen’s advisory committee” (but no details); all crime stats in 2023 increased although the solved rate seems good; the encampment cost about $61K in 2023 – a full report on this was provided; there are gaps in the Downtown Dynamic Patrol due to resources being diverted to the encampment; Police won’t normally enter the encampment unless accompanied by other agencies; the case for a new building was not discussed; Police made their largest-ever single drug-related seizure; Of the $10.8M budget, $2M came from the business centre (plus all Capital was funded from business centre profits); the idea of… Read complete articlePolice Board meeting – 16 July 2024

Contract Extended for Police Chief Paul VandeGraaf

Today the Cobourg Police Board announced that the contract for Police Chief Paul VandeGraaf has been extended to 2029 – that’s 5 more years. The exact date in 2029 was not announced nor were any terms in the contract announced. But the Chief was praised for his work to date – he was promoted from Deputy Chief on August 15, 2019 so presumably his contract is dated August 15. Specific accomplishments quoted included tiered policing, mental health response, and technology adoption as well as “he fostered strong partnerships with community organizations, local businesses, and other law enforcement agencies”.   Current challenges cited were “homelessness, addictions, and mental health crises in our community”. Paul said that in his new term he will… Read complete articleContract Extended for Police Chief Paul VandeGraaf

Slow Summer News

With Council taking a summer break, there’s little Council news and not much other news happening in Cobourg. There are a few events: Police continue to catch some bad guys and report on that, the Town has now hired a replacement Director of Planning, Lakefront Utilities has acknowledged that there are too many outages – they say they are working to fix that – but there’s no news (yet) on Brookside and there’s no news on clearing out the illegal encampment. For more details on what news IS available, see Resources below for links. Fortunately, and unlike other media, I don’t rely on news happening to make a living!   But I am still here and if there is any significant… Read complete articleSlow Summer News

Pilot of Bus connection to Go station to end

For about 20 years, residents of Cobourg and nearby have been asking for a Go Bus service to Toronto.  In 2020, Northumberland County decided to advocate for this and hired AECOM to carry out a business case study. At the time, MPP David Piccini lobbied Metrolinx but they said “that given the length of the route and the relatively low densities, none of the options perform well from a Revenue/Cost ratio stand point. They are modelling around 20% revenue coverage of costs, which puts these options in the lowest performing GO bus route revenue categories.” Then in April 2022 the Province and County announced a trial service – the Durham line – connecting Cobourg and Port Hope to Oshawa Go… Read complete articlePilot of Bus connection to Go station to end

Town of Cobourg Operational Plan for 2024

In 2020, Council contracted with KPMG to do an organizational review. Then in 2021, Council directed CAO Tracey Vaughan to prepare an “Organizational Review Implementation Plan” to spell out specific actions. The first step, in 2023, was to decide the “Strategic Vision” so the “Strategic plan for 2023-2027 and Beyond” was developed. Tracey has now delivered the implementation plan which revolves around actions and KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). In addition, there is now an online measurement report on the KPIs. (Go to “Operational Plan – Program Dashboard” at the link in Resources). There are three sets of KPIs based on the Strategic Plan’s Priorities/Pillars: 1) Sustainability;  2) Service Excellence and 3) Thriving Community.  Each set has 4 “Strategic Actions” and 2… Read complete articleTown of Cobourg Operational Plan for 2024

Longest Council meeting – 26 June

I have been following Council meetings for a number of years but last night’s was the longest – it finished at 12:27 am. That’s right, after midnight. The reason of course is because the next meeting will be in September – no longer are there regular meetings in summer. A number of items needed to be passed, and they were, although the issue of stormwater fees triggered a long debate with a large public gallery. Other major items passed included the non-union salary increases, delegation of powers to staff, the new customer service strategy, the non-core asset management plan, a new “operational plan”, approval of an $8M debenture required by waterworks, and more – see a list below. Mayor Cleveland… Read complete articleLongest Council meeting – 26 June

Asset Management Plan – Part 3

In 2012, the Province decreed that if a municipality wanted provincial funding, they would have to demonstrate how any proposed project fits within a detailed asset management plan. This also applied to receiving the Federal Gas Tax. The requirement was for three phases: (1) core assets, (2) non-core assets and finally: (3) Proposed Level of Service, Lifecycle Management and Financial Strategy. The first one has been done and the plan for non-core assets will be presented to Council at their meeting on June 26. Why do we care? When an asset management plan was done for stormwater (part of core assets), a shortfall was discovered which led to the imposition of the stormwater fee. The basic intent of an asset… Read complete articleAsset Management Plan – Part 3