Province gives Northumberland Two Major Grants

At a single event on Wednesday April 24, M.P.P. David Piccini made two announcements about money to be provided to Northumberland County:  1) $5M will be provided to Northumberland municipalities to allow them to “find smarter ways to deliver services” and 2) $1.8M will be provided to “invest (in) and improve affordable housing”.  Since these grants are unconditional, the Province is trusting Municipalities to use them for the intended purposes. The announcements were made at the County building – $725K of the “improve service delivery” money will go to the county, $619K will go to Cobourg and the rest of the $5M will go to the other County Municipalities.  All of the $1.8M for affordable housing will go to the County.  Although several Mayors were present at the announcement, there was no indication at this point where the money will be spent on improving the efficiency of service delivery.

Improving Service Delivery and Efficiency

MPP David Piccini and Warden John Logel
MPP David Piccini and Warden John Logel

In explaining the rationale, the announcement said:

The province undertook a line-by-line review of its own expenditures, and has been clear that they expect their partners, including municipalities, to be taking steps to become more efficient. Examples could include service delivery reviews, development of shared services agreements, IT solutions, capital investments or other projects. Municipalities will decide how to best target funding to benefit their local communities.


The Ontario government is taking a different approach to fiscal management, job creation, and how we deliver core services by putting our municipalities and people first.

Invest in and Improve Affordable Housing.

Most of the $1,809,026 will come from the Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative which was started in 2013.  Warden John Logel commented:

As local municipalities and partner agencies work to address housing and homelessness challenges in Northumberland, ongoing Provincial support is critical.

In addition to the grant announced, MPP Piccini mentioned other initiatives designed to help via the new Community Housing Renewal Strategy which provided some policy/regulation changes:

  • Encouraging tenants to seek opportunities at school and work by removing existing penalties for working more hours or going to college or university;
  • Making rent more predictable by simplifying rent calculations;
  • Freeing up the wait-list by having tenants prioritize their first choice and accept the first unit they are offered, while allowing Service Managers flexibility to make exceptions in extenuating circumstances;
  • Protecting tenants who receive child support payments by ensuring their rent is not impacted by payments;
  • Making housing available to those who truly need it by requiring an asset test;
  • Making housing safer by empowering housing providers to turn away tenants who have been evicted for criminal activity.

It appears that affordable housing (also called community housing) is getting increasing attention at not only first tier municipalities but also at the Provincial level.


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Keith Oliver
5 years ago

In Walter Luedtkes’s report on the busses being organized to take locals to Queen’s Park to demonstrate against Ford’s Provincial Policies on April 30, the full phone number to contact Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas, the organizer, should read 905-885-9942. Meeting place just north of Port Hope …Harveys-Swiss Chalet at NE corner of routes 401 and 28 .. If anyone in Cobourg wants a lift, call me no later than noon on the 29. Leave your address and phone number. Don’t count on me until I’ve replied to confirm arrangement.

Walter Luedtke
Reply to  Keith Oliver
5 years ago

thanks for checking on that Keith!

Bill Prawecki
5 years ago

How about some positive comments. Why so negative most of the time. Let council decide. If you folks are better than the consultants then apply next time they need one.

manfred s
Reply to  Bill Prawecki
5 years ago

perhaps it’s a case of skepticism rather than negativity… Scepticism is born of historical events and outcomes, and by nature, focuses on the back side of the coin flip which is an attempt at writing a rah-rah story for very specific reasons. It’s important to view every action from all sides, not just the ‘intended’ ones. Expectedly, the actors downplay the messy stuff with derogatory labels like “negativity”. Thank goodness for those who don’t simply swallow the koolaid and genuflect appreciatively.

Walter Luedtke
Reply to  Bill Prawecki
5 years ago

Here is more negativity.
Did Mr. Piccini hold this announcement for more than a month in order to dazzle the faithful and draw attention away from this:
“It is shaping up to be one of the largest public rallies at Queen’s Park since the Ford government took power. It will be held next Tuesday, April 30 at Queen’s Park. Ontarians from towns and cities across the province are heading to the Ontario Legislature to stop health care cuts, privatization and mega-mergers that threaten care. Patients have been contacting Ontario Health Coalition offices and local coalitions in record numbers, concerned about half-a-billion dollars in leaked OHIP cuts impacting diabetes and pain management services, colonoscopies and other services that are a lifeline for many.”
Buses for Northumberland at Hwy 28 and Hwy 401, Near Harvey’s Swiss Chalet 9:45 am, Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas 905-885-994

manfred s
Reply to  Walter Luedtke
5 years ago

… or targeted scepticism? Walter, you ARE incorrigible indeed! but .. we luv ya

5 years ago

Cobourg gets 619K to “find smarter ways to deliver services”. How will this work in real life? More empire building at Town Hall, more consultants (I can see them lining up now) with power point presentations and a plethora of buzzwords to dazzle Council with. And is there a time limit on the funds? Will this money just disappear into general revenue? How will Council direct staff to instruct them how to use this money?

All kinds of questions when do we get answers?

Reply to  ben
5 years ago

The Provincial Government just announced the funding…given them a chance!!

5 years ago

Wonder what took so long.
Neighboring Peterborough’s MPP Dave Smith made this announcement a month ago.
Is Northumberland County on the way-back burner at Queen’s Park?
Or is it because MPP Dave Smith wears a business-like tie and the hairy Piccini doesn’t.
Petty, huh?