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OPINION – Trent Gow and Chris Carrier comment on the status of the proposed sale of the Collingwood Regional Airport and Infill Development issues on this edition of Talking Politics.


OPINION – What is going on with the proposed Wasaga Beach Casino?


Professional Public Policy Advisor Trent Gow and former Collingwood Mayor Chris Carrier talk about recent developments surrounding the proposed new Wasaga Beach Casino situation.

What did council know … what didn’t council know? Chris and Trent share their opinions on this edition of TALKING POLITICS.

More episodes at www.talkingpolitics.ca



The bone chilling temperatures and high winds that bashed the Collingwood waterfront throughout the final week of January provided us with some amazing photo opportunities. CLICK HERE to view a few of photos we took.


News Headlines


Family Day Weekend – First Long Weekend of 2019

The first long weekend of 2019 is upon us.

The Family Day weekend is a time for family and friends to get together to enjoy winter events and good company.

Don’t look now but the weather is cooperating. After what seemed like endless weeks of storm watches, warnings and advisories we are now able to look forward to an extended stretch of weather that is perfect for downhill skiing, boarding, snow shoeing, cross country skiing, outdoor shinny and any other winter event you can think of.

Collingwood is holding its annual February Family Jam on Monday February 18th at Central Park.

CLICK HERE for a full list of Collingwood events.

Wasaga Beach is holding its 14th annual Snowman Mania this weekend. The event began as a snowman building competition and has grown into a full Family Day Weekend festival filled with activities.

Wasaga Beach Mayor Nina Bifolchi says Snowman Mania provides a wonderful opportunity for residents to come together as a community and celebrate winter living in Wasaga Beach.

“I encourage you to check out the chili cook-off, Toronto Maple Leaf Hockey Pop-Up Rink, Great Canadian Lumberjack shows and all of the many other exciting activities planned.”

CLICK HERE for a full list of Wasaga Beach events.

Blue Mountain will offer extended skiing and boarding on Monday February 18th. The annual sunrise ski on Monday, February 18 will see the Silver Bullet lift open at 6:30am for first tracks to cap off a weekend full of family activities and entertainment!




The Honourable Christine Elliott, MPP, Minister of health and Long-term Care, Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson

Jim Wilson, MPP for Simcoe-Grey, is asking for Provincial Government assistance to assist Hospice Georgian Triangle in activating much needed services.


Simcoe – Grey MPP Jim Wilson, in a letter dated February 11th, 2019, has written to the Honourable Christine Elliott, Minister of Health and Long-term Care, to once again, express his concern that the proposed four-bed expansion to the Collingwood facility is urgently needed.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE


Provincial Regional Government Review Could Have Far Reaching Implications for Collingwood

The Ontario government is conducting a review of regional governments.

Halton, York, Durham, Waterloo, Niagara, Peel, Muskoka District, Oxford County, the County of Simcoe and their lower-tier municipalities are being examined for ways to streamline services and cut costs.

Mayor Brian Saunderson said there could be big changes ahead as a result of the Provincial Regional Government Review.

Michael Fenn, is a former deputy minister and one-time chief executive of Metrolinx. Ken Seiling recently retired as the long-time chair of Waterloo Region. Both men are assuming the roles of special advisers for the Province in the area of regional reform.

Saunderson said interviews by Fenn and Seiling are underway at the County of Simcoe with all Mayors of the sixteen municipalities.

“As we know Simcoe County is one of the two counties that will come under this assessment, and there could be very far reaching implications for us, from municipal governance, municipal decision making and service delivery as well as potential upsizing or amalgamation.”

Mayor Saunderson will meet with Michael Fenn and Ken Seiling on Tuesday February 19th.


#Itstarts Campaign 2019

Collingwood Mayor Brian Saunderson participated in the kick off of the Simcoe County #Itstarts Campaign 2019 kick off.

IT STARTS is a public awareness campaign designed to take a proactive step towards addressing racism and discrimination in Simcoe County.

The campaign promotes equitable communities that are fair, open and inclusive for all residents regardless of race, gender, age, socio-economic circumstances and sexual orientation.



Turning Lanes Considered To Ease Congestion at Intersection Near Collingwood Collegiate

Deputy Mayor Keith Hull is concerned about traffic flow close to Collingwood Collegiate at specific times of the day.

Hull talked about the long lines of vehicles that accumulate along Lockhart Road and Campbell Street as motorists wait for other motorists to turn left on to Hurontario Street.

He asked if an advanced green signal could be considered to help ease the congestion.

Hull said the problem peaks between the weekday hours of 8:00 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. and again in the afternoon between 3:00 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Brian MacDonald, Director of Public Works and Engineering for the Town of Collingwood told council that a traffic analysis has been completed for the intersection of Hurontario Street and Campbell/Lockhart Road.

MacDonald said as a part of the 2019 budget, a request has been made for funding to create turning lanes. He said private property will not be impacted as the work to create the turning lanes will be carried out within the municipal right-of-way on both Lockhart Road and Campbell Streets.

MacDonald added that it would be difficult to provide a quick fix as an advanced green traffic light signal would have little positive impact without having the turning lanes in place.


Restricted Use of Plastic Water Bottles a Possibility in Municipal Buildings

Collingwood Mayor Brian Saunderson attended a meeting of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative Board of Directors meeting on Thursday February 7th.

“I have assumed former Mayor Cooper’s position on the Board. It is a very important initiative that was established under former Mayor Terry Geddes with Mayor Miller and Mayor Daley from Chicago and it can involve all cities and municipalities that are located on the Great Lakes shorelines.”

Mayor Saunderson said one of the hot button issues focuses on the growing plastics problem in fresh water lakes.

“The plastics problem in fresh water is as bad and potentially worse than what it is in the oceans, and we all know it is very bad in the oceans. Zero Plastics Waste Strategy is something that is very much on the horizon and we may look at our own council about passing bylaws restricting the use of bottled water in municipal buildings.”

Saunderson said one quick way of helping solve the problem would be to provide Collingwood’s clean drinking water right from the taps to allow residents and visitors to refill their drinking bottles.


Labour Human Trafficking Has Collingwood – Wasaga Beach Connection

Ontario Provincial Police, Barrie Police Service, Canada Border Services Agency and community-based agencies have released more details of a labour human trafficking investigation with connections to central and eastern Ontario including Collingwood and Wasaga Beach.

Police began investigating information in 2018 that suggested Mexican-born workers were being trafficked and/or defrauded by a cleaning company based in Barrie.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE


OPP Appeal for Assistance after Shooting Incident in Wasaga Beach

(Wasaga Beach, ON) – Members the Huronia West Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) were called shortly after 2:00a.m. Sunday morning to assist a male who was suffering from a gunshot wound in the Town of Wasaga Beach.

The 30-year-old male victim was transported to an area hospital where he is recovering serious but non-life threatening injuries. Police are looking to speak with anyone who might have witnessed suspicious activity in the area of Wesley and River Road early Sunday morning. Investigators believe this is an isolated incident and at this time there is no concern for public safety.




Ice Road – Road Closure

A portion of Heritage Way remained closed after last weeks thaw triggered melting snow followed by heavy rain followed by a quick freeze. The melting snow and rain caused flooding on the road between the Watt’s Boathouse and Collingwood Terminals. The sitting water quickly turned to ice when temperatures took a nose dive resulting in the road closure.


How Would Provincial Health Care Reform Impact Simcoe County Hospitals?

How will possible health care reform in Ontario impact Collingwood’s bid for a new hospital?

Recent media reports focused on newly released government documents leaked to the NDP that show the Ford government is close to pulling the trigger to reform the province’s healthcare.

Health care reform in the province of Ontario could change the discussion on what kind of hospital Collingwood will have in the future.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE


Confirmed Mumps Cases at Two Collingwood Schools


The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit has confirmed that there are five cases of the mumps reported at two elementary schools in Collingwood. However, an outbreak has not been declared by the Health Unit. The students attend St. Mary’s Catholic School and Connaught Public School.

Mumps is an illness caused by a virus that commonly causes swelling of one or more of the salivary (parotid) glands. Symptoms of mumps include fever, headache, muscle pain, tiredness, loss of appetite and swollen and painful glands. Usually it is the glands just below and in front of the ear that become swollen. Symptoms can begin approximately 12 to 25 days after being in close contact with someone with mumps.


Distracted Driving Charges Handed Out To Multiple Motorists in Stayner


Members of the Huronia West Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police Traffic Unit spent several hours over a two day period monitoring the traffic flow at the main intersection in Stayner. As a result Police in total stopped and charged 43 motorists for distracted driving.

The Huronia West OPP remind all motorists that the safe operation of a motor vehicle requires your full attention and that distracted driving is one of our leading causes of serious and fatal motor vehicle collisions. Fines for distracted driving range from $1000 and $3000 and a driver’s licence suspension of up to 30 days.


Huronia West OPP Looking For Two Individuals Following Foodland Robbery


(WASAGA BEACH, ON.) – On February 4th, 2019 at approximately 02:36 a.m., members of the Huronia West Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police responded to a report of a robbery at the Foodland grocery store at 711 River Road W., Wasaga Beach. Police were advised that two males entered the store in disguises and left on foot with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Upon arrival Huronia West OPP with the assistance of our Central Region Emergency Response Team and our Canine Unit conducted an extensive search but did not locate the suspects.

First suspect is described as:

1. Male

2. White

3. Thin

4. In his late teens, early 20’s

5. Wearing a black hooded winter jacket, dark pants & Black shoes with white soles

Second suspect is described as:

1. Male

2. dark skinned

3. Thin

4. In his late teens, early 20’s

5. Wearing a darker coloured hoodie sweatshirt (possibly grey or army green), & lighter coloured shoes

If you have any information in regards to this crime, please contact the Huronia West O.P.P. at (705) 429-3575 or Call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (1-800-222-8477) or submit your information online at www.sdm-crimestopperssdm.com if you have any information on this crime or others.



Roller Coaster Weather Pattern Continues



What a difference a day makes. Following a day of double digit spring-like temperatures, fierce winds sent temperatures plummeting and waves crashing along the shoreline on Tuesday February 5th.

Mild Temperatures Triggered The Big Melt on Monday



The big warmup on Monday February 4th was a welcome relief from the bone chilling temperatures South Georgian Bay residents were forced to endure last week, however, the melting snow caused flooding in some areas of town including Sunset Point Park. While it may have been tempting to have a coffee at this picnic table, you would have needed a canoe to get to it. Temperatures on Monday hit the mid double digits.


Proposed Junior “B” Admirals to Affiliate With Major “A” Owen Sound Attack


The committee to bring back Junior “B” Hockey to Collingwood has announced that it has reached an affiliation agreement with the Major Junior “A” Owen Sound Attack. The Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League has awarded a franchise to Collingwood, confirmed in a letter dated January 9th by league commissioner Greg Best.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE




Collingwood Colts – No Comment from League Commissioner Regarding Possible Tier Two Junior “A” Team Transfer To Collingwood

A group led by Dave Steele, current General Manager and Head Coach of the Stayner Siskins Junior C hockey club, is looking to bring back Tier Two Junior “A” hockey to the Collingwood Eddie Bush Memorial Arena.

Steele is working with the Major Junior A Barrie Colts to ice a team in Collingwood next season. The Collingwood team would be known as the Collingwood Colts.

Marty Savoy is Commissioner of the Ontario Junior Hockey League. Mr. Savoy was not able to comment as to whether a franchise transfer was underway to relocate a Tier Two Junior “A” team to Collingwood for next season.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE



Collingwood Elvis Festival Announces Dates for 25th Anniversary Event


It has stood the test of time, just like the music and the man it honours. The 25th Anniversary of the Collingwood Elvis Festival will be held from July 26th to 28th. The event will feature many returning Champions, Vegas style indoor shows, lots of outdoor activities including Elvis Tribute Artists performing on the downtown stage and the return of the always popular Saturday morning Tribute Artist Classic Car Parade.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE




MEDIA:
Long Time Barrie – Collingwood Radio/Television Broadcaster Has Passed Away


If you grew up in Collingwood, Wasaga Beach, Barrie, Midland or anywhere in-between in the 1960’s, 70’s or 80’s, you will remember listening to Wayne Bjorgan on the radio. Wayne Bjorgan was born in St Walburg, Saskatchewan, but spent most of his life living in Ontario. In his early years he worked in radio in south-western Ontario but moved to Barrie in 1961 where he began his 30-year run in local television and radio broadcasting.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE



Collingwood Man Charged In Centennial Aquatic Centre Break and Enter


(COLLINGWOOD, ON) – Officers from the Collingwood and The Blue Mountains detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) recently charged a male in relation to a break and enter at a commercial property in Collingwood.

The break and enter took place on January 18, 2019 shortly after 1:00am at the Centennial Aquatic Centre on Third Street in Collingwood. The incident caused damage to the front sliding door windows and a small amount of cash was stolen.

Police have now charged 33 year-old Mark WEST of Collingwood, he is charged with one count of Break, Enter a Place – Commit Indictable Offence and is to appear that Ontario Court of Justice in Collingwood on February 26, 2019.

Police are continuing their investigation into the other break and enters which took place late last week and are asking that anyone with information contact the Collingwood/The Blue Mountains O.P.P. at (705) 445-4321 or, to remain anonymous you can contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). You can submit your information online at www.p3tips.com or if you have any information on this crime or any other crime.




Collingwood Councillor Bob Madigan expressed concern over what he sees as a lengthy delay at the expense of existing neighbours

Eden Oak Subdivision Proposed Fencing and Boundary Wall Construction a Hot Topic at Collingwood Council Table

At the regular meeting of Collingwood Council on Monday January 28th, a Staff Report was presented to provide Council with an analysis regarding a discharge of a Development Agreement from the Eden Oak (McNabb) Subdivision lands.

Councillor Bob Madigan spoke to concerns he has over the almost one year delay of the construction of the fencing and retaining wall along the northern boundary of the Eden Oak development.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE


Councillor Yvonne Hamlin
Collingwood Councillor Yvonne Hamlin

Collingwood Councillor Concerned Over Current Infill Development Policies

Town of Collingwood Councillor Yvonne Hamlin is concerned about how the Town currently deals with infill developments. Hamlin told members of Collingwood Council on Monday January 28th that she would like to see a public meeting scheduled to discuss the matter.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE




G&M Hospital CEO Norah Holder, Clearview Mayor Doug Measures, Collingwood Mayor Brian Saunderson, Wasaga Beach Mayor Nina Bifolchi

Hospital and Communities Work Together To Achieve Health & Wellness Throughout South Georgian Bay

Collingwood Mayor Brian Saunderson told Collingwood Council on Monday January 28th that the initial meeting of all stake holders has taken place. He said the mandate was to create a Municipal Advisory Committee to provide a forum for the Hospital and the municipalities to work collaboratively to identify and address community health and wellness opportunities.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE



Michael Tibollo, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport – Collingwood Mayor Brian Saunderson

Stronger Economic Development Improves Tourism

Mayor Brian Saunderson recently participated in a round-table discussion with Michael Tibollo, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport.

Saunderson said the session included Simcoe County Warden and Mayor of the Township of Tiny, George Cornell, and Mayors from throughout Simcoe County.

“Minister Tibollo understands that tourism is not just an economic driver, it’s also dependent on the economic circumstances of the various communities and our ability to support tourism through things like attainable housing and workforce accommodation and training. We’re really looking at tourism and economic development as walking hand-in-hand.”

Mayor Saunderson said Simcoe County welcomes approximately 9 million visitors per year, adding that the Collingwood region receives approximately 2 million visitors annually.

“We certainly see over 25 percent of the visitors that come to Simcoe County, and it is a large part of our economic driver here so it’s something we need to foster and strengthen.”

Saunderson said a large part of the strengthening exercise will be strengthening the Town’s economic development.


Township of Clearview Received Distinguished Budget Presentation Award

For the sixth year in a row Clearview Township has been presented with the Government Finance Officers Association’s (GFOA) Distinguished Budget Presentation Award for the Township’s 2018 Budget.

A distinguished achievement, awarded to the Township since 2013 showing commitment by Clearview Township Council and staff to the highest principles of governmental budgeting.

Recipients of the award must meet the nationally recognized guidelines assessing the municipalities budget presentation in four key categories. How well the budget presentation serves as a policy document, financial plan, operations guide and communications device.



Cold temperatures have allowed Blue Mountain to crank up the snowmaking system
— photo – Paul Richards

Bitterly Cold Temperatures Kick Off The New Week

South Georgian Bay residents woke up to temperatures at or below -20 on Monday morning. By noon, temperatures were still sitting close to -18. While Blue Mountain fired up its extensive snow making system on Monday, Mother Nature delivered its own snow maker.

The South Georgian Bay region received 10 plus cm of fresh snow, but it was the GTA that received the hardest hit from Monday night’s storm. The record-breaking snowfall was more than double the previous record from 2009, with 26.4 centimetres of snow recorded at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport on Monday. Storm related problems impacted the TTC causing headaches for GTA commuters. By the Tuesday morning commute the northbound lanes of the Don Valley Parkway had been opened again. The major roadway had been closed to traffic for several hours throughout the Tuesday morning hours to allow for cleanup of accidents and the road surface caused by the heavy snowfall and weather conditions.




photo courtesy Blue Mountain

Blue Mountain World Cup Audi FIS Ski Cross

The weather was perfect for a World Cup Ski Cross Event at Blue Mountain. Cold temperatures made for a fast track and exciting competition, televised to a national audience on CBC.

Canada’s Olympic medallists went head to head at the 2019 Audi FIS Ski Cross World Cup at Blue Mountain from January 23rd to 26th. The Blue Mountain event was the final race before the FIS World Championships to be held in Utah.


RESULTS FROM BLUE MOUNTAIN – ON THE PODIUM


Women’s

1: Fanny SMITH, Switzerland
2: Marielle THOMPSON, Canada
3: Alizee BARON, France

Men’s

1: Brady LEMAN, Canada
2: Bastien MIDOL, France
3: Johannes ROHRWECK, Austria

World Cup Ski Cross skiers race head to head down the course negotiating naturally occurring terrain and artificial features including jumps, rollers and high-banked turns making Ski Cross an incredibly exciting spectator sport.

Each heat consists of four racers going head to head, with the aim of finishing first. The top 2 in each heat advance to the next round until just 4 skiers remain. The final heat is a single run where four skiers race to be the first across the finish line for the win.

Ski Cross was first introduced as an Olympic medal sport at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver-Whistler. Canada’s Ashleigh McIvor won a historic Gold medal in the first ever Olympic women’s Ski Cross race on Cypress Mountain. Since that time the Canadian Team has been one of the best in the world with multiple World Cup, World Championship and Olympic medals to their credit.

At the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, Canada’s Brady Leman won men’s Gold, while Kelsey Serwa and Brittany Phelan won Gold and Silver respectively in the women’s competition.

Visit www.bluemountainworldcup.ca .


Steady ridership for Wasaga Beach Transit

Wasaga Beach Council has received the Wasaga Beach Transit Report for December 2018.

Ridership was down slightly in December when compared to one year earlier. There were 7,554 rides taken in December 2018, compared to 7,669 in
November.

However, ridership in December 2018 was up 855 rides when compared to the same period one year earlier.

CLICK HERE to read more about Wasaga Beach Transit




Heavy snow in snow squall activity moved into Collingwood and throughout South Georgian Bay on Friday morning

Snow squalls impacted the Collingwood – South Georgian Bay region on Friday.

One particularly intense band stretched from the Bruce Peninsula across Georgian Bay towards the Midland and Orillia areas. The squalls caused weather conditions to vary considerably with clear skies turning to heavy snow and blowing snow.


Colltrans proved to be one of the best ways to get around town in the heavy snow activity. Snow squalls are in the weekend forecast as well.



Deceased Identified in Collingwood Murders

(COLLINGWOOD, ON) – An investigation into the death of two individuals has resulted in the arrest of one male by members of the Collingwood and The Blue Mountains Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Crime Unit. The investigation remains ongoing at this time.

The two deceased males have been identified as Dean COPKOV, 52 years-old, and Donovan BASS, 42 years-old, both of Wasaga Beach, Ontario.

57 year-old Cameron Gardiner of Collingwood has been arrested and charged with two counts of second degree murder and is scheduled to appear at the Ontario Court of Justice-Collingwood on January 29, 2019.

Investigators are continuing their efforts to identify a third unknown male, believed to have been at the residence at the time of the incident.

With the assistance of OPP Central Region Crime Unit, and OPP Forensic Identification Services (FIS), the investigation continues under the direction of Detective Inspector Paula Milne, OPP Criminal Investigation Branch (CIB).

Members of the public are reminded to be vigilant of their surroundings and personal safety at all times. Further details will be provided when they become available.

Read more about this story in this Toronto Sun article


Renovations To Patient Rooms at Collingwood General & Marine Hospital


Patient rooms at Collingwood’s General and Marine Hospital are about to receive much needed renovations.

Jory Pritchard-Kerr, Executive Director of The Collingwood General & Marine Hospital Foundation says the foundation has successfully reached its $1 million goal to raise the funds necessary to renovate all 58 inpatient rooms.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE



NOWHERE TO CALL HOME
Photographs & Stories of the Homeless – Leah denBok


On Monday January 28th, Collingwood Council will listen to a deputation from Leah denBok on Homelessness in Collingwood.

For a number of years, Leah and her father Tim have visited cities across Canada and the United States taking pictures of the homeless and more importantly, taking the time to talk to them to hear their stories.

Leah’s publication Nowhere To Call Home – Photographs & Stories of the Homeless, Volume One made an initial impact on the homeless issue.

CLICK HERE to read previous article on Leah denBok and her travels



Collingwood Junior B Franchise Announces Team Name

The Collingwood Junior B hockey team will be known as the Collingwood Admirals. Former Collingwood Mayor Terry Geddes announced the team name and unveiled the logo on Friday January 25th.

The Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League has awarded a franchise to Collingwood, confirmed in a letter dated January 9th by league commissioner Greg Best.

Geddes said the league announcement is exciting for the community and comes as a result of close to 10 years of commitment by many Collingwood hockey enthusiasts who never gave up.

“Junior B is a perfect fit for our community. Our legendary history is here and Junior C. There isn’t a hockey fan in Collingwood who does not recall the excitement that the Collingwood Blues brought to the town. This is not a team transfer but a new franchise allowing us to start from scratch.”

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

The Town of Collingwood Council is also considering an application for a Junior A franchise. (CLICK HERE to read more) No decision has been made as to whether or not council will approve a Junior “B” team or Tier 2 Junior “A” team for occupancy of the downtown Eddie Bush Memorial Arena.



Simcoe County Council Approves 2019 Budget


Simcoe County Council has approved a $548 million budget for 2019. Council approved the budget on Tuesday January 22nd. The 2019 budget focuses on the resources necessary to maintain existing services and service levels in the region, while continuing to invest in infrastructure, Transit, Paramedic Services, Solid Waste Management, and Social Housing.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE


Ridership Up on CollTrans Routes

A good news story has taken place over the past few months dealing with public transit.

On Monday night, the Development and Operations Standing Committee received a staff report recommending it be passed to the Mayor and full Council as an update on the transit pilot project and background for consideration of a permanent service enhancement during the 2019 budget deliberations.

The transit task force had approached Municipal Councils in Collingwood, The Blue Mountains and Wasaga Beach to recommended a nine (9) month trial to extend service throughout the areas. The objective was to meet transportation needs mainly for the workforce within the Southern Georgian Bay region.

Colltrans ridership numbers in Collingwood had been slipping prior to the trial period.

The Development and Operations Standing Committee learned that ridership throughout the entire region was up substantially over the trial period.



Fraser Institute School Rankings Released

This year’s Report Card ranks more than 3,000 anglophone and francophone public and Catholic schools (and a small number of independent schools) based on nine academic indicators from results of annual provincewide reading, writing and math tests.

The Institute states on its web site that the act of publicly rating and ranking schools attracts attention, and this can provide motivation. It claims schools that perform well or show consistent improvement are applauded while poorly performing schools generate concern.

Collingwood and area schools received a variety of scores.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE



Collingwood Council To Consider Pre-Budget Approval for Expansion Planning of Water Plant


Collingwood Council will soon consider a report from Brian MacDonald, Director of Public Works, Engineering & Environmental Services asking for Pre-Budget Approval for Engineering Services to complete the Class Environmental Assessment and Detailed Design of the R.A. Barker Water Treatment Plant in preparation to expand the plant.

MacDonald’s staff report notes Development in Collingwood, as well as customer municipalities, continues to increase the water demand.

The Town has seen an increase in the average number of constructed units over the last five years. The development has included smaller industries as well as commercial establishments. Development growth of any variety increases the required demand on the water system.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE STAFF REPORT


More Break-ins Under Investigation in Collingwood

One day following a series of break-ins were reported at businesses in downtown Collingwood, the OPP are investigated additional overnight break-ins in the town.

(COLLINGWOOD, ON) – Officers from the Collingwood and The Blue Mountains detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) are currently investigating several break and enters that took place overnight in Collingwood and are asking for the public’s assistance in solving these crimes.

The break and enters, which took place between 12:30am and 2:00am this morning, occurred at two businesses on First Street and one more on Third Street in Collingwood. Investigation is ongoing at this time with the assistance of the OPP Forensic Identification Services (FIS) and the Collingwood/The Blue Mountains OPP Community Street Crimes Unit.

Further details will be provided when they become available.

Police are asking that anyone with information contact the Collingwood/The Blue Mountains O.P.P. at (705) 445-4321 or, to remain anonymous you can contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). You can submit your information online at www.p3tips.com if you have any information on this crime or any other crime.

Crime Stoppers does not subscribe to call display and you will remain anonymous. Being anonymous, you will not testify in court and your information may lead to a cash reward of up to $2,000.00. You can follow Crime Stoppers of Simcoe Dufferin Muskoka or Grey-Bruce on Twitter or Facebook.



Clearview Township To Hold Public Meeting To Discuss New Communication Tower Construction

Clearview Township will hold a public meeting to gather comments from residents regarding a plan to construct a communication tower at 5339 County Road 9. The proposed tower is planned to be 37 metres in height and will be a multi-carrier tower. The public meeting will take place on February 11th at 6:30 at the Clearview Council Chambers in the Township of Clearview Administration Centre at 217 Gideon Street in Stayner.


Sledfest at Edenvale Airport


Wasaga Beach Mayor Nina Bifolchi bundled up and took part in Sledfest

They had to truck in the snow but it was “all systems go” for Sledfest at the Edenvale Airport. Wasaga Beach Mayor Nina Bifolchi (pictured above) bundled up to take part in the popular winter event January 19th and 20th. Snow machines of all types were on display including vintage sleds. Races were organized by class and drew good crowds despite the frigid cold temperatures.



Wasaga Beach looking at all location options for new arena and library

Wasaga Beach Council is going to look into all options in dealing with the proposed construction of a new library and arena for the town. Council has directed staff to look at a variety of sites that could be suitable for the proposed new facilities.

“How we handle taxpayer dollars is vitally important so we need to give careful consideration to where these new amenities should be built,” Mayor Nina Bifolchi said.

The previous Wasaga Beach council had considered building a new arena and library as part of a community hub at Main and Beck streets.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE


Collingwood OPP Investigating Overnight Downtown Collingwood Break-ins

(COLLINGWOOD, ON) – Officers from the Collingwood and The Blue Mountains detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) are currently at scene of several break and enters that took place sometime overnight in downtown Collingwood.

The break and enters occurred at four businesses located on Hurontario Street between Third Street and Fourth Street in Collingwood. Investigation is ongoing at this time and the OPP Forensic Identification Services (FIS) is expected to attend for the examination of the scene this morning.

Further details will be provided when they become available.


Town of Collingwood Moving Forward With Sale of Regional Airport

Collingwood Regional Airport Sale Moving Forward



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Hockey Day in Collingwood 2019
There was hockey action all day on Wednesday January 16th at Central Park and the Eddie Bush Memorial Arenas during the 5th annual Hockey Day in Collingwood.

Hockey Day in Collingwood

Young hockey players from Collingwood and surrounding area schools got to take a break from the classroom and hit the ice to take part in the 5th annual Hockey Day in Collingwood on Wednesday January 16th. Ten teams took part in the special event that the Simcoe County District School Board promotes as a key outdoor learning experience for the students taking part. Hockey action began early, at 7:00 a.m. as teams from Stayner, Wasaga Beach, Creemore and Collingwood hit the ice at both the Central Park and Eddie Bush Memorial Arenas.

Mayor Brian Saunderson dropped the puck for action between both the girls and boys teams from CCI and Vanier Wednesday evening at the downtown Eddie Bush Memorial Arena. Both games were exciting to watch and were played in front of a large crowd.


Second period action in a tight game between the CCI and Jean Vanier Senior Girls Teams


Boys’ action between CCI and Vanier at the Eddie Bush Memorial Arena



Collingwood Council Votes In Favour of Allowing Retail Cannabis Sales

At the regular meeting of Collingwood Council on January 14th, 2019, council voted to permit cannabis retail stores in Collingwood.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

Wasaga Beach has already said “no” to having a retail outlet operate in the town.



Ray Smith was presented with the Order of Collingwood by Mayor Brian Saunderson and Councillor Mariane McLeod


Wayne Noble was presented with the Order of Collingwood by Mayor Saunderson and Councillor Bob Madigan. Mr. Noble’s presentation was at times emotional and exceptionally meaningful as he accepted the award on behalf of himself and his late wife, Hilda Noble.

New Year’s Levee Sunday January 13th


The Mayor’s New Year’s Levee was held on Sunday January 13th from 1:30 p.m. until 3:30 p.m. at the Georgian Bay Hotel and Conference Centre in Collingwood. Recipients of the Order of Collingwood were honoured.

Margaret Adolphe, Gail Michalenko, Ray Smith, Wayne and the late Hilda Noble and Sharon Steward received the Order.


Harold Zukerman and Dr. Farrell Anderson received the Companion to the Order of Collingwood.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW PHOTOS FROM THE 2019 MAYOR’S NEW YEAR’S LEVEE



Remembering Popular Radio Personality Brian Henderson

Former CKBB Barrie – CKCB Collingwood Program Director and popular on-air personality Brian Henderson has passed away. Brian’s radio career began at CKMP in Midland. He then moved on to CKBB radio when it was a part of CKVR-TV in Barrie and he was off to the races. Brian later would spend 27 years with CHUM in various capacities including the morning sports guy, news person and morning show host. He owned the airwaves in Barrie and Collingwood when he worked here. Brian Henderson was one-of-a-kind.

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New Waterfront Units Proposed for The Shipyards

The face of Collingwood’s harbourfront continues to change. Plans have been submitted to the Town of Collingwood for a new group of town homes within the Shipyards development. Described formerly as “The Huronic” the proposed development will consist of 13 new residential units.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE



Clearview Township Missing Person Investigation Remains Open

On April 6, 2012, the Huronia West Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) issued a media release asking for the public’s assistance in locating Kelly Coleman who was 34-years-old at the time. The investigation remains open. Coleman has not been seen or heard from since early August 2011.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE


Real Estate Sales Down in December 2018 Compared to December 2017

Southern Georgian Bay home sales were down year-over-year in December according to numbers released by the Southern Georgian Bay Association of Realtors.

Residential sales recorded through the MLS® system for the Southern Georgian Bay region totaled 130 units in December 2018.

This was down 8.5% or 12 sales from December 2017.

On an annual basis, home sales totalled 3,049 units in 2018, a decrease of 18.9% from the same period in 2017.

The Southern Georgian Bay region is made up of two distinctive markets. Home sales in the Western Region, which includes Wasaga Beach, Clearview Township, Collingwood, The Blue Mountains, the Municipality of Meaford, and Grey Highlands, numbered 81 units in December 2018 … down 8% or seven sales from December 2017.



Clearview Township Council Votes “No” to Cannabis Retail Outlets at January 7th Meeting

Clearview Township Council has voted “no” to the sale of cannabis in retail stores.

At its regular meeting on January 7th, Township of Clearview Council received report CAO-009-2019 (Recreational Cannabis) and advise the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) by January 22, 2019 that the Township of Clearview does not wish to host cannabis retail stores in their communities at this time.

Clearview Township Staff included a recommendation for Council’s consideration, that Clearview opt-out at this time. The municipality can then undertake additional public consultation and if we consider opting back in, the Township can develop a policy for reviewing applications for comment back to the AGCO.

The Staff Report notes that On December 13, 2018 the Government of Ontario amended Ontario Regulation 468/18 which identifies that at this time 25 retail store licenses will be issued until such time as there are more authorizations issued, no store will be allocated within a municipality with less than 50,000 persons.

The current regulation limits the stores as follows:

1. The Toronto Region may have a maximum of 5 retail stores.
2. The GTA Region may have a maximum of 6 retail stores.
3. The North Region may have a maximum of 2 retail stores
4. The East Region may have a maximum of 5 retail stores.
5. The West Region may have a maximum of 7 retail stores.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL STAFF REPORT

Wasaga Beach has also voted “no” to the sale of cannabis in retail stores.



Collingwood Mayor Brian Saunderson welcomes Hockey Night in Canada’s Ron MacLean to Collingwood for Rogers Hometown Hockey

Hometown Hockey Celebrated The Good Life We All Enjoy in Collingwood


The Town of Collingwood scored big with Rogers Hometown Hockey’s national broadcast from the town’s main street. Ron MacLean and Tara Slone provided news and commentary that portrayed Collingwood as one of Canada’s most picturesque communities in which to live. From an economic development point of view, Collingwood received a Holiday Gift from Rogers Sportsnet that no advertising campaign could match.

While the event was a huge success in terms of a made-for-television event, there was concern from some downtown merchants who felt that having Hurontario Street between Second and Third Street closed for a number of days hurt retail sales during the most critical selling time of the year.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE


First New Year’s Baby in Collingwood


The first baby of 2019 born at Collingwood’s General and Marine Hospital arrived on January 1st at 11:25 p.m.

Our newest citizen is Emmi Mary Dawe. She weighted in at 7 pounds 8 ounces. Emmis is the daughter of Tara and Jason Dawe.



Death at Blue Mountain Village


Officers from the Collingwood and The Blue Mountains detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police and emergency crews were called to Blue Mountain Resort shortly before 3:00 a.m. on Friday January 4th.

The initial investigation found that a 24 year old male attempted to climb the outside wall of a building in the Blue Mountain Village when, at some point, he lost his footing and fell to the ground. He was subsequently transported to an area hospital where he died of his injuries.


OPP Charge More Than 500 Impaired Drivers During Festive Ride Campaign

(ORILLIA, ON) – The Festive RIDE campaign resulted in OPP officers removing 539 alcohol/drug-impaired drivers from roads during Festive RIDE stops between November 23, 2018 and January 2, 2019.

An additional 384 drivers where issued Warn Range Suspensions for having a Blood Alcohol Concentration in the .05 and .08 range.

Officers conducted a total of 10,270 RIDE stop events throughout the province during the campaign, marking the first time the number of OPP RIDE stop events exceeds the 10,000 mark.

During the previous (2017/18) Festive RIDE campaign, the OPP charged 587 drivers with alcohol/drug-impaired driving, issued 366 Warn Range Suspensions and conducted 9,830 RIDE stops.

“I am extremely proud of our officers for their commitment to keeping our roads safe over the holidays. Whether drivers were charged with alcohol-impaired driving, drug-impaired driving or issued Warn Range Suspensions, the bottom line is that our officers took close to 923 impaired drivers off our roads and eliminated the threat they posed to those who were sharing the road with them that day.” – OPP Interim Commissioner Gary COUTURE.

Tragically, there were 42 alcohol/drug-related road deaths on OPP-patrolled roads in 2018.

The OPP is reminding drivers that as of December 18, 2018, police can demand a roadside breath sample from any lawfully stopped driver without first having to suspect the motorist has been drinking.

Under the new legislation, drivers impaired by alcohol now also face higher mandatory minimum fines and some higher maximum penalties.



Mayor Brian Saunderson Issues Challenge In Support of Big Brothers – Big Sisters

Collingwood Mayor Brian Saunderson salutes the people who have played key roles in his life. By paying tribute to his mentors, Saunderson is helping Big Brothers Big Sisters. He challenges mayors from around the region to take part and he has issued a challenge to former Olympians to jump on board.



Janet Leiper, LL.B., LL.M., C.S., Barrister & Solicitor and Superior Court of Justice Associate Chief Justice Frank N. Marrocco

Collingwood Judicial Inquiry Hearings Schedule Announced


In consultation with counsel for the participants, the Inquiry has scheduled the following dates for the public hearings:

Part I (Collus Share Sale) and Part II (Recreation Facility) of the Inquiry:

April 15-18, 2019
April 22-25, 2019
April 29-May 3, 2019
May 13-17, 2019
May 21-24, 2019

Part III (Policy Phase) will depend on completing the evidence in Parts I and II. The target dates for Part III are June 10, 11 and 12, 2019.

In preparation for the public hearings, Inquiry counsel have continued to hold regular meetings with all counsel. The focus of these meetings has been the participants’ ongoing document production, key documents and witnesses. Documents are still outstanding, and the Inquiry has set a deadline of January 8, 2019 for participants to complete this task.

Once all the documents are received, the Inquiry will determine which documents are needed for the public hearings. Counsel to the Inquiry will identify necessary witnesses and prepare statements with those witnesses, so the participants will know what to expect on the hearing days.

Some participants will decline to produce certain documents because of a claim of solicitor client privilege. These privilege claims may require adjudication by an independent decision maker. Inquiry counsel will use this process as required. This will be done before the public hearings.

CLICK HERE to go directly to the Collingwood Judicial Hearing web site.




CollingwoodLiving.com – 2018