Monday, May 31, 2010


Someone ask on the blog which Melancthon candidates attended the NDACT fundraiser on the weekend.

Sources have provided the following information and if I have missed anyone, please comment anon and I will update any names that I have missed.

Remember these are declared ones only.

I have listed them numerically and alphabetically so you might want to get a pen and paper handy so you can record them all:

1) Wayne Hannon
2) Bart Malloy (overlooked on the original post)

1) Mayor Gord Montgomery (overlooked on original post)
2) Deputy Mayor Sue Snider (overlooked on original post)


Now I know why lots of local politicians say you can't believe everything you read on the internet (probably in reference to this blog).

I do have to admit, with tongue firmly in cheek, I have made the only mistake I have ever made in my entire life and that was reporting there were two candidates who have filed in Melancthon-Bill Hill for Mayor and Wayne Hannon for Council.

I completely forgot and missed Bart Malloy, who filed some time ago. Sorry Mr. Malloy.

I stand corrected and trust me, everything ELSE you read here is the truth and accurate!!

Sunday, May 30, 2010


Wayne Hannon, lifelong resident of Melancthon has filed his papers to run for Melancthon Council.

That makes two-Bill Hill has filed for Mayor and Wayne for Council.

Anyone who runs should be congratulated.

A campaign is not easy.

And in Mordor, I mean Melancthon in these troubled times is it easy to be a local Councillor.

And if I can digress for a moment in my opinion they do not get paid enough to do the job for the experience, time and expertise required. I can say that because I have no personal agenda, I am not and won't be running for Council.

Friday, May 28, 2010


Below is an Orangeville Banner article from May 26, 2010 (these links expire so I am including the entire article).

You can read it in full, but in a nutshell Shelburne Mayor Crewson moved a motion at County Council to remove the water bottle ban that the County implemented in 2008.

The reason? Big business.

"The motion was introduced originally as a gesture of welcome to bottled water company Ice River Springs, which is in the process of setting up a food-grade plastics recycling facility in Shelburne." (Source: Orangeville Banner, May 26, 2010)

So lets see. Shelburne already has water issues, Melancthon's water is being threatened by a 2,400 acre 200 foot deep open pit limestone mine, by Highland Companies a client of Mayor Crewson's insurance company and now Ed wants to remove a water bottle ban to help out business to be located in Shelburne....

What happened to the feeder parts plants that Mayor Crewson championed about 15 years ago? IN fact the town paid for infrastructure to support it at a cost to Shelburne ratepayers of about $300,000.00? Oh yeah it is not running at full capacity-people have been laid off. They had 300 jobs for a few years and And how much aggregate did it take to construct KTH and Johnsons? A-freaking-LOT.

So lets sell out our water for another few years in favour of a recycling plant who's time is up.
Seriously, bottled water's shell and PR game has come and gone. People are realizing what a sham it is and what an environmental disaster it is.

Too bad our local politicians don't realize that most people have computers and software programs now and can produce all sorts of big fancy packages to sell their product, with ONLY good news.

Water bottle ban remains in place
Dufferin’s water bottle ban will not be lifted — at least for now. Shelburne Mayor Ed Crewson withdrew his motion to lift the ban at last Thursday’s (May 13) council meeting in the face of opposition to the idea from some councillors.
“I don’t have any strong feelings,” Crewson said before pulling his motion. “I don’t have any great passion one way or another.”
The motion was introduced originally as a gesture of welcome to bottled water company Ice River Springs, which is in the process of setting up a food-grade plastics recycling facility in Shelburne.
If it had succeeded, the motion would have reversed a policy approved in November 2008 which banned single-use water bottles from all facilities under the control of Dufferin County.
But the motion met opposition from Amaranth Mayor Don MacIver, who noted the ban was imposed in the first place despite there being water bottling companies elsewhere in the county.
Amaranth Deputy Mayor Walter Kolodziechuk added that if a tobacco company set up shop in Dufferin, the county would not eliminate non-smoking areas.
(Source: Orangeville Banner, May 26, 2010)

If you have any comment to make to Mayor Crewson, either for or against his stance, please direct them to Mayor and Council, Town of Shelburne c/o

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


Okay, so the Province is looking for your input on their Provincial Policy Statement.

You know, that document that says prime agricultural land is important, but not important enough for the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs to write any corresponding policy in the past five years since the PPS was introduced.

And maybe not as important as aggregate, depending on what the OMB says in the absence of any firm direction from the province?

Link is attached:

Have at it.

AND since I know that some of our local politicians read (and comment) on this blog, could I suggest that the Council introduce and discuss this opportunity to provide input to the Province on the PPS at their next meeting and provide comments as a Council NOT as individuals?

Just a thought.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


While this blogger, for the most part, has stayed away from outright support for any organization, please check out the following link:

As I received in an email tonight, please think about it in these terms:

Admission prices:

Adults 1 pm to 1 am (12 hours of live music) $25.00
Seniors 1 pm to 1 am $10.00
Evening only adults: $15.00

That means $25.00 is $2.00 an hour for live entertainment

4 water water cooler jugs of bottled water....

Please come out on Saturday and support NDACT.

Monday, May 24, 2010


Please take the time to vote on the poll on this blog.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

MAY 2-4

Enjoy your long weekend the way all good Canadians should.

Update next week on yet another fiasco at the last meeting of Council.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Holey smokes....can you believe the hypocracy? The Speaker of the Ontario Legislature is upset because a planned condominium development will destroy the view of the Ontario Legislature at Queen's Park.

Hey take a drive through Melancthon. There is nothing left, thanks to Highland Companies, to destroy the view, not a tree, not a house, not a barn.....

Sure hope they don't find gravel underneath the Ontario Legislature building at Queen's Park, otherwise you will see Daniher and Lowndes out there tomorrow doing this.....

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Duntroon ratepayers are fighting an expansion by Walkers.

Their Council, Clearview, agreed not to oppose the expansion because Walkers gave, no, NOT a YMCA, but $$$$.

Here is an update on the OMB hearing:

Sunday, May 16, 2010


You might have noticed from the May 13 posting, the the Councillor who moved the motion to leave the demoliton control bylaw up to the next Council, instead of showing leadership and doing something about it during this term of Council was Deputy Mayor Bill Hill.

To the best of my knowledge he is the only declared candidate for Mayor in the October 2010 municipal elections.

My partner and I, as have all Melancthonites, received his monthly mumbo jumbo newsletters on green paper advising us (and I am paraphrasing here) we should vote for him based on experience and leadership.

If the experience we are looking for is this......

then yes, I wholeheartedly agree, vote for Bill.

If you are looking for someone with vision and leadership we need another candidate to step up....

Don't forget, Bill says one of the reasons he can't do anything about the demolition of our homesteads, culture and taxbase is because it might cost $10,000.o0.

Yet he is also the politician who, in the 2009 budget, lobbied and got $12,000.00 set aside to help people with gas money to get to school...

WHAT you ask, yes I say.

Ask him at the next meeting of Council why paying people gas money to get to school would be more important than protecting the loss of (to date) $5 million off the assessment in homesteads that have been demolished to date.

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Definition of lame duck?

Lame duck is defined in popular vernacular as:

A politician's inability to do anything of substance. (urban dictionary)

Under Ontario legislation, a "lame duck" council is defined in the Municipal Act, 2001 under restricted acts. It happens during the period when nominations close (in 2010 it is September 10 @ 2:00 p.m.) until the election (in 2010 it is October 25, 2010) AND again, depending on the circumstances from the election until the new Council is sworn in (in Ontario that is from October 25, 2010 to December 1, 2010).

So....a lame duck Council, with the inability to do anything of substance SHOULD begin in Ontario after September 10, 2010 at 2:00 p.m.

Why then, is the Melancthon Council leaving a massive problem/decision to the next Council to deal with?

I am referring to the demolition control bylaw.

In August 2008 ratepayers attended a Council meeting to inquire about options available to Council to stop the demolition of structures in Melancthon.

2008.....August....that meant there was MORE than 2 years left on the term of Council in which to take action.

In March/April of 2009 more and more oposition to the demolition of homes in Melancthon began to appear on Council agendas....

2009....April....that meant there was more than 18 months left on the term of Council in which to take action.

In December 2009 Council introduced a demolition control bylaw on the agenda.

2009....December...that meant there was 10 months left on the term of Council in which to take action.

In May of 2010, with more than 5 months left, Council takes the definative action of leaving this important issue to...the NEXT Council. They have cited costs ($10,000.00-where is the breakdown of costs???, and the possibility of having to go (altogether now) the OMB!!) The should have cited the very real issue of lack of leadership and vision.

If this Council can't take action in their term, there is NOT one single incumbent on this current Council who deserves a position on the next Council.

If you can 't make the tough decisions now, why in the hell would anyone vote you in to provide leadership for the next term of Council?

Here is a campaign slogan for every incumbent....

VOTE for me, I won't take you to the OMB

Thursday, May 13, 2010


Regarding the demolition control bylaw that was on a Melancthon Council agenda in December 2009, the following resolution was passed at the May 6, 2010 meeting of Council:

Moved by Hill, Seconded by Crowe:

Be it resolved that: Whereas there has been considerable discussion and correspondence regarding the implementation of a demolition control By-law for the Township,

And whereas Council received a report dated March 29 2010 from Andrew Fyfe providing an update of the By-law,

And whereas the report recommended the creation of an ad hoc committee to establish framework for such a By-law to suit the particular circumstances of Melancthon to include but not limited to,

- the architectural and historical significance of the dwelling

- the potential for relocation to another site

- potential impact on agricultural production

- the cumulative impact of housing stock

- the cumulative impact on the rural landscape, including the proximity to other recent removal of dwellings

And whereas both the planner and legal counsel have stated publicly that a demolition control By-law will not necessarily stop a demolition,

And whereas they have also cautioned about the possible costly appeals to the Ontario Municipal Board,

And whereas subsequent to the April 15th Council meeting the C.A.O. was requested to survey the Counties of Dufferin, Grey and Wellington to request copies of their demolition control By-laws,

And whereas only the Township of Centre Wellington responded, as there is apparently no other Municipalities with demolition control By-laws in those Counties,

And whereas a request was made of Mr. Fyfe to provide a time and cost estimate to complete a By-law,

And whereas he suggested it would be “meeting heavy” with stakeholders, public open house(s), Council, as well as two or three rewrites of a By-law before it is finally presented to Council, with further additional costs of “about $ 10,000,”

And whereas this Council has six months left in it’s term and it is most likely the information and final By-law will not be available for passage within that time frame,

Therefore be it resolved that further discussion of the demolition control By-law be tabled until January 6 2011 when the new Council can review all the correspondence from BOTH open and closed sessions and decide if in their view a demolition control By-law is in the best interests of all of the residents of Melancthon Township and make the necessary budget choices for 2011 depending on their decision.


Analysis in tomorrow's blog.

Monday, May 10, 2010


What anniversary you ask?

Well the one year anniversary of Highland Companies informing Melancthon Council they would be filing for an aggregate licence within 3 to 6 months.

Hm, timing seems to be off a bit.

Wonder if they ran into some problems?

Sunday, May 9, 2010


Under an older posting on this blog is information re: Baupost Group, the Boston based hedgefund company that is allegedly behind Highlands quarry proposal.

Funny thing.

I have been getting reports that when people write the Baupost Group, expressing their concern/displeasure with the Baupost's group investment in an less than environmentally friendly project (you know the 2,400 acre 200 foot deep limestone mine on the headwaters of the Grand and Nottawasaga River systems in Melancthon) they get a letter from.....wait for it.....

Highland Companies. That little company based in Melancthon (or from a post office box from their "head office" in Hamilton). The messaging from Highlands to these letter writers is basically to cease and desist from communicating with the Baupost Group.

Wow. Last I heard Canada and the US were still free countries.

Just as a refresher, if you want to know more about the Baupost Group, google them.

Seth Klarman, however is their founder and here is his picture (hard to get as he is VERY elusive and oh yeah and very rich-on other people's money)

And here is the email address for the Baupost Group. I am not suggesting you email them, that is your own decision. I am only the information broker...

And seriously I have no idea what Highlands or the Baupost Group can or will "do to you", but...this IS a free country and the email and their website is in the public domain......


Click on the link and enjoy...

Saturday, May 8, 2010


Lets see, Stevie has solved many mysteries of the universe.

If only he could explain to us the rationale of Melancthon Council.

The May 6, 2010 Melancthon Council agenda shows that under correspondence to be considered at the meeting is a news release from the Town of Shelburne regarding the Street Carnival & Classic Car Show June 12, 2010.

It has been explained previously in public meetings that the disemination between items ON the agenda and posted/circulated and items on the agenda that are not circulated but available on request at the Clerk's office are:

Items that require Council direction/resolution/action are posted ON the publically discussed agenda and circulated, items that require no action or for information only are listed on file with the Clerk. The final decision lies with the Mayor.

So the Street Festival was information only-NO action.

Yet there were several items listed on the agenda as not being circulated, but available on file at the Clerk's office that Council might have, nay SHOULD have considered/discussed took action, including correspondence from Marni Walsh and Louisette Lanteigne with respect to the Flamborough Quarry issue and their success in opposing it.

But no, that might be AWKWARD for Council considering Highlands paid mouthpiece is at every meeting NOT providing information, but gathering information and Council does not want any debate with them, by golly. They might be sued.

The rest of us who are actually eligible voters (unlike Highlands, Lowndes and Daniher) can....well you figure it out.

Here is the link to the May 6 agenda:

Friday, May 7, 2010


Here I go again, harping on and on.....on yet more YMCA woes.

This time in Owen Sound.

They are getting a brand spanking new YMCA....
"Right now, the estimate is Owen Sound will have to come up with 9.35 million dollars LOCALLY for the rec centre project, but that could balloon to 22 million without government grants."

So lets see, that makes Collingwood, Owen Sound AND Shelburne....hokey smokes, someone is going to be physically fit and it won't be from working out at the Y, it will be because they are running around trying to fundraise to keep all these joints in good shape.

That is a pretty small geographic area to be raising all the money for these Y's. If I didn't know any better I would suspect there will be donor and taxpayer fatigue and in fact the existing facilities will need to be closed.

But then what do I know?

Thursday, May 6, 2010


Update: Councillors have stated repeatedly they can NOT and will NOT comment on the Highland Companies 2,400 acre 200 foot mine proposal because there is no official application as yet and it would be improper...

AND yet they can "officially" comment against 401 Energy's proposal for windturbines, despite NOTHING have been officially put in front of them when asked at Council meeting today by Highland mouthpiece as to whether they were against it.

They voted unanamously today NOT to pass the demolition control bylaw because of course Highlands is against it and oh yeah, it would take them too long to investigate what is required to pass it. What the hell does that mean? Well we don't know because of course the meeting was held during the day and they waited until the crowd left before doing this.

If any eligible voter is still considering of voting for ANY SINGLE incumbent you should be ashamed of yourself. Your vote for an incumbent is a vote for Highlands. The only people who should be more ashamed is every single incumbent on Melancthon Council.


Great article in Better Farming about NDACT's efforts to battle Highlands-see the link:

Within what seemed like "moments" however, Daniher the highly paid mouthpiece, I mean spokesperson for Highlands had submitted a response to the article to yet again point out not only is NDACT wrong but the reporter who wrote the article wasn't (wah, wah, wah) fair..... In fact the headline given to the response is:

"Company representative challenges quarry coverage"

Click here for the link:

Be sure to read all the comments in response to Daniher's prattle and feel free to post your own.

Monday, May 3, 2010


Last week the Museum Committee passed a motion recommending that County Council pass the draft tree bylaw.

Get this, included on the correspondence to be considered at that meeting was a letter from the very expensive solicitors for Highland Companies and it said, in respect of the committee amending the bylaw throughout various public meetings, at which Highlands were in attendance:

"We view this as a very unusual, secretive, and unfair procedure."

Wah, wah, wah.

In their correspondence they refer to "special interests groups"....this from the company who pays people to lobby the government in support of aggregate over food and water????

This from the company who has 21 demolition permits and when the municipality tried to protect its interests by PUBLICALLY passing a demolition control bylaw who met privately with the Mayor and staff and all of a sudden the bylaw "went away"....


Here is the link to the letter:

Here is how I picture Daniher getting ready for a meeting:

diaper - check

bottle - check

bag of money - check

SMIRK - check

Hey, don't forget the soother.....

Saturday, May 1, 2010


If you haven't read the Shelburne Free Press this week, you missed the headline "Town wrestling with water, sewer costs" and the article goes on to state that:

"A Watson Associates study of Shelburne's water and wastewater capital needs over the next 30 years has placed town council squarely on the horns of $3.9 million dilema."

This would SEEM to say that Shelburne is needing $3.9 in capital repairs, and they may, BUT it is over the next 30 years....

So, while I would like the headline of this blog to read
"$3 MILLION DEFICiT FOR WATER/SEWER AND SHELBURNE WANTS TO BUILD A $15 MILLION YMCA" it wouldn't right, fair or honest. And I am nothing if NOT honest, particularly when it comes to how Highlands is screwing local Councils around over the YMCA.

The exercise that Watson did for Shelburne is one that all Ontario municipalities have been mandated to go through. While the fancy word is Tanglible Capital Asset Accounting, in municipal circles it is referred to as PSAB.

In private business the owner/operators know when a piece of equipment, machinery is outdated, when it will need replaced and have the replacement costs in their heads and/or on the books and are always cognizant of what it will cost, when and how they will pay for it.

Councils on the other hand, are the "boss" for 3 or 4 years, depending on their term and some, not all, tend to go for the short fix. The low hanging fruit if you will, you know, something visible that won't impact taxes too much that will get ratepayers attention and if they are lucky, get politicians re-elected. IF not, then the replacement and upkeep of the item becomes the next bosses (Council's) problem. This is NOT just local Councils, this is the pattern of lots and lots of Councils.

An example of this might be a YMCA-you can't help but see it when you drive into a municipality. Repairs to something visible tend to happen, because you can see the paint flaking, the lights blown out, the sign falling down.

With other things, particularly infrastructure that is invisible-like water, sewer lines, etc. under the ground and out of sight, Councils have been tending to put these capital replacement costs off. Particularly since stable funding from province has all but stopped over the past 10-15 years.

You might have heard about this phenomina, called the Infrastructure Gap.

The "PSAB" exercise puts a value on everything owned by municipalities at the time of purchase/construction, including the pavement, stoplights, bridges, pipes under the grounds (as well as buildings, equipment, etc). Then the depreciated cost of the asset over the estimated lifespan of the asset is also given a value. (E.g. a bridge built in 1910 at a cost of $500,000.00 might have a lifespan of 100 years so the value of that bridge is zero today). Not only does the value of the assets get shown on financial statements, but the depreciation value as well.

It is hoped that this will show Councils which capital assets need replacement in order of need, not want, and help them budget for replacement. For example, clearly that 100 year old bridge with no value better get replaced and SOON. does this have anything to do with the YMCA?

Well if the YMCA gets built some municipality is going to have to show it as an asset, and also show the depreciated value/lifespan and it is going to impact their bottom line.

Like I say, the cheap part is building it.

And if we NEED a YMCA, then be honest. What other facilities will you close, what is the bottom line cost to ratepayers on an ongoing basis. The entire plan would never have got to the point of a study if there wasn't a business case/plan in place. WHERE is it?

Probably the same place the study to reduce blowing snow on County Road 124 (you know the publically owned road) is located-Highlands head office, I mean a post office box in Hamilton.