Sunny days and warm weather are guaranteed to make you want to head outside and enjoy our short Canadian summer. Unfortunately, there is a danger lurking in our forest, tall grass and shrubs. The danger is one that can be hard to spot, until it’s too late. Ticks. Tiny creepy crawlies that are part of the arachnid family and enjoy feasting on the blood of animals and human. One species of tick – the black-legged tick – is of particular concern because these ticks are known to carry Lyme disease.
It’s official – the Monument de la francophonie will have a permanent home on Le Chenail Island. Earlier this month, Hawkesbury council voted unanimously in favour of giving the monument a home on the western portion of the island. Although its exact location has yet to be determined, council’s decision puts an end to years of debate and uncertainty. Or does it? While the 15 or so members of the monument committee in attendance collectively cheered and applauded council’s decision, others are not so pleased with the decision.
We reported last week that the United Counties of Prescott-Russell was pleased to declare not even a zero, but a minus .5 per cent tax rate increase. And we also reported that the average increase of property assessments is 4.5 per cent. That combination does not equal zero when it comes to your tax bill.
There’s something fishy going on in Prescott-Russell. In the April 24 edition of The Review we brought you two pretty surprising stories. Even we were surprised to hear about them and believe us when we say it can be pretty tough to surprise us. The first discussed how shocked East Hawkesbury Mayor Robert Kirby, his council and municipal staff were to learn that TransCanada Corporation was examining the municipality as a potential thoroughfare for the Energy East Pipeline.
Do we really need a play-by-play when tragedy strikes? It all started with a big explosion at the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday, April 15. Immediately, media outlets from around the world kicked into high-gear. For the last week and a half, this incident, which claimed the lives of three people and injured nearly 150 more, has played out on live television.
With increasing pressures in our professional, family and social lives, it seems we’ve become a generation of “yes” men and women. We want to please everyone all of the time. We don’t want to rock the boat. We don’t want to create tension. We don’t want to disappoint. So, we say “yes” when what we really should say is “no.” The word “no” is viewed as being negative and so, the consequences of saying it are often viewed as being negative too. But sometimes, saying “no” is the only thing that makes sense. Sometimes, saying “no” can be a good thing.
Some people looking forward to a significant income tax refund this season will be in for a big surprise. Despite promising things would be different this tax season, the provincial government has neglected to give Ontarians the choice it promised regarding the Ontario Trillium Benefit (OTB). The government promised Ontarians would be able to choose how they receive their OTB payments - in monthly installments or in one lump-sum. Unfortunately, that is not the case.
Last week, something truly amazing happened. A group of Cree youth arrived on Parliament Hill after completing a gruelling 1,600-kilometre journey through dense bush, snow and frigid temperatures. Walkers wore snowshoes most of the way. The walk, known as the Journey of the Nishiyuu, began in James Bay in mid-January. By the time these young people arrived in Ottawa, more than 270 walkers had joined them.
Why are we so reluctant to put the environment first? This is a question we find ourselves asking as it becomes more and more apparent that Canada is putting industrial development before environmental sustainability. Take a recent report from federal environment commissioner Scott Vaughan, which states that the Harper government is failing to protect Canadians’ health and environment from the pollution risks associated with the resource industry boom across the country.
Hawkesbury council is at it – again. If you read this paper or attend/watch Hawkesbury council meetings, you know exactly what we’re talking about -- arguing. At the council meeting held on Monday, March 4, tempers flared and insults flew once again. This time, the issue up for discussion was a staff recommendation to consider building a new marina, not only to accommodate this summer’s Poker Run 2013 and Ottawa River Festival, but to further the town’s efforts to make Hawkesbury a tourist destination.
The Hawkesbury Central Food Bank’s mission is to provide temporary emergency support to the people in our communities who have difficulty feeding themselves and their families. Unfortunately, statistics show the need for the services provided by the food bank is increasing steadily from month to month. Hunger, it seems is not a temporary problem; it recurs frequently in households where making ends meet is an ongoing struggle.
There was a time, not so long ago, when we didn’t have to ask a lot of questions about our food. We didn’t worry about meat being pumped full of antibiotics to increase production. We didn’t have to wonder if the hamburgers we grilled on our barbecues might contain e.coli that could make us terribly sick. Food labels didn’t contain an alarming list of ingredients we could barely pronounce, let alone understand.
There is no doubt about it, this year’s flu season was a doozy. In some places it’s still surging, in others it has plateaued, and in other parts of the country it may actually be on the wane. But in most parts of Canada this winter, influenza has been reminding Canadians what a real flu season feels like. After a few quiet flu seasons, which included a relatively lacklustre H1N1 outbreak, many are quick to call this flu season the worst in decades. It remains unclear if that’s true or not just yet, but it certainly is fair to say that this was a very active flu season.
In the editorial that appeared in the February 13 edition of The Review, we talked about the need for economic development and tourism in Prescott-Russell. We pointed out that both have been priorities for all levels of government for quite some time now, but both also continue to present challenges for municipalities. We noted that it’s time to stop talking about economic development and tourism and start taking action to come up with a concrete plan to make our region an attractive place to live, work and play.
Last year, the Eastern Ontario Financial Sustainability Update Project, which was initiated by the Eastern Ontario Warden’s Caucus (EOWC), examined the economic condition of all 114 urban and rural local governments in Eastern Ontario.
For the first time in Canada’s history, we are penniless. As of Monday, February 4, the federal government officially ended nearly 150 years of penny production and distribution. Pennies will no longer be distributed to businesses and financial institutions. Last spring, the Harper government announced it was scrapping the penny, ending production of a coin that weighs down consumers’ pockets while adding little to their purchasing power. The government stopped minting new pennies last April.
Times are tough. Or so we keep hearing. While our country’s financial situation is enviable compared to most, let’s face it, the bar really hasn’t been set very high. At the federal level, we’re struggling to deal with a nearly $2-billion deficit. Most provinces, including our own, are millions of dollars in debt. Grant money for infrastructure and economic development projects is scarce. A report released last year says the future of eastern Ontario looks bleak as municipalities try to invest in much-needed infrastructure projects while dealing with a shrinking tax base.
Last week, cycling superstar Lance Armstrong officially confirmed what many already suspected – he lied, cheated and doped his way to seven consecutive Tour de France wins. After vehemently denying allegations that he used drugs to enhance his performance during the world’s toughest and most demanding cycling competition, Armstrong finally came clean during an interview with American talk-show host Oprah Winfrey.
If you haven’t been bitten by this year’s flu bug yet, you’re one of the very few lucky ones. This year’s flu season arrived earlier and is much nastier than in previous seasons. As a result, public health officials across North America are all sounding the same alarm to the general public – protect yourself.
Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence got what she wanted. More than 25 days ago, Spence started a so-called hunger strike to force Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Governor General David Johnston to meet with First Nations leaders to talk. Last week Harper agreed, stating he will meet with First Nations leaders this Friday, January 11.