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Watershed Conditions Statement – Riverine Flood Outlook

HALDIMAND COUNTY, ON – Please be aware that the Long Point Region Conservation Authority is issuing a Watershed Conditions Statement – Riverine Flood Outlook for all areas within its watershed.

Precipitation across southern Ontario is forecast to reach 15-20 mm today with an additional 15-25 mm on Saturday. Additionally, above-freezing daytime air temperatures, as high as +10° cm are forecast for southern Ontario over the next four days. A moderate snowpack, ranging from 0-6.9 cm has been recorded throughout the watershed.

The above-freezing temperatures with added rain will result in the snowpack becoming saturated with water. It is expected that the entire snowpack will melt and release water which will create a potential for flooding in flood prone areas through the week into the weekend.

Members of the public are reminded to stay away from ditches, streams, rivers and ponds as the combination of slippery banks and cold, fast-flowing water is dangerous. Parents are reminded to keep children and pets away from these areas.

Landowners are also advised to make sure dams, culverts, and catch basins are free from debris and functioning properly – if it is safe to do so.

Water levels are expected to remain high for several days. This Flood Outlook is in effect until Tuesday March 28, 2023.

Architect named for design development of Hagersville Library + Active Living Centre

Plans are moving forward for the construction of Haldimand County’s new Library + Active Living Centre in Hagersville with the awarding of the design contract to the firm of Curran, Gacesa, Slote Architects Inc. (CGS).

The firm was one of seven compliant bidders which submitted competitive bids—assessed through the County’s Procurement Policy and in keeping with legislation—for the contract. The work includes the development of detailed design and engineering drawings, which will become part of a tender document for construction of the facility.

Work will begin immediately to finalize the design of the new multi-purpose facility and includes incorporation of stakeholder and community input about the design so far as well as a final round of consultation this spring.

Details about opportunities to contribute to the design will be promoted through Haldimand County’s newspaper ads and social media platforms, as well as the dedicated County webpage for the project:


Haldimand County logo. A yellow sun rising or setting atop green and blue waves. Haldimand County in black lettering below.

Mayor’s statement on the passing of former mayor Lorraine Bergstrand

I was deeply saddened to hear of the loss of Lorraine Bergstrand. As the first official mayor of Haldimand County as its own entity, Lorraine was instrumental in setting a solid foundation for Haldimand County to build upon for years to come.  Lorraine was a strong advocate for women in politics and administration, an inspiring and tenacious leader to many and will leave behind a lasting impact. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family, friends, and all those grieving.

We’ve lowered flags at the County Administration building to mark her passing and honour a life taken too soon. Lorraine was a familiar and passionate presence in our community and she will be greatly missed.

— Mayor Shelley Ann Bentley

Haldimand County Council Approves 2023 Tax-Supported Operating Budget

On March 2, 2023, Haldimand County Council reviewed and approved the 2023 Tax-Supported Operating Budget. The budget results in a total levy requirement of $80,305,850, which equates to a residential tax impact of 3.28%.

Generally, the annual Operating Budget pays for day to day operations of the County, including salaries, wages, utilities, insurance and services such as running arenas/programming, maintaining locals parks and cemeteries, providing emergency services (fire, police and ambulance), garbage collection and related activities.

Major factors that influenced the 2023 Operating Budget include external financial pressures like inflation, supply chain impacts, reduced/uncertain provincial funding and the rising cost of insurance and contracted essential services. The 2023 budget also introduces new initiatives in response to growth, new legislative requirements and to meet the community’s evolving needs and service desires.

“While the Operating Budget initially represented a 5% increase for ratepayers, staff conducted a rigorous review of controllable costs and did not bring forward any new initiatives that weren’t urgent, required by legislation or wouldn’t directly benefit the public,” CAO Craig Manley stated.

“Through this review, staff have developed a budget that addresses the county’s current needs, keeps the tax impact lower than what many other municipalities are facing, and employs strategic foresight to ensure our strong financial position is sustained.”

Manley also noted that Haldimand is in a unique period of growth and demographic change, and it will be important for Council to carefully evaluate not only levels of service that are offered to the community, but how they are administered when planning for the future.

“Thanks to the hard work and diligence of staff, we have a budget that balances maintaining the services our residents value with making investments to ensure Haldimand remains a prosperous, vibrant community for future generations,” noted Mayor Shelley Ann Bentley.

Highlights of the 2023 Tax-Supported Operating Budget include:

  • introducing new, temporary staffing resources to oversee and expedite major projects, including the construction of Caledonia’s new Fire/EMS station, municipal website re-design and the last year of the gravel road conversion program;
  • over $76,000 in grants to support local organizations with community beautification initiatives;
  • continuing to roll out the Council-approved reorganization of the IT division to increase efficiencies, meet service delivery requirements and strengthen cybersecurity;
  • increasing the staffing complement of Building Services to enhance the building permit application intake, inspection and issuance process;
  • enhancing the county’s forestry management program and reducing external consulting costs by introducing a new, in-house Urban Forester position to respond to service requests;
  • spearheading a recruitment and retention strategy to ensure the county can continue to recruit, retain and develop existing staff;
  • investing in the development of a corporate training plan relating to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion as recommended by the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion committee;
  • in response to rapid growth, adding a Project Manager, Municipal Infrastructure to manage all construction associated with land development;
  • introducing six additional summer students to facilitate the county’s roadside mowing program as a pilot project, with the aim of reducing costs and reliance on contracted services; and
  • adding additional summer program staff in response to growth and increasing demand for programming.

More information on County budgets and budget processes is available on the County website via You can also check out the 2023 Operating Budget overview for an at-a-glance look at budget highlights.

Average tax bill allocation by services chart, as outlined in the 2023 operating budget.

Haldimand County Municipal Facilities Closed, Garbage and Recycling Collection Canceled

The Haldimand County Administration Building, arenas, libraries and museums will be closed on Thursday, February 23, 2023 due to inclement weather. Garbage and recycling curbside collection is also canceled.

The combination of ice and blowing snow is resulting in hazardous travel conditions, and the County is asking residents to follow Environment Canada advice and consider postponing non-essential travel until conditions improve.

Facility closures/service impacts on Thursday, February 23, 2023:

  • The Haldimand County Administration Building, museums, libraries and arenas will be closed.
  • The Canborough Waste Management Facility will be closed.
  • All scheduled programs and ice/room rentals are canceled.

Garbage and recycling curbside collection is canceled. Due to the Family Day holiday delay this week, this means that:

  • The normal Wednesday collection (scheduled for Thursday, February 23 due to the holiday delay) is canceled; residents will be allowed double the material next Wednesday;
  • The normal Thursday collection (scheduled for Friday) will resume on Friday; and
  • The normal Friday collection (scheduled for Saturday) will continue on Saturday.

Storm-related updates will be posted on the county website and shared via Facebook and Twitter.

Haldimand Museums hosting International Women’s Day Presentation at Edinburgh Square Heritage & Cultural Centre

On Wednesday, March 8 at 1:30 p.m., Haldimand Museums will be offering a special, theatrical presentation to celebrate Woman’s History Month and International Women’s Day. Guests will travel back in time and walk in the shoes of 20th century suffragette, Annie Fearless to learn about the challenges and triumphs experienced by women in the early 1900s.

The cost for this presentation is $12.50/person. Pre-registration is required. Register online at or in person (prior to the event) at the Haldimand County Administration Building, 53 Thorburn Street South in Cayuga.

International Women’s Day emerged in the early 20th century, resulting from labour movements in North America and Europe which signalled an increasing call for equal opportunities for women. European countries such as Germany, Denmark, Austria and Switzerland were the first to recognize International Women’s Day, beginning on March 19, 1911.

Edinburgh Square Heritage & Cultural Centre is located at 80 Caithness Street East in Caledonia. For more information about programs and activities, contact Edinburgh Square at (905) 765-3134 or email

Incoming Winter Weather

HALDIMAND COUNTY, ON – Please be aware of a possible weather event arriving Wednesday evening into late Thursday.

With this storm comes the potential for high winds and a large accumulation of ice.  What makes this storm even more of an issue is the predicted duration of the freezing rain, with the potential for it to last hours.

Residents are reminded to be prepared for these types of instances. While the County and Emergency Services will monitor the situation, take the time now to get prepared. This storm may cause prolonged power outages, downed trees, and roads could be impassable due to ice and/or debris.  As such, be aware that there is the potential for Emergency Service response times to be delayed, so only call 911 if you have an emergency. Calling 911 when there is, in fact, no emergency takes crews away from residents who need it.

Take the time to prepare or look through your 72 hour kit at home and place extra supplies or kits in your vehicles. Be prepared for potential prolonged power outages, and be reminded that only approved gas heating appliances are to be used, this does not include gas stoves. Check all Smoke and Carbon Monoxide alarms to ensure they are working. Ensure vehicles are filled with both gas and washer fluid. Sheltering in place is the preferred method during these types of storms, and continue to monitor the News outlets, Social Media, and the County website for updates. Stay off the roads unless travel is absolutely necessary.

Haldimand County CAO announces retirement; acting CAO appointed

At the February 16 Special Council Meeting, Haldimand County Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Craig Manley informed Council of his intention to retire at the end of May. Manley has been employed with the County at senior positions since 2007 with the last four years as the CAO. The CAO is appointed by Council and is the head of the County Administration and the key link between staff and Council.

“After 37 years in the workforce it is time to transition to a new phase in my life journey – to spend more time with my family, to travel and to pursue my hobbies.  I have been most fortunate to have been able to work in my chosen professional discipline, to have had the opportunity to learn, grow and progress over the years and to have a career that has been meaningful and fulfilling.  Haldimand County has been a wonderful place to work and it has been most rewarding to see the community prosper, grow and add services and facilities that improve the quality of life for our residents and businesses. With Council having completed its orientation process, its strategic planning objectives for the council term and the annual budgeting process it is an appropriate time to make this transition. I would like to thank the successive Councils I’ve worked with for their support and collegiality.  I am leaving knowing the County is in good hands both at the Council and at the administration level.”

Mayor Shelley Bentley thanked Craig for his 15 years of service with the County and the recent work done to help the new Council acclimate to their new roles.  “Craig’s experience, advice and leadership has been very much appreciated by both myself as a new Mayor and by all members of Council. He’s been an invaluable part of Haldimand County for many years as a steady, guiding voice that has seen our community through some of its toughest times.  I know I speak for many of us here when I say that his wealth of knowledge and insight will be sorely missed, and that we wish him all the best in his well-deserved retirement.“

At this same meeting, Council also appointed Cathy Case as the Acting CAO upon Manley’s departure with that role becoming permanent effective October 1, 2023 subject to a performance review and negotiation of an employment contract. Case is a life-long resident of the County and is currently the General Manager of Corporate and Social Services and has significant experience in municipal governance.

Mayor Bentley noted “We are fortunate to have a strong management team in Haldimand and a positive work culture.  In order to ensure a smooth transition and a continued positive trajectory for our community Council felt it was important to look within the organization as a first priority to ensure a continuity of management style and approach to working with Council.’

Over the next four months Manley and Case will be working together to ensure a seamless transition with Manley’s last day occurring on May 31.


Haldimand County logo. A yellow sun rising or setting atop green and blue waves. Haldimand County in black lettering below.

Haldimand County Council approves 2023 Capital Budget

Haldimand County Council reviewed and approved the 2023 Tax-Supported Capital Budget and 10-year forecast on February 2, 2023. The Capital Budget outlines $32.6 million of infrastructure investment in 2023, with a total investment of $326.8 million over the next 10 years. In total, 338 capital projects are scheduled for the 2023 calendar year.

The 2023 Capital Budget is heavily focused on infrastructure revitalization with notable expenditures in areas like roadway improvements, bridge and culvert rehabilitation, and enhancements to corporate, community and recreation facilities.

2023 Capital Budget Highlights:

  • $20 million towards roadway and active transportation improvements such as paving, road reconstruction, tar and chip resurfacing, gravel road conversion, sidewalk/curb replacements, street lighting, as well as bridge/culvert rehabilitations, replacements and other structure-related projects;
    • Includes $2.9 million towards the Gravel Road conversion program, with the bulk of the work to be completed in 2023;
  • $2.1 million towards the purchase of one new pumper and two new tankers and $520,000 for two new ambulances;
  • $939,000 towards enhancing municipal arenas, including upgrades to refrigeration equipment/concessions and building infrastructure;
  • $677,000 combined towards library and museum services, including the installation of an elevator at the Dunnville Branch and stair riser/accessible washroom and lift at Edinburgh Square;
  • $948,000 towards tree conservation and re-forestation initiatives, such as the Downtown Street Tree Revitalization Program and general maintenance, removal, planting and care of urban trees;
  • $394,000 for park and trail-related projects, including bleacher/players’ bench replacements in five locations, paving of the Jarvis Meadow Pathway and Trails Master Plan Update;
  • $378,000 towards the Community Halls Partnership Program, with funds allocated to facility repairs and necessary maintenance; and
  • $211,000 towards mechanical/electric maintenance and repairs at municipal pools.

“The 2023 Capital Budget was prepared in a difficult economic climate and faced a number of challenges in terms of balancing current priorities, future needs and the types of services and facilities we know are desired by the community,” noted Chief Administrative Officer Craig Manley.

“Things like inflation, the rising cost of contracted services, increased growth and uncertainties with regard to federal/provincial funding have all had a big impact on our capital program. Despite this, the 2023 Capital Budget and long-range financing plan outlines a strategy that ensures community needs are met and that will allow us pivot if unforeseen needs arise,” Manley added.

“I appreciate the time and dedication put forward by staff to develop a budget that supports responsible growth in our communities and focuses on sustaining the high-quality levels of service our residents value,” said Mayor Shelley Ann Bentley. “The budget was developed with careful strategic foresight and identifies key challenges that we must plan for proactively to maintain our strong financial position over the long term,” Bentley added.

Similar to past years, the capital levy, funded by property taxes, will increase by about $762,200 or about one per cent of the overall municipal levy. The total municipal levy for 2023 will be determined once the 2023 Tax-Supported Operating Budget is approved by Council.

The 2023 Tax-Supported Operating Budget will be presented to Council on the following dates:

• March 2 & 3*, 2023 – 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Haldimand County Administration Building Council Chamber (*if required)

More information on Haldimand County budgets can be found at


Need for Proper Smoke and Carbon Monoxide

The Emergency Services Division of Haldimand County would like to remind all residents of the importance of having proper smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms in their residences. With the tragic number of house fires and related fatalities in 2022, a key priority for Emergency Services in 2023 is stressing the importance of working smoke/CO alarms under the Fire Code. Community members are asked to be mindful of the requirements as failure to comply could lead to charges.

Provincewide, fire-related deaths have been steadily rising year after year.

  • 2019 saw 72 fire deaths
  • 2020 saw 114 fire deaths
  • 2021 saw 124 fire deaths
  • 2022 saw 133 fire deaths

The top five suspected causes of residential fires are as follows:

  • Unattended cooking
  • Overloaded or faulty wiring
  • Supplementary heating from space heaters, wood stoves, and chimneys
  • Candles
  • Careless smoking

Ontario law requires fire detection devices on every floor of a dwelling and outside all sleeping areas. Offenders can be ticked $360 or fined up to $50,000, and double that for corporations.

What to do to help avoid house fires:

  • Don’t leave the kitchen unattended, most kitchen fires are a result of distraction or leaving the oven/unattended. If you need to leave the room, ask your spouse or roommate to keep an eye on the food and keep stove and oven clean. Keeping your appliances such as your stove clean reduces the risk of a grease fire. Residents should either manually clean their appliances once it is at room temperature, or opt for the oven self-cleaning setting every few months.
  • Limit the use of extension cords and read the CSA/ESA labels on items you are using to determine the electrical load on the receptacle you are using. Especially heating devices/appliances.
  • Try to replace traditional candles with battery-operated decorative candles. If you must use a traditional candle ensure it is in a “tip” proof container or globe.
  • If you smoke, be sure to do it outside and completely extinguish the cigarette in an ashtray.

To help avoid injury or death in the event of a fire, Haldimand County Fire Department recommends the following tips.

  • “Get Out and Stay Out” – never go back inside for anything.
  • Make sure to test your alarms frequently and change the batteries twice annually.
  • Have an escape plan and practice it with your family members. It is important to have a plan set in place prior to an emergency, and allow your children to hear the alarm sounding when you test the batteries so they know what it sounds like.
  • Openly discuss with your children the importance of following the rules and safety guidelines as everyone’s lives depend on it.

If you are not sure how many alarms you need or where they should be placed, do not hesitate to reach out to your local fire department.