New Haldimand County Administration Building opening February 25, 2020

Construction on Haldimand County’s new administration building is wrapping up and the building will be open to the public for service on February 25, 2020.

“The new administration building is a reflection of the County’s long-term, strategic focus on continued service excellence and efficient, transparent government. The building design is community-focused, cost-effective and well-equipped to lead our growing County into the future,” said Mayor Ken Hewitt.

Staff will be permanently relocated to the new administration building at 53 Thorburn St. S throughout February on the dates highlighted below.

Satellite OfficeRelocation details
Haldimand County Caledonia Centre administration offices
100 Haddington St., Caledonia
HCCC administration offices will close at 12pm on February 7, 2020
Dunnville Satellite Office
117 Forest St. E., Dunnville
The Dunnville Satellite Office will close at 12pm on February 21, 2020
Caledonia Satellite Office
282 Argyle St. S., Caledonia
The Caledonia Satellite Office will close at 12pm on February 21, 2020
Kohler Garage / Office
1162 Kohler Rd., Cayuga
The Kohler Office will close at 12pm on February 21, 2020
Hagersville Satellite Office
1 Main St. S., Hagersville
The Hagersville Satellite Office will close at 12pm on February 21, 2020
Cayuga Administration Building
45 Munsee St. N., Cayuga
The Cayuga Administration Building will close at 4:30pm on February 27, 2020.

 

Starting February 21, ‘myHaldimand’ or ‘myHC’ community hubs will also be open for use at all local libraries. ‘myHC’ community hubs are computer and information stations designed to connect residents with County news, information and access to online services. For residents who are not familiar with online services offered, such as paying taxes or water bills online, library staff will be available to provide guidance on how to utilize them. Additional 24/7 online services (such as applications for certain permits) will be introduced in the near future.

“The new building is a one stop shop. Under the new centralized service delivery model, there’s no longer a need to visit multiple offices for specific services, and many services can be accessed online,” Mayor Hewitt noted. “This is an exciting moment for Haldimand County and I look forward to welcoming and serving the community in this new space.”

Other key dates & information

  • All satellite offices, with the exception of the old Cayuga Administration Building (45 Munsee St. N., Cayuga), will be permanently closed as of Friday, February 21 at 12pm. Residents who require in-person service between Friday, February 21 at 12pm and Tuesday, February 25 at 8:30am may visit the old Cayuga Administration Building.
  • The first Council in Committee meeting in the new Haldimand County Administration Building is expected to be held on Tuesday, March 31.
  • Court will begin operating in the new building as of Wednesday, March 4.
  • Service enhancements that residents and contractors will experience immediately in the new administration building will be the provision of full day permit application intake, general inquires and building inspections (Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 4:00 pm). Inspection requests can be made by calling 905-318-5932 or emailing inspections@haldimandcounty.on.ca. As of February 25, building inspections received prior to 3:00 pm will be scheduled for the next business day.

Plans for the new building and centralized service delivery model have been in the development stages since their approval by Council in early 2016, with a focus on enhancing customer service, maximizing administrative/operational efficiencies and ensuring long-term cost effectiveness. More information about the new administration building, including a project timeline, is available at HaldimandCounty.ca/HCAB.

Haldimand County’s New Administration Building On Track For January 2020 Completion

On October 8, 2019, Haldimand County staff presented Council with an update on the new Administration Building’s construction progress. A number of major construction milestones have been reached and the building is on track to be completed by January 2020.

Painting, floor finishes and light fixture/ceiling tile grid installation is currently underway within the building’s interior. Electrical work will continue over the next several weeks, as will landscaping and work on remaining exterior finishes (e.g: composite paneling, landscaping). Furniture deliveries and the overall setup/configuration of the building’s interior will begin in early December. Staff moves and satellite office closures are expected to begin in January 2020.

All services currently available at the County’s satellite offices will be offered at the new administration building, and new online tools will be introduced to provide more 24/7 services to residents. Library branches will be retrofitted with ‘Community Hubs’ – computer and information stations designed to connect resident with County news & online services. Library staff will be available to provide instruction and guidance on how to make use of online services, like how to pay taxes or water bills online.

Satellite office closure information will be announced and communicated to residents later this fall. To ensure service consistency across the County, Community Hubs openings will be coordinated to occur prior to satellite office closures.

The project is within budget and moving along well to substantial completion despite weather delays and impacts related to trades-related workforce disruptions in spring 2019.

More information about the new Central Administration Building – including construction updates – will be shared on the County website and social media channels as the project progresses.

Haldimand County Shortlists Vendors To Deliver County-Wide Broadband Internet Services

In July 2019, at the request of Council, staff released a Request for Pre-Qualification (RFPQ) to short-list internet service providers capable of installing broadband infrastructure and facilitating County-wide internet services. Of the four (4) submissions received, three (3) vendors met the requirements outlined in the RFPQ and will progress to the next phase of the selection process.

At the September 23 Council meeting, staff presented Council with a high-level overview of the RFPQ results and received approval to initiate a Negotiated Request for Proposal process (NRFP) with the three successful vendors. Ultimately, negotiations will result in the selection of a successful bidder to install and facilitate internet services throughout all of Haldimand’s communities.

Given the diversity and complexity of the three qualified submissions received during the RFPQ process, the development of the NRFP and subsequent evaluations will be focused on ensuring the best service is obtained at the best value to the County. As such, Council approved obtaining third-party resources to assist staff in facilitating the negotiation process and providing technical expertise with respect to each vendor’s technology proposals & financial capacities. A budget amendment of up to $100,000 was approved and a third party consultant will be brought in to manage the NRFP process from start to finish.

“Council is committed to finding a financially sound, practical solution that makes internet connectivity attainable and sustainable for all,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt. “We’re taking all steps necessary to ensure we find the right provider that is capable of  delivering these services in the long-term,” he added.

Hewitt also re-iterated Council’s rationale for pursuing an internet service provider independently, outside of the SWIFT (Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology) initiative. “SWIFT’s proposed timeframe – to install high-speed internet to all of Southwestern Ontario by 2040 – was concerning, and Haldimand was placed at the bottom of the project’s priority list,” he noted. “If the County had partnered with SWIFT, there would have been a cost incurred to the County and its taxpayers with no guarantee of an end product.”

The target date to have an agreement in place has not changed and it is anticipated that an agreement will be presented to Council for approval in January of 2020. Project updates will be posted on the County website and social media accounts as they become available.

Haldimand County Adopts 2018-2022 Term Of Council Corporate Priorities

On September 23, 2019, Haldimand County Council formally adopted 8 corporate priorities for the 2018-2022 term. Term of Council Corporate Priorities are a key tool in maintaining strategic organizational focus, managing workload/resources and moving the County forward by prioritizing items that add significant value to the community.

At the beginning of each Term of Council, Council holds strategic planning exercises and discussions to identify major initiatives and administrative improvements it wishes to achieve during its tenure. County staff then identify the scope, resources, timing & other logistical matters associated with proposed initiatives and – through a report – seek Council approval of the proposed work program.

The 8 approved Corporate Priorities are, in no particular order:

1) Responding to provincial funding changes
Identify challenges and develop a fiscal strategy in response to the 2019 Ontario budget and
related legislation

2) Growth strategy, Official Plan update & Highway 6 corridor infrastructure
Continue to plan for & address population growth, long-term infrastructure needs and
economic opportunities for the next 20 years

3) High speed, County-wide broadband internet
Facilitate private sector investment to provide County-wide broadband internet infrastructure
& services     

4) Affordable/social housing strategy
Take necessary steps and examine options related to implementing an affordable and social
housing strategy

5) Procurement & contract management enhancements
Develop and implement solutions to enhance procurement and contract management
activities

6) Customer service enhancements
Further develop customer service standards, practices and resources to enhance
convenience and increase accessibility to municipal services

7) Public mobility & transportation
Define & explore potential transportation options to assist residents with travel-related needs

 
8) Major community recreational facility needs & implementation strategy
Identify and prioritize community and recreation needs associated with 20+ year growth
forecast

“These 8 priorities were determined by Council as a whole in response to our communities’ most pressing needs,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt. “A number of projects and initiatives will stem from these priorities over the next 3 years, all with the end goal of enhancing livability, community vibrancy and the potential for economic growth in all areas of the County,” he noted.

More information regarding the 2018-2022 Term of Council Corporate Priorities, including timing and key milestones are available at HaldimandCounty.ca under ‘Government’ > ‘Council’ and ‘Council Priorities’. This information will be updated annually.

Council, Staff Taking Steps To Deliver County-Wide Broadband Internet Service

Haldimand County Council is moving forward with its commitment to bringing affordable, reliable high-speed internet service to all residents. On July 16, 2019, staff released a Request for Pre-Qualification (RFPQ) to short-list internet service providers capable of installing broadband infrastructure and facilitating County-wide internet services.

The Request for Pre-Qualification (RFPQ) is an invitation by Haldimand County to prospective bidders to submit proposals outlining their qualifications and experience. In order to make the RFPQ short list, bidders must demonstrate their ability – across multiple evaluation criteria – to facilitate County-wide internet services in the long-term. Bidders who meet the requirements outlined in the RFPQ and receive a passing score will be allowed to progress to the final selection stage.

It is anticipated that at the conclusion of the RFPQ process, staff will report back to Council and seek direction to initiate a Negotiated Request for Proposal process (NRFP) with a shortlisted number of proponents. Ultimately, negotiations will result in the selection of a successful bidder to install and facilitate internet services throughout all of Haldimand’s communities.

“This is an important step in making affordable, reliable high-speed internet available to all residents,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt. “A reliable internet connection is not a luxury – it’s a necessity. Everyone in Haldimand County deserves access to this vital and basic service, whether it’s to stay connected with family, take care of day-to-day tasks, complete an online course or sustain a business,” Hewitt noted.

Community consultations will take place as the project progresses to obtain resident input, assess needs and address questions or concerns related to broadband internet service.

“We are committed to finding a financially sound, practical solution that makes internet connectivity attainable and sustainable for all. We’ll keep the public informed and engaged as the project moves forward,” added Mayor Hewitt.

The approximate project timeline – as listed in the RFPQ – is as follows:

Key MilestonesEstimated Commencement DateEstimated End Date
Issue RFPQJuly 16, 2019August 16, 2019
Evaluate RFPQ ProponentsAugust 19, 2019August 22, 2019
Issue NRFP to qualified biddersSeptember 24, 2019October 29, 2019
Evaluate NRFPOctober 30, 2019November 4, 2019
Enter Negotiations with shortlisted three (3) proponentsNovember 5, 2019November 26, 2019
Report to Council for approval of recommended bidderDecember 16, 2019December 16, 2019
Construction*Spring 2020*January 2025

 

*Timelines are established based on a tentative contract execution date of January 2020 and are subject to change.

Project updates will be posted on the County website and social media accounts as they become available.

A Fresh New Look: Haldimand County Council Approves New Corporate Logo And Brand

In April 2019, Council reviewed a proposed new logo and brand as part of its approved Economic Development Strategy. After deliberation and some suggested modifications to the concept, Council additionally approved staff recommendations to adopt the logo for corporate use.

Creating a new brand and logo to market the County was identified as a priority in 2017 following the development of comprehensive economic development & tourism strategies. The Council-approved strategies outlined the need for a strong brand to raise the County’s profile and differentiate it in the minds of prospective investors, visitors and businesses to foster economic growth.

In 2018, the County received funding from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) Rural Economic Development Fund to conduct the brand strategy. Hamilton-based consultants CQNS were retained to lead the brand strategy’s development, which included multiple stages of research and stakeholder engagement including online/telephone surveys, the formation of a brand steering committee and public meetings held within each community.

During the development of the new Economic Development & Tourism brand, an opportunity to update the Haldimand County corporate logo was identified. For the past 18 years, the County has had a Coat of Arms (used for formal business) as well as a logo (used for marketing and communication purposes). The County’s corporate logo usage policy – instituted in 2001 – acknowledged that the logo would have a limited lifespan and require periodic updating.

The new logo provides a fresh new look for Haldimand County and portrays the county’s natural beauty while symbolizing its potential as a great place to live, work and play. “A cohesive, contemporary corporate identity helps portray the benefits of our community to residents, businesses, investors and visitors,” said Don Boyle, Haldimand County’s Chief Administrative Officer. “Haldimand County has evolved significantly since 2001 & the new logo reflects our community’s increased vibrancy, dynamism & potential,” he added.

Part of the re-brand involved the creation of a new tagline that celebrates what makes
Haldimand a unique destination for both visitors and prospective investors. The new Economic Development & Tourism tagline – Real. Potential. – speaks to two key elements of Haldimand County’s character: authenticity and opportunity.

Real is just how we live. It is about authentic and sincere experiences with people who are proud of who they are and what they have created.

Potential is our promise. We want to show people what Haldimand County is – a place where you can create a new business, have unique experiences and make a real impact.

“This is an exciting change and marks a turning point in the way we communicate the benefits of the County,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt. “While our commitment to the business community in Haldimand will not change, there is incredible potential to grow. Cities and surrounding regions throughout Ontario are marketing themselves directly and in defined, refreshed ways; the new branding puts Haldimand in a position to compete for those opportunities,” he continued.

The new logo will be rolled out incrementally. Replacement of roadside and building signage, as well as updates to County publications bearing the old logo, will occur gradually over time to minimize costs. The majority of County assets and materials will be updated as they are re-ordered, re-printed or replaced.

For more information about the new logo and brand visit HaldimandCounty.ca/HCbrand.

Funding for the brand strategy was provided by the Government of Ontario’s Rural Economic Development Fund.

Haldimand County CAO Announces Departure, New CAO Appointed By Council

Haldimand County Council has appointed a new CAO following the resignation of current CAO Don Boyle, who has accepted an employment opportunity in the private sector.

At the June 27, 2019 Committee of the Whole meeting, Mayor Hewitt announced on behalf of Council that Craig Manley, General Manager of Community & Development Services, will be appointed as Haldimand County’s new CAO. Manley will take on the title of Interim CAO on August 1, 2019 until his employment contract is finalized on September 3, 2019. As of September 3, he will officially assume his new leadership role as CAO.

“The County is in a very good place thanks to the dedication of Don, his Senior Management Team and all supporting staff. On behalf of Council I sincerely thank him for his service and wish him great success in the future,” said Mayor Ken Hewitt.

“It is on to a new chapter in Haldimand’s journey, and I am very pleased to have Craig Manley at the helm. Craig has consistently demonstrated his strong leadership skills and commitment to Haldimand County time and time again. His attention to detail, foresight, and knowledge of municipal operations – especially planning – will no doubt lead us into further success,” he continued.

“I am grateful to have worked with Council past and present, my team, County staff and the community,” said Chief Administrative Officer Don Boyle. “I leave the County for a new opportunity knowing we have the right leadership team in place and a Council that is committed to doing what is best for the community,” said Boyle.

Over the next four weeks, Boyle will work with Manley as he transitions into his new role as CAO.

Ward 2 Community Vibrancy Fund Grant Will Help Construct New Playground At J.L. Mitchener

On Thursday, June 27, Ward 2 Councillor John Metcalfe presented J.L. Mitchener Public School principal Mark Finochio with a $6,000 grant from the Ward 2 Community Vibrancy Fund for the purpose of constructing new playground equipment for students and neighbourhood children.

J.L. Mitchener Public School’s Parent Committee was able to fundraise $27,000 of the estimated $34,000 playground equipment cost. Councillor Metcalfe introduced a motion to provide a CVF grant for the remaining $6,000 and it was approved at the June 24th Council meeting.

Under the Community Vibrancy Fund agreement established in 2011, renewable energy companies with projects in Haldimand County are required to contribute to the Community Vibrancy Fund annually for 20 years. The distribution of CVF funds to geographic areas of the County are based on the proportion of wind/solar power and transmission infrastructure in each ward.

Council approved a number of principles and prioritization criteria to govern the use of CVF funds and ensure they are appropriated to directly benefit residents. As per the CVF principles, funds may be utilized for: land stewardship initiatives, developing/constructing County recreational facilities, enhancing community and protective services, improving roads/public municipal infrastructure and other community-focused activities.

Principal Mark Finochio expects that construction on the playground will begin mid-July and be complete by September 2019.

Photo (left to right): Haldimand County CAO Don Boyle, J.L. Mitchener Public School Principal Mark Finochio, Ward 2 Councillor John Metcalfe. 

Community Vibrancy Fund Contributions Exceed $6 Million, Fund Over 100 Community Projects Since 2011

In September 2011, Haldimand County Council passed resolutions to establish a Community Vibrancy Fund (CVF) and agreement with companies pursuing renewable energy projects within the County. To date, $6,351,620 has been contributed to the CVF by these companies, which has funded over 100 community projects.

Under the agreement, renewable energy companies with projects in Haldimand County are required to contribute to the Community Vibrancy Fund annually for 20 years. For solar and wind energy projects, annual company contributions are calculated by the projects’ nameplate capacities, or total power output per year (in megawatts). For transmission projects, annual company contributions are based on kilometres of power line.

By 2031 – at the end of the agreement’s 20-year lifespan – approximately $40 million will have been contributed to the CVF by the following companies:

● Grand Renewable Solar LP
● Grand Renewable Wind LP
● Capital Power Corporation
● Summerhaven Wind LP (Nextera)
● FWRN LP (Niagara Wind)

“When the CVF was first introduced, residents had questions. How is this money going to be allocated? How will it benefit me and my family? Since the fund was established, we’ve seen some amazing community assets developed and infrastructure projects expedited that wouldn’t be feasible otherwise,” noted Mayor Ken Hewitt. “Putting the funds to good use has meant working with councilors, constituents and community partners to determine areas of need and identify opportunities that will make an impact,” he noted.

The distribution of CVF funds to geographic areas of the County are based on the proportion of wind/solar power and transmission infrastructure in each ward. Council approved a number of principles and prioritization criteria to govern the use of CVF funds and ensure they are appropriated to directly benefit residents. As per the CVF principles, funds may be utilized for: land stewardship initiatives, developing/constructing County recreational facilities, enhancing community and protective services, improving roads/public municipal infrastructure and other community-focused activities.

Notable & recent CVF-funded projects include:

● Jarvis Lions Park Trail & Pathway
● Dunnville Farmers Market & Waterfront Park
● Hagersville Splash Pad
● Cayuga Library & Heritage Centre
● Cayuga Grand Vista & Gypsum Mine Tract trails
● Fisherville Lions Park & Hall enhancements
● Road enhancements & rehabilitation work (e.g: expedited gravel road conversions such as
Yaremy Road, shoulder widening on Cheapside Rd., Dunnville bridge noise mitigation project, etc.)
● Cayuga Tourism Booth improvements
● Rural streetscaping in York, Byng, Fisherville & Selkirk

Each year during the Capital Budget process, CVF initiatives and relative rankings/prioritizations are reassessed by Council to ensure funds are used strategically to meet community needs.

Trail Grand Openings Met With Enthusiasm By Residents And Visiting Recreation Seekers

On Saturday, April 27, Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt and members of Council hosted grand opening celebrations at the award-winning Cayuga Grand Vista and Gypsum Mine Tract trails. Dozens of residents and visitors attended, despite the blustery weather, to explore the new routes and learn about Haldimand’s history.

“Both the Cayuga Grand Vista and Gypsum Mine Tract are fantastic additions to the community,” said Mayor Ken Hewitt. “They offer new opportunities to stay active, learn about our history and connect with nature,” he added.

At the Cayuga Grand Vista celebration, attendees were introduced to stories of the late Honourable Madame Justice Helen Kinnear and Honourable Dr. Justice T. David Marshall – both Cayuga-born figures with extraordinary accomplishments – whom the trail’s two scenic lookouts were named after. Justice Kinnear defied early gender stereotypes to become a history-making pioneer in the legal profession, while Dr. Justice Marshall achieved national recognition in the fields of medicine and law. Family members of both Justice Kinnear and Dr. Justice Marshall were present and acknowledged by Council prior to the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

At the Gypsum Mine Tract opening, attendees learned about the history of gypsum mining that played a major role in Caledonia’s development. From 1838 – 2016, 5 mines were established and eventually decommissioned in both Caledonia and York; gypsum was extracted from 65 feet below ground and hauled to the surface by donkeys and horses underneath what is now the trail.

“The community response to both of these new trails has been extremely positive and they will be enjoyed by residents and visitors for generations to come,” said Hewitt.

More information on Haldimand County trail routes, parks and recreation activities is available on the Haldimand County website.


Haldimand County Council, staff, Trails Advisory Committee members and family members of Dr. Justice David T. Marshall and the Honourable Madame Justine Helen Kinnear cutting the Cayuga Grand Vista trail ribbon.

From left to right: Janet deVos (Haldimand County Trails Advisory Committee), Sheila Wilson (Haldimand County), Jill Morison, Fred Morison, Mrs. T. David Marshall, Don Boyle (Haldimand County), Brittany Morison, David Morison, Albert Morison, Darline Kinnear, Mayor Ken Hewitt (Haldimand County), (Behind Ken is Murray Kinnear), Ward 2 Councillor John Metcalfe (Haldimand County), Ward 3 Councillor Dan Lawrence (Haldimand County), and Megan Turner (Haldimand County).

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