News

Flood Warning terminated

The Grand River Conservation Authority has terminated all flood watches and warnings.

Flows continue to recede throughout the Grand River watershed. River ice and associated ice jams have generally moved out of the river system. A small ice jam remains in place in the Grand River at Port Maitland. This ice jam is not causing major flooding at this time.

Milder weather with limited rainfall is expected to move in to the watershed over the coming week. These weather conditions will help melt the remaining snow pack. The slow release of runoff into local waterways is not anticipated to cause additional flooding.

Flood Watch Upgraded To Flood Warning; Ice Jam Risk Continues For Haldimand County, Southern Grand River Watershed

The Flood Watch for low-lying areas along the Grand has been upgraded to a Flood Warning. Haldimand County Emergency Services has been monitoring conditions along shoreline areas and have reported minor flooding in the Caledonia, Cayuga, York and Dunnville areas. River levels are high on the upper river between Dunnville and Caledonia. The Kinsmen Park off of Ouse St. in Cayuga is flooded, as well as parts of the Lions Park in Dunnville, Seneca Park, the Caledonia Fairgrounds and York Park. York Park has been closed due to flooding, as well as Ouse St. at Baird St.

Flows in northern and central portions of the Grand River watershed continue to recede but will remain high through the weekend. Flows through Dunnville are forecast to peak shortly after midnight on Sunday morning. Flows through York and Cayuga will peak late Saturday evening.

River ice remains present in the southern Grand River upstream of Dunnville Dam. Residents in low-lying, flood-prone areas in Cayuga, Caledonia, York, Dunnville & Port Maitland should keep a close watch on conditions, regularly check for updated messages and exercise caution around riverbanks and lakeshore areas. Residents who have a historic susceptibility to flooding should consider taking action to secure or protect any property in flood-prone or vulnerable areas. This may include ensuring sump pumps are functioning and/or securing items along the shore line.

Updated flood messages will be issued as conditions develop and better forecast information becomes available. Residents are encouraged to monitor the Grand River Conservation Authority & Haldimand County websites and social media accounts for the most up-to-date flood and weather warning information.

OPP Conducting Distracted Driving Campaign (March 11-17, 2019)

With the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) set to conduct its Distracted Driving Campaign during March Break, drivers caught using their cell phones may also get caught off guard by the tougher penalties that took effect on January 1, 2019.

The new penalties include a fine increase up to $1,000, three demerit points and a three-day licence suspension. The penalties increase with subsequent offences. For novice drivers in the graduated licencing system, there is no fine or additional demerit points but longer licence suspensions now apply.

The deaths of 55 people and more than 9,115 collisions were linked to an inattentive driver on OPP patrolled roads in 2018. The OPP laid 13,529 Distracted Driving charges last year against drivers whochose to make roads unsafe by dividing their attention between driving and using a hand-held electronic device.

For more information on distracted driving, including statistics, fines and penalties, visit the Province’s website.

Haldimand County Artists, Creators Sought For Great Art For Great Lakes Project

Haldimand County has partnered with the Great Art for Great Lakes organization to bring public art to local communities.

The Ontario Trillium Foundation has provided funding to support five Great Art for Great Lakes public art projects in 2019, and an additional five in 2020. Two of the art projects will be created and located in Haldimand County – one in 2019 and a second in 2020.

Haldimand County has committed to providing up to $7,500 of in-kind support, including:

– providing space for community workshops/programming;

– identifying location(s) for the installation of art pieces;

– providing assistance with the installation of art piece(s); and

– working with Great Art for Great Lakes to promote the project and programming

Through public workshops and events, local makers, creators & artists will work towards the co-creation of permanent, public artwork to be installed within Haldimand County. The art installation, in whatever form it may take, will focus on ideas that showcase the grandeur of the Great Lakes and how it connects people, their shared history and diverse cultures.

How to get involved:

Great Art for Great Lakes has issued a call for proposals from the local creative community and will be hosting a preliminary artist information session on March 20, 2019 at Ruthven Park National Historic Site (6:00pm – 8:30pm). Interested artists may register for the information session via gaglhaldimand.eventbrite.ca. The call for proposals closed April 5, 2019.

For more information about the project, including proposal submission requirements, visit the Great Art For Great Lakes website or e-mail gagl@waterlution.org.

Haldimand County Council Approves 2019 Tax Supported Capital Budget

Haldimand County Council approved the 2019 Tax Supported Capital Budget on March 5, 2019. The Tax Supported Capital Budget outlines $30.7 million of new infrastructure investment in 2019, with a total tax-supported infrastructure investment of $224 million over the next 10 years. In total, 300 new tax-supported capital projects have been scheduled for the 2019 calendar year.

The 2019 Capital Budget is heavily focused on infrastructure renewal with notable expenditures in areas such as roadway improvements, bridge and culvert rehabilitation, municipal drain maintenance and enhancements to corporate, community and recreation facilities.

2019 Capital Budget Highlights:

– $15.7 million towards roadway and active transportation improvements such as paving,
reconstruction, resurfacing, gravel road conversion, pedestrian crosswalk installation,
sidewalk/curb replacements and street lighting

– $3.4 million towards community partnership projects and enhancements to parks, trails,
arenas, museums and libraries

– $2.9 million towards essential equipment like ambulance & fire apparatus, snow
removal vehicles and fleet-related items

– $2 million towards storm sewer and municipal drain enhancements/maintenance

– $1.7 million towards bridge repairs, bridge rehabilitation and other structure-related projects
(such as culvert replacements)

– $550,000 towards tree conservation and forestry management initiatives

In recent years the County has deliberately increased its investment in capital to ensure that existing facilities are updated, new facilities desired by the community are added and that a funding plan is in place to minimize tax impacts. Money is set aside every year to ensure that when assets need repairs or replacing, funding is available.

“We’re at a point where, during budget preparations, there aren’t a lot of surprises. Staff have applied strong financial principles and asset management practices that result in a predictable, flexible and sustainable capital program. By planning for the long-term, we’re in an excellent position to address priorities and respond to community needs,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt.

“The numbers and projects outlined in the 2019 budget and 2019-2028 capital forecast reinforce Council’s commitment to making prudent infrastructure investments that result in safe, reliable services for residents,” he added.

Similar to past years, the capital levy, funded by property taxes, will increase by about $640,000, or about 1% of the overall municipal levy. As well, Council approved an additional 0.75% to be added to the levy for further acceleration of the Gravel Road Conversion Program. With the addition of this new funding all granular roads within the County will be converted 3 years earlier – by 2025. This additional contribution to reserves will be considered by Council during review of the Tax Supported Operating Budget.

The total municipal levy for 2019 will be determined in April once the 2019 Tax Supported Operating Budget is approved by Council. Council has set the target tax impact, on an average residential property, at 2% as part of the approved budget guidelines for this year.

The 2019 Tax Supported Operating Budget will be presented to Council on the following dates:

• April 2, 3* & 4*, 2019 – 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers at the Cayuga Administration Building (*if required)

More information on Haldimand County budgets can be found at HaldimandCounty.ca/Financials/Budgets/.

Haldimand County Business Community Invited To Excellence Awards Breakfast

Haldimand County Council has extended an invitation to all local business owners and representatives from business organizations to attend the upcoming Business Excellence Awards Breakfast. This year’s free breakfast and networking event is scheduled for Wednesday, April 10, 2019 at the Fisherville Community Centre (7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m.)

The event will feature an address by Mayor Ken Hewitt along with a recognition ceremony to announce Business Excellence Award winners. Exceptional local businesses will be recognized in the following categories:

  • Agri-Business
  • Business – over 10 employees
  • Business – 10 employees and under
  • Not-for-profit
  • Tourism
  • Youth Entrepreneur Award (Under 30 years of age) sponsored by Grand Erie
    Business Centre

“This event is a great opportunity for business owners to connect and network with one another,” explained Lidy Romanuk, Manager of Haldimand County’s Economic Development and Tourism division. She added, “The event highlights and recognizes local business leaders excelling and inspiring others in our communities.”

Any members of the business community who wish to attend may call 905-318-5932 ext. 6331, e-mail opportunity@haldimandcounty.on.ca or sign up online via www.BusinessHaldimand.ca. RSVPs must be received by Friday, April 5, 2019.

Edinburgh Square Heritage & Cultural Centre wins Carol Ritchie Scotch Thistle Award

Tourism Caledonia recently recognized Edinburgh Square Heritage & Cultural Centre for its presentation of the history of Caledonia through education/outreach activities and the numerous permanent & temporary exhibits available for tourists.

Edinburgh Square was also commended for the many improvements made to the 1857 building, an architectural design of the renowned John Turner.

The old Town Hall with its original 1857 jail cell is appealing to visitors from near and far. The permanent display highlighting the gypsum mining industry along the Grand River is an interesting feature. Family ancestors researched in the Gillespie Clark Reference Library attract tourists with Caledonia connections. The library contains books, files and historic documents relating to Caledonia’s rich history. The collection of surviving editions of the Grand River Sachem from 1856 to the present day is also valuable for visitor research.

Cayuga Grand Vista Trail Wins International Design Award For Architecture

Haldimand County’s Cayuga Grand Vista trail was recognized for its innovative design and architecture at the International Design Awards. The trail was awarded a ‘Silver’ for architectural design in the ‘arches, bridges, viaducts and gateways’ subcategory. This award follows the trail’s recognition at the Landscape Ontario Awards of Excellence in January 2019.

The International Design Awards (IDA) exist to recognize, celebrate and promote legendary design vision and to uncover emerging talent in architecture, interior, product, graphic, and fashion design. The firm contracted to design the trail, Seferian Design Group of Burlington, put forward the award nomination.

“This is incredible news. I am so proud of this award, our team, and the project being recognized on the international stage,” said Brad Smith, Seferian Design Group’s Senior Landscape Architect. Seferian also won a Landscape Ontario Award of Excellence in January 2019 for the Cayuga Grand Vista design.

The Cayuga Grand Vista’s main trailhead is located behind the Cayuga Courthouse at 55 Munsee St. N. The trail guides pedestrians and cyclists on a scenic loop from the courthouse over the Grand River on the restored CN bridge to King George St. and Maple Rd. (secondary trailhead) and back to the courthouse via Talbot St. E. and Munsee St. N. Two lookout platforms on the east and west sides of the bridge offer picturesque views of the river and its natural surroundings. Parking is available at the main trailhead behind the Courthouse.

“Seeing the concept of this trail come to life – especially restoration of the bridge – was an amazing thing to witness. It’s a fantastic addition to the community that will be enjoyed by residents and visitors for generations to come,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt.

A Grand Opening Celebration for the Cayuga Grand Vista trail will be held on April 27 at 10:30 am, 2019; full details will be announced shortly.

Note: Trail photo courtesy of Seferian Design Group

Haldimand County Museum & Archives Hosting Family Heirloom Preservation Workshop, St. Patrick’s Celebrations And More This March

This March at Haldimand County Museum and Archives, residents and visitors are invited to celebrate all things Irish, learn how to take care of their family heirlooms and discover how Haldimand County lived through a number of natural disasters.

All events run from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm at Haldimand County Museums & Archives in Cayuga (8 Echo Street). Registration can be completed online for paid events or at any Haldimand County Office using the code provided.

March 6 – Adult Workshop: Preserving Your Family Heirlooms

At this hands-on workshop, participants will learn how to take care of precious family heirlooms. Museum staff will provide instruction on how to care for precious documents, photos or objects and stop the damage caused by common environmental threats. Pre-registration is required for this program; the cost is $10/person includes handouts and light refreshments. Code: 8099

March 13 – Tea & Talk: Irish Celebrations

At this very Irish afternoon, participants will celebrate the wearing of green, learn about Irish culture and explore its superstitions with museum staff. Homemade scones and other Irish treats will be served. Pre-registration is required for this program; the cost is $10/person. Code: 8414

March 20 – Heritage Series: Flood, Fire, and Fury

At this informative talk, museum staff will highlight some of the major disasters that have had an impact on Haldimand County including floods, fires, snow storms and other significant weather events. Pre-registration is required for this event; the cost is $5/person. Code: 8093

For more information on museum programs and events, contact the museum at 905-772-5880 or email museum.archives@haldimandcounty.on.ca

 

Flood Warning terminated, High Lake Level Outlook remains in place

The Flood Warning for Lake Erie issued on Sunday, February 24 has been terminated. A Lake Erie Conditions Statement – High Lake Level Outlook remains in place due to the heightened potential for shoreline flooding and erosion.

During the peak of the weather event on Sunday, wind gusts reached upwards of 120 km/h in some locations with sustained winds of approximately 65 km/h along the Lake Erie shoreline. These winds caused flooding of Zones 1 and 2 in Port Maitland due to a lake surge of approximately 0.5m above critical level.

Due to the instability of ice along the Lake Erie shoreline, elevated water levels and cold water temperatures, people are reminded to stay well away from these areas and keep children and pets well back.

Lake levels are updated each hour on the GRCA website at www.grandriver.ca under the river data section.

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