​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ALEX WALDER, COUNCILLOR HASTINGS HIGHLANDS

This website is being used for Council Work . It is totally funded at my expense. The views expressed are my alone and do not represent the views of the Municipality.  

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ALEX WALDER, COUNCILLOR HASTINGS HIGHLANDS

This website is being used for Council Work . It is totally funded at my expense. The views expressed are my alone and do not represent the views of the Municipality.  

Jan, 31, 2021

Ontario has officially extended the Province's State of Emergency and all orders associated with it, including the stay-at-home order, for an additional 14 days to Feb. 9/21.  Hastings Highlands will fully comply with Provincial Regulations. The measures for all Businesses, Organizations and Facilities may be seen at: https://hastingshighlands.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/moh-provincewide-shutdown-en-2020-12-21.pdf  During the Stay-At- Home order, the HH Municipal Offices are available via telephone (613) 338-2811 and through the CONTACT page of our web site:  https://hastingshighlands.ca/municipal/contact/.
Anti-Racism Declaration  At the start of the Jan. 20 regular meeting, Mayor Bodnar read a statement to address the defacing of signs in the Municipality. The full text may be viewed at: https://hastingshighlands.civicweb.net/Portal/MeetingInformation.aspx?Org=Cal&Id=747
Property Tax Covid-19 Relief to Hastings Highlands Property Owners Council directed that penalties applied to overdue 2021 property tax accounts be deferred to August 1, 2021.
2021 Capital Budget Council approved the 2021 Capital Budget with a total expenditure of $2.25M. This amount includes budgeted expenses for roads’ and bridges’ reconstruction and for related equipment/vehicles  purchases($1.86M), Fire fighting and safety equipment ($320K) and IT updates and replacement equipment ($50K) *The 2021 Operating Budget is in the works, this is scheduled to come to Council in February.
Auditors  Council approved the firm of Baker Tilly KDN LLP to once again conduct the municipality’s audit for 2021
User Fees Council approved an update to USER FEES for the 2021 year in HH.  The full list may be seen at: https://hastingshighlands.civicweb.net/FileStorage/8D647AF7EF1040EE9ACF0E940F888EB5-2021-001%20User%20Fees.pdf
Waste Sites Management HH’s 9 sites must, under Ministry regulations, be monitored and regularly inspected through out the year. Council approved to continue the services of BluMetric Environmental for 2021 for a contracted cost of $188K, plus additional unforeseen necessary services that may arise.

HH Building Department continues to be the 3rd most active in Hastings County (behind the City of Belleville and the City of Quinte West). CBO Cox reported on the status of Building Department Fees for 2021 as applicable to: Municipal Permit Surcharges, Onsite Sewage Systems and Orders to Comply/Stop Work Orders. The Building Department’s annual report from January 1 to December 31, 2020 indicates two hundred and forty-six permits (246) were issued with a total estimated construction value of $13,700,232.00 and generated $175,229.49 in associated building permit fees. The Building Department carried out 760 inspections in 2020. The value of new construction adds to the Municipality’s tax base, an advantageous and needed Economic Development for the Municipality.
Library Board Vacancy As of Jan 22, two applications have been received for appointment to HHLB. I anticipate that Council will complete the appointment process during the month of February.  
HH Delegations are Seeking the Province’s Assistance HH presented on several topics to two Ministries of the Ontario Government. A more comprehensive report may be found on the Mayor’s Diary posted on his Facebook page. In brief:
-On January 26, 2021to the Hon. Sylvia Jones, Ontario’s Solicitor General and Staff. Participating presenters were Mayor Vic Bodnar, Deputy Mayor Hagar, 2 Councillors, Gerrow and Davis and CAO Stewart from HH, Warden, Rick Phillips, along with County Sr. Staff from Hastings County and Daryl Kramp, MPP Hastings - Lennox and Addington. The purpose of the delegation was to discuss the subject of exotic animals in Ontario and the role the government should play to prohibit and/or regulate exotic animals through provincial statute.
-On January 25, 2021 to the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks Parliamentary Assitant, Andrea Khanjin and Staff. The presenting participants were Mayor Bodnar, Deputy Mayor Hagar, Councillors, Gerrow and Davis and HH CAO Stewart. Two topics were brought forward to the attention of the Ministry of the ECP.
The Mayor spoke of concerns of the effect of waste generated by “large animals maintained on property that is mainly zoned Environmentally Protected (EP) with a small portion that is classed as Marginal Agricultural (MA)”.
Councillor Gerrow described the waste management realities in our 9 waste sites and requested “assistance to Municipalities to reduce waste, reduce costs associated with waste and increase revenues associated with waste…. [and]  requested that an overall Provincial Waste Management Committee be established to address the issues”
Constituency Work: Start of the 5th year (50th issue). I appreciate the feed back, as I continue my work on behalf of the people of Hastings Highlands. Receiving questions, comments, statements of concern and to dialogue is important. I can be reached at 613 338 0028, send me an e-mail to www.awalder@hastingshighlands.ca or a pm on Facebook to “Alex Walder”. My new website http://alexwalder.ca accessible from desk top, lap top and hand held devices.
Live Streaming of Council and Committee Meetings continue on live sound streaming and word-for-word recording. These remains available to the public at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKvxLBeiJzVbvJz8vH29ftg