- Endangered species and spaces
May 29, 2017
The delays currently facing two major city projects because of endangered species could be the tip of the iceberg given the massive declines in mammal, bird and other vertebrates displaced by human activity and especially global climate change. Provincial authorities are allowing the public to comment on the city’s request for an exemption from the Endangered Species Act for the Confederation Park sport fields proposals, and that opportunity may also eventually occur over a multi-million dollar road extension from the Ancaster business park.
- How they voted in April
May 24, 2017
This is a regular CATCH summary of votes at committee and council meetings. This report covers the month of April 2017. The first line of each entry identifies the issue, followed by a brief description. This is followed by the location of the vote. Multiple votes on the same issue are reported together. Absentees are only listed where reported in the minutes and where the missing councillors are members of that committee or decision-making body. Links are provided to source documents. Note that the vast majority of council decisions are unanimous and the votes are not officially recorded. Changes to the city’s website mean it is no longer possible to provide direct links to motions and staff reports.
- City abandons pipeline fight
May 22, 2017
Despite making serious written accusations about the National Energy Board, the city has abandoned its legal challenge of the NEB’s approval of a 35 km expansion of Enbridge’s Line 10 oil pipeline across rural Hamilton. The NEB has other problems to worry about, especially a federal blue-ribbon panel report last week that recommended it be dismantled.
- Budget winners and losers
May 15, 2017
Taxes on apartment buildings are going down this year and that should automatically mean lower rents, but the city is not required to notify tenants, so landlords may get to keep the windfall. They join hotel owners, commercial businesses and industrial corporations as major winners from council’s 2017 budget decisions, while low-income city workers and HSR riders are among the losers.
- Hamilton behind on growth fees
May 10, 2017
Ontario cities are tapping into tens of millions of dollars in additional transit and waste management funding from growth fees as a result of modified provincial regulations put in place sixteen months ago by the Wynne government. Hamilton hasn’t started considering the potential windfall, despite delaying bus purchases and other HSR spending and even postponing acceptance of federal grants because of a restricted transit budget.
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