Letters to Editor

We're in a climate emergency. Let's act like it.

Dear Editor,

For weeks, I’ve been among the thousands of people in Canada calling for the CBC to host a federal leaders’ debate on climate change and a Green New Deal. We’re calling on the CBC to fulfill its mandate as our national, public broadcaster and ensure that voters across Canada have the information they need to cast their vote to tackle climate emergency.

Earlier this year, Canada declared a national climate emergency. Before and after that, dozens of cities and towns have done the same and, according to the CBC’s journalistic standards and practices, our national broadcaster has a responsibility, during national emergencies, to provide special, critical coverage. This is one of those moments.

The CBC can and should host this debate, but every media outlet in Canada, including this one, should support this critical debate. The IPCC has given us 11 years to get our act together and keep global temperature rise below catastrophic levels. The government we elect this fall will lead us through 4 of those years, and it’s up to our media to ensure voters have the information they want and need to cast a vote for real climate action.

Thank you, Sincerely,

Noel Macartney


Policy Statements

To:  John Brassard Conservative M P for Barrie Innisfil

Recently you sent a message to your constituents in which you outline the policies of the Conservative leader, Andrew Scheer.  While  most of the statements are dream catchers - our government should be a “force for peace and freedom”,  and a “disciplined protector of tax dollars”.  All good stuff.  The message goes on to state that Canada should be “ a welcoming land of refuge for the world’s persecuted and afflicted “  - very encouraging rhetoric, but how many millions of people are persecuted? The number must be in the millions, and how many more are afflicted?  Perhaps a billion or more?

Does the Conservative party seriously consider welcoming all those who are persecuted and afflicted?  As a motherhood statement I understand the desire of Mr. Scheer to be seen as the champion of the oppressed and downtrodden, but to suggest that such a goal would become the policy of potentially our next government is a concern.

War is a constant threat - the Middle East, India / Pakistan, Russia and the Ukraine - the list is endless, and Andrew Scheer is promoting Canada as a refuge for those in peril - has he considered the ramifications of his assertions?  Or given the disruptions to our weather patterns due to global warming, how well will Mr. Scheer’s promises hold up if drought wipes out crops in southern Europe and north Africa - millions of people will be looking for a refuge. Is the Conservative Party, assuming it can form the next government, willing to stand by its commitment?

Yes, Canada should welcome immigrants, yes, our government should offer aid when disaster strikes.  But Canada should not be thought of a  “refuge “ for any and all  seeking relief.

When God commanded Noah to build an ark, quotas were established.  Perhaps Mr. Scheer should temper his rhetoric.

Joffre McCleary    Barrie Ontario


Province Moves to Constrain Conservation Authorities’ Programs and Services 

NEWMARKET (August 19, 2019) Conservation authorities and Conservation Ontario are stunned by a letter that the Province circulated recommending that conservation authorities start shutting down any programs not related to their ‘core mandate’ as described by the Province in the proposed changes to the Conservation Authorities Act earlier this year.

Conservation authorities (CAs) and their member municipalities received letters from Jeff Yurek, Minister of Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP), addressed to ‘whom it may concern’ on Friday evening (August 16) recommending that CAs start to wind down any programs not directly related to their ‘core mandate’.

“This is confusing and extremely disappointing,” said Kim Gavine, General Manager of Conservation Ontario, the Association which represents Ontario’s 36 conservation authorities. Conservation authorities provide a wide variety of watershed management programs in partnership with all levels of government. These programs help to reduce or prevent the costly and devastating damages of flooding, protect water resources, help to reduce pollution from getting to the Great Lakes and support healthy watersheds.

“We’ve been caught completely by surprise,” Gavine said. “We’ve been working for months in good faith with the government to make a number of planning and development approvals streamlining changes to support their agenda to eliminate the deficit and implement the Housing Strategy.” There was no consultation with Conservation Ontario or the CAs about this letter before it was circulated.

“I can only assume they are trying to avoid criticism about downloading conservation authorities’ programs and services to municipalities,” she said. Conservation authorities’ provincial funding for natural hazards was reduced by 50 percent earlier this year.  Gavine pointed out that what the government is proposing isn’t taking into consideration the fact that the CA Act is still a work in progress.

“The changes being proposed by the government to the Conservation Authorities Act haven’t even been proclaimed and we are only starting discussions about the regulations that go with the legislation which will specify which actual programs and services are mandatory,” she said. After mandatory programs and services are agreed upon by the Province and conservation authorities, then CAs can begin to negotiate the remaining non-mandatory programs with their member municipalities. 

“It was a very pre-emptive move that disregards the process and relationship that conservation authorities and municipalities have together.” 30

For more information: Kim Gavine, General Manager, Conservation Ontario 905.895.0716 ext 231   (Cell) 905.251.3268  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Shaming  PC PAINT male driver

My husband and I were going to the Toronto-Dominion Bank in Wasaga Beach shortly after noon on August 2, 2019. My husband has a disability sticker, however no disability spots were free and we had to park two rows back. As we were walking to the bank along the side of the drive, the above vehicle slowed beside my husband and the male driver yelled at him “move your fat ass”. He walks with a cane, has major spinal injuries and two replacement knees – so yes he is a little slow and careful! I am the only person allowed to remark on his “ass” and it is nice and tight and definitely not fat – he is almost 80 years old. Another gentleman walking with a cane observed this interaction and suggested that my husband wallop him with his cane – he did not do so.

PC PAINT then parked in the now free disability spot and as I wrote down his plate information, there did not appear to be a disability sticker visible at the front of his windshield area. I plan to petition the aging control witches to have PC PAINT’S ass drop one half inch each month, for life.

Maret Wannamaker,  Phelpston


Noise Bylaw ENFORCED

Dear Editor/Mike -

I thoroughly enjoy every issue of your Springwater News. Thank you so much for doing all that is necessary to keep the paper up and running and out and available - so informative and so appreciated!

I’m writing just to add a comment to D.R.M.’s timely and appreciated L to E, Noise Bylaw ENFORCED.

I certainly agree with all the points made and find the noise not only a nuisance but as someone with a hearing disorder (neuralgia induced auditory hyper-sensitivity), the extreme noise literally causes me excruciating pain.

My point, however, is this. I’m very sorry to tell you that as someone who spends about $1500 a week on “lifestyle” - in restaurants, at home decor stores and gardening centres, bakeries, local cheese shops, and farm stands etc. - I have stopped doing so in our local communities because of the people operating these motorcycles and other unnecessarily loud (offensive and assaultive!) vehicles. And I know from neighbours and friends that they are doing the same thing. If you do see me out, I’m the one with the NR33 yellow earplugs in - I cannot chance getting hurt by one of these arrogant yet obviously insecure vehicle operators. I use that language specifically because the vehicles aren’t as much the issue as the people choosing to use the vehicles to create the noise. 

So, thanks to D.R.M. for revisiting this very important issue and for you publishing it.

And just to recap, among the so many other problems they cause, we must also recognize the significant, negative economic impacts these excessive noise-makers have on our communities.

With thanks for your consideration,