Editorials

MacDonald is swimming against the current, but how strong is it?

Written by  |  Thursday, 15 September 2011 08:03  |  Published in Editorials
Editorial Jeff Green Liberal candidate Bill MacDonald has been preparing for the provincial election campaign that is now underway for at least four years, and he is putting everything he has into it. But in electoral politics the local campaign is usually limited in its impact on the election because people trend towards political parties based on the leaders’ campaigns and sometimes on crude but effective advertising. There are a number of polling companies working on this campaign, and as well as tracking voter intentions regionally and province-wide, some riding-by-riding predictions have also been made. Conservative MPP Randy Hillier received just under 2% more votes than Liberal Ian Wilson last time around (40.58% to 38.76%), a margin of 820 votes. So, as Bill MacDonald put…

Editorial: Energy Policy is about more than Hydro Rates

Written by  |  Thursday, 01 September 2011 08:02  |  Published in Editorials
Editorial by Jeff Green Energy policy will be a major theme in the coming provin-cial election. The Conservative Party has been making the cost of hydro a major thrust of their pre-election banter, but aside from a commitment to cutting the HST from hydro bills, and scrapping the Liberals’ Green Energy Act and smart hydro metres, we are still waiting for something from the Conservatives on the really big energy question fac-ing Ontario – how will the province’s future energy needs be secured? According to the party website, the coal fired electrical plants that remain in operation in Ontario will finally be eliminated in 2014. As the statement on the website rightly points out, this is something that the Liberals have failed to do over…

Editorial: I Didn't Know Jack

Written by  |  Thursday, 25 August 2011 08:02  |  Published in Editorials
Jack Layton: A Tribute This Guy Knew Jack I didn’t know Jack By Jeff Green Anyone who has gone through a cancer death in their own family - and that is almost everyone it seems - took a deep breath when Jack Layton appeared in public a few weeks ago to announce he was taking a leave of absence from his duties as NDP leader. Although no one wanted to say it, even in the media, there was widespread fear that he was dying of cancer, and indeed it turned out that was the case. Somehow the death of Jack Layton, who is a stranger to most of us, is being taken like the death of a relative, not a close relative, but like the…

One More Reason to Loath End of Summer - Editorial

Written by  |  Thursday, 11 August 2011 08:01  |  Published in Editorials
We are now well into the Dog Days of summer. The weather is still hot, and we really don’t want to have to think about the cold weather to come. But deep inside we know summer will end. So even if we don’t act right away we are starting to think about preparing for winter. Thoughts like “Is there enough wood in the pile?” and “Should I start cutting a bit on cooler days?” or “Should I call to get the furnace looked at before too long?” are popping into our brains as we sit on the porch at the end of another hot summer day. There is something else we are faced with this year, and it will come about before any of the…

Managing Forests – More than a tax break

Written by  |  Thursday, 28 July 2011 08:00  |  Published in Editorials
Several years ago John Campbell bought a 200-acre farm on the Willis Armstrong Road, a little bit north of Hwy. 7 in Central Frontenac. The farm had been run by the Young family until age and modern economics held sway. Like so many properties in Frontenac County, and in rural Ontario generally, the efforts made over 100 plus years to clear land, and raise crops, livestock and families in a sometimes forbidding landscape had fallen by the wayside. John Campbell purchased the property with a view towards renovating the farmhouse or building a new home on the property, but that plan proved not to be viable. Campbell lives close by, in a house near Sharbot Lake, but his interest in the old farm remains strong.…

What price good neighbours?

Written by  |  Thursday, 14 July 2011 07:59  |  Published in Editorials
Bill Day Jr. owns a property that is on a busy through road between Sydenham and Harrowsmith. His property is easy to find from Kingston and the 401. His father ran grass drag snowmobile races on the property for 35 years, and Bill Day is taking things to another level. He has built a motocross track on the property and wants to run the track as a commercial enterprise, with sanctioned races a couple of times a year, as well as public use of the track one evening a week for practice sessions and informal riding. As part of the Maguire motocross series, a number of races were held last summer. “There has been racing on this land all my life. I grew up with…

Editorial: Shooting the Messenger

Written by  |  Thursday, 16 June 2011 07:54  |  Published in Editorials
Editorial by Jeff Green The Committee of Adjustment in North Frontenac seems to think their own planning consultant is at fault because the Province of Ontario has decided that development on the limited number of new cottage lots that can be found in Ontario will be limited by two things: increased lot sizes and buffer zones. Essentially, after 100 years of cottages being built right around all of the most accessible lakes in the province, it has been determined that the lakes have been impacted - and not in a good way. So, from now on, any lake that has not already been divided up into lots will see a new set of rules, which are designed to minimise the impact of development on the…

Library Closure: One for the Books

Written by  |  Thursday, 19 May 2011 13:14  |  Published in Editorials
Editorial by Jeff Green A month ago, Claudette Richardson, the Chair of the Library Board, a volunteer position, was asked if the board is currently considering closing any branches. “Not to my knowledge”, she said. So even though Ms. Richardson invited a number of library users from Ompah to the April library board meeting, it came as something as a surprise when, in the context of considering the request for the reinstatement of the lost two hours a week for the Ompah branch, as had been requested by the Ompah library users, a motion was made and passed to close the Ompah branch instead. The closing is the first branch closure since the Frontenac and Kingston libraries amalgamated in 1998. It marks a formal turning…

Thoughts On the election

Written by  |  Thursday, 05 May 2011 13:20  |  Published in Editorials
Editorial by Jeff Green At the outset of the federal election campaign that just ended, I made a call to a local NDP riding association member whom I hadn't talked to in quite a while. I was setting up all-candidates’ meetings at the time. We spent a few minutes talking about the way the campaign was shaping up. I suggested that if it became clear during the campaign that the Liberals were not going anywhere, there might be a bump in support for Jack Layton and the New Democrats. “I don't think that will happen,” he said, “I think Ignatieff will prove to be competent and people will stick with him. I think he will do well.” Well, it didn't turn out that way. And…

Editorial: About that $2

Written by  |  Thursday, 07 April 2011 07:42  |  Published in Editorials
Editorial by Jeff Green Prime Minister Harper said last week that, “Public money should not be used to support political parties that the public does not support” as he proposed to scrap the program that pays $2 annually to political parties for each vote they receive at election time. Harper's argument is consistent with a Conservative value. Why should taxes be used to support political parties? People who want to support their favourite party can give them money each year if they want to, and there is a generous tax benefit to those kinds of donations, namely a 75% refundable tax credit. So, for $25 in net cost to me, I can donate $100 each year to the political part of my choice. But maybe…

Aboriginal Issues: parties have policies, if you can find them

Written by  |  Thursday, 07 April 2011 07:42  |  Published in Editorials
Former Prime Minister Kim Campbell once said that an election campaign is a bad time to discuss policy. She said that during an election campaign that did not end well for her or for her party. None of the major parties seems to think this election is a good time to discuss Aboriginal policies, if the content and layout of their websites is any indication The NDP have a web site devoted to their Aboriginal Commission, and that site contains a seven-point party platform, which includes a commitment of $1 billion a year for five years to improve conditions in First Nations, Metis and Inuit communities. The commission is referred to in a four-line item on the main ndp.ca election site, but that item does…

The 'North Frontenac' Turns 40: A look Back

Written by  |  Thursday, 17 March 2011 07:27  |  Published in Editorials
1st Edition Editorial, It could be up to us, (March 1971 #1) Community columnists: The Heart of the Paper, by Jeff Green Dear, Dear Martha A Cornerstone For Pine Meadow. (July 21, 1992  #718) Important dates in the history of “The North Frontenac”  by Jeff Green Joe the Porter (Oct 16, 1984 #329) Marathon of Hope (July 11, 1980 #221 Oso Hall full to capacity for meeting of uranium mining (Sept. 5, 1980, #225) Seniors' housing project rejected, July 1985 Editorial: It could be up to us?  1st edition March 1971 Many citizens are concerned about the lack of development in the Northern Townships of Frontenac County. What have the ‘70s to offer the North Frontenac residents? Is it only game preserves, pockets of governmental privilege,…

It's still all up to us: The 'North Frontenac' Turns 40

Written by  |  Thursday, 17 March 2011 07:27  |  Published in Editorials
Photo: Drawing by Angela Badour, then  grade 10 student at SLHS, who was a winner for the 500th edition drawing contest in 1988. The first edition of the Frontenac News was nothing more than a short essay, printed on the second page of a single sheet of paper (It is reprinted below). It was a call to a public meeting to try and pull together the small communities in the former townships of Olden, Oso, Hinchinbrooke and Bedford. One of the interesting things about the essay is that with a few changes in wording, much of it could have been written in March of 1981, 1991, 2001, or even today, in March 2011. “What do the 2010s have to offer the Frontenac residents, after all?…

Forty years later, communications are as important as ever

Written by  |  Thursday, 24 February 2011 06:26  |  Published in Editorials
Editorial by Jeff Green In 1971 there was no Facebook, no Twitter, no Internet at all, and no cell phones. Most telephones in this part of the world were on party lines. It was a long distance call between Sharbot Lake and Arden, or Harrowsmith and Sydenham for that matter. At that time, the institution that had been the life blood of rural communities, the K&P railroad, was long gone. All the local mines had closed. Agriculture, a victim of the rocky ground and changing times, was in the midst of a long decline, and the heyday for local foresters was also in the past. Tourism, which had long been a major factor in the local economy, was becoming the economic base, and there was…

Time to wake up

Written by  |  Thursday, 17 February 2011 06:25  |  Published in Editorials
OK, you’ve been holed up in the house since Christmas, watching the meter drop on the oil tank or feeding the wood stove and watching the woodpile dwindle, or watching the electricity meter spin and spin at high speed - or doing all three – and almost two months have gone by. The bad news is that winter is not about to end, notwithstanding this week's warm, slushy weather. The good news is there is something that can be done about it. It’s time you got out of the house. It’s time to shake off the doldrums and get out into the cold and wet and face up to the fact that we live in a country with winter. It all starts tomorrow night, February…
 

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