Correction: As noted previously by then police chief Darryl Pinnell, the correct number of members of the St. Thomas Police Service earning in excess of $100,000 in 2016 should have been 46 and not 43, making the overall total for that year 113. The increase then for this year is from 46 members to 49.
A report on the salaries of municipal employees earning in excess of $100,000 in 2017 is included in Monday’s council agenda. This is required under the Public Sector Salary Disclosure Act of 1996. In total, 117 employees eared more than $100,000, that’s up from 110 in 2016. Breaking down by sector, 49 members of the St. Thomas Police Service are included, up substantially from 43 in 2016. At the St. Thomas Fire Department, 46 are on the list and that is down by two from the previous year due to retirements. In city administration, 22 staffers are listed, up three from 2016. Most notable is the hefty increase in remuneration for some of the senior staff, while most others saw their salary remain relatively stable from 2016. Continue reading →
Michael Loewith of Loewith-Greenberg Communities made an impressive presentation to city council Tuesday, outlining his proposal for developing the Alma College property. There have been proposals in the past for the site of the former school for girls, so is this latest presentation the real deal? “He (Loewith) is the right guy,” insisted London Developer Gino Reale, current manager of the Moore Street property. “It took a little while to find him. But, I think we found the right guy . . . I’m not a builder, but if I find the right guy then that’s who is going to buy it. And this guy, in my books, is the right guy.” Loewith has a conditional offer to purchase the property, as Reale explained earlier this week. “There are conditions on the offer until April. As far as he (Loewith) is concerned, it’s a done deal. Until he sends me the paperwork and says he waives the conditions – which was primarily this meeting with council and a couple of other minor things – it will solidify or fall apart by April.” Continue reading →
What lies ahead for the Alma College property might very well come into sharper focus this fall. London developer Gino Reale is optimistic such is the case. Speaking to him from his home Friday, Reale was upbeat. “There have been a lot of positive discussions. We’re getting close to some resolutions. But nothing has been inked.” While he was unable to reveal details at this time, Reale said discussions are underway with a group on the possibility of constructing a small recreation centre on the Moore Street property geared to seniors. Part of the green space could be utilized for a community garden, suggested Reale.Continue reading →
It was a question posed by one of three appeal court justices that cut to the chase in the latest snafu associated with the Sutherland Saga.
Wednesday morning at Osgoode Hall in Toronto, she queried why “a defect in service would make an order null and void.”
Specifically, why would an alleged deficiency in the manner in which Chris Peck, the city’s chief building inspector, delivered a notice to building owner David McGee, warning of demolition of the structure for failure to comply with a previous work order, render it null and void?
Well, that was the determination of Justice Kelly Gorman on Sept. 27 of last year at the Elgin County Courthouse, which let to the city’s appeal of that decision heard last week.
Question for you. What’s a common factor in the demolition of a building and demolition of end-of-life vehicles? Well, in St. Thomas that would be Valerie M’Garry.
For nearly a decade, the London lawyer has steered her client – Sutherland Press building owner David McGee – through the court system, deflecting at every turn attempts by the city to demolish the structure built in 1913.
Twice this year, the hearings have stalled due to M’Garry’s ill health, but at the most recent appearance Ontario Superior Court Justice Peter Hockin left no doubt as to what lies ahead in the Sutherland Saga: the matter will be addressed May 24 with or without M’Garry.
“Mr. McGee should take that into account,” cautioned Hockin.
She has been christened Sheba, after being found abandoned last week in a corn field just outside St. Thomas. Missing much of her fur and blind at this point, the sadly neglected dog “is why we are so concerned about having available funds for vet care for lost pets that come into the city pound,” stresses Lois Jackson, chair of the city’s animal welfare committee and founder of All Breed Canine Rescue.
A St. Thomas man who abandoned two dogs and a cat in a sweltering apartment with no food or water was sentenced to four months in jail Tuesday afternoon.
In addition, 20-year-old Cody Yeo was slapped with a 10-year prohibition on owning any animal.
In sentencing Yeo, Justice Marietta Roberts – who was handed “graphic” photographs of the squalid apartment unit and the two dead dogs – said she hoped the jail time would act as a deterrent, adding “this is the most appropriate sentence to take you out of the community.”
St. Thomas animal welfare activist Lois Jackson called the term of incarceration “reassuring.”
Round 3 is coming up momentarily. Of course we’re talking about the Sutherland Saga, the seemingly endless courtroom soap opera.
In the last episode, culminating on Sept. 27, Justice Gorman accepted Sutherland Press building owner David McGee’s submission at a May hearing in the Elgin County Courthouse that Sutherland Loft Inc. did not receive notice of a building order issued by the city and its president was unaware, specifically, the building might be demolished if not remediated by the owner.
McGee’s lawyer, Valerie M’Garry, argued in March of this year the city did not properly deliver via registered mail a letter warning demolition of the building would begin at the end of that month because of noncompliance with a property standards order. The order called for immediate replacement of spalling or damaged bricks and securing the roof, which had suffered a partial collapse. Continue reading →
Monday night’s presentation to council from the St. Thomas-Elgin General Hospital Foundation provided little in the way of insight and generated a gurney load of troubling questions.
For instance, isn’t a partnership a two-way street?
So, if the hospital wants the city and county to each write cheques in the amount of $4.5 million, then it should be open to financial disclosure. Let’s see some accounting.
After all, a partnership is more than just cutting a cheque.
Who is determining the final amount to be raised and the term of payment?
Let’s see the documentation from the province to the hospital to validate this.
Has anyone at city hall seen paperwork on what is required at the municipal level? Continue reading →