Saturday, January 31, 2015

Food for Thought with Alex Bielak - Sips and (great big crunching) Bites - News and Upcoming Events

Despite the cold, things are heating up in our area. Here’s some news and several coming events that you might want to get tickets for or mark in your calendars.

The upcoming Pop-Up: Speakeasy Hamilton St. Valentine’s 3-Day event is pretty well sold out, but there are still a few tickets available for Thursday 12th February via the Popup Hamilton website or by calling 289-788-3283. It promises to be a fun event conjuring up the shades of the naughty goings on that came about as a result of Prohibition. There’ll be food, wine and craft beer. As usual the Pop-up is at a secret location (as befits a speakeasy of course) to be announced to participants two days prior to the event. 

A baker’s dozen or so brewers, will be at the Burlington Winter Beer Festival, at the Waterfront Hotel, Friday, February 06, 2015 - Sat, February 07, 2015. Tickets are available now for both an

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

A Merulla Motion

‎Moved by; Councillor Sam Merulla

Whereas t‎ransportation and public transit continue to be significant and important public policy matters; and

Whereas public transit (known as HSR) in the City of Hamilton remains a priority for Council; and

Whereas public transit ‎is currently apportioned to residents based on geographic area and service levels; and

Whereas Council has stated on numerous occasions, it supports a system wide approach to public transit which includes enhancing service levels;

Therefore let it be resolved:

That City staff report back as part of the 2016 Budget process the feasibility and impacts of adding HSR to the general levy; and

That this report align with the overall City Transit strategy.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

City of Hamilton warning residents about door-to-door scams


City of Hamilton warning residents about door-to-door scams

HAMILTON, ON – January 27, 2015 –The City of Hamilton is warning residents to exercise caution when approached by unsolicited private contractors or representatives who claim to be affiliated with the City. The City has recently learned about different scenarios in which homeowners were approached by representatives claiming to be associated with the City related to waste programs and lead water testing. In these cases, the representatives asked the homeowner to allow them to enter the home to provide a service on behalf of the City.

Any City of Hamilton representative visiting a home would have a City of Hamilton identification card and City of Hamilton uniform. The City typically only visits a home during an emergency situation such as a water main break that would disrupt water service to the home, or for a previously arranged meeting with a homeowner about an issue or complaint.

Property owners who are approached by unsolicited contractors or representatives claiming to be affiliated with the City of Hamilton should report the incident to Hamilton Police or the City at 905-546-CITY (2489).

Monday, January 26, 2015

Hamilton Wynning LRT

Although details are preliminary, Mayor Eisenberger has announced that Premier Wynn has committed to full funding for LRT in Hamilton.

We will provide updates as they become available.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Food for Thought with Alex Bielak - A New Year - Sites to Share

I hope readers had a wonderful break over the holidays and are back at it rested and refreshed. I was able to clear my mind of visions of my digital media course homework, and was pleased to get back to my stove cooking for family and friends. In my mind there is nothing better than breaking bread together, catching up and sharing experiences.

One of the ways I spent my time was browsing the web where I discovered several websites I’d like to share with you. They’re a mix of recipes I’ve stumbled across and really liked, interesting information, and kitchen gadgets that caught my eye.

For example I found two super recipes on NotQuiteNigella.Com and have had success with both. Her Singapore Chilli Prawns (shrimp) recipe is delicious and simple and seems failsafe, allowing one to

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Dear City Council...

The following two pieces of correspondence have been sent to city council. One is from Michael Desnoyers, and with respect to Aerotropolis (AEGD) lands and land uses. The other is from Gary Santucci to city council with respect to his view that school closures may be related to Pan Am parking needs. These two items are provided for your information. Respectful comments welcomed.

Mayor Eisenberger and Members of Council,

At the GIC meeting of Wednesday January 14 under item 12.5 a Proposed Joint Settlement for the Airport Employment Growth District Phase 3 Ontario Municipal Board hearing will be presented in camera for discussion and consideration.

HPD and its members would like to respectfully remind this council that previous councils and with some certainty returning members of this council have for the past decade repeatedly assured the citizens of the City of Hamilton that ANY boundary expansion for a proposed AEGD would NOT allow the inclusion of lands for residential development.

This would include modifications to the proposed AEGD boundary to allow for future residential development.

We respectfully hope that the above will be taken into consideration during the discussions on Wednesday.

Michael J. Desnoyers
Co- Chair, Hamiltonians for Progressive Development

Community Gutting & Demolition

It appears that the strategy for the rush to close schools had an ulterior motive; to provide parking for the Pan-Am Games and that the City of Hamilton would receive the revenue. Parkview School for special needs students was closed and demolished, a much needed and used community hockey arena was demolished, Heritage King George School closed and at risk of demolition and not to mention the reacquisition of the former Scott Park Secondary School by the HWDSB. Finally, will the Jimmy thompson pool be coming down anytime soon as well? As a community we have born all of the costs over and over again, financial and social. Now we got sucker punched again by the province who will take over transportation and parking. How many of our local officials were in on this with the our public school board and it's former director and trustees, now hoist by their own petard.

Gary Santucci
Hamilton, Ontario


Democracy is Dead

Democracy is Dead (subtitle: What are we going to do about it?) - is a multi-disciplinary, multi-media theatrical work written and directed by Hamilton's talented Gary Santucci. It is a wake-up call to the generations of the 60′s and 70′s to join the young people of today to begin to repair the damage that we all have caused and allowed to be inflicted on our environment, our institutions and our societies. The work was inspired through and by the cathartic exercise of creating the Pearl Company Arts Centre in Hamilton’s sacrifice zone.

CAST: Gary Santucci – Alpha; Jeremy Shand – Beta; JonGordon Odegaard – Gamma; Greek Chorus: Francis X. Rocchi – Jason; Val Kay – Helen; Robert Innes – Homer; Jolanta Bace – Aphrodite; David Minnick – Euclid; Steve Wilson – Orpheus.

Democracy Is Dead Performance Schedule
Jan 15 7:30
Jan 16 9:00
Jan 17 7:30
Jan 22 7:30
Jan 23 9:00
Jan 29 8:00
Jan 30 7:30
Jan 31 9:00

16 Steven Street, Hamilton. 905 524 0606. 15$

The Pearl Company | Theatre, Gallery and Arts Centre 16 Steven Street Hamilton ON 905-524-0606

Sunday, January 11, 2015

A Stop/Go Decision

Click on chart to see it better
As has come to be expected as of late in Hamilton, there is a lot of emotion around whether the bus lane project should be halted, continued or continued with changes. In the midst of these perspectives it is often helpful; to look for empirical data that would help inform the discussion. 

The chart  to the left  reflects collision stats for the months of January to September and for the years 2008-2014,  in the area. (self reported collisions are excluded) The data seems to suggest a slight increase in collisions in the area, in January-September 2014, over past periods comparing the same months.

What is your interpretation of these stats. Are they enough to have us question continuing with the pilot project? Or do you think they are marginal and the pros still outweigh the cons. Have a look at the other reports surrounding this issue by clicking here

Friday, January 9, 2015

City of Hamilton- Media Release

HAMILTON, ON - Friday, January 9, 2015 – Today, the City of Hamilton administration presented the 2015 staff recommended Tax Operating Budget, and the 2015 staff recommended Water, Wastewater, and Stormwater Budget to the General Issues Committee.

The staff recommended 2015 Tax Operating Budget includes the recommendation of a tax supported budget increase of $136 based on an average annual tax bill of $3078. Almost 80% of the increase helps the City maintain existing services, another 8% supports increase expenditure on roads, sidewalks and other items, and 12% to facilitate greater economic growth.

The 2015 staff recommended budget addresses the current budget requirements for overall fiscal health, and long-term financial sustainability. The recommended budget focuses on infrastructure funding challenges, job creation, and invests in programs that will ensure the City is positioned to take advantage of the economic growth potential which is expected to peak in the near future.

Some of the key challenges the City of Hamilton will face in the next few years include:

• Additional funding for capital renewal to overcome the current annual deficit of $195 million

• Need to balance more competitive property tax rates with key investments in the community

• Provide funding and resources to address future priorities

• Ability to address increased costs related to legislative and regulatory requirements

• Manage compensation pressures

Budget deliberations will take place over the next few weeks. The Mayor and Members of Council, with input from Hamilton residents and businesses, will make choices about City services and programs.

The City invites residents to learn more about the 2015 Budget and become involved in the budget decision-making process. Public Delegations are invited to appear before the General Issues Committee on Tuesday, February 24, 2015, from 3 PM to 7 PM.

Staff Report and Mayor Eisenberger on Bus Lane Motion

Click here for a look at the staff report that went forward concerning the bus lane pilot.

The Hamiltonian also asked Mayor Eisenberger for his reaction to Clr. Collins' anticipated motion to attempt to put an end to the bus lane pilot. 

The following was the reply we received:

Mayor Eisenberger is looking forward to the staff presentations and the discussion that will occur as a result. Councillor Collins planned motion will bring more information to consider.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Planned Motion- by Clr. Collins

The following is issued by Clr. Chad Collins:

Hi everyone, please note the following motion I plan to present to GIC next week during our bus lane deliberations. As always, I welcome any input related to amendments or modifications.

Thanks Chad

Whereas the number of vehicular accidents has significantly increased along the Bus Lane Pilot route, and

Whereas many commercial operators have been adversely affected by the implementation and operation of the Bus Lane Pilot project, and

Whereas there are no documented transit benefits listed in the Bus Lane Pilot report, and

Whereas the Bus Lane Pilot project has created unnecessary traffic congestion, causing lengthy delays for downtown shoppers, residents, workers and merchants,

Therefore be it resolved that the bus lane pilot project be discontinued and staff be directed to make the necessary arrangements to return the bus lane to a fully functional lane for all vehicles.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Making Headlines- 2015 Predictions from our Perspectives Virtual Panel

This year, we took a slightly different approach in asking our Perspectives Virtual Panel for their predictions as to what might happen in Hamilton in 2015.

Rather than ask them for straight predictions, we decided to make it fun and ask them to capture their predictions in the form of a headline that might appear in a newspaper. We also invited them to create an optional one paragraph description under the headline to further explain it.  

We suggested that headlines can be based on predictions that may come to be, and/or may be formed in a light hearted comedic way. The only thing we asked is that the submissions not be mean spirited or otherwise violate our site policy.

So, enjoy these predictive headlines submitted by our Perspectives Virtual Panel:

 Presented in alphabetical order by surname:

Headlines by Laura Babcock

Councillor Green Moves for a Moritorium on PayDay Loan Locations 

Rookie Councillor Matthew Green is planning a motion at council Wednesday night to create a temporary moratorium on Pay Day Loan locations in Hamilton while the Province completes its

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Back to the Future- Examining the 2014 Hamilton Predictions

The following is an article from January 2014,  It contains predictions that our Perspectives Virtual Panel made at the start of 2014, for the year 2014. We thought it would be fun to repost it so that you can have a look at which predictions materialized.

Soon, we will be posting our predictions for 2015, which we are sure you will find interesting as well as amusing. Stay tuned. Until then, have fun with these: 

Ranging from the serious to the satirical, to places in between, our Perspectives Virtual Panel weigh in on what might happen in Hamilton in 2014. Judging from some of the predictions made for the year 2013 (see them here to compare predictions against outcomes), some of these prediction may in fact, come to be. 

Enjoy what has become a popular feature of the Hamiltonian- our Virtual Panel's 2014 predictions. 

1. What is the most positive thing that will happen in Hamilton in