Let’s Talk… Let’s Connect – The second session of the Let’s Talk…Let’s Connect…networking series was held on June 6, with approximately 100 people in attendance. Survey results indicate that 294 connections were made during the session.
Our Canada Awards – On May 14, the Halton Region Museum partnered with the Halton District School Board in the Our Canada Awards (formerly Visions Canada), to honour Halton students from Kindergarten to Grade 12 whose Canadian-themed projects were judged to be the most innovative and relevant.
New Advocacy documents – In May, Halton Region launched “Advocating for a Strong Halton,” a series of documents outlining the key issues currently facing the Region.
Section of James Snow Parkway Open – The opening of the section of James Snow Parkway between Regional Road 25 and Boston Church Road, with a new grade separation with CN Railway, connects the employment lands on either side of the railroad and provides an alternate route to Highway 401.
Region’s Largest emergency Generator Installed – The Region’s largest emergency generator (three megawatts) was installed at the Burlington Skyway Wastewater Treatment Plant. The generator will provide standby power to support efficient treatment of wastewater in the event of a power failure.
Wastewater Flows in Service – The North Oakville East Wastewater Pumping Station is now operational. Wastewater is received from the new residential development north of Dundas Street and pumped to the Mid-Halton wastewater treatment plant for final treatment.
Third Line Sewer Trunk Rehabilitation Complete – The rehabilitation of the Third Line Trunk Sewer was completed in 2013. The trunk sewer will help meet the wastewater collection needs of recent and future development in North Oakville and Milton. This trunk sewer is also part of the new collection system that was constructed east of Third Line on Dundas Street.
Improving Regional Road Infrastructure – In June, staff updated Regional Council on the improvements to Regional Road infrastructure. By the end of 2016 capital improvements will have increased the east/west capacity on portions of our Regional roads by 16 additional lanes and the north/south capacity by 14 additional lanes. In fact, also by the end of 2016, segments of all 15 major Regional road corridors will have been improved to provide additional capacity and 153 km of new lanes.
Planning Sustainable Communities
Cootes to Escarpment EcoPark System – Halton Region celebrated the creation of Canada’s newest urban ecopark, the Cootes to Escarpment EcoPark System, with partners on June 22 in a public launch event at Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington.
Environmental Protection and Conservation of Water
Rain Barrel Sales – In May and June, four annual rain barrel truckload sales events were held to encourage wise outdoor water use. Over 2,700 rain barrels were sold.
Irrigation Optimization Workshop – In June, an Irrigation Optimization Workshop was held in partnership with Landscape Ontario. At the workshop, local irrigation contractors and vendors explored technological improvement opportunities to help reduce outdoor water use associated with irrigation systems.
Drinking Water Quality Management System Audit – The organization NSF International Strategic Registrations conducted an on-site audit of Halton Region’s Drinking Water Quality Management System (DWQMS) from April 1 to April 5. Findings stated the Region’s system is well managed for the critical provision of safe drinking water services. The successful audit findings led to the official registration of Halton’s DWQMS with the NSF accreditation body.
Wastewater Systems Effluent Regulation – The Identification Report and first Quarterly Report submissions under the Wastewater Systems Effluent Regulation (WSER, 2012) were completed. Under the regulations, all seven of Halton’s Wastewater Treatment Plants met or exceeded the national standards for wastewater treatment.
New curbside waste collection programs implemented– On April 1, Halton implemented enhancements to its waste collection program, including: the introduction of new acceptable materials in the Blue Box; a new, larger Blue Box (22-gallon); a three garbage bag/can limit; and the introduction of garbage tags for garbage above the new limit. Resident participation in these changes is already having a positive impact on Halton’s waste diversion and will help extend the life of the landfill another four years—a savings of $15 million to taxpayers.
Special Waste Drop-off Days Held in Burlington, Halton Hills and Oakville – Halton Region held Special Waste Drop-off Days in Burlington, Halton Hills and Oakville. Approximately 2,400 residents attended the events.
Spring Compost Giveaway – In May, more than 4,100 residents attended Halton’s annual Spring Compost Giveaway at the Halton Waste Management Site. During the event, residents picked up processed compost to use in their garden and landscaping projects. Halton residents also generously donated 5 tonnes of non-perishable food items and contributed $8,470 for local Halton food banks.
GreenCart Program Implemented in Townhouse Complexes – In April, the process of implementing the GreenCart program in all townhouse complexes in Halton Region was completed. There are a total of 362 townhouse complexes with over 13,000 units now participating in Halton’s GreenCart program.
Growing Good Food Ideas – Halton Region collaborated with Sustain Ontario, Powerline Films and 16 other partner organizations in the production of the 2012-2013 Growing Good Food Ideas video series. The videos showcase several Halton Region farmers, highlighting the importance of buying “local” and supporting agriculture in Halton.
Assisting Halton’s Low Income Residents
Employment Halton supports Toronto Premium Outlets job fair – On June 6, Employment Halton assisted Toronto Premium Outlets with their job fair that included more than 2000 job seekers, and assisted 65 retailers with the recruiting and hiring of qualified employees. Through this successful partnership, 24 new employer relationships were established, 11 clients received interviews, four clients obtained employment and 18 employers posted job opportunities on haltonjobs.ca.
Safe Beds program at Lighthouse Shelter – Halton Region has worked in partnership with the Salvation Army and the Canadian Mental Health Association to create 10 new beds with on-site 24 hour case management supports for individuals with mental health issues at the Lighthouse Shelter.
Children and Youth Development
Ensuring car seat safety – The Halton Partners for Car Seat Safety, chaired by the Halton Region Health Department, along with seven other community organizations and volunteers (including Halton Regional Police), ran two recent spot check clinics in Acton and Oakville to improve car seat safety and ensure residents are installing their children’s seats properly.
Youth Survey results – Results from the third Halton Our Kids Network Youth Survey show that Developmental Assets are up across Halton in both Grade 7 and Grade 10 students, indicating that Halton youth are feeling more connected to and supported by their families, schools and communities.
Completion of the Parent Youth survey – In early 2013, Our Kids Network (OKN) conducted a Parent Survey of School-aged Children. The results include the responses of 1762 parents, who were asked about school climate, bullying and/or harassment, parenting challenges and parenting supports. The survey also includes the measurement of 5 Family Asset® Categories.
Palliative Care Project – On June 17 and 18, Creek Way Village and Allendale celebrated their accomplishments as a result of participating in a five-year palliative care study. The study included a partnership with two LTC homes in Thunder Bay, as well as McMaster University and Lakehead University.
Service Awards for Geriatric Excellence (SAGE) – In May, three Regional staff members were honoured as SAGE award nominees. The annual SAGE awards celebrates those who are passionate and committed to improving the quality of life of seniors.
Family BBQs – Halton Region’s long term care homes each hosted summer BBQs for residents and their families. Each event was a huge success, including a 300-person turnout at Post Inn Village.
Willow Golf Tournament – On May 23, The Halton Regional Chair’s Annual Golf Tournament in support of the Willow Foundation at Crosswinds raised $32,738. Funds raised will help support life enriching initiatives for our seniors and disabled adults in Halton Region’s long term care homes and Adult Day Programs.
Lively Dragon Boat Race – Allendale and the Adult Day Programs joined forces to participate in the Lively Dragon Boat Race at Kelso Park on May 25. The team won a bronze medal and helped raise approximately $6,000 in support of residents and clients.
Hydrate to Feel Great – Halton Region’s long term care homes have implemented a collaborative and interdisciplinary hydration program for resident enjoyment and health promotion. Care teams provide gentle encouragement to ‘Hydrate to Feel Great’ and as a result, hydration levels have dramatically improved.
Protecting Public Health
Public Health Inspectors reach 100% inspection rate January-April – Halton Region’s Public Health Inspectors reached a 100 per cent inspection rate for high-risk food premises from January 1- April 30 this year, surpassing their goal of 95 per cent. To view inspection results from restaurants or food establishments, visit www.halton.ca/dinewise.
Promoting Healthy Living
Aldershot Village: Connecting People and Places on Plains – The Health Department, in partnership with the Plains Road Village Vision Committee; Aldershot BIA and the City of Burlington, launched the new Aldershot Village: Connecting People and Places on Plains campaign. Over 45 Aldershot residents participated in a Jane’s Walk on May 5. The campaign promotes walkable communities where people can walk or bike to places to which they would normally drive.
Celebrating Clean Air Day with the launch of Ka-Pow to Powerjams – Halton Region celebrated Canadian Environment Week and Clean Air Day at Milton Public Library with the launch of its new children’s book Ka-Pow to Powerjams. The book rounds out the series by introducing a power failure during a winter storm, touching on energy reduction and emergency preparedness themes.
If you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at email@example.com. You can also find me on Twitter @garycarrhalton, LinkedIn or Facebook. To receive further updates on Regional issues, please subscribe to my quarterly e-newsletter, “The Carr Report.”