Municipal Affairs

Your Taxes Will Not Be Forgiven

Your Taxes Will Not Be Forgiven

May 6, 2020 at 11:38 am

The CBRM will borrow from the province to fund a property-tax deferral program to assist residents and businesses “significantly impacted” by the COVID-19 pandemic. The first thing you must understand about this program — and you know this is vital because it appeared on the very first slide presented toRead More

Monster, Chiller, Horror Budget

Monster, Chiller, Horror Budget

January 15, 2020 at 1:34 pm

I do not know what to make of Monday’s “pretend” budget-cutting workshop but I suspect it may be viewed in some quarters as a poor use of a cash-strapped municipality’s resources. To recap: as a prelude to the actual budget process this year, CBRM council held a session on MondayRead More

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

February 1, 2019 at 10:37 am

On the Waterfront (Not) The Sydney Waterfront District Association has changed its name back to the Sydney Downtown Development Association after experimenting with a rebranding for the past few years. (Cape Breton Post) I find this really funny because I’m the kind of person who finds rebranding failures funny. I’mRead More

More About RENs

More About RENs

January 23, 2019 at 1:06 pm

While writing last week about the CBRM Regional Enterprise Network or CBRM REN it suddenly struck me that I didn’t know what I was talking about. I didn’t really know what a Regional Enterprise Network was, so I decided I’d better educate myself. I began by looking up the existing CapeRead More

So…What is the CBRM REN?

So…What is the CBRM REN?

January 16, 2019 at 12:02 pm

Now that Business Cape Breton (BCB) has been consigned to the ash heap of history, it’s time to meet the CBRM’s new sidekick in economic development — the Cape Breton Partnership. Because it seems there is to be a Cape Breton Regional Municipality Regional Enterprise Network (REN) and the CapeRead More

Weren’t We Expecting Big Port News This Year?

Weren’t We Expecting Big Port News This Year?

December 5, 2018 at 12:36 pm

Our port “developers” — Sydney Harbor Investment Partners (SHIP) formerly Harbour Port Development Partners (HPDP) — have been engaged in promoting the Port of Sydney as a “deep water, transshipment and intermodal mega hub” capable of handling Ultra-Large Container Vessels (ULCV) since 2014 (although we only made it official inRead More

Talkin’ Bout Remuneration Part IV

Talkin’ Bout Remuneration Part IV

December 5, 2018 at 12:32 pm

Editor’s Note: Mayor Cecil Clarke’s contention that discussing council remuneration in camera (and treating elected officials as “personnel”) is a longstanding CBRM practice sent me scuttling to the “CBRM Mayor and Council” clippings file at the McConnell library, to research some of the remuneration (and related) issues council has dealt withRead More

It’s Public Money — That Simple

It’s Public Money — That Simple

November 21, 2018 at 1:08 pm

CBRM Council approved a raise for itself last night in response to the federal government’s decision to end a tax break that allowed elected municipal officials to collect one-third of their salaries tax free. Councilors did it without a word of debate or discussion, presumably because they’d already debated andRead More

Letter to the Editor: Breaching Governing Legislation

Letter to the Editor: Breaching Governing Legislation

November 14, 2018 at 11:15 am

In recent published comments, Mayor Cecil Clarke suggested that because the Municipal Government Act (MGA) was ignored in the past it is perfectly acceptable for our current elected representatives to continue thumbing a collective nose at a statutory mandate to follow the rules. What the Mayor and Council repeatedly didRead...

Civic Centre, CBRM

When A Raise Is Not A Raise — Or Is It?

November 7, 2018 at 1:02 pm

There are two ways to look at CBRM Council’s decision, taken during Monday’s General Committee meeting, to increase the mayor and councilors’ salaries to compensate for the federal government’s decision (contained in that gripping bestseller Budget 2017: Building a Strong Middle Class) to eliminate a tax break that allowed themRead More