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Icebreaker keeps power on page 3 Dorothy Rungeling celebrated page 14 Skating in Fonthill page 15 EXCEEDING EXPECTATIONS

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"Fill the Pig" campaign aims to help stressed families

Column Six

The Blue D Victory, fame, adulation, just ten cents away BY NICK SALTARELLI


Special to the VOICE

Nora, Shaelynn, and Kaleigh McDermott, and Marshall Claus adopt their piggy banks.


Special to the VOICE

Modern-day stressers, including social media, peer pressure, a lack of self-esteem, as well as other psychological and dysfunctional dis-

orders in society, all contribute to children and teens struggling with mental health. February has been designated Mental Health Month, and Pathstone Mental Health Foundation in St. Catharines has launched its first


“Fill The Pig – Feel Better Campaign,” said Kim Rossi, Director of Philanthropy. The pig is a pink piggy bank, which can be picked up at any of the 17 Meridian Credit Union locations across Niagara. Fill it with donations and return it by the end of

the month, and the proceeds will go to Pathstone. Rossi said the fundraiser doesn’t really have an end number in mind. “We are more focussed on getting See PIGGIES Page 10



NIAGARA / FONTHILL, ON People are planners by nature. We make big plans, small ones, and the most important plans we reserve for our loved ones. Want to make it easier for them emotionally and financially? - plan to call us today. SELL phone: 905-321-2261

LLOW ME TO TAKE you back in time to the mid 1960s— the Middle Ages to those of you who weren’t there, and famously unremembered by some who actually were—when iPods and digital music weren’t even so much as a Flower Child’s pipe dream. The British Invasion was in full swing, Rock ‘n’ Roll was undisputed king, and if you wanted that glorious sound beside you on the beach there was a solitary option: the transistor radio. But you had to be very cool, and better off than most, to actually own one. Transistor radios. High school kids had them, but not all high school kids. Only the very coolest. Certainly no kid at St. Mary’s elementary school had his very own. To be a mere Eighth Grader with a transistor radio? Now that would be beyond cool. Grade Eight is an awkward time of change in a See COLUMN SIX back page

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The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019

NRPS impaired driving charges

THE VOICE POLL The old arena: Sell it or keep it?


The Town is listening: As the Voice goes to press, the Town is holding two public information sessions at the community centre, soliciting resident feedback on whether to retain, or sell, the old arena. There’s an opinion poll to the right—tell us what you think, and look for results (and coverage of the information sessions) in next week’s paper. Coincidentally, almost exactly a year ago we ran a poll that asked a similar question. The poll asked: Should the Town of Pelham proceed on its current course to sell the existing arena to real estate developers? Or should it postpone a final decision until after the municipal election in October, when a new council may choose a different path? The answer choices were: Yes, sell it now. The loss of space is relatively minimal, and the Town needs the cash earned by the sale to help pay for the new community centre. Or: No, stop the sale. There is sufficient community opposition to justify waiting, allowing voters a say through the ballot box. With 280 votes recorded, just 31 respondents (11%) said sell it, while 249 respondents (89%) said postpone the decision until after the election. So here we are, a year later, and well after the election. Fate intervened and scuttled a $3 million dollar conditional sales agreement—money, it becomes increasingly clear, that the Town most definitely needs. We’ve been running this latest poll online for the last few days, and so far the results are fascinatingly contradictory. Let’s see what another week brings in...We’ll take what we can get: The Amazing Saltarelli is back, having seen the Bat Signal, with a new Column Six this week, as engaging as ever. But Mr. S. is a busy man, and makes no promises as to when another of his essays may grace these pages. Savour it while you can...Free family fun: There’s no shortage of Family Day activities, next Monday, February 18, at the community centre. The centre and walking track will operate on special holiday hours— 8 AM to 4 PM, with free activities beginning at 11 AM. The schedule includes a free public skate, 11 AM to 12:30 PM; free family gym time, 11 AM to 1 PM (indoor, non-marking shoes required); free laser tag, 11:30 AM to 12:30 PM; a Community Expo, from 11:30 AM to 12:30 PM; and a Golden Boot Hockey Game, starting at 1 PM. Seen above, Pelham's Culture and Community Enhancement Programmer, Jodi Hendriks, putting the final touches on planning for the event...Hat tip to Anthony Gallaccio: Thanks for the icebreaker photo!

As the Voice went to press, the Town of Pelham was holding a special public meeting to solicit resident comment on whether to keep, or sell, the old arena on Haist Street. Interim CAO Teresa Quinlin says that the Town needs the cash. Tell us what you think. Take the poll:

DEPARTMENT OF BETTER LATE THAN NEVER The Pelham Horseshoe League thanks all of those who participated in their annual tournament last September, as well as the local businesses that donated prizes for the event. The League plays at Centennial Park every Wednesday evening, starting at 7 PM, from June to September. The winners, from left: Lenny Bisson, Hank Nikitczuk, Bob O'Hara, George Elicich, and (absent) Rick Koudys. [Editor’s note: To be clear, it was the Voice that is late running this photo, not the League in submitting it. We've kept it on the shelf, and present it now as a refreshing reminder of what late summer looks like.] SUPPLIED PHOTO

Voice on vacation!

REPORTER WANTED Calling all journalists, feature writers, or wordsmiths of any kind: The Voice is hiring a full-time writer. If you have what it takes to knock out a relevant and readable story on deadline, hit us up. For further information and salary range, kindly see:



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In an effort to bring further attention and deterrence to driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs, the Niagara Regional Police Service reports the names of those people who are charged with an alleged criminal impaired driving offence in the Region. None of the following charges have been proved in court. In addition to being charged, these individuals are also bound by a Ministry of Transportation 90-Day Administrative Driver’s License Suspension and are prohibited from operating a motor vehicle on a roadway. The public is encouraged to contact the Niagara Regional Police Service Traffic Safety Hotline or Crime Stoppers to report those who are driving in contravention of the suspension. The following individuals have been charged criminally with impaired driving by alcohol or drugs, driving with a blood alcohol concentration above 80 mgs of alcohol in 100 ml of blood, or refusing to provide a breath / blood sample.   Justin W. C. CAMPBELL, 35, Welland Benjamin D. WHITE, 33, Niagara Falls Wesley P. JAMES, 23, Princeton Kevin M. ZAMPALONI, 56, Ridgeway Neal H. GETZ, 36, Pelham Ike KOSKI, 60, Niagara Falls Trent W. BEECROFT, 24, Niagara Falls David C. JODOIN, 38, St. Catharines The Niagara Regional Police Service is committed to reducing impaired driving offences through education and the apprehension of offenders through enforcement programs like RIDE. Impaired driving is still the leading cause of criminal deaths in Canada and destroys thousands of lives every year.


Voice 905-892-8690 Find the Voice at these locations: Indulgence Bakery Mossimo’s Pelham Street Grille Sobeys Fonthill Peter Piper’s Pubhouse DeVries Fruit Farm Beamer’s Hardware Pelham Libraries Churchhill Meats Bob’s Boys Antiques PharmaChoice Pharmacy Fonthill Fitness Fenwick Pie Company McDonald’s Duffin Appleworks Fonthill Legion Semenuk’s Gas Bar Shoppers Drug Mart Tim Horton’s Giant Tiger Fonthill LCBO Zee Lube Express Care Food Basics Minor Bros Stores Avondale Stores A-1 Market Pharmasave Sobeys South Pelham Grill on Canboro Ridge Berry Farm Circle-K

The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019

Page 3

Niagara icebreaker keeps the power on Commissioned 27 years ago, the Niagara Queen II is still sailing BY KEVIN VALLIER

Special to the VOICE

While Niagara residents tried to stay warm during the recent deep freeze, the Niagara River needed to keep its waters flowing in order to supply power to the province and electricity to homes and businesses. A frozen Niagara River can quickly cause a problem, from flooding to power failure. Enter the Niagara Queen II, an 85-tonne vessel, powered by two 1,720-horsepower diesel engines. The icebreaker smashes through the frozen waterway ensuring the rivers icy waters continue to flow. First commissioned in 1992, the small, dependable icebreaker, owned and operated by Ontario Power Generation (OPG), helps keep the water flowing to OPG’s Adam Beck hydroelectric stations, which generate more than 2,000 megawatts of power for the province. The Niagara Queen II can deploy a number of different tactics to get the job done, depending on the type of ice, how fast the water is flowing and the wind and weather conditions. Up un-

til recently it was running around the clock. OPG’s Director of Corporate Communications, Neal Kelly said that heavy winds off Lake Erie have been pushing more ice over the Niagara River ice boom. “The boom is situated across the river between Fort Erie and Buffalo and holds most ice back, but when it’s windy, some ice jumps the boom and heads down the river,” said Kelly. The New York Power Authority also has an icebreaker, the William H. Latham, and the two vessels will work in tandem to keep the water flowing. Of particular concern is ice that gets bottled up on the Grand Island side, which can cause flooding in the town of Tonawanda. OPG’s predecessor, Ontario Hydro, first began deploying an icebreaker in the early 1960s with the Niagara Queen, a modified tugboat icebreaker. Today, depending on the location and severity of the ice problem, OPG can call upon the Queen II or its larger American cousin.

The Niagara Queen II at work. The Latham has a spoonshaped bow and can break up a large field of ice by riding on top of it, whereas the Queen II has a knife-edged bow better suited for slicing through ice, especially near the intakes. The operators of the Queen II are OPG employees who apply to be part of the crew. According to Jessica Polak, V.P. of Operations for OPG, every crew member goes through rigorous training, including operation of the vessel, recovery and safety drills. The crew members are mostly industrial mechanics by trade.

In the grand scheme of things, the 2000 megawatts that the Adam Beck stations supply is a significant amount. Niagara has the capacity to supply up to nine percent of the province’s total electrical supply. So if the river isn’t flowing, it can cause a significant problem. How and when the icebreaker is deployed is decided by employees at OPG’s Niagara River Control Centre (NRCC), who regulate the flow of water in the Niagara River and over Niagara Falls. In the winter, this also involves monitoring

for ice buildup in the river, in an area called the Chippawa-Grass Island Pool, upstream from the control centre. The centre is equipped with cameras and a new radar system that provides OPG’s hydroelectric operating supervisors with detailed ice intelligence and weather system monitoring. “There is a lot of assessment and analysis that is ongoing,” said Polak. If ice threatens to clog the hydroelectric intakes that deliver water to the stations downstream, the NRCC team will call on


the Niagara Queen II and its three-person crew— a captain, an engineer, and a deck hand—to deal with the problem. Depending on the weather, a typical winter sees the icebreaker running for 300 to 400 hours in a season, and it can be out clearing ice as early as December 20 and as late as May. While the recent deep freeze had Ontario in its icy grip, the crew of the Niagara Queen II continued to brave the frigid temperatures to keep the waters moving and the electricity flowing.

CannTrust unconcerned about projected cannabis shortfall Report from U.S. market research firm shows Canadian growth stalling


Special to the VOICE

A report from a U.S. market research firm that indicated underwhelming numbers in the first few months of legalized cannabis sales in Canada is not of major concern to one of Pelham’s grow-op operators, CannTrust CEO Peter Aceto said. The report from Brightfield Group suggested that Canada’s cannabis industry will be worth just $5 billion by 2021 — significantly less than previously estimated. However, most of the data in is based on recreational sales. “Our reputation really is based on the medical business,” Aceto told the Voice, asserting that CannTrust is the fastest-growing medical cannabis company in Canada, with approximately 60,000 patients using its products. Part of their current and future plans do include recreational sales, but Aceto points to both a slower rollout of product across the market as well as Canadian regulatory issues as clear effects

on Brightfield’s numbers. “Medical cannabis has been legal in Canada for five years,” Aceto said. “Recreational cannabis has been legal for four months. The underlying reason why recreational cannabis was legalized was to try and eradicate the black market, and to make sure that it gets up to healthy standards.” In short, people who want to smoke a blunt after work are probably still buying marijuana from their longtime suppliers. The cannabis industry in Canada, on the other hand, still faces regulatory hurdles with products such as edibles and vapors. Still, some of Brightfield’s numbers seemed surprising. “To give you some context, in Colorado, with a population of four million, they sell about a billion dollars worth of cannabis in a year,” Brightfield’s Bethany Gomez told the Financial Post. “When the recreational market

was announced here in Canada, there was so much hype and hope that the rollout was going to be strong. We didn’t see that.” It’s still early days, said Aceto, adding that Colorado has had legalized cannabis sales since 2012. Throw in the evolving regulatory factor, and you have the numbers seen in Canada. “I feel pretty certain that, you know, Canada has been much more restrictive than you would've seen in the State of Colorado,” he said. Yet the news in Brightfield’s report wasn’t necessarily positive for the medical cannabis industry either. According to their numbers, Canada’s market in that space was worth $532 million last year — growing to a relatively low $652 million by 2021 because of competition from the more-accessible recreational market. From a consumer standpoint, however, the lines

between the two markets figure to blur somewhat over time, and the data did not include the black market. Regardless, Aceto is not complaining yet about the often drawn-out regulatory tendencies of governments in Canada. “No, I think that, in terms of quality, in terms of all these types of things, the goal is to eliminate the black market,” he said. “I think a problem that may happen slower than people had hoped for, and [for some] it's actually probably more convenient to [consume] through the black market.” Stats Canada estimates that on average, legal cannabis costs $9.70 per gram, which is up to 50 percent more than the same amount on the black market. “All the talk today is that demand is outstripping supply, right?” Aceto said. “So I think this [report] very much flies in the

face of that.” Still, some financial analysts are warning of a bubble within the legalized cannabis industry. CannTrust closed last Friday’s TSX session at $9.92 a share on a market cap of over $1 billion. However, Canada remains one of the leading cannabis-consuming nations in the world, and a separate report from another cannabis market research agency, Arcview, pegs the edible market alone in North America to reach $4 billion by 2022. Aceto said CannTrust owns patents on various recreational products and plans to roll them out as Canadian regulations evolve. “We're quite focused on the edibles market,” Aceto said. “But we call it cannabis 2.0 because it's not just edibles. There's other things like rubs, if you've got arthritis or pain in your joints.” CannTrust currently employs 285 people at its Fenwick site. The company is moving forward this year with a large-scale expansion of its grow-op after beating the Town of Pelham’s interim control bylaw to the clock last October.

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The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019


The opinions expressed in submitted commentary and letters to the editor are those of the contributors and not necessarily those of the Voice of Pelham.

The Voice of Pelham is a 1211858 Ontario Limited publication David Burket, Publisher 2-1428 Pelham St., P.O. Box 1489, Fonthill, ON L0S1E0

COMMENTARY / OP-ED Larry Coté On being a friend


HE PHILOSOPHER Aristotle said, “In poverty and other misfortunes of life, true friends are a sure refuge.” Following a recent gathering of some long-term friends, I began to think of how one establishes the value of friendship. The French have a phrase which for me encapsulates the answer to that inquiry far more poetically than its literal translation into English. Joie d’ vivre is an all encompassing phrase that describes the rewards and happiness that one finds in life. A major element of joie d’ vivre comes from the elevated elation one feels when experiencing the companionship of friends. It is difficult to countenance the heartache and loneliness that accompanies the loss, for one reason or another, of such joy-giving relationships. Perhaps the worst of life’s sorrows may be when these is torn away through death or for other disconcerting reasons. Mark Vernon, a human relations researcher, says that if we properly cultivate friendships “we can lift the burdens” from our lives. A recent gathering of friends recognized the trea-

sure trove of more than 50 years together as we sat around a kitchen table enjoying a delicious home-cooked meal. After so many years together, there were plenty

It is a fact that to be and to have a friend takes effort

of memories to revisit and, of course, problems of the world to be solved. Some sad times are occasionally recalled but, fortunately, the good times mostly prevail in our collective memories. Integral to all of such gatherings are the updates of the goings-on of offspring who are so important to all in the group. All of the members of this special group are retirees, and since entering that phase of life have had the good fortune to visit many places around the world. Cruis-

NEED HELP? MAKE THE CALL Distress Centre For depression, distress, and crisis. 24 hour help line: 905-688-3711   Mental Health and Addictions Access 1-866-550-5205 (Toll Free) Gambler’s Anonymous 905-351-1616

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The Voice

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(905) 892-8690 PUBLISHER & EDITOR Dave Burket ADMINISTRATION Lori Gretsinger CONTRIBUTORS Jane Bedard, Carolyn Botari, Colin Brezicki, Rosemary Chambers, John Chick, Larry Coté, Gloria J. Katch, Samuel Piccolo, John Swart, Sarah Whitaker NEWS INQUIRIES & TIPS LETTERS TO THE EDITOR ADVERTISING INQUIRIES

ing and touring together has intensified the relationship and added boundlessly to the friendship and memories. According to medical researchers, good friendships need to be cultivated and are vitally important to one’s mental health and to the quality of life. These medical experts claim that to live a happy life and to have friends are inseparable from each other. Their prescription to make and keep friends is to make space for them in your life and, most importantly, in your hearts. It is often said that a true friend will stand by you through thick and thin. Having someone to lean on in times of toil and trouble is akin to having a life preserver when at sail in turbulent waters. It is a fact that to be and to have a friend takes effort. But the rewards of friendship are well worth the trouble. And so, if you have a friend that may be in need a hug, or just a friendly gesture, make certain to take the time to deliver that time- honoured sign of good friendship and do so with vigor. ♦ Larry Coté is a retired college professor. He was award the Governor General’s Medal for his community contributions.

Letters Appreciates the icy memories I loved the Column Six by Colin Brezicki [That good old hockey game, Feb. 6, p. 1]. It brought back such good memories of when I was that age playing hockey. It was very seldom that we played in an arena. Most of our games were played on different outside rinks at various public school

yards. The flooding of the rinks was courtesy of the local fire department. Our coach was our physical education teacher. Ironically I also played for Ryerson, but it was Ryerson Public School, in Owen Sound, Ontario. Stu Wilson Fonthill

One way or another, we'll have to pay Times are changing for our quiet little town. Will we become the “Pot Capital of Canada”? Will this help pay the debt we have been left with?

The last council snookered us. We will pay for it—we have seen it already, streets not plowed, not sanded, garbage not picked up at

designated times. I applaud the new council. They knew what they were taking on, so let's give them See PAY next page


Electoral District: Niagara West

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Mayor of Pelham Marvin Junkin 289-929-2681 Members of Pelham Town Council

Member of Provincial Parliament

Ward 1 Councillor Mike Ciolfi 905-892-0077

Sam Oosterhoff, MPP 4961 King St. East, Unit M1 Beamsville, ON L0R 1B0 905-563-1755

Councillor Marianne Stewart 289-821-0840

Electoral District: Niagara West

Members of Niagara Regional Council Councillor Marvin Junkin 289-929-2681 Councillor Diana Huson 905-324-3094 Town of Pelham 20 Pelham Town Square P.O. Box 400 Fonthill, ON L0S 1E0 905-892-2607

Ward 2 Councillor Ron Kore 905-933-3805

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The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019

Page 5

OPINION Message to new council and mayor: You need to get this right Since reading last week’s reader comments, especially Cathy Thompson's, I felt a clarification was needed. Comparing cannabis to pigs or poultry or livestock production is ludicrous. Companies like CannTrust, and Leviathian, and RedeCan knew in advance that they could circumvent rules that pertained to new builds if they purchased/converted existing greenhouses. First of all, flower and vegetable greenhouses are agricultural, which carries a whole lot of property and tax benefits. As well, by purchasing an existing greenhouse operation, the historical rules on greenhouse minimum distance requirements apply. It seems obvious that all these operations knew the benefits of

“grandfathering,” plus it allowed them to ramp-up construction and production faster. While cannabis brings with it a whole different set of light, air and water pollution issues, compared to pepper, cucumber, tomato or flower production, those operations can seem to exist and expand on a grandfathered location, all with the blessing of the past Town Council, mayor, and staff. The problem is that these operations were quietly being converted amongst their existing residential neighbours. CannTrust, if I do my math correctly, will expand to include nearly 1 million sq.ft. of production. Who knows about Leviathian’s real plan, and there seems to be a lot of construction material

Debate over old arena fate Fifty years from now, a much bigger Pelham will regret selling parkland. I hope we get some answers next week about how spreading loans over a longer period of time may help what many of us knew was a very bad fiscal situation, created by our previous Mayor, Council and CAO. Tillie Maria Via Facebook No choice but to sell it. Theresa Quinlin's interview [The Conversation: Hitting the ground running—again, Feb. 6, p. 3] convinced me. Appreciated the honesty and transparency she provided. Thomas Keenan Via Facebook

sitting at RedeCan. These investment companies have become industrial in scope and are further encroaching on residential neighbourhoods, and are taking prime farmland out of cultivation. Do any of these shareholders live with their families downwind of their industrial operations? I don't think so. Take for example the largest operation in the area, in Niagara-on-the-Lake. It is outside of any residential area, as it should be in Pelham. When a farmer applies to build or expand his poultry, pig, or dairy operation—which by the way is a true "agricultural" business, producing wholesome food—there are a whole lot stricter set of “minimum distance” rules, nutrient management plans and

permits, as well as codes of practice and HACCP policies that must be followed, even before a building permit is issued. In many cases it is the residential areas that have encroached on the farmland, but in the case of cannabis it is the free-wheeling expansion of these industrial greenhouses that are encroaching on the farm and residential areas of Fenwick, circumventing minimum distance requirements by purchasing existing greenhouses, a loophole in the law. These cannabis operations say they want to be good neighbours, but if we oppose them, their lawyers will sue the town of Pelham, which, by the way, is every taxpaying resident. Shame on these investors, prior councillors and

mayor, and staff, who have allowed much of this to happen quietly without residents knowing. The issue is that Pelham needs to set minimum distance rules, just like livestock operations, for these greenhouses that are converting to cannabis and/or new builds, and tax them as industrial production, so they cannot use agriculture as a property tax loophole. The new mayor and council have an opportunity to get it right, by making sure there are strict minimum distance bylaws to keep these cannabis operations away from residential areas, just as we do in livestock production. Rick Kavanagh Fenwick

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continued from previous page a chance. They will bear the brunt of our displeasure of higher taxes. I have trouble understanding  people who want free education, health care, daycare, to mention a few. Where do they think the money comes from. Our taxes. But they don’t want to pay higher taxes. I wish we could go back to the sleepy little town that captured our dream of retirement. Unfortunately, this is what they call progress. Joan Chick Fonthill


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NEWSFLASH Tell us your story! Column Six presents tales of personal triumph, adventure, strange-but-true stories, life-changing events, and looks-back at our past. Did you conquer Everest or kick a bad habit? Did you meet your spouse-to-be in jail or on an African safari? Do you know where Hoffa’s buried? Write it down, send it in:


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The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019




COMMENTARY / OP-ED Nancy Beamer, DSBN Trustee

continued from Page 11

Truth about Greenbelt Act Good news from the DSBN Actions by the government for the public good should not be the burden of the private landowner. Those who are not in the Greenbelt have the mistaken impression that they somehow have a right to speak to someone else's private property. The Liberals imposed it on those who owned agricultural land without their permission or compensation—it's called stealing. When property is taken to widen a road, the owner is compensated as it is considered an expropriation. The Greenbelt legislation includes clauses that state the Greenbelt is not subject to the Expropriation Act and further that there can be no liability for enforcement of the Greenbelt Act. How is this democratic? Aging farmers are struggling to keep their small farms viable.  Some are pulling their grapes out as they can't sell them at local markets at cost and wineries grow their own. Greenbelt devalues properties—no one wants to get stuck with all the restrictions. This legislation has more to do with the government's control over land use than environmental. The Ontario government owns 87% of the land mass (validate on Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry site). They can designate their own land as Greenbelt. For those who feel strongly about the Greenbelt, call MNRF and give them permission to designate your property Greenbelt. Erika Furney Port Robinson


The District School Board of Niagara has approved a million-dollar expenditure on SHSM – Specialist High Skilled Majors program. What does this mean for our students and schools? Thorold Secondary School will receive support for three of their SHSM programs: their communications program will receive additional Apple iMac computers. There will be upgraded drill presses and a pedestal grinder brake for the Manufacturing and Welding program, and in the transportation program there will be upgrades to the tire changer, a 4-post hoist and a 2-post hoist, a wheel balancer, and a vehicle scanner/diagnostic. Pelham’s E. L. Crossley will receive funding for their electricity and transportation programs with renewable energy work stations, LED lighting with control boards, and a vehicle scanner. For many years the emphasis has been on students going on to post-secondary education, and the trades were a less- valued pathway. However, with more and more employers searching for skilled trades people, the trend in education seems to be moving to a better balance between

academics and the trades. This give students more choices as they plan their futures, and the DSBN is taking a positive approach to providing the educational pathways that will lead all students to jobs with a great future. Many people have been asking about the field at Crossley. They are refurbishing the athletic field. In the 2018-2019 school season, the school board is investing approximately $1.7 million dollars to upgrade the field at Crossley. Westlane and Port Colborne secondary schools are also getting new fields. The money comes from the provincial government’s school renewal budget. The field at Crossley will feature an eightlane synthetic track with a synthetic turf soccer field in the middle. In addition to benefiting the athletes, the even surface will make access for students with mobility issues much easier and will help to foster inclusion. The projected finish date for the field is late spring, depending on weather conditions. The project start in September was due to the fact that the field had been rented for the summer to various groups of young people for soccer, etc., and

Family Day in Pelham 2019

Trustee Nancy Beamer. SUPPLIED PHOTO

the DSBN did not want to disappoint them or make them scramble to find alternate arrangements. All the DSBN fields are fenced and gated to provide student security and to avoid the misuse of the fields after hours by motorized vehicles, ATVs, etc. The public and community can still access the field after hours by using the Community Use of Schools Booking System on the DSBN website. There are many good things happening at the DSBN schools, and as your community voice, I will do my best to keep you informed. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at, or 905-892-5280, or follow my trustee Facebook page – Nancy Beamer. ♦

country have been great for years and years, generations and generations. So you know, I've got 22 minutes every week to renew that, year-round. And thanks to loyal sponsors like Subaru, they’ve been with us since day one 27 years ago.” Tomas knows that while auto racing’s profile ebbs and flows on the national stage, there’s a base market that has always been there, and that starts at tracks like Merrittville, in less-populated regions such as Niagara. “NASCAR’s TV numbers have waned a bit, and attendance is down, but in terms of interest in the sport, this little track over here, they’re about to start their 68th consecutive season of operation — the oldest operating dirt track in Canada,” he said. “Junior hockey has come and gone, minor league baseball has come and gone, but they haven’t been as constant as that little old dirt track over there.” Tomas doesn’t see this changing. “You’re not going to bump the NHL off that perch, you’re probably not going to bump the Blue Jays off that perch, but down in certain pockets of this country, racing automobiles, man, it’s still a big deal. And I think that’s why we’ve survived as long as we have.” Tomas is also involved as a media consultant on the long-delayed Canadian Motor Speedway in Fort Erie. Despite little movement on the project, he says it is still a go. “When you’re building a $400 million project — it took seven years just to get it through the Ontario Municipal Board — nothing this big has been built in this area before,” Tomas said. “So I mean, it sounds like an excuse, but if you’re going to do something this big, you need to do it right.” In the meantime, Tomas will continue hosting Raceline, preparing the show in Fonthill and driving to Hamilton once a week to broadcast the final product. Thanks to cutbacks and the downsizing of the newspaper industry, he figures he is one of only two sports journalists left in Canada covering auto racing full-time. “It’s a labour of love, and when you’ve been doing it for 27 years, you don’t get too many no’s on interview requests,” he said. “We’re still riding it. I’m 66 years old, I’m past retirement I suppose, but you’ll find me dead one day at the microphone.”

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Page 8

The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019


Special to the VOICE

While Pelham Town Council’s February 4 agenda looked brief enough, with only two delegations, the number of questions and comments posed during the meeting, and during the following Committee of the Whole session, resulted in the meeting being extended until 10:30 PM. Even at that time, the Public Works and Treasurer’s department still hadn’t completed their preview of the upcoming Capital Budget. Residents in the gallery left bleary-eyed.

Report from Huson

In her first official update as a Pelham representative at Regional Council, Diana Huson expressed a good working relationship with Mayor Marvin Junkin, and said she is “very receptive” to councillors informing her of any issues which should be brought to the Region. Huson was recently named vice-chair for the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA). The new NPCA is expanding its board, with Hamilton’s representatives increasing from two to four members, and Haldimand doubling from one to two representatives. The NPCA receives about $7 million from the Region for overseeing areas like the Sugar Maple, St. John’s Conservation Area, and Twelve Mile Creek, which runs through Pelham. What happens to the Niagara River area also affects many people in rural areas of Pelham. “We need to look at floodplain mapping,” Huson said.

A few people interested in sitting on the NPCA have already come to her attention. She asked council if they were in favour of having a professional in conservation or forestry sit on the authority, rather than just a municipal councillor. Towns such as Fort Erie have gone through many resumes to choose qualified citizens to represent them at the NPCA, she noted. “The organization is still functional, but it takes time to get a CAO. You want to take the time to find the right candidate. I hope to have a candidate for review by the middle of this month,” Huson said.


Last week, Mayor Junkin commended Huson for fighting to keep the EarlyON Centre, a dropin facility in Fenwick, open for another five months. One daycare on Pelham Street recently closed, and Family and Children’s Services were scheduled to close the Church Street site if it hadn’t been for a rally organized by residents Cory Ziraldo and Paul Bryant. Huson worked behind the scenes with FACS and the Region. While the Ministry of Education previously funded FACS and the EarlyON centers, this funding was discontinued and placed under the Region’s jurisdiction. The Region is now the manager of EarlyON, and is currently studying child population levels and facilities offering daycare in the area. Ann Godfrey, Communications Officer for FACS, recently told the Voice that the Region will be undergoing a procurement process and will be accepting bids by organizations wanting to operate

the daycare. FACS will also have to place a competitive bid, as well. Since some of FACS’ funding has been eliminated, she said the agency does not have the budget to operate a daycare, because its core mandate is child protection, not daycare services. In other areas, EarlyON programs operate under other managers like the YWCA and Port Cares, she noted. Huson told the Voice that the Region has to take into consideration that rural areas have to be served as well, especially since transportation was a problem in Fenwick.

Town website update

Teresa Quinlin, Treasurer and now acting CAO, said the Town is “conducting an audit on what works and what doesn’t” on the Town’s website. The Town will be getting a new look online. Marc MacDonald, Public Relations and Marketing Specialist, said this process will include going through 260 current web pages, and checking to ensure that links to other files, photos and maps are not broken. “We are encouraging departments to upgrade their information, including information that will be easier to find,” he said. The Town’s landing page will stay the same. Quinlin added that the website will be more user-friendly, without costing more money. “We will determine what people are looking for, and we will look at other municipalities.” This was in response to Councillor Lisa Haun giving several suggestions on searching for other “easy-peasy websites.”

The Capital Budget

Quinlin and Jason Marr, Director of Public Works, presented the highlights of the Capital Budget and Reserve Fund, which earmarked $2.6 million in projects which have been ongoing from previous years, but were not completed by December. The proposed capital budget request for 2019 is $6.4 million. Marr later stated in the presentation that they had deferred some $3.9 million dollars in work to 2020. “We tried to push off any projects that we can, but eventually we will have to deal with them,” he said. Mayor Junkin said, “This is a serious program, and when you put off projects it has a steam-rolling effect.” Councillor Hildebrandt expressed concern that drinking water remained safe. “We are trying to ensure safe and clean drinking water,” replied Marr, who said that water mains would be installed before scheduled road repairs were made.


Some $152,000 has been budgeted to protect against cyber attacks and the hacking of information. The project involves purchasing a back-up generator for the Information Technology Room, which provides backup to everything in the Town Hall, as well as the community centre through wireless connections. Councillor Bob Hildebrandt said he believes this is an area where money needs to be invested. Services have to be automated to technology, which includes being able to control lighting systems and other electrical monitoring

through programming, so these tasks aren’t done manually. Quinlin noted the Town is expecting to receive a grant of some $2 million dollars that would be allocated for rural projects. “Once we have news of the projects getting the grant, we have two years to do it,” she added. Even if the grant is received, Quinlin said all the projects slated for completion will leave the town with a $830,556 shortfall. At that point, she said she would be asking council’s approval on what would have to be completed, or deferred to another year.

Fire Department radios and repairs

The big-ticket item in the equipment category was $305,000 to replace the Fire Department’s radio technology. Fire Station No. 1, on Highway 20, needs roof repairs and structural waterproofing. When asked about the damage, Fire Chief Bob Lymburner said that he’s been buying extra pails lately to catch the leaks in the building, some of which are creating puddles by desks. The flat roof has been repeatedly patched over the years, but now a proper replacement needs to be completed, and the Town has estimated it will cost $45,000. Marr pointed out the roof repairs couldn’t be done until spring or summer, when there was better weather. Chief Lymburner told the Voice that the station is the oldest in Pelham, and in a few years it will need another bay for the six pumper trucks. “There’s just no more space in the building,” he said. See COUNCIL next page


continued from previous page

Town Hall roof

Facility Condition Assessments are completed every five years on a large number of buildings. About $50 million has been allocated to repair and renovate many buildings in the town. Currently $4.9 million has been deferred that needs to be used, Marr said. Since 2014, Town Hall’s roof, structural waterproofing and painting was slated for replacement, which will cost in excess of $55,000. Mayor Junkin suggested issuing a tender for a roofer to complete both the fire hall and Town Hall roofs, which might save more time and money.


Discussing parkland designations, Wiens said any new subdivisions and developments in town have to dedicate a certain percentage of their acreage to parkland. In cases where the area already has enough green space and parks, the Town can use this money for parks in alternative areas. Currently, there is $126,500 available for development of parks and recreation. The digital sign at Centennial Park needed to be replaced. Diamond #3’ needed a dugout area for the safety of the players. The Fenwick Park was also heavily used because it had clay courts that are popular. Councillor Hildebrandt requested a utilization report to determine if technology could be incorporated in these parks to save costs as well.


The idea of paving the Steve Bauer and the trail from Port Robinson Road to Line Avenue arose, but the notion, which initially sounded appealing, was turned to stone. Councillor Ron Kore noted that once

The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019 the paving was completed, there would be many additional costs to maintain it down the road. Marr agreed. Councillor Haun suggested a chip or softer surface, which was preferred by runners because it had less impact on their joints than concrete. Haun asked if a portion of the trails could be half-paved and half-covered with stone, but Marr replied that eventually this causes a “tripping hazard.” However, the Ontario Cycling Committee Program awarded council a $75,000 grant. The transportation committee recommended these two sections for completion. There are two other trails the funding can be used for, but the Town is restricted to four projects that were submitted in order to obtain the grant. While the Town is in receipt of these funds, it is obligated to inform the funders how the money is to be allocated.

Road repairs

There is only so much patchwork a Town can do. Road rehabilitation is projected at $400,000 in the upcoming capital budget. Marr pointed out that the normal patching treatment is a tar and chip process that is commonly found in rural areas. However, with fluctuating weather conditions from deep freezes to quick thaws, roadways suffer the consequences. Marr has identified roads that need to be resurfaced, with Welland Road being the top priority for 2020. Councillor Kore asked, “Why not 2019? That’s the worst strip of road in the Town.” Mayor Junkin added, “People would really take notice if Welland Road was fixed.” Marr replied that Public Works is considering the development along Haist Street, because a large pipe had to be replaced there, and the road would have to be ripped up anyway.

Poth Street culvert

Closed since 2016, a sec-

Page 9 ellers tend to do a “rolling stop,” and the acceleration at the intersection can cause problems. A water main also has to be installed in the area, which needs to be coordinated with the road project. “We have to put the water main in ahead of time,” noted Marr, so the road doesn’t have to be ripped up again. The parameters of the project include Burton to Shorthills Streets. There are also public mailboxes located along the roadside, and because it’s such a busy area, Councillor Marianne Stewart said,“They shouldn’t be there.”

Resident Richard McCombs addresses his cannabis grow-op concerns to Pelham Town Council. GLORIA J. KATCH PHOTO

tion of Poth Street barely inched toward reopening. An engineering study on it is 95% complete. Marr said the detailed design of the bridge is being completed by Spriet Associates. Mayor Junkin said that contractors have offered to complete the project for half the cost at about $200,000, and “they are willing to take all the responsibility for it. They can come back to us with a proposal. I don’t know why we are going to engineers. We are not engineering these. That should have been done before. These are not new, this is a replacement.” Given the poor conditions of the soil in this area, Marr said there has to be more ingenuity in the design, so that the bridge retains its stability over a long-term basis. He also noted that the “hydraulic capabilities” of the drain have to be managed, and this can only be accomplished through a proper design. The estimate to do this report was described as “reasonable,” by Marr. Having previously worked with the Region, Marr commended Spriet for having a solid reputation. Once Spriet completes the

design, council can tender the project to the best bidder to construct the bridge.

Roadwork to the north

Pelham Street north from Birch Steet to Shorthills Place also involved urbanization, which included new sidewalks and a storm sewer for runoff. There were complaints about “speed and safety,” so the Town is contemplating narrowing the road at some points to slow down traffic. Whether or not this would actually decrease speeders was noted, as Councillor Kore said he preferred a stop sign at the end of Hurricane Road. Kore said he has received many complaints from residents in that area. Marr said stop signs don’t always help, because hurried trav-

The Arches

The wooden arches above Pelham Town Square may be replaced by floral arrangements or another feature, pending a report from the rehabilitation committee. Marr said the inspection of the arches would require $4,000. Councillor Kore said he felt the inspection is too costly for a project that was only considered temporary. “Trying to save something that we don’t need, or have to put up later doesn’t make sense, considering the Town demolished a historical building on Highway 20 last year,” he said. Councillor Haun said, “The arches are being held together by paint,” and could be replaced by hanging flower baskets, or some other decorative design. Marr suggested an engineering firm conduct a report, and then council would be in a better po-

sition to make a decision. Councillor John Wink noted the Summerfest Committee might have some input on this item, budgeted for $100,000, in its report to council. Town Clerk Nancy Bozzato suggested that council “red circle,” or postpone, this item until further recommendations were made.

Cannabis replaces cucumbers

Resident Richard McCombs says he purchased a home on Foss Road, in Fenwick, two years ago based on the realtor’s information that the greenhouse behind him was growing cucumbers. That all changed quickly when the owners of the greenhouse sold it to Leviathan Cannabis, making it the seventh prospective marijuana grow-op in Pelham. Now McCombs said his living space smells like “Skunk Hollow,” and detracts from the enjoyment of his property. McCombs told Pelham Town Council last Monday that “the issue is not about cultivation,” but where it can be cultivated. “In and amongst residential areas is not the place for it,” he said, adding that grow-ops lowered the property values in the neighbourhood as well. As requested by McCombs, council voted in favour of developing a committee to devise terms of reference as to where marijuana growops can locate, and other restrictions. The committee’s See COUNCIL next page

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continued from previous page structure, including who should be participating, is to be considered at the Policies and Procedures committee meeting in March. In October 2018, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities Guide to Cannabis Legalization outlining jurisdictions states, in spite of a company being awarded a license, that local regulations dealing with land use still apply. “Locally this constitutional arrangement can provide municipalities with the authority to prohibit particular land uses,” noted McCombs. In response to Mayor Marvin Junkin’s question on how to form a committee, Town Clerk Nancy Bozzato said that council can implement the committee, “but

The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019 the process should be forwarded to staff on the terms of reference, goals and objectives and to ensure that it was balanced” with cannabis producers included. Councillor Mike Ciolfi asked about the logistics and time frame of the committee. Bozzato replied: “Once it was approved by council, we could advertise for citizens to apply to the committee.” The process would take about five months. Councillor Marianne Stewart said she didn’t see how having cannabis producers on the committee would be particularly helpful. Barb Wiens, Director of Community Planning and Development, said she thought that this was an advisory committee. “It’s important to have all parties at the table. I can’t


prejudge what the terms of reference would look like,” but Wiens added that having communication with marijuana producers is beneficial to the town. McCombs reiterated,“We’re not saying that they can’t be here. We just don’t want them in subdivisions.” Mayor Junkin reported he would look at other municipalities and how they handled the issue. “The clock is ticking and council and staff realizes that, and we will be instigating some actions on the interim bylaw. We fully support this bylaw,” he added, referring to a moratorium on new cannabis production facilities until October, at the earliest. McCombs suggested they look at Beamsville, where 500 people attended council to rescind its bylaw. Wiens said at a previous meeting that the Town was notified that Leviathan would take legal action if forced to move. Mayor Junkin said he was confident that the Town’s Interim Control Bylaw would withstand any legal challenges.

Trash talking


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Regional representatives from the waste services department, Lydia Torbicki and Susan McPetrie, presented council with two basic options to increase the effectiveness of garbage and waste collection in Pelham, while decreasing its cost. The report was delivered as Pelham’s waste collection contract is up for renew-


continued from Page 1

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Lydia Torbicki and Susan McPetrie present trash collection options to council.


al in 2021, and is re-negotiated every 10 years. The pair outlined a Region-wide survey of 13 municipalities, which asked participants to weigh-in on garbage pickup by Feb. 20. A report with recommendations on the preferred option, or a combination of the two options, will be submitted in a final report to council for approval in March. “We’ve gone through an extensive stakeholder consultation, and we want comments and verification, and what advanced services council needs,” said McPetrie. Later on, Torbicki said that Metroline Research Group Inc. conducted online and telephone surveys, which garnered 6,600 and

250 respondents respectively. The outreach process also included the Region meeting with the Welland/ Pelham Chamber of Commerce, Business Improvement Associations, tourism agencies and the Niagara Industrial Association. In the next contract, several of the Region’s goals are to increase participation in its diversion programs, avoid higher costs, and improve the awareness of garbage collection services to residents and businesses. The Region believes standardizing garbage container bag/can limits for all industrial, commercial and institutional properties, and mixed-use property facilities. A mixed-use property facility is one that

is a business or organization which doesn’t have a home attached. There are about 63 properties in the central location or disposal base collection area (DBA) of Pelham, and only 129 outside this area that are in the industrial, commercial and institutional Category. Mixed-use properties without homes attached amount to about 27 in the main area, and 30 outside the (DBA). McPetrie wants to ensure the statistics are correct regarding the different types of garbage collected: regular trash, recyclables and organic waste, and reflect actual service usage. “Our data shows that the rural program is under uti-

Canada is diagnosed with a mental illness. While mental illness has no socioeconomic boundaries and affects all types of families, Rossi said research with youth indicates those in the age group between Grade 7 and 12, who spend more than two hours a day on social media, exhibit more signs of stress, anxiety and suicidal thoughts. Unfortunately, she said, many teens “validate themselves and their worth by Facebook and how many likes they get. They take selfie pictures. To kids it’s everything,” said Rossi. Pathstone’s staff believe

that if they address debilitating problems and stress early on, it will avoid further complications in mental health and severe problems later in life. “Awareness, prevention and treatment,” is their focus. “If a parent thinks their child is struggling they need to come to us,” said Rossi. The money fundraised helps run Pathstone’s programming, which includes a walk-in clinic that is run on Tuesday through Thursday in St. Catharines from 9 AM to 4 PM. Pathstone also offers group therapy and counselling on a wide variety of issues. Pathstone receives many queries from concerned parents, but more importantly, it accepts youth and teenagers to drop into the clinic, where there are no fees, appointments or referrals required. This is important to teenagers who may not want to discuss sensitive issues with their parents for fear they may not understand, and feel ashamed, embarrassed, or fear some form of disciplinary action.

Once a person speaks to a specialist and is registered, they will be referred to therapist, who can assess and help them with their problem. There is a crisis hotline that anyone can access at 1-800-263-4944, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. As an incentive to everyone to get involved in this project, anyone returning his or her piggy bank by February 28 and opening their first Wealth, RESP or High Interest Savings Account with a minimum deposit of $1,000, will automatically receive $100 for their participation. Brian Berton, Manager of the Meridian Credit Union in Fonthill, said all credit unions throughout the Region have adopted this partnership and extended this offer. While the Meridian Credit Union supports many charities and gets many requests, helping kids in crisis is “a great cause,” he said. The money also helps support educational workshops designed to help families maintain sound mental health and happiness, noted Rossi.

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Page 11

Running a racing institution from Fonthill Raceline's Erik Tomas inducted into Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame BY JOHN CHICK

Special to the VOICE

If you’ve ever heard the nationally syndicated weekly show Raceline Radio, it might surprise you to learn that many of host Erik Tomas’ interviews with some of the giants of the global auto racing scene are conducted from his home in Fonthill. “It’s a locally generated program, and that’s not a stretch,” Tomas said in his unmistakable, booming voice. “I do much of the prep and the interviews from my office at my house on Hurricane Road.” Over the past three decades, Tomas has interviewed and built relationships with a parade of famous surnames like Andretti, Villeneueve, Goodyear, and Hinchcliffe. That work was honored this week in Toronto when


continued from previous page lized,” she said. Currently, the Region subcontracts out its waste collection services for Pelham to Entera. Basically, the two options include: increasing the usage of clear paper bags, or changing the pickup of regular garbage (non recyclables or organics) to ever other week. In the second option, the collection of recyclables and organics will still be collected on a weekly basis from residences, as well as diaper, medical and group home facilities. Obviously, recycling and savings would increase if both services were adapted, said McPetrie to the Voice. The Region is recommending the use of clear bags for garbage, with the option of allowing an opaque bag to be placed inside the clear one for privacy collectables like diapers, and other type of sanitary napkins that seniors may wear. For people who don’t use bags, this may seem like an inconvenience, said McPetrie. However, when clear bags are used, residents seem to improve recycling and recycle more often. If inappropriate items are put in clear bags, the waste collection company will place a yellow sticker on the garbage with a note. When the clear bag system is adopted, the amount of clear bags allotted is generally doubled to what is accepted now. Studies in other cities, such as Markham, indicated $1.5 million savings

he and nine other racing journalists were inducted into the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame. Not bad for a guy who got his first taste of racing at Merrittville Speedway some 60 years ago. “It all started when my dad took me to Merrittville when I was seven years old,” he said. “I’m 66 now.” Tomas later became the track announcer there, meeting his wife Janice — whose father used to own Merrittville — in the process. Ultimately pursuing a media career in Toronto, in the 1980s he saw an opening for a Canadian motorsports TV show. Tomas, Bruce Mehlenbacher, and John Massingberd launched

by switching to clear bags, and a $12 million saving by changing its garbage collection of regular garbage, which are non-recyclables, and non-compostable materials, to every second week. According to a 2015 and 2016 waste collection breakdown from Niagara Region, 50% were organic materials, 36% was regular garbage, and 14% were recyclables. “We want to align services with usage and depending on where you live,” said McPetrie. In other areas, such as Peel and Durham, the change to clear bags increased recycling. The number of clear bags increased from four to six in many cases. The contract savings in the past ranged from $200,000, in Barrie, to $12 million in Peel, depending on the size of the contract and area affected. As a result of the surveys in Niagara, every other week garbage collection was preferred over clear bags, even when garbage containers were reduced, said Torbicki. Most Pelham business respondents stated the change from four garbage containers to two was acceptable, while mixed- use property

Tomas interviews Canadian Motorsport INDYCAR star James Hinchcliffe. SUPPLIED PHOTO a program on TSN called Raceline, which became the seed for the current radio show — now in its 27th season. Syndicated in 15 markets from

owners outside the municipality believed four containers were sufficient for the amount of refuse they had. Councillor Mike Ciolfi asked if the telephone survey was “statistically representative and done by a research firm.” Torbicki was confident in the data, and said there were 329 respondents to the survey in Pelham. “Region-wide the statistics are very parallel,” she said. Overall, the results indicated 32% in favour of clear bag usage, while the remaining respondents preferred garbage pickup every other week. By comparison to Pelham’s results, Region-wide residents were split, with 48% stating that every other week pickup would have a “big or some impact.” On clear bag usage, 48% in Pelham said they would support it, while 52% said they would not. The online responses indicated 73% were not in favour of using clear garbage bags. Mattresses and furniture placed by the curbside would still be picked up when residents call the Region’s waste collection services. While large pickups will continue under the new contract, it would be restricted to

coast to coast across Canada, Raceline Radio is heard locally on CKTB, CHML, and Sportsnet 590 The Fan. “The greatest compliment I

four large items, per week. Television sets and other electronics are not included in garbage service. Niagara Region amended Pelham Council’s recent staff recommendation to include scrap metal and appliance pick up, but indicated it would be priced separately in the next contract. The Region’s statistics indicated appliance and scrap metal pickup decreased by 94% since 2007. Only 5% of the properties are using this service, as most people drop off metal items at the Region’s drop-off depots, or have them picked up by scrap metal dealers, who pay residents for these types of products. Mayor Junkin commented on there not being much difference in strength between clear and coloured bags, and continued to note the privacy issue with clear bags. Torbicki said, “[Niagara Region is] doing well as far as recylables, and we are comparable to other Regions, but there is always room for improvement.” Junkin said, “If we can stop garbage trucks from going up and down the street every week we can save money.” McPetrie told the Voice


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gion does not use an incineration system, and she told the Voice she wasn’t sure why this is the case. In the meantime, the Region’s focus is to “increase [recycling] and get the most out of our landfill sites.”

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get is from people who tell me two things,” he said. “One, they all think it’s an American radio program — and that’s a great compliment because sometimes locally produced radio shows tend to sound very colloquial. But because we get the major stars on the air, it doesn’t sound like a locally-generated program. And I think the other big compliment I receive, is when [listeners] say, ‘I’m not necessarily a big auto racing fan, but I like the way your show sounds.’” Slick U.S.-style production aside, Tomas has always made it a priority to cover Canadian racers of all stripes. “The mandate of the show has always been to not only cover all of auto racing, from NASCAR to F1 to Indy cars, the mandate was to make sure we spotlighted Canadian racing talent and events,” Tomas said. “I mean this country has produced some historically great drag racers. And motorcycle racers in this

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The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019

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Places of Worship and Events THE VOICE OF PELHAM

Bethany Christian Reformed Church 1040 Balfour St., Fenwick Creative Director



Dave Burket

Fenwick United Church email 1050 Church St., Fenwick


Pelham Evangelical Friends Church 940 Haist St., Fonthill

Fonthill TarynBaptist WiltonChurch 1414 Pelham St., Fonthill

ColorHoly InfoTrinity Anglican Church black1557 onlyPelham Street, Fonthill

Ridgeville Bible Chapel 418 Canboro Rd., Ridgeville

Contact Phone

Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses 905.401.5748 1369 Rice Rd., Fonthill Approved By:

The Voice of Pelham ad size Glad Tidings Church of God Service Directory ad 1 Pancake Lane, Fonthill w:2.5” x h: 1.75”


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Concordia Lutheran Church email 105 Welland Rd., Fonthill

Fenwick Church of Christ Marketing Director 765 Welland Rd., Fenwick

FirstFonthill Presbyterian Church Rlectric Ltd 602 Metler Rd., North Pelham

Contact email Fonthill United Church 42 Church Hill, Fonthill Date:

KirkDate on the Hill Presbyterian Church Due 1344 Haist Fonthill Friday, March 18 atSt., noon

Rundate(s) Pelham Community Church 461Apr. Canboro Fenwick Mar. 23, 6, 20,Rd., May 4, 18, June 1, 15 and 29.

St. Alexander’s Roman Catholic Church 50 Pelham Town Sq., Fonthill St. Ann’s Roman Catholic Church 834 Canboro Rd., Fenwick

Cost $42 per insertion plus HST. Terms: Due on publication

FROM KIN TO PINS The Fonthill Kinsmen present a cheque in the amount of $2093 to Special Olympics. The money was raised from door proceeds from their recent craft show.  The funds will support 13 athletes to compete at the Ontario Special Olympics Five-Pin Bowling Championships. SUPPLIED PHOTO

COMBO BOOK DRIVE In late January, students from St. Ann Catholic School organized a book drive in support of two efforts: Me to We’s We Read Together campaign, as well as Family Literacy Day. Both initiatives were aimed at raising awareness of literacy-related activities. Students were encouraged to bring in gently used books from home, and were given the opportunity to swap them for others. Some 530 books were exchanged. SUPPLIED PHOTO

The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019

Page 13


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Page 14

The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019

2019 Air Race Classic to celebrate Dorothy Rungeling BY GLORIA J. KATCH

Special to the VOICE

Niagara’s Amelia Earhart was Dorothy Rungeling, author of “The Flying Housewife,” and a pioneer of local aviation, particularly for women in the 1950s. Niagara Central airport, off Effingham Road at the southern reach of Pelham, recently changed its name in her honour. Rungeling, who died last year at 106, was a prolific nonfiction writer—primarily about her life in Pelham— was the first woman to serve on Pelham Town Council, in 1964, was made a member of the Order of Canada in 2003. The 43RD Annual Air Race Classic (ARC), which is an international event, marks an unprecedented year for aviation enthusiasts, as it’s the first time the race finishes in Ontario— at the Niagara Central Dorothy Rungeling Airport. Up to 55 teams of women pilots will test their flying knowledge and skills, travelling more than 2,400 miles. Starting June 18, the pilots will depart Jackson, Tennessee, veering south to Georgia, then westward to Arkansas, before heading north through Minnesota and crossing into Canada through Sault Ste. Marie, then landing at Rungeling Airport on June 21. The race team with the best handicapped time wins. Registration for the event opened January 2, and the local 2019 Air Race Classic terminus committee is encouraging Canadian teams to compete. Entry is $590

USD, which covers terminus costs in Niagara. Registration closes March 31, and interested persons are asked to visit for more information on being a participant. All racers must have at least 100 hours as a pilot in command, and either the pilot or the co-pilot must have at least 500 hours as a pilot-in command, or a current instrument rating. Sometimes there are three persons in a team. Many of the pilots are involved in aviation schools and courses, and there are several throughout Ontario. ARC’s board of directors and volunteers are, “Thrilled to be celebrating 90 years of women's air racing,” said Lara Gaerte, President of the U.S.-based ARC. “The women who fly the ARC are as bold and tenacious as the pioneering pilots, who competed in the original 1929 Women's Air Derby. We look forward to welcoming back veteran racers, and meeting new competitors at the 43rd Air Race Classic.” The race will officially begin at the McKellar-Sipes Regional Airport on June 18, with teams departing 30 seconds apart, with the faster planes quickly leading the journey. At each of the nine en route stops, teams will execute high-speed flybys over a timing line, a means to monitor their race against the clock. Teams may also land to refresh or refuel. Prior to the race, each plane, depending on its engine size, performance

Rungeling and her four-year-old son, Barry, at Welland Airport in 1948, the day that she first flew as a nervous passenger in a small plane. From frightened to fascinated, she returned a week later and starting taking flying lessons. SUPPLIED PHOTO power and speed, is given a handicap, so pilots are racing and challenging their own best time. This also creates a level playing field, so slower planes can equally compete against faster aircraft. Teams have to strategize during the race, and consider the atmospheric and geographic elements in order to beat their handicap by the greatest margin. Official standings aren't determined until after the last team has crossed the finish line, and the judging is completed. “The last arrival at the terminus may, in fact, be the winner,” said Gaerte. “Competing in a handicapped race is safe, because planes aren’t interfering with each other or zooming across the finish line,” said Peter Van Caulart, Co-Chair for 2019 Air Race Classic

Terminus Committee. “The race tests the quality of the teams’ skill level, and also gives them the air miles they need to pursue aviation careers, especially for the larger commercial airlines. Winning the Air Race Classic is definitely a feather in anyone’s cap,” he said. On June 22, the public is invited to a posthumous plaque unveiling at the airport in honour of Dorothy Rungeling. The local chapter of The Ninety-Nines, an international organization of women pilots, is also making a dedication from its Compass Rose Project at this time. Demonstrations by Skydive Niagara, aviation career booths, a meet- andgreet with the racers, as well as other family-oriented and educational activities, will be held on the airport grounds. There will also be a Fly Market with local vendors, and businesses and organizations can rent a table. On Sunday evening, there will be a special dinner and awards banquet. Prizes for the ARC 2019 include: medallions, trophies and cash

awards of $5,000, $3,000 and $2,000 for the three best scores. The next day, the pilots depart en mass to return home. Historically, the air race classic dates back 90 years to the 1929 Women’s Air Derby, which included renowned pilot Amelia Earhart, flying from Santa Monica, California to Cleveland, Ohio. The event was so successful it became a tradition. Similarly, Dorothy Rungeling enjoyed and participated in long- distance races, particularly the All Women’s International Air Race, which began in Welland and ended in the Carribean in 1953, 1958 and 1963. “[Dorothy] would be honoured, to see the Air Race Classic end in Welland,”said Cathy Boyko, Co-Chair of the local fundraising committee, known as the 2019 ARC terminus. Currently, women are still under-represented in many aviation jobs and careers, asserted Boyko, “and we look forward to promoting aviation to women and youth at the

event through demonstrations and exhibits.” The 2019 ARC terminus is supported by a fundraising committee of local volunteers. The local committee has to fundraise approximately $40,000 for hosting the event, and is looking for sponsors, contributors and volunteers. The airport itself is funded by the municipalities of Welland, Pelham, Port Colborne and Wainfleet, and a board of municipal councillors make up the airport commission. Within the next few weeks, Van Caulart and Boyko’s goal is to address all four municipal councils to ask for funding to assist with the event. To date, and in tribute to the event, the Town of Pelham has declared June 19 to 24 Air Race Classic Week. Wainfleet council stated it will be doing the same in May. The airport dates back to World War II, when thousands of airports were set up across Canada as a part of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan.

ROWING FOR CASH Jeremy Langelaan, of Fonthill (centre, in white cap), is attending the University of Western Ontario and rowing with the Junior Varsity Crew. The team recently broke the world record for the 1 Million Metre Relay as part of a fundraising effort in support of mental health, and to race in a regatta in Philadelphia this coming May. SUPPLIED PHOTO

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The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019

Page 15

Ice surfaces in Fonthill over the years PELHAM

Pieces From Our Past



Special to the VOICE

Y SONS AND NIECES come home on Labour Day weekend, from San Diego, Ottawa, Florida. Whenever they come, we take a tour of their home town to see what’s changed from their last visit. First stop was the new community center. Wow, was the operative word. As we were walking through, so many of their memories of when they were kids came forth. They reminisced about skating and playing hockey on the rink in Marlene Stewart Streit Park, lovingly known, at that time, as “the pit.” My son Todd remembered helping Mr. Damm clear the ice before practice and games. They commented on how neat it was to skate outdoors, under the lights. They all remembered on how cold it was. Next, they talked about the old arena and being warm, even in the change rooms! So, I thought a bit of “ice history” would be interesting. I talked with Lenora Horne, Paul Ryan, Lloyd Beamer, and Ralph White about their skating memories. Eleanor (Klager) Arbour gave me “History of The Village of Fonthill” prepared by the Fonthill Women’s Institute, February 7 1963. The first rink anyone remembered was on the corner of South Pelham and Linden Streets, across from the Anglican Church. Bob Reid and Don Lacy flooded it and the neighbourhood kept it clear of snow. Skating was free. In the 1940s, the rink moved to the corner of Station and College Streets. Sawdust was put down first and then multiple flooding until an ice surface developed. Once again, it was a

community effort. Harley Keller, Harold Coons and Otto Clark would flood it at night. There was a pot-bellied stove to keep warm and Sis Coons made hotdogs and hot chocolate. If you helped clear the ice, skating was free, otherwise it was 10 cents. I heard so many old Fonthill names— Les Timms, Jim Perkins, Ralph Horne, Fred and Harry Crafter, the Giles family. Everyone took part to make skating and shinny happen for the community. In 1939, the Village of Fonthill began to build a park in the ravine north of Highway 20. An opening was held on May 24 1939. At that time, the one big difficulty was that of finding a suitable entrance. Then the Fonthill Lions got involved. They purchased the roadway rights and Park Street made the Park accessible. Beginning in 1945, the club built the rink, the bandstand, the baseball diamond, and installed the floodlights. At first the base for the ice was made with sawdust, but then the club was able to pave with asphalt. Members of the Lion’s Club, along with volunteers such as Bill Pitken, Harold Robins and Paul Ryan helped flood and clear the ice. In the 1950s, the Fonthill Lions gave the park to the Town. Refrigeration was put in, which made the ice surface available for a much longer time. We had so many boys playing hockey during the ‘60s. Practices started at 6 AM so that everyone could be accommodated. There was a “dawn patrol.”One or two dads would pick up the boys, take them to the rink, probably coach them, then take them back home, where they would get ready for school. Gord Smith re-

members going down to watch his sons play and how cold it was for everyone in the “pit”—players and spectators alike. We outgrew those facilities and plans got underway to build an arena. Where to put it was a challenge. It had to be placed where there were services—water and sewers. The property on Haist Street was chosen. It had the services, was easily accessible to all parts of the town without causing congestion to built-up areas, and there was enough room for parking, other recreational activities and room for expansion. The cost of the whole project was $525,000. Mayor Harold Black challenged us all for donations to the Arena Fund. We, as citizens, needed to reach $131,000. This would be matched by the province. Everyone pitched in, from the Fenwick and Fonthill Lions, the Kinsmen Club, the Legion, churches, schools, businesses and individuals. We did it! We also received money from Wintario. Because of our efforts our taxes were raised only $4 a year. Then it happened. Construction proceeded and our arena was ready! It was built to twin, just in case we needed to expand. Over the next 40-plus years, it saw everything from hockey, figure skating, lacrosse to dances and art shows. Because we as citizens worked so hard to “get it done,” we felt very proud of our efforts. It really was “ours.” I hope that this wonderful new facility that we now have will turn out to be just as good and even better than the last. ♦ Pictured: "The Pit" in winter and summer. Photos courtesy of Brian Garrard.

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Page 16

The Voice of Pelham, February 13 2019


continued from Page 1 lanky boy’s life. Nose too big for your face, joints aching from having grown like a weed over the previous year, and face and nether regions blossoming with the dubious dividends of later puberty. You needed all the help you could get, and you’re just now noticing that some of the girls in your class aren’t nearly as icky as they used to be, though most had somehow grown half a head taller. The very coolest girls would probably even flirt with the boy who had his very own transistor radio. More importantly, a transistor radio would make you especially cool with the guys. Can you imagine being that one groovy kid at recess in your paisley shirt and button-fly bell-bottoms, penny-loafered feet keeping time to the Beatles and the Rolling Stones and Herman’s Hermits and the Dave Clark Five? The very definition of ultra-cool. Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind. It was at the very beginning of the summer of 1965, against the backdrop of that impossible dream, when the Humpty Dumpty potato chip company announced its Lucky Letters Contest. Ten thousand dollars’ worth of transistor radios to be won! Something like 200 transistor radios up for grabs. It would be only a slight exaggeration to say it fired-up the imaginations of most of the school-aged boys in the ‘hood. A real chance to win a radio. A unique opportunity to become the coolest of the cool. And not just any transistor radio but a SIX-Transistor Radio! For the benefit of those readers who aren’t so long in the tooth as your narrator, let me inject some perspective into the conversation. So you understand, a six-transistor radio was

incredibly lust-worthy back in 1965. Solid State. None of that old-fashioned vacuum tube stuff. Six ultra-modern transistors mated through a printed circuit and multicoloured wires to diodes and capacitors and batteries and a whole lot of other neat new-age electronic stuff, all shoehorned into a compact package not much bigger than your average brick. But it’s those transistors that make it a Transistor Radio, after all. Six transistors. By comparison, your standard iPhone needs two billion and, taken in a temporal context then and now, is just nowhere near as cool, man. A Lucky Letter card was packed into every ten-cent bag of Humpty Dumpty potato chips. All you had to do was collect twelve upper case letters spelling out HUMPTY DUMPTY. That’s all. Twelve lucky letters. HUMPTY in red and DUMPTY in blue. Hit it just right and a buck twenty’ll get you a transistor radio that would otherwise set you back at least 50 clams at Kresge’s on the south side of Main Street in downtown Welland. Fifty dollars would buy a Catholic family’s groceries for a week, a lot of money even for an adult. For a kid, a king’s ransom. A buck twenty was only a couple, maybe three, weeks’ allowance. The game was on! A few weeks into it, rummaging down to the bottom of the bag while breaking as few chips as possible, you’d often find a lucky letter you already had, but that was part of the plan. All it took was cooperation. Leverage. You knew six kids who knew another six kids who’d play along. Then 30, 40 kids in our neighbourhood just east of the Canal and even beyond; friends, brothers, sisters and cousins, trading their doubles and triples. You’d trade your duplicate red P for that blue M you needed. We had

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A few weeks into it, rummaging down to the bottom of the bag while breaking as few chips as possible, you'd often find a lucky letter you already had, but that was part of the plan.

it all figured out. Before you knew it, at least one of us, maybe two, would score all 12 lucky letters and join the ranks of the elite. The plan was flawless. I ate a boatload of potato chips that long, hot summer. Everybody did. Only plain chips were available those days, copiously endowed with salt that made you crave eating more. I suppose there were a lot of kids retaining water, along with spoiled supper appetites and pockets crammed full of grease- stained lucky letter cards where

once there were pennies, nickels and dimes. As the summer wore on and the September 15 contest deadline drew ever nearer it seemed most everyone had three or four complete collections of red HUMPTY and blue UMPTY lucky letters. But nobody had the key to victory, the magic consonant, the maddeningly elusive Blue D. As the dog days of summer waned toward the dawn of the new school year, optimism morphed into a resigned hope. Time was running out. Scoring

The Blue D became the holy grail, for which finding a dime to buy another bag of Humpty Dumpty potato chips took on an ever greater priority. It had to be out there, that blue D. A couple of hundred blue Ds, in fact. They were all still out there. Had to be. All you had to do is find one of them tucked inside a lucky, ten-cent bag of chips. Just one more bag, you’d tell yourself. This can be The One. But it wasn’t. Or the bag after that, or the one still after. By the end of summer holidays, you’d find unfinished bags of Humpty Dumpty potato chips in the trash bin outside the confectionary store at the corner of Lincoln and Garner, along with the odd crumpled and tossed Lucky Letter card. You’d pick it out and smooth out the wrinkles for a look. Just in case. Nobody got lucky, and I figure collectively all those kids had spent the equivalent cost of multiple transistor radios with no more


to show for it than chapped lips and extra zits. In mid-September I stuffed all those greasy not-so-lucky letter cards into an envelope, plastered on a six-cent stamp and mailed it in to Humpty Dumpty’s contest HQ in Winnipeg. Hey, it was worth a shot. Maybe when they saw how very hard I’d tried, how I’d spent all those dimes and scarfed down all those greasy, salt-encrusted potato chips they’d be impressed. Or maybe take pity. Give me something. Turned out I was right. A month later there arrived a bright yellow envelope addressed in my name, that familiar bow-tied egghead smiling in the corner. With great expectation I tore it open. Inside there was a coupon—for a free ten-cent bag of Humpty Dumpty potato chips. ♦

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The Voice, February 13 2019  

The Voice, February 13 2019