Author Archives: dougdraper

Ontario NDP Brings Families Throughout The Province Together To Push Back Against Conservative Cuts To Autism Supports

After Ford Government admission that only families earning less than $55,000 are entitled to full amount

“People everywhere are coming together to fight back against Conservative cuts that rip funding away from the kids that need it most.” – Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath

A News Release from Ontario’s Official Opposition New Democratic Party

Posted February 21st, 2019 on Niagara At Large

Queen’s Park—Official Opposition Leader Andrea Horwath said that families of children living with autism have spoken; and they oppose Doug Ford’s scheme to rip supports and treatment away from their kids.

This past Wednesday (February 20th), about 200 families from every part of the province joined the NDP at Queen’s Park to push back against Ford’s callous cuts to autism services — all families with a child with autism, all devastated by Ford’s cut to funding. 

“People everywhere are coming together to fight back against Conservative cuts that rip funding away from the kids that need it most,” said Horwath. Continue reading


Ontario Taking Action to Strengthen Protection for New Home Buyers

Province Transforms Tarion Warranty Corporation’s Broken System to Protect Ontario Families

News from the Constituency Office of Niagara West NPP Sam Oosterhoff

Posted February 2nd, 2019 on Niagara At Large

Niagara West MPP Sam Oosterhoff

Niagara, Ontario —Sam Oosterhoff, MPP for Niagara West is working for the people by protecting hardworking Ontarians when making one of the biggest purchases in their lives — a new home.

Ontario’s Government is transforming Tarion Warranty Corporation and implementing initiatives to better protect purchasers of cancelled pre-construction condominium projects.

“There are many families across the province who have faced difficulties over the years when seeking a solution from Tarion,” said Sam Oosterhoff, MPP for Niagara West. “For our government one thing is clear, Tarion is broken. That is why our government is pleased to announce that we are taking decisive action to put the People of Ontario first by transforming Tarion and strengthening consumer protection.” Continue reading

New NPCA Board Could Begin to Build a Bit of Public Trust by Rehiring Fired Employee

Time  Rapidly Running Out For This Board to Take Real Action to Clean e Mess at  Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority Up

A News Commentary by Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper

Posted February 19th, 2019 on Niagara At Large

I don’t believe I’d be too far off the mark to say that if the current board of the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA) was a song, it would be lucky to ever make it on to the Hot 100 Billboard charts – not the way things on this board are going.

One of many demonstrations of citizens in front of the NPCA’s headquarters in Welland over the past four years. File photo by Doug Draper

Now more than two thirds of the way through a three-month interim mandate, the 12 area mayors and councillors Niagara’s Regional Council appointed to the board of this highly dysfunctional public agency, along with members from Hamilton and Haldimand County, have overseen a continuation of what an Ontario Superior Court Judge described this past December as the kind of chaos that cannot be tolerated any more. Continue reading

Ford Government Appoints Former Wainfleet Mayor, NPCA Board Members to Board of Niagara Parks Commission

April Jeffs is appointed Vice-Chair on board of Ontario’s  Niagara Parks 

A News Commentary by Doug Draper

Posted February 19th, 2019 on Niagara At Large

Ontario’s Tory leader (now Premier) Doug Ford last year with then Tory candidate April Jeffs, who lost in the Niagara Centre riding last June to the NDP’s Jeff Burch. Jeffs also served as mayor of Wainfleet and sat on the board of the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority until Niagara’s Regional Council appointed new NPCA board members late this past year.

Ontario’s Ford government has appointed April Jeffs, a former Wainfleet mayor and a failed Ford candidate in last year’s provincial election, to the post of vice-chair on the Niagara Parks Commission’s board of directors.

Jeffs, who ran as a provincial Tory candidate in the Niagara Centre Riding last June and has been nominated to run as the Tory candidate in the same riding in this year’s federal election, also sat for the past four years as a member of the board for the problem-plagued Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA).

Jeffs, who decided not to run for another term for Wainfleet’s mayor in last October’s municipal elections, is the second failed provincial Tory candidate since this past fall to get appointed by the Ford government to sit on the Niagara Parks Commission board. Continue reading

Niagara Parks Prepares Upcoming Niagara River Shoreline Restoration Projects

News from Ontario’s Niagara Parks Commission

Posted February 19th, 2019 on Niagara At Large

Boyer’s Creek coastal wetland project to utilize recycled blue spruce from Queen Victoria Park holiday tree display

New project, as part of riparian zones initiative, uses felled ash trees to mimic the natural environment, creating instant small-scale fish habitat

Niagara Falls, Ontario – As part of delivering on Niagara Parks’ mandate as the environmental and cultural stewards of the Niagara River corridor, Niagara Parks will be undertaking another Niagara River coastal wetland restoration project at Boyer’s Creek, beginning the week of February 18, 2019 (weather-permitting).

A stretch of the Niagara River shoreline along the parkway on the Canadian side of the border

Niagara River Coastal Wetlands Restoration

Beginning in 2016, in collaboration with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and Environment and Climate Change Canada, Niagara Parks began a series of coastal wetlands restoration projects to reduce shoreline erosion and provide essential fish habitat at seven strategic locations in the Niagara River. Continue reading

Some Good News for Ontario’s Electricity Consumers and the Environment

Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) takes major step to lower Ontario’s electricity bills

A News Release from the Ontario Clean Air Alliance

Posted February 19th, 2019 on Niagara At Large

On February 1st, Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) asked Hydro One to upgrade its transmission system to permit Ontario to buy large quantities of low-cost water power from Quebec.

Specifically, the IESO has asked Hydro One to increase its import capability by up to 1,650 megawatts (MW) by December 2022 at a cost of approximately $20 million. This upgrade will permit Ontario to buy enough Quebec water power to displace more than 50% of the output of the Darlington Nuclear Station. Continue reading

Does the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority Even Care About Water Quality?

Protesting the NPCA’s Firing of Stuart McPherson, the Conservation Authority’s “last resident ecosystem restoration expert”

“It is frankly bewildering to try and understand why this new (NPCA) Board would sanction the loss of a valuable employee.” – from an Open Statement circulated by the Niagara Chapter of Trout Unlimited Canada and the Niagara Restoration Council

By Dennis Edell, Chair of Niagara Chapter of Trout Unlimited Canada,  and John Bacher, Chair of the Niagara Restoration Council

Posted February 18th, 2019 on Niagara At Large

Stuart McPerhson, a respected watershed restoration projects worker at the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority, is the latest rank-and-file employee to get axed at the controversial agency

Last week, the alleged management of the Niagara Conservation Authority fired Stuart McPherson, the Agency’s last resident ecosystem restoration expert.

Mr. McPherson was uniquely qualified as a water quality expert, with knowledge of the science and familiarity with the issues surrounding the management of Niagara’s watersheds.

This action was approved by the interim Board of Directors, acting without the advice of a qualified CAO.  

According to Conservation Ontario, “Conservation Authorities are local, watershed management agencies that deliver services and programs that protect and manage water and other natural resources in partnership with government, landowners and other organizations.” Continue reading