The top 10
By Chad Ingram
Published Dec. 24, 2018
An annual tradition, here is a list of the top 10 Times stories of the year.
10. Scotch Line landfill
Making the list for the second consecutive year, issues continue to plague Minden Hills’ main waste disposal site, including a seagull infestation and $200,000 deficit.
9. Pinegrove Place
Construction on Phase 2 of the affordable complex near the arena in Minden is scheduled to commence in April of 2019. The three-storey building will have 21 units and it’s anticipated the facility will be open for occupancy in spring of 2020.
8. Algae bloom
A blue-green algae bloom briefly forms, then dissipates, on a lake in Algonquin Highlands.
The provincial government passes legislation making it easier for double-hatters – full-time firefighters who are also members of volunteer fire departments in communities where they live – to do both. For two decades, the practice had been fought by firefighting unions. The news is hugely welcome to communities that rely on volunteer fire departments.
6. Legalized pot
There has been a lot of talk around council tables about legal pot this year, and in December, Haliburton County council, as well as the councils of its four, lower-tier townships, all opted in to allowing marijuana stores within their borders.
5. MH fire hall
A project at least a decade in the making with preliminary work spanning a number of council terms, Minden Hills opens its new, $2-million fire hall along Highway 35. The facility provides a state-of-the-art building for the township’s volunteer fire department located outside Minden’s flood plain, and opens up the downtown property occupied by the old fire hall for other purposes.
4. Municipal elections
Local elections are always newsworthy. While there was not a ton of change for the councils of Minden Hills and Algonquin Highlands, with two new ward councillors each, at the upper-tier level of the county, there was a departure of three, longtime councillors from the table.
3. Arena project
A proposed renewal of the S.G. Nesbitt Memorial Arena, which would include a new arena, new gymnasium and refurbished community centre, now has an estimated cost of nearly $12 million. Minden Hills council is to discuss what it will do with the project in January.
2. All-women council
In the October municipal election, voters in Algonquin Highlands elected a council comprised entirely of women, only one of a very few times that has ever happened in Ontario’s history. The circumstance garnered a phone call from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Minister for Women and Gender Equality Maryam Monsef.
1. Laurie Scott
After nearly a decade and a half as part of the provincial Opposition, longtime Haliburton-Kawartha-Lakes-