Don’t forget about our economy

Dear Haliburton County Council and Echo Editor,

You have to be officially looking for work to be counted among the unemployed.
So as bad as these numbers are, it is likely they do not reflect the full story as many would have simply given up looking and therefore not be included in the data. This feature report which came to [Haliburton County] Council revealed that unemployment in the county is a whopping 30 per cent higher than the provincial average. Among the worst in Ontario! Just imagine how much worse this will become when cottagers pull back on projects that could employ some of these idle workers due to the hostile, repressive and costly nature of the proposed shoreline lockdown by-law, since cottagers are a key driver of local economic growth at all levels.
In my opinion given this disaster locally, council needs to do a local business damage assessment study on the impacts of employment, should the shoreline lockdown bylaw become law of the lakes. Given the current high unemployment, failure to complete an independent third party review to examine this holistically, would be tantamount to malfeasance by council and staff.
The North Bay, Guelph and Bracebridge authors of the bylaw like to point out that the province targets 30 meters of shore protection. However these same so-called paid experts fail to disclose the fact the province also requires counties and municipalities to encourage economic and employment growth in the policies they implement. These growth and employment ideals are specified in more detail in the official Provincial Policy Statements known in the trade as PPS.
Ignore at your peril.

David Hopkins Howe
Minden Hills

Editor’s note:
David Hopkins Howe references the “shoreline lockdown bylaw,” but it is formally known as the shoreline preservation bylaw. The report the letter references is in the story High rates of poverty, unemployment pose challenges for Haliburton County in the Feb. 4 issue.