By Jenn Watt
Published Nov. 26 2019
Community centres and public institutions are frequently packed with civic-minded folks when municipal all-candidates meetings are hosted in Haliburton County. People come out en masse to hear from those seeking office and seem particularly passionate about the municipal representatives – those who are the most accessible and immediate to the daily lives of residents.
But after the commotion of the election subsides it’s uncommon to have another opportunity to sit face-to-face with those who are representing you. In particular it’s rare to have a chance to talk to them in the early days of the term when some decisions have been made but there is still much more to come.
It’s impressive to see that at Dysart et al the mayor and deputy mayor will be welcoming the public into council chambers for a town hall meeting presenting an overview of what they’ve been up to and offering attendees a chance to ask questions and give feedback.
Members of the public are always welcome at council meetings but because meetings are during the daytime when most people work and since you’re not allowed to speak unless you’ve registered as a delegation they’re not ideal for the kind of back and forth that make town hall meetings fruitful.
On Saturday Nov. 30 Mayor Andrea Roberts and Deputy Mayor Patrick Kennedy will be hosting the town hall from 2 to 4 p.m. at council chambers.
If you’ve got an issue that you think needs addressing or you’re just curious about who represents your interests locally and beyond it’s worth attending.
Kudos to the provincial government for introducing a dental program for low-income seniors. For those with a net income of $19300 or couples with an income of $32300 coverage is available for checkups X-rays and treatment of conditions and diseases.
Dental work can be expensive especially for those on fixed incomes. The health unit estimates that within its region which includes City of Kawartha Lakes and Northumberland as well as Haliburton County as many as 4000 seniors will benefit from the program which will be administered in partnership with Volunteer Dental Outreach in Haliburton.
This will also alleviate pressure on hospitals which provide emergency services to those who may not have had the means to keep up regular visits to the dentist.
Hopefully over time the income limits can be raised to include more seniors who are struggling to pay their bills and still maintain their overall health.
Our hearts go out to everyone who was involved in the accident last week on Highway 118. No one should ever have to endure such loss and trauma. We thank the first responders who responded to the call working into the night and all of those who have supported the families and friends affected by this tragedy.