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eNewsletter | March 21, 2024

Northumberland Paramedics donate decommissioned ambulance to Habitat for Humanity Northumberland

After six years of tireless service on the roads of Northumberland, a former ambulance from the Northumberland Paramedics fleet is transitioning to a new role. Yesterday, Northumberland County Council and Paramedic Chief Susan Brown handed over the keys for this decommissioned ambulance to Habitat for Humanity Northumberland. The donated vehicle will be used to support the organization’s efforts to build affordable housing throughout the county. It will enable the transfer of equipment, materials and supplies to building sites throughout Northumberland, supporting Habitat for Humanity’s mission to break the cycle of poverty though promoting homeownership among financially vulnerable individuals and families. In 2012, Northumberland County established a by-law permitting the donation of surplus assets, including retired ambulances. Donations of retired ambulances from the Northumberland Paramedics fleet are prioritized to support non-profit agencies and community emergency management partners that continue to serve residents across the County.

Read the full media release for more information on the donation

Council receives report on Community Engagement on Modernizing of Shelter Services at 310 Division Street, Cobourg and Thematic Analysis of Feedback


During Wednesday’s meeting of County Council, staff provided Council members with a report on the thematic analysis of feedback gathered through community engagement pertaining to the modernization of shelter services at 310 Division Street. Over a 12-week period, from December 4, 2023, to February 23, 2024, Northumberland County and Transition House Shelter, together with LURA Consulting, engaged with community members through activities such as small group discussions, a public meeting, an open house, and email and online submissions. Each engagement activity was designed to gather valuable input from residents, stakeholders, community partners, and people with lived experience of homelessness. The final report provided a summary of themes that emerged from feedback gathered regarding the planned relocation of Transition House emergency shelter services from 10 Chapel Street to 310 Division Street in Cobourg. Additionally, Council members were provided with a summary of related recommendations to help shape the positive integration of shelter services within the neighborhood and broader community. 

Read the full report for more information on the community engagement and thematic analysis of feedback 

2024 Total Solar Eclipse

On Monday April 8th, Northumberland County will experience its first total solar eclipse in 400 years as the Moon passes between the Sun and Earth, casting a shadow on Northumberland County and bringing a brief period of total darkness. This once in a lifetime event will not return for another 375 years. From approximately 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. a gradual reduction of sunlight will occur, with a short period of complete darkness around 3:20 p.m. Parts of the county will experience totality, with the Moon fully covering the Sun for about two minutes, while the rest of the county will see a partial eclipse. With the path of totality passing through the region, there is potential for an increase in visitors from outside Northumberland, creating traffic congestion and strain on infrastructure and services. The County is therefore taking this opportunity to remind residents about the importance of preparedness and always having a 72-hour emergency kit on-hand. It is also important to note that proper safety precautions should be taken when viewing the eclipse. Looking at the sun without proper ISO 12312-2 certified solar viewing glasses can cause permanent eye damage.

For a list of safety and preparedness tips, reputable solar viewing glasses vendors and additional resources visit

View the presentation from Wednesday's regular meeting of Council for more information on the eclipse

2023 Annual Development Activity

The combined construction value of residential and non-residential development activity in 2023 for Northumberland was $446.9 million. Council received a report summarizing the annual development activity throughout Northumberland based on member municipal building permits as well as planning activity for the year. Development activity is monitored on an on-going basis as an indicator of housing and employment activity, the level of local investment and economic performance. There was a total of 685 new residential units built in 2023, with Cobourg having the highest number new units, followed by Brighton, Trent Hills, Cramahe, Port Hope, Hamilton Township and Alnwick Haldimand. In 2023, local municipalities reported 126 non-residential permits, broken down into five sectors: agricultural, commercial, government, industrial and institutional. At the end of 2023 there were 4,835 residential units at various stages of the municipal planning process being considered for development. The County will continue to monitor development activity for future reporting. 

Review the report from the March 6 meeting of the Economic Development, Tourism and Planning Committee  

2024 Northumberland County Tax Ratios

County Council has approved a recommendation to continue with the gradual reduction in the multi-residential tax ratio from 1.8 to 1.6 for the 2024 tax year. The reduction stems from a presentation received by County Council on February 28th, 2023 from Peter Frise from Municipal Tax Equity (MTE) Consultants retained by the County to assess tax policies. During this presentation, Peter recommended that the County begin to reduce its multi-residential tax ratio from 2.0 towards the new ratio of 1.0. The recommendation was made in anticipation of potential provincial mandates requiring such changes across all municipalities. Understanding that the reduction of the ratio for one class increases the burden on all other property classes, the County opted for a phased approach, reducing the ratio over several years to make the impact more manageable. The Northumberland Treasurers Inter-Municipal Working Group has discussed tax policy and supports the recommendation that Northumberland continue with the gradual reduction in the multi-residential tax ratio in 2024. 

Read the full report from the March 5 meeting of the Finance and Audit Committee 

2023 Remuneration and Expenses

Northumberland County Finance and Audit Committee members received a report outlining Council remuneration and expenses for 2023. The report advised Council of their remuneration and expenditures as required by the Municipal Act. As per section 284 (1) in the Municipal Act, it is required that an itemized statement of remuneration and expenses paid to each member of Council be provided to Council for the previous year. Members of Council are paid an annual salary as well as reimbursement for expenses incurred to attend meetings and conferences within their prescribed budget. In addition, members also receive a per diem to attend Standing Committee and Advisory Group/Board meetings. In 2023, Council remuneration expenses were less than the approved 2023 budget of $271,015, the savings of $17,963 will be transferred to the County general Reserve for use at a future date. 

Read the full report from the March 5 meeting of the Finance and Audit Committee 

Upcoming dates of recognition

County Council issued three proclamations during yesterday's meeting, recognizing the following occasions as key dates in Northumberland County: 

Visit our Council webpage for a complete listing of agenda items coming forward to County Council this month through the County's six Standing Committees, which met the week of March 4, 2024. To request a recording of any of these meetings, please complete our online form.

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Next Regular Meeting of County Council: April 17, 2024

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