Transit lock out.

A resident’s perspective.

Please, please resolve this dispute. There is an election coming up and transit riding voters will remember what was done on this side of the dispute. By saying that the ball is in the court of the union is all well and good for the city but does absolutely nothing to help come to a resolution. Because you locked out the transit workers would it then be possible for me to invoice the transit department for all costs incurred arising from the dispute? I doubt it, but as of today the bill is already over one hundred dollars with lost wages and taxi fees.

While not classified as an essential service, transit service is definitely essential to our family, and I am curious as to how many of you rely on transit to get around? I am guessing none or this would not have happened.

I will do my best to inform the residents of this city about your (in) action on this matter, and campaign against voting for incumbents in October.

You may have cost my family employment due to this lock out I will try my best to cost you your jobs also. MT


Filed under On the Buses

City of Guelph offering transit refunds to all bus pass holders

Press release

The City of Guelph is offering refunds to all bus pass holders as a result of the lockout of Guelph Transit’s union employees and suspension of transit services.

Refunds for both regular and affordable bus passes will begin at 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, July 23, 2014 at the following four City locations:
o City Hall

o Evergreen Seniors Community Centre

o Victoria Road Recreation Centre

o West End Community Centre

To receive their refund, pass holders have two options:

Option A: Hand in their July 2014 pass in exchange for receiving a refund for 50% of its value. The refund will be paid to the customer in the same form of payment as the original pass purchase. If the customer originally paid by cheque, they will receive a cash refund.

Option B: Hand in their July 2014 pass in exchange for using 50% of its value as payment toward a future month’s pass purchase. Must be used before the end of 2014.

extension 3356



Filed under City Policy

Guelph Transit employees reject tentative agreement; transit service suspended

Press release

Tonight, the members of Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 1189 voted to reject a tentative agreement ratified by Guelph City Council and endorsed by their own union executive.

With the tentative agreement defeated, the City has reinstituted the lockout originally set to begin Monday, July 14. Guelph Transit services are halted indefinitely until such time as the members of ATU Local 1189 reconsider the City’s offer.

The City of Guelph will be offering refunds to all Guelph Transit July 2014 pass holders for the second half of July. Details will be confirmed and shared in a subsequent media release.

A statement has been issued by the City of Guelph’s Chief Administrative Officer, Ann Pappert detailing the City administration’s level of frustration.

For details on picket lines, City service disruptions and FAQs, visit

For background on the negotiation process, visit


Filed under City Policy

Good news about Petrie Building

From a resident.

News Flash (17 July, 2014):

I have been given the very great honor of announcing the successful nomination of Guelph’s Petrie Building (15 Wyndham Street North), now deemed by Heritage Canada as an Endangered Place. It is officially released today that Heritage Canada recognizes the Petrie Building as one of the top ten Endangered Places across Canada for 2014. This significant news is also released today on Canada’s Newswire.

Several months ago, with the encouragement of the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario (Wellington Chapter) group, and the support of the “Save the Petrie Building Facebook” group, I officially nominated the Petrie Building to Heritage Canada as a potential candidate. And today, it is nationally recognized for its significant position as an iconic example of Canada’s heritage and Guelph’s downtown core character, while also highlighting how such a unique and prominent structure finds itself endangered.

While simple historic Guelph buildings (such as the Wilson Farmhouse) succumb to development and a disturbing trend of erasure, let this good news further encourage the tireless efforts of local and national incentives to save Canada’s maturing heritage.

The Petrie Building was built in 1882 by Alexander Bain Petrie, druggist and dispensing chemist. The iron-clad facade is now a unique example in Canada of Neo-Baroque Italianate architecture that celebrates the industrial success, not only of Petrie’s original drug store, but also of Canadian expansion in the late 19th century. The building’s continuous biography is both personal to Guelph and also now nationally recognized.

I would like to sincerely thank members of the Petrie family and the present owners of the Petrie Building, along with an ever-growing membership of the “Save the Petrie Building” Facebook group, of this magnificent yet endangered building for an ongoing interest in its possible futures. DK

Leave a comment

Filed under Heritage

Ontario re-confirms commitment to expanded GO service for Guelph and Kitchener-Waterloo corridor

Press release.

Partners in the Innovation Supercluster consortium – including the Mayors of Kitchener, Waterloo, and Guelph and the Chair of Waterloo Region – are pleased that two-way, all-day GO train service is part of the provincial budget that was reintroduced yesterday.

The Ontario government included the initiative in the budget it tabled on May 1, but that budget was not passed by the Legislative Assembly before it was dissolved for a general election.

“We are thrilled that Premier Wynne has been unwavering in her commitment to two-way, all-day GO trains,” said Kitchener Mayor Carl Zehr. “This is a game changer for our area, and one that will pay huge economic and social dividends in the years ahead.”

The Innovation Supercluster consortium developed a business case that outlined how increased GO train service will increase the connectivity of the regional economies of Waterloo Region/Guelph and the Greater Toronto Area, and drive the attraction of talent, investment, and innovative companies to the local region. The business case demonstrates the majority of costs to build the system will be met from the potential $542 million in annual personal income taxes that will be generated from increased economic activity.

“I am pleased that the significant advocacy of local municipalities, along with our private sector partners, has been successful. The Province recognizes how transformational this opportunity is, and their commitment is solid,” said Guelph Mayor Karen Farbridge.

The re-introduced Ontario budget confirms the Province’s planned improvements to GO’s Kitchener line to prepare for full-day, two-way train service. These include:

· More trips: by the end of 2016, Metrolinx will double current service frequency between Kitchener and Toronto, with two additional morning and afternoon peak period trips.

· Upgrades to the rail corridor leading to faster travel times.

· Building a new train layover facility.

Municipalities in the consortium will work with the Province to implement expanded GO service successfully, for example by advocating for expanded parking near local GO stations.

“I welcome Premier Wynne’s comments that the Province will work closely with municipal partners to deliver on its transit commitments in ways that make sense for local communities,” said Waterloo Mayor Brenda Halloran. “I’m glad that the Province has not only embraced the vision put forward by our consortium, but pledged to implement it in a collaborative way.”

“This ongoing commitment by the Province reflects a major advance in the Region’s efforts to provide increased GO rail transit to the Region of Waterloo,” added Regional Chair Ken Seiling.

Iain Klugman, CEO of Communitech, noted that attracting top talent in this area has always been competitive. “The number one barrier to tech company growth is attracting and retaining talent,” Klugman said. “More GO train trips in the short term, and faster travel times and all-day, two-way service over the longer term, will make a significant impact on companies’ ability to access and retain the latent they need.”

The business case, “Innovative Regional Economies and Strategic Infrastructure: the business case for Two-Way Urban Commuter Rail on the CN North Mainline,” outlines the economic imperative and opportunities along the Toronto to Kitchener rail corridor which will help the province and our communities compete for global talent and innovative companies.

The joint request was that a 10-year capital allocation for rail infrastructure be established by the Government of Canada and the Province of Ontario to support full two-way GO Train service on the Kitchener Line (CN North Mainline) in the 2014 federal and provincial capital budgets.

The business case contains cost-savings analysis, maps, ridership estimates and development potential organized in six sections:

· Ontario’s economic growth opportunity

· Building an innovation supercluster

· Innovative cities in the Waterloo region to Toronto corridor

· The geography of innovation

· Proposed two-way GO Train service

· Recommendations and conclusion

Quick facts

· There are 30,000 local tech workers, 34% commute from Toronto/GTA

· There will be an additional 37,000 tech and creative workers in the area by 2031

· 32,000 trips are made daily each way between Waterloo Region and Guelph·

There are 11 million square feet of potential residential growth in transit station areas·

There is $4 billion construction potential in urban growth centres/station areas·

Initial prediction of ridership fares total $5.25 million with net operating costs of $750,000

Leave a comment

Filed under Traffic Management

Election Workers Wanted

Press release.

The City of Guelph is inviting residents to participate in the fall election by working at a voting location on Election Day (October 27) and/or during the Advanced Voting period (October 15-19).

Interested residents are invited to attend an open house session to learn about the available positions and responsibilities, and to interview for a position.

Recruitment Open Houses

City Hall, 1 Carden Street, Meeting Room 112

August 5

8:30 – 10:30 a.m.

12 – 2 p.m.

4 – 6 p.m.

August 7

8:30 – 10:30 a.m.

2 – 4 p.m.

The following summarizes the required positions.

Ballot Officer
- check voters’ identification, issue written oaths and ballots, brief voters on procedures and electronically strike voters off the list as they vote

Rate of pay $220 per day.

Revision Officer
- assist voters to get on the voter list, enforce revision requirements and add voters to the list

Rate of pay $220 per day.

Tabulator Officer - receive completed ballots in secrecy folders from voters, process ballots through the vote tabulator and transfer used ballots from ballot box into ballot transfer box

Rate of pay $180 per day.

All election workers will report to the Managing Officer, assisting with set-up and take-down as directed. No experience is necessary; however, past election experience is an asset. Computer experience is required for the Ballot Officer and Revision Officer positions. Tabulator Officers should be comfortable using electronic equipment. Training will be provided for all positions.

Full job descriptions, eligibility requirements and applications are available on

Leave a comment

Filed under Community

Guelph City Council votes to ratify agreement with ATU Local 1189

Press release.

Tonight, Guelph City Council voted to ratify the tentative agreement reached with the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 1189.

The agreement will be taken before members of ATU Local 1189 for ratification on the evening of Sunday, July 19.

Leave a comment

Filed under City Policy