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Ontario ombudsman accuses auditor general of 'perilous' power play
Toronto Star
Ontario Ombudsman André Marin is firing back at what he calls a "perilous" power play by Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk to restrict his investigative authority. The Star has obtained a five-page letter that Marin wrote to Lysyk after she urged MPPs on a legislative committee last week to limit the ombudsman's office to investigating individual beefs from citizens instead of looking as well into larger systemic concerns.
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Brampton mayor to launch full probe of city hall
Toronto Star
Brampton's newly elected mayor Linda Jeffrey will ask former Ontario Auditor General Jim McCarter to review the city's books and plans to invite the provincial ombudsman, Andre Marin, to investigate the city as soon as Bill 8 gives him the power to do so. "Both individuals have strong credentials and years of experience that will benefit our city. Just as the Deloitte review of the previous administration highlighted problems that needed correcting, these reviews should help us identify what needs correcting and will help establish the necessary foundation Brampton needs so we can move forward," said Jeffrey.
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Critics slam Premier over welfare payout 'glitch'
Toronto Star
Numerous welfare recipients got no money or as little as $5 due to problems with the new $240 million computer system that manages Ontario's social assistance caseload, says the head of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union. Warren "Smokey" Thomas said the wrong allowance payments affected Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Program recipients and is concerned the problems might mean recipients don't get their December cheques in time for Christmas.
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Ontario Provincial Police Festive RIDE checks now underway
Inside Ottawa Valley
News -Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere (RIDE) spot checks will be seen frequently on Renfrew Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police area roads and highways. Dubbed Festive RIDE, as the holiday season is generally a festive time of year, the OPP is visually reminding motorists to always choose to drive sober. If you are going to be drinking, plan ahead and make arrangements so you are not put in a position where you may be tempted to drive after consuming alcohol.
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Ontario moves toward curbing pesticide blamed for bee deaths
Toronto Star
Ontario is moving closer to curbing a class of pesticides blamed for massive bee kills that endanger the pollination of crops and the environment. But farmers are infuriated by the move by Agriculture Minister Jeff Leal to reduce the number of acres planted with neonicotinoid-coated corn and soybean seeds by 2017.
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Green energy sector jobs surpass total oil sands employment
The Globe and Mail
Canada's green energy sector has grown so quickly and has become such an important part of the economy that it now employs more people than the oil sands. About $25 billion has been invested in Canada's clean-energy sector in the past five years, and employment is up 37 per cent, according to a new report from climate think tank Clean Energy Canada.
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8 qualities of leaders who deliver value every day
Fortune
Leadership is a means to create value for others through self-expression. How a leader shows up is everything as it sets the tone for others to either emulate or evade. Making the jump from manager to director to leader is never a clear-cut process. The position itself changes but the "how to lead" skills are never made clear, so what happens is newly-appointed leaders apply yesterday's management tactics to today's leadership demands, and the two don't play nicely.
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Lori Baldwin-Sands, daughter Catharine Sloan may battle on 2015 federal ballot
CBC News
For voters in the area around St. Thomas, ON, who might be weary of mean, nasty, personal campaigns that are short on substance, next year's federal election might just hold a pleasant surprise. Municipal politician Lori Baldwin-Sands has been acclaimed as the Liberal candidate in Elgin-Middlesex-London.
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Researcher: Ontario's flavoured tobacco ban 'comprehensive'
CBC News
The Ontario government's move to ban flavoured tobacco, including menthol cigarettes, would make the the province a leader in tobacco laws across the country, says a researcher with the University of Waterloo's School of Public Health. "Menthol is the one flavour youth actually use. So about 30 per cent of youth smokers smoke a menthol brand, that's way more than adults," said David Hammond, who studies tobacco control policy and nutrition labelling.
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Ontario struggles to divert construction waste
Daily Commercial News
The Ontario Ministry of the Environment (MOE) says it's in vital consultation with stakeholders around reducing the amount of construction and demolition (C&D) waste going into landfills but won't identify those stakeholders. The obvious industry players say they haven't been invited to any discussions while the MOE will not comment on any plans to introduce regulations around C&D waste or where those discussions are in terms of the construction and demolition industry.
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Ontario seeking feedback on proposed changes to OHSA, WHMIS regulation
Canadian Occupational Safety
The Ontario Ministry of Labour is proposing to amend selected provisions in the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) and the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) Regulation, as a part of the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). In Canada, the federal government has taken steps to implement the GHS.

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BlackBerry offers $550 to get iPhone users to switch to Passport
The Globe and Mail
BlackBerry Ltd. is offering to pay iPhone users as much as $550 to switch to a square-screened BlackBerry Passport. Starting in December, customers who trade in an iPhone for the keyboard-equipped Passport will get as much as $400 back depending on their Apple Inc. smartphone's model and condition.

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Power still out for 2,000 homes, businesses in wake of wind storm
Toronto Star
About 2,000 Toronto Hydro customers were still without power by mid-Tuesday morning following a severe wind storm that snapped tree branches and downed power lines across the GTA. Toronto Hydro customers in the west to central north regions and North York were the hardest hit by the damage, according to Toronto Hydro spokesperson Tanya Bruckmueller.

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 AMCTO Legislative Updates


Report looks at the effects of extreme rainfall on municipalities

A new research report, released last week by the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction (ICLR), examines the alarming increase in damage resulting from extreme rainfall. The report draws on the experiences of 20 Canadian municipalities to highlight some risk mitigation strategies already being used by cities and towns across the country. Read the report here.
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Decision made in Blue Box arbitration case

Last week the Honourable Robert Armstrong released his 2014 Blue Box payment arbitration decision. At issue was a dispute between municipalities (represented by AMO and the City of Toronto) and the steward producers (represented by Stewardship Ontario) over the amount of money owed by stewards to municipalities for Blue Box recycling in 2014. For more information on this case, you can read the decision here, or releases from AMO and Stewardship Ontario.

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New Private Members Bill would amend the Planning Act

Bill 48, the Restoring Planning Powers to Municipalities Act was introduced in the legislature last week and passed its first reading. The private members bill, introduced by acting Leader of the Official Opposition Jim Wilson, would eliminate several amendments to the Planning Act that exempt renewable energy projects from its provision. The effect of the legislation would be to return control over renewable energy projects, such as wind turbines and solar farms, to municipalities.
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Province offering news grants for age-friendly community programs

The province is rolling out a new program that will offer grants to municipalities offering senior-focused programs that prioritize good health, active community participation and a secure environment. Some examples include installation of automatic doors, adding new park benches, installing countdown timers at crosswalks and making shopping centres more accessible. You can learn more about this program here.
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Accessibility Directorate launches new AODA Compliance Campaign:

The Accessibility Directorate of Ontario (ADO) launched a new campaign in November to help inform businesses across the province about their compliance requirements under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. The campaign, which will run until December 15, 2014, includes a new website to simplify and clearly communicate accessibility requirements. Learn more about the AODA here.
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Update on Bill 8 committee hearings

Last week Bill 8, the Public Sector and MPP Accountability and Transparency Act was studied by the Standing Committee on General Government. Prior to a third reading and potential Royal Consent, the committee will debate amendments to the Bill this week, finishing its work by December 3. For more information, you can review the committee transcripts here, or AMO's remarks and submission.
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 AMCTO Special Announcements



 AMCTO In-House Training




 Municipal Career Opportunities

City of Hamilton - Lobbyist Registrar - Integrity Commissioner

Municipality of East Ferris - Community Planner

City of Waterloo - By-law Enforcement Assistant - 6 month contract

Town of Newmarket - Supervisor, Property Taxes

City of Stratford - Chief Building Official




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Frank Humada, Director of Publishing, 289.695.5422
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