March 15, 2018: Councillor’s Corner; City News.

March 15, 2018: Councillor’s Corner;
City News.

By Jeff Leiper, Kitchissippi Ward Councillor.

Happy March, Kitchissippi! Our February was very busy. We have lots of active planning files on the go, which means lots of public open houses. We also had our last community bonfire of the season, complete with s’mores and a synthetic skating pad courtesy of the Wellington West BIA.

On February 14th, council voted – including me – to approve a modified version of the Rochester Field development concept. This concept still contains two mid-rise buildings grouped together at the south end of the field, but some changes have been made to address the concerns I was hearing from residents.

The original proposal contained two six-storey buildings on Richmond, with a setback and a gap of roughly 15 meters between them. Because of concerns from myself and residents that this offered too little gateway between the Richmond and the SJAM park, I successfully secured a pause on the process to see whether any improvements could be made. My thanks to Councillor Harder, the Mayor, and the NCC’s Dr. Kristmanson for helping us get that second look.

Ultimately, the new plans resulted in a 4-meter widening to the gap between the two buildings, which is roughly the same width of the Byron Linear Park. To compensate for loss of density, the building on the east side of the site is proposed at seven stories instead of six. It was a difficult decision for me to support this, and I am grateful for all the advice I received, but I consider the addition to the gap to be meaningful. There is no actual development proposal for this property, and there likely won’t be for many years. This effort was not the last chance to effect change in the proposal, and we will continue efforts with the NCC as opportunities arise.

Recently, the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) decided that the City must take steps to either officially decommission the Prince of Wales Bridge or bring it into a state of repair where it could be used for rail operations within a year. While this decision has enormous repercussions for the City, it could be good news for those advocating for a cycling/pedestrian connection between Gatineau and the Bayview Station. The City will take some time to determine how it wants to proceed, and the current deadline for the City to outline its intended actions is April 30th. I have a few outstanding questions about this; it seems to me that the City should appeal the April 30th deadline in order to gather more information about the cost of renovating the bridge. Furthermore, we need to understand what the CTA will accept as a plan to repair the bridge moving forward. I consider that the bridge should be put into operation as a rail/cycling/pedestrian connection, but the issue is complex. You can read more about my thoughts on the blog.

We look forward to welcoming spring in the Ward and all the wonderful activities that attend it! Hope to see you out there enjoying the warming weather, Kitchissippi.

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March 15, 2018: Federal Report; Everything you need to know for the 2018 Tax Season.

March 15, 2018: Federal Report;
Everything you need to know for the 2018 Tax Season.

By Catherine McKenna, MP Ottawa Centre.

Tax season is in full-swing and I want to make sure you have all of the information you need to easily and successfully file your taxes for 2017.

Our government has made it easier for Canadians to receive the credits and benefits they are entitled to through two major service changes. First, Canadians who filed by paper last year will automatically have their forms and guides mailed to them directly. If you filed by paper and have not received a package in the mail, please contact my community office.

Others who want to file on paper can download the forms online at canada.ca/get-craforms , call the CRA at 1-855-330-3305 (for service in English) or 1-855-330-3310 (for service in French), or get a package from my community office.

Second, there is now a “File My Return” automated phone service for individuals on low or fixed incomes. File My Return is free, secure and easy to use by giving some personal information and answering a series of short questions over the phone.. There are no paper forms to fill out or calculations to do. Those who are eligible will have received an invitation letter in the mail in mid-February 2018.

I also want to make sure you are aware of benefits you might be entitled to. Here are some of the most common benefits:

  • Canada Child Benefit (CCB)
    This benefit helps with the cost of raising children. In Ottawa Centre 7,340 families receive an average $5,410 per year from this benefit.
  • Child Disability Benefit.
    This is a tax-free benefit of up to $2,730 per year for families who care for a child under age 18 with a severe and prolonged impairment in physical or mental functions.
  • Working income tax benefit.
    This is a benefit designed to help individuals and families in the workforce who have low-income. Eligibility is based upon the income of individuals and families.

For a complete list of benefits, you can visit: http://canada.ca/benefits .
If you need help filing your taxes, the Community Volunteer Tax Program is available for Canadians who make a modest living. To find local tax clinics in Ottawa Centre, you can visit the Canada Revenue Agency website or call my community office.

Canadians have until April 30, 2018 to complete their 2017 tax returns and until June 15, 2018 if they are self employed.

My community office is here to assist you in any way we can. Feel free to give the office a call or a send an email.

[Ed: I think this link of a list of CRA forms will work better for our readers https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/forms-publications/forms.html ]

March 15, 2018: OCSB Trustee’s Report; New support for outdoor learning.

March 15, 2018: OCSB Trustee’s Report;
New support for outdoor learning.

By Jeremy Wittet, OCSB Trustee, Zone 7.

Notre Dame High School Information Night.
On February 8, Notre Dame High School hosted their annual orientation night for new students. Parents and prospective students had the opportunity to view displays from various departments, learn about programming and meet the teachers. Notre Dame has experienced a steady increase in enrollment over the last couple of years and we look forward to seeing that number climb even higher.

Catholic Teachers’ Association Dinner:
The Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association hosted their annual Silver Celebration recognizing teachers who have achieved 25 years of teaching excellence in the Ottawa Catholic School Board. It was a privilege to join Fiona Fahey, teacher from St. George School who was recognized and who has been a tremendous asset to the St. George school community. Congratulations Ms. Fahey!

St. George School Council Meeting:
On February 20, St. George School held their monthly school council meeting. Whenever possible I try to attend school council meetings to listen to parents and better understand individual school needs. Topics at the meeting included, school fund raising initiatives, hot lunches and the need for more outdoor education items such as benches and gardens.

More Support For Outdoor Education:
At the regular board meeting of February 27, trustees discussed how to spend some surplus funds from previous budgets. The board looked at flexible classroom seating/lighting, playground equipment for schools in need and boosting technology for teachers in the classroom. One notable item that was missing was support for outdoor classrooms and educational experiences. After listening to school councils and principals, I put forward a motion, which the board of trustees unanimously passed, calling for a one-time expenditure of $200,000 toward outdoor classrooms. We look forward to seeing what creative ideas schools have to enhance outdoor learning experiences for students.

Contact Jeremy Wittet by telephone at (613) 721-2376, by e-mail at Jeremy.Wittet@ocsb.ca, and via Twitter @OCSBWittet.

March 15, 2018: Why Westboro?; Rezoning Rochester Park.

March 15, 2018: Why Westboro?;
Rezoning Rochester Park.

By Gary Ludington, Westboro Community Association.

We know most of Kitchissippi has been invaded. Yes, by the Emerald Ash Borer, but also by developers. In February City Council ruined Rochester Park by rezoning it to allow two mixed-use buildings to be built along Richmond Road from the Keg Manor, west to the lot line of the homes on Fraser Avenue.

A representative for the NCC said this was necessary because the Federal Government wasn’t providing them with enough funding to carry out their mandate.

Also in February, four meetings were scheduled to inform residents of rezoning applications in our community. On February 20th at the Churchill Seniors Centre, we were presented with a Domicile proposal for a six storey mixed-use building which would replace the first three houses on the west side of Roosevelt behind Starbucks. This is an R3 zone where single homes are zoned for a height of 8M not six storeys as proposed by Domicile.

On February 22 we met at the Superstore to hear about a six storey proposal for 403 Tweedsmuir known as the Richmond Plaza Motel. One of the things the zoning is seeking is approval for a boutique hotel.

A third meeting was scheduled for February 26th for the corner of Churchill Ave and Byron Place but was cancelled at the last moment. The fourth meeting was held at the Churchill Seniors Centre on February 28th.

This meeting is for a four storey building with 25 rental units and no parking to be located at 342 Roosevelt next to the transitway. The rational for the 25 unit building is a need for rentals. However just in Westboro on McRae there are three buildings (one already built) that provide rental units; at Tweedsmuir and Richmond is a nine storey building of rental units; there are also a large number of triplexes that have been, or are being, built on Tweedsmuir, Clare, Athlone, Tillbury and Ravenhill – all rentals. So why do we need another on a short dead end street that already has vehicle issues.

Controversy about the two developments on Roosevelt centers around the fact that this section of Roosevelt is a dead end at the transitway and has just about zero on-street parking. Also, the street up to this point consists of single family homes.

The Domicile rezoning, if successful, would be to change that part of Roosevelt to Traditional Mainstreet similar to Richmond Road. We have heard support from the private sector that our Secondary Plan needs changing but they still come forward with these proposals and the City keeps supporting them.
Why? Let us know what you think.

[Ed: For more details on the developments on Roosevelt meeting visit kitchissippi.com and look for the March 1st 2018 issue of Kitchissippi Times, pg. 3, Streets “Crumbling” Under Development, by Bradley Turcotte.]

March 15, 2018: Neilly’s Neighbourhood; Springtime challenges.

March 15, 2018: Neilly’s Neighbourhood;
Springtime challenges.

By Dawn Neilly, OPS.

February is long gone and March is showing signs of spring. Barring any unexpected weather events, roads are clear, days are longer and there’s a real incentive to come out of hibernation and be more active.

Maybe you’ve resumed activities that were put on hold because of winter, like jogging, bicycle riding or just walking more. Or maybe, if you’re driving, you’re inclined to put your foot down a bit harder on the gas pedal to take advantage of those clear roads. My advice: don’t do it. Resist the temptation.

Some of you may know that every month the Ottawa Police Service traffic enforcement officers focus on a specific infraction or two, not just to write tickets, but to draw attention to the need for safer driving habits, including not speeding.

The selected infractions are posted at the beginning of every month and this information is available on the Ottawa Police web site at http://ottawapolice.ca or you can sign up to receive a Neighbourhood Watch Bulletin which includes this information and more about staying safe. Just send an email to wellingtoncpc@gmail.com asking to be added to the list.

The approach of spring is certainly reason to celebrate, but if the improving weather isn’t enough of a reason to hold a party, I see that we’re just about to hit St. Patrick’s Day, a long-standing invitation to party hearty.

Go ahead. Enjoy yourself. Just don’t spoil the party by drinking and driving, a potentially deadly combination. Do yourself and your friends and colleagues a favour by offering to be a designated driver. Drink close to home. Use public transit. Anything but drinking and driving.

Enjoy the spring. Have a happy, fun St. Patrick’s Day and a great March 18!
mar15-2018-pg-17
Photo Caption: Cst Neilly appreciates a celebration and suggests moderation and caution to ensure a safe, happy party with a cheerful day after. Photo by T. Hairbac.

March 15, 2018: Happy Birthday Judy; Party dresses and bow ties.

March 15, 2018: Happy Birthday Judy;
Party dresses and bow ties.

By Anna Borris.

One day when the mail was delivered, to my surprise there was a little envelope addressed to me.
At ten years old, the only mail I had ever received besides Christmas cards from distant aunts and uncles, was my monthly copy of “Calling All Girls” magazine.

With great excitement I tore open the envelope to find a birthday party invitation in honour of a girl who had recently moved in down the street. The card said “It’s a surprise.” I was just getting to know Judy, who was in my class, and wondered if my friend Karen would be invited too. As it turned out, she was.

After school the next day my mom and I walked up to the United Store on Wellington Street to look for a birthday gift. We found paint by number sets, paper dolls and India rubber balls, but nothing that really caught my fancy.

Our next destination was Beamish’s, quite a few blocks further west on Wellington Street just past Holland Avenue. Some of the toys were the same but I found one I liked, Wooly Willy. Willy was a magnetic drawing toy. He had a hairless face and a bald head under a clear plastic cover. Metal filings were moved about with a magnetic wand to add hair, eyebrows, a beard or moustache. I loved Willy right away and insisted that that was the perfect gift. We picked up some wrapping paper and a card all for under two dollars, and headed home to wrap him up.

Finally the big day arrived. Wearing our party dresses, Karen and I walked over to Judy’s house. Her mother told us that Judy was out with her dad, and showed us to the basement playroom where a number of kids of various ages were gathered. Some were cousins and a few were neighbours.

All were aware of the social importance of birthdays and were dressed accordingly, the girls in fancy party dresses and boys wearing bow ties. Suddenly Judy’s mom appeared in the doorway hissing “Shh, they’re here!”

In the silence we could hear Judy and her dad coming in and heading downstairs. As she came through the door to a loud “Surprise!” she stopped short and stared. Then she burst into tears, covering her face with her hands.

“What’s the matter?” asked one little boy cousin.

“I’m just surprised that you’re all here,” Judy started to laugh.

“Let’s have some games, then we’ll open your gifts” suggested her mom. We played pin the tail on the donkey as we did at every birthday party, drop the clothespin in the milk bottle, and musical chairs.

Everyone was hot and flushed after all the activity. Judy sat in a chair surrounded by her gifts which she began to open slowly and teasingly. The guests watched with anticipation and envy as cards were read and papers were strewn about the floor to reveal each new burst of excitement and anticipation.

Obviously several people had been shopping at the United Store, both the paper dolls and paint sets appeared. Along with the India rubber ball there was a Bobbsey Twins book and another called “The Water Babies”. Finally she opened Wooly Willy. She was delighted, and everyone wanted to try drawing some hair for Willy.

We trooped upstairs to the dining room where the table was loaded with glasses of orange Freshie, and three kinds of sandwiches made of egg, peanut butter and jam, and cheese. Judy blew out the candles on her cake and we were all served a piece with chocolate ripple ice cream.

Everyone found at least a nickel or dime wrapped in wax paper in their cake, and Karen found a quarter in hers. It was getting late, and some of the little ones were overexcited and starting to cry and fight. Little plastic baskets full of candy were handed out as we went out the door yelling “Happy Birthday” to Judy one last time.

It’s safe to say that a fine time was had by all and that Wooly Willy was a hit.

March 15, 2018: Photo Inset: Quicker than Boiling an Egg; 2 weeks of short skywatching.

March 15, 2018: Photo Inset: Quicker than Boiling an Egg;
2 weeks of short skywatching, with a Newswest Night Sky Scorecard.
Chart courtesy of Mark Narwa.
mar15-2018-pg-18
Photo Caption: Because the ISS passes over Ottawa so rarely at convenient times, and in suitable weather conditions for viewing, Newswest is celebrating this month’s 7 consecutive evenings of early fly-overs with this handy schedule and score card. Now, you can keep track of your sightings and let us know about what you expected to see, and what you actually saw. Send an email to editor.newswest@gmail.com or join us on Facebook or Twitter @NewswestOttawa – Chart courtesy of Mark Narwa.
Text version for the first image.
Newswest Night Sky Score Card.
Chart courtesy of Mark Narwa.
March 17 – 31, 2018.

Date. Time. Event. Did you see it?.
March 17, 2018. 30 minutes after sunset. New Moon.
March 18, 2018. 30 minutes after sunset. Moon close to Venus in west horizon.
March 20, 2018. 12:15 p.m. Vernal Equinox – Spring Begins – Equal Day and Night.
March 24, 2018. 11:35 a.m. First Quarter Moon.
March 24, 2018. 8:42 – 8:48 p.m. ISS passes over Kitchissippi from SW horizon.
March 25, 2018. 7:50 – 7:58 p.m. ISS passes over Kitchissippi from SSW horizon.
March 26, 2018. 8:33 – 8:41 p.m. ISS passes over Kitchissippi from SW horizon.
March 27, 2018. 7:40 – 7:50 p.m. ISS passes over Kitchissippi from SW horizon.
March 28, 2018. 8:24 – 8:32 p.m. ISS passes over Kitchissippi from WSW horizon.
March 29, 2018. 7:31 – 7:42 p.m. ISS passes over Kitchissippi from WSW horizon.
March 30, 2018. 8:15 – 8:24 ;p.m. ISS passes over Kitchissippi from West horizon.
March 31, 2018. 8:37 a.m. Full Moon – *Second Blue Moon of 2018.
March 31, 2018. 8:59 – 9:06 p.m. ISS passes over Kitchissippi from WNW horizon.

Web-extra:

mar15-2018-pg-18_WE
Photo Caption:The second table is of satellite predictions from March 16 to March 30 for the Kitchissippi area. Chart courtesy of Mark Narwa.

Text version for the second image.

DATE TIME EVENT
March 16, 2018 9:44pm – 9:48pm SEASAT 1 passes over Kitchissippi from NNE – NNW
March 17, 2018 9:24pm – 9:29pm H-2A R/B passes over Kitchissippi from ENE – North
March 18, 2018 8:06pm – 8:13pm ERS-2 passes over Kitchissippi from SSE – NNW
March 20, 2018 9:31pm – 9:36pm H-2A R/B passes over Kitchissippi from ENE – North
March 21, 2018 8:16pm – 8:25pm SL-16 R/B passes over Kitchissippi from SE – North
March 23, 2018 8:03pm – 8:10pm RESURS-DK1 passes over Kitchissippi from South – NE
March 24, 2018 9:37pm – 9:42pm COSMOS 1953 passes over Kitchissippi from SW – North
March 27, 2018 8:20pm – 8:27pm ERS-2 passes over Kitchissippi from South – NNW
March 29, 2018 9:52pm – 9:57pm ARIANE 40 R/B passes over Kitchissippi from East – North
March 30, 2018 9:36pm – 9:41pm COSMOS 2242 passes over Kitchissippi from SSE – NNE