New on Save Our Rideau
April 24, 2013 - Parks Canada is refusing to release information regarding comments from the public about the fee structure that they clearly have in their possession. The reply to a very simple request for information is a masterpiece of bureaucratic bafflegab. See the Misinformation from Parks Canada page.
April 17, 2013 - An unresolved complaint on the Trent-Severn to Parks Canada about their proposed hike in user fees has triggered the formation of an Independent Advisory Panel (as per the User Fee Act). See the press releases on this page (see right) and the Proposed New Fee Structure Page.
March 14, 2013 - Parks Canada has finalized its new fees proposals. See the Proposed New Fee Structure Page for details.
March 8, 2013 - Parks Canada will accept complaints regarding the fees until midnight on March 13, 2013. See the Proposed New Fee Structure Page.
February 19, 2013 - "Consultation" regarding the new fee structure is now closed. Parks Canada has until March 21 to resolve all the complaints it has received. See the Proposed New Fee Structure Page
Added a February 14, 2013 letter from George Ingram about fees and revenue generation on the Rideau Canal. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
February 12, 2013 - As we approach the Feb. 18 "consultation" deadline, I've added a few more observations about fees and how to attract more boaters. See "A Few Observations" on the Proposed New Fee Structure Page
Added a February 11, 2013 letter from former Rideau Canal Superintendent Gord Giffin. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
February 9, 2013 - Added a intro page about the threat to Rideau Canal Heritage. See the Rideau Canal Heritage Page
February 4, 2013 - Parks Canada has released a revised version of their proposed fee structure for its canals. See the Proposed New Fee Structure Page
Added a January 29, 2013 letter with a new fee proposal put forward by the Office of Mayor John Williams of Quinte West. They are soliciting public comments regarding their ideas for a more reasonable fee system. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
On January 29, after waiting for 207 days, I received a "reply" to my July 6, 2012 letter to Minister Peter Kent. It was a form letter that didn't address any of the heritage issues raised in my letter. It is very disappointing to see that Minister Kent and the Government of Canada do not care about the heritage of the Rideau Canal. See the Communications Page.
Added a January 23, 2013 letter from former Rideau Canal and Trent-Severn Waterway managers regarding magnitude of proposed lockage and mooring fee increases. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Added a January 18 & 23, 2013 letters from Neil Manders with a U.S. view of the cuts and fee increases. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
January 22, 2013 - updated the Jones Falls Photo Essay with a couple of photos and notes about the closure of the Blacksmith's Shop and the 1841 Lockmaster's House (Sweeney House). See the Jones Falls Photo Essay Page.
January 18, 2013 - Parks Canada has released a revised version of their proposed fee structure for its canals. See the Proposed New Fee Structure Page
Added a January 17, 2013 letter to MP Gord Brown from former Rideau Canal Superintendent Gord Giffin. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
January 12, 2013 - Parks Canada is proposing a new fee structure for the Rideau Canal with fee increases of up to 400%. I've created a page looking at the real costs of these new fees. See the Proposed New Fee Structure Page
December 13, 2012 - added a link to MP Paul Dewar's petition: Stop the Cuts to Parks Canada and the Rideau Canal. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
December 10, 2012 - updated my Dwindling Support page detailing the political reality of the Canadian Government sacrificing Canadian heritage for the sake of looking green (adding more "protected spaces" to Parks Canada's financial responsibilities while slashing their budget). See the Why the Dwindling Support for Our Heritage Canals page.
December 1, 2012 - added the details of the 2013 season to the Operating Season page. I also included the 2012 season numbers for those that wish to do a comparison. See the Operating Season Page.
Added a November 29, 2012 letter to the Township of Leeds and Thousand Islands Council from the Seeley's Bay and Area Residents' Association. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
October 23, 2012 - added an editorial titled "Saving the Season is not all Good News". The government announcement that the operating season would be maintained with modified hours is good news, but the reality check is that the already underfunded Rideau Canal is still being cut by 2 million dollars. See the Saving the Season is not all Good News page.
October 14, 2012 - added a small update to the Dwindling Support page regarding the federal government adding yet more park property for Parks Canada to administer while at the same time cutting their budget. No wonder Parks Canada has to steal the money for that from the heritage side of its organization. See the Why the Dwindling Support for Our Heritage Canals page.
Added a September 28, 2012 communiqué from Parks Canada CEO Alan Latourelle regarding the new Ontario and Quebec waterways units to the Restructuring Page.
Added an August 22, 2012 letter to Minister Kent from Inland Waterways International. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Added a September 4, 2012 letter to Minister Kent from the REAL. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Why the dwindling support of our heritage canals from Parks Canada? Why are our canals taking a disproportionate share of the cuts? I've put some thoughts about that into a little editorial. See the Why the Dwindling Support for Our Heritage Canals page.
Added short synopsis of a public roundtable held in Portland with Mr. Bob Rae MP, interim Liberal Leader, on the cuts being made to the Rideau Canal. See the Meeting with Bob Rae page.
Added the August 20, 2012 media release from several former Rideau Canal and Trent-Severn Waterway Superintendents and managers regarding navigation costs. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Added a link to the news page of the Canadian Canal Society which has links to the latest press on the issues. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Added a letter from the Rideau Roundatable and a link to a photo essay about Jones Falls by Orland French. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Parks Canada and the Department of Environment are now releasing misinformation under the guise of clarifying public misinformation. See the Misinformation from Parks Canada page.
Added a section about how the World Heritage Status of the Rideau Canal is being put at risk by the Government of Canada cuts and lack of attention to heritage by Parks Canada. See the World Heritage Status At Risk page.
Added a quote from Carol Sheedy, Parks Canada's VP of Operations for Eastern Ontario, and apparently a major part of the problem within Parks Canada when it comes to attention (or rather lack thereof) to heritage. See Heritage Value of an Operating Canal on the Parks Canada page.
Added the August 6, 2012 media release and letter from several former Rideau Canal and Trent-Severn Waterway Superintendents and managers. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Added the July 31, 2012 letter to the Hon. Peter Kent from Hunter McGill, Chair of Friends of the Rideau. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Added a new section called The Dumbing Down of Parks Canada. Parks Canada is using the recent cuts to continue its policy of eliminating most of the skilled positions dealing with heritage and ecology. See the The Dumbing Down of Parks Canada page for more info.
Added a new section called Restructuring. Since Parks Canada is making large changes with no public consultation, this info is hard to come by. But it is known that the Rideau and Trent-Severn canals will be part of Parks Canada's new Ontario Waterway Unit with the Superintendent based in Peterborough. See the Restructuring page for more info.
Added some actual numbers for the cuts to the Trent-Severn. Those cuts are 18.7% of their overall budget, far greater than the less than 6% cut to Parks Canada. It is more evidence that Parks Canada is making the canals take an unfair portion of the Government of Canada cuts. See the numbers section at the bottom of the home page.
Added a short synopsis of a public meeting held by MP Gord Brown on July 24, 2012. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Added a letter from Peter Au of the Rideau Roundtable to MP Gord Brown. See the What Other's Are Saying Page.
Added a letter from George Ingram to MP Gord Brown. See the What Other's Are Saying Page. As a former (retired) historian with Parks Canada, George provides an expert's opinion on Parks Canada's management of Rideau heritage.
Added a letter from Gord Giffin to MP Gord Brown. See the What Other's Are Saying Page. Gord is a former Superintendent of the Rideau Canal and knows first hand the problems with Parks Canada's HQ management of the Rideau.
Added a written response to MP Gord Brown's press release for a public consultation meeting. See the Communications Page.
Added a poster that can be downloaded and used to publicize this issue. See the Communications Page.
Added some budget number calculations at the bottom of the home page. See the Home Page.
Added the Parks Canada Charter to the Parks Canada page as a reminder to their upper management of what they are supposed be doing to support cultural resources such as the Rideau Canal. See the Parks Canada Page.
Added a letter I wrote on July 6, 2012 to the Hon. Peter Kent (cc to the PM and MP Gord Brown). See the Communications Page.
14 May 2013 - Harper Government freezes recreational lockage fees for three years : www.pc.gc.ca
14 May 2013 - Review Panel Could Trigger Cut in Rideau Canal Fee Increases : www.ottawacitizen.com
22 Apr 2013 - Panel will look at waterway fee structure : www.intelligencer.ca
17 Apr 2013 - The proposed fee hikes for the Trent Severn Waterway are going to an independent panel: www.quintenews.com
4 Apr 2013 - Many Parks Canada heritage buildings, highways in ‘poor’ condition: www.canada.com
17 Mar 2013 - Prime Minister Harper doesn't like Parks Canada: www.macleans.ca
16 Mar 2013 - Parks Canada Out of Touch: www.ottawacitizen.com
11 Mar 2013 - Rideau Canal fees set as time for public objections runs down: www.ottawacitizen.com
7 Mar 2013 - Government Cuts to Have Big Implications for all Ontario Waterway Communities: www.emcperth.ca
26 Feb 2013 - Tourism bodies want Peter Kent to cancel cuts on Rideau Canal: www.ottawacitizen.com
8 Feb 2013 - Tory MPs question whether Parks Canada should operate historic canals: www.ottawacitizen.com
7 Feb 2013 - Ottawa City Committee calls upon Parks Canada to Drop Rideau Canal Boating Fee Hikes: www.ottawacitizen.com
31 Jan 2013 - Beyond Bricks and Mortar - comments by Christina Cameron, former Parks Canada Director General of National Historic Sites: www.ottawacitizen.com
27 Jan 2013 - Mayors angered over skyrocketing canal fees: www.ottawasun.com
25 Jan 2013 - Canal changes don't pass smell test: www.intelligencer.ca
24 Jan 2013 - Parks Canada Loses Way with Failed fee raise: www.ottawacitizen.com
24 Jan 2013 - Waterway insanity?: www.trentonian.ca
24 Jan 2013 - Parks Canada Blinks: www.ottawacitizen.com
23 Jan 2013 - Rideau corridor mayors not yet satisfied with Parks Canada fee changes: www.ottawacitizen.com
21 Jan 2013 - Parks Canada reduces proposed new canal fees, restores passes: www.ottawacitizen.com
16 Jan 2013 - Plan to raise Rideau Canal fees will hurt business, says heritage group:
16 Jan 2013 - Rideau Canal operator faces 2,100 percent fee increase from Parks Canada:
15 Jan 2013 - Liberal senator condemns proposed Rideau Canal fee increases:
15 Jan 2013 - The following notice has just appeared on the Parks Canada website: "Following the launch of consultations on fee adjustments, Parks Canada is pleased to have already received a significant number of comments related to its new proposed model for fees associated with canals. Parks Canada will determine by Friday [January 18, 2013] which adjustments or new products need to be added to the consultation package on canals."
15 Jan 2013 - Waterway fees sure to be a shipwreck (Trent-Severn):
15 Jan 2013 - New Rideau Canal pay structure would almost triple fees:
14 Jan 2013 - Editorial: Sinking canal usage:
11 Jan 2013 - Parks Canada's Proposed New Fee Structure:
- Public Consultations:
- Proposed Canal Fees FAQ:
9 Jan 2013 - Parks Canada Wrong for Waterway [Trent-Severn]:
11 Dec 2012 - Anger Brewing over Trent-Severn Waterway Cuts:
10 Dec 2012 - Long Exposure to History - a letter to the editor from Franklin Folts, the owner of the Hotel Kenney at Jones Falls :
9 Dec 2012 - After 16 years, Captain Lance and Chuckles quit the Rideau in disgust. New canal hours are too restrictive to allow boat tours:
3 Dec 2012 - Cuts to Rideau Canal hours and budget raising alarm bells:
1 Dec 2012 - Parks Canada announces the 2013 operating season and hours for the Rideau Canal. See the press release:
1 Dec 2012 - The new Director for Ontario Waterways will be Ms. Jewel Cunningham who will assume the post on December 3, 2012. For more info see the Restructuring Page.
23 Nov 2012 - Harper Government Slashes Parks Canada:
13 Nov 2012 - another example of the cuts to Canadian heritage by Parks Canada:
11 Nov 2012 - in Britain, government control of its heritage canals (British Waterways) was handed over this year to a trust (Canal and River Trust). What is interesting in this article is the fact that they spend £50 million (80 million dollars) per year on repairs and maintenance to their heritage canals. Wish we had that sort of commitment to our heritage canals here:
9 Nov 2012 - musings on whether responsibility for the Rideau should be switched from Parks Canada to the Department of Canadian Heritage:
2 Nov 2012 - After a long delay, the Government is now planning an expanded recognition of the Rideau Canal Construction workers. Lots of nice non-substantive words and plans for plaques but no mention of the fact that the budget of the Rideau is being drastically cut. In the release, Minister Kent states "I decided that the original designation should be expanded to honour their contributions," but the reality is that the dramatic budget cut dishonours the workers' legacy:
30 Oct 2012 - Question about Parks Canada's cuts by MP Paul Dewar and answer my MP Peter Kent:
18 Oct 2012 - Parks Canada's press release regarding the 2013 season and operating hours:
18 Oct 2012 - Minister Kent announces no change to length of 2013 operating season although hours will be adjusted:
16 Oct 2012 - Parks Canada cuts are placing our historic canals in jeopardy:
15 Oct 2012 - Waterway Operators on Trent-Severn looking for answers from Parks Canada:
11 Oct 2012 - Rideau Canal boat traffic down in 2012:
11 Oct 2012 - This is just sad, cutting a very small but important grant to Friends of McNabs Island - yet another example of Parks Canada's lack of public co-operation:
10 Oct 2012 – historic attractions closed at Jones Falls. Sweeney House and the Blacksmith Shop no longer being interpreted.
9 Oct 2012 – Rideau Canal workers to receive recognition soon?
7 Oct 2012 – Parks Canada cuts tour guides at Laurier House in Ottawa. Similar cuts happened to Riel House in Manitoba. The best interaction between a visitor and history is a knowledgeable tour guide, the proposed IPads are too impersonal, though they will please some.
28 Sep 2012 – Extreme weather and Conservative extremists a perfect storm for heritage waterways
27 Sep 2012 – Rideau Round Table planning a forum for next year looking at the future of the Rideau Canal.
24 Sep 2012 – Recognition of Rideau Canal workers not being delayed by minister
24 Sep 2012 – letter to the editor – Keep up Canal System
19 Sep 2012 – Historic designation for Rideau Canal workers in limbo?
19 Sep 2012 – Conservative Northumberland Quinte-West MP Rick Norlock mum on recommendations to Minister Kent on the Trent-Severn Waterway
18 Sep 2012 – Conservative Haliburton – Kawartha Lakes – Brock MP Barry Devolin calls for new agency to manage the Trent-Severn Waterway
17 Sep 2012 – letter to the editor – decline in historic sites
14 Sep 2012 – Trent-Severn Waterway is more than just boaters – letter to the editors -
13 Sep 2012 – Survey captures values of canal (Trent-Severn Waterway) – letter to the editors -
7 Sep 2012 - The slow death of the Trent-Severn Waterway is by design, not misfortune, an opinion piece by Al Hoy Retired TSW maintenance supervisor
5 Sep 2012 – Trent-Severn Waterway, Superintendent’s position cut.
30 Aug 2012 – Rideau Canal World Heritage Site designation at risk? Bob Rae, a Rideau Canal summer resident, meets with citizens concerned with the impact of Parks Canada cuts.
23 Aug 2012 – Parks Canada told to leave canal hours alone by Marina Operators
22 Aug 2012 – Stephen Harper would like to create a National Park in the Arctic, but, he won’t commit to reversing Parks Canada cuts, so that they can properly look after the parks we already have.
20 Aug 2012 – MPs to recommend that Parks Canada implement increased fees
17 Aug 2012 Talks on canal cuts leave out key players?
17 Aug 2012 Waterway cuts to be finalized in the fall: CEO
16 Aug 2012 Rideau Canal cutbacks don't make sense - letter to the editor
15 Aug 2012 No closure, fees on Trent-Severn: Parks Canada
14 Aug 2012 Let's not lose canal history - letter to the editor
14 Aug 2012 Historic Canals - put taxes dollars to work - letter to the editor
11 Aug 2012 Rideau Canal cuts extremely 'disproportionate'
11 Aug 2012 union head warns cuts will hurt Campbellford - Trent-Severn Waterway
10 Aug 2012 Peter Kent, Environment Minister's office, denies cuts are 'disproportionate'
10 Aug 2012 Rideau Canal cuts disproportionate