News, updates, and so much more…


Ontario rent increase for 2023 capped at 2.5%

Ontario’s rent increase guideline for 2023 is 2.5 per cent, below current rates of inflation. The rent increase guideline is the maximum amount a landlord can increase rent during the year for most tenants without the approval of the Landlord and Tenant Board.

The guideline is based on Ontario’s Consumer Price Index, a measure of inflation calculated monthly by Statistics Canada using data that reflects economic conditions over the past year. Due to recent inflation, this would result in a 2023 guideline of 5.3 per cent, however the guideline is capped to help protect tenants from significant rent increases.

The guideline applies to the vast majority – approximately 1.4 million – of rental households covered by the Residential Tenancies Act. It does not apply to rental units occupied for the first time after November 15, 2018, vacant residential units, community housing, long-term care homes or commercial properties. Rent increases are not automatic or mandatory, and landlords must give 90 days’ written notice of any intention to increase rent using the correct form. In addition, at least 12 months must have passed since the first day of the tenancy or the last rent increase.

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Niagara Transit Commission Board holds historic first meeting

Yesterday, the Niagara Transit Commission held its inaugural Board meeting; a historic first step in the journey to the launch of one transit system for all of Niagara. The new Commission will assume control of all transit operations in Niagara on Jan. 1, 2023.

Board members selected the first Chair, Walter Sendzik, Regional Councillor and Mayor of St. Catharines, and Grimsby Regional Councillor Wayne Fertich as Vice-Chair.

With the Board now in place, they will guide the formation of the Commission, working alongside the Steering Committee of Niagara Region and local transit staff. The following key milestones will take place starting this summer and continuing through the end of 2022:

  • ​The hiring of a General Manager
  • Development of the new organizational design
  • Develop a strategic workplan and key deliverables for such things as a harmonized fare structure and fare technology
  • The initial branding strategy and name for the new Commission; and
  • The transfer of transit assets, staff, and infrastructure to the new Commission.

Niagara Region and local transit staff are continuing to operate the existing local and Regional transit systems and are collaborating on the plan for the transition of services through 2022. Transit users can expect that existing routes and services will operate at current service levels when the Commission assumes operational responsibility on Jan. 1, 2023.

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Media Release


Memorial Park pool revitalization delayed as City continues to seek grant funding


June 29, 2022

Welland, ON –  Anticipated work to revitalize the Memorial Park pool is on hold while the City staff explore new grant opportunities to fund most of the project.

Memorial Park pool was built in the late 1950s. After over 60 years of operation, this location remains Welland’s busiest outdoor public pool, attracting over 14,500 visits during the 2019 season. The revitalization of this pool continues to be a top priority given the facility’s age, current condition, and, most importantly, the need in the community. 

In anticipation of the City’s award of the Green and Inclusive Community Building grant from the Federal Government, staff initiated a competitive bid process for the Memorial Park pool project in May 2022. Unfortunately, all tender bids came in over budget, and the City was unsuccessful with this highly competitive grant opportunity that was expected to fund 60 percent of the project.

“All staff were excited and hopeful that the City would be awarded this grant. Unfortunately, this did not transpire this time. I don’t believe this is a question of if the City will be awarded a grant, but rather when we would expect to see a grant,” said Rob Axiak, director of community services. “Staff will look to maintain the current pool to stay open for the public until we can secure the necessary funding for the revitalization. This project continues to remain a top priority for the City.”

On June 28, Council approved delaying the work, confirming staff continues to seek all grant opportunities to help fund this important project. The current design would remain in effect until a grant is applied for and awarded and the project re-tendered.

Staff also feel that Memorial Park Pool can operate for an additional season (2023) should this be required, with minimal renewal requirements.

Given the delay, Council approved the staff-recommended increase in budget from $6.4M to $7.75M. The escalation of costs has been difficult to predict in the current financial climate. However, staff are forecasting a 10 per cent increase in prices by extending this project by an additional year into 2023. To learn more about pools in the City of Welland and available programs and activities visit: https://www.welland.ca/RecCulture/publicswimming.asp


For media inquiries, please contact:

Marc MacDonald

Corporate Communications Manager

905-735-1700 x2337


Niagara-on-the-Lake approves Municipal Accommodation Tax By-law

At the Monday, June 20, 2022, Council Meeting, Niagara-on-the-Lake Council approved a By-law for the implementation of a Municipal Accommodation Tax (MAT), commencing July 1, 2022.

In August of 2021, Council passed a motion to implement a MAT within the 2022 budget for tourism projects and to place any revenues generated into a special reserve for tourism promotion, Town capital infrastructure and tourism initiatives. Council further directed that Staff form a MAT Governance Advisory Group of 7 to 9 people for consultation on the proposed MAT design and governance processes.

With the approval of this By-law, Tourism NOTL, a subsidiary of the NOTL Chamber of Commerce, is approved as the local Destination Marketing Organization (DMO). MAT revenues will be split on a 50/50 basis, net of administration costs, with the local DMO.

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Niagara Region commits to addressing climate change at inaugural summit

Niagara Region, in partnership with representatives from the 12 local municipalities, academic institutions, non-profit organizations and the private sector made a commitment to actively do more to address climate change in Niagara.

After hearing from keynote speaker Karen Farbridge, and a number of expert discussion panels, summit attendees were invited to sign a call to action as a demonstration of their commitment to form partnerships, share critical data and accelerate action on climate change and green house gas emissions in Niagara. Over 100 individuals, representing dozens of local organizations, signed the pledge.

The pledge forms a foundational first step for Niagara’s municipalities, institutions and businesses as it is widely accepted that meaningful action on climate change will require all sectors of society working together. It is anticipated that today’s call to action will be a precursor to a formal emissions target that will be established in the future.

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Best regards,

Alexis Higginbotham
Executive Director
60 East Main Street
Welland, ON
L3B 3X4
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