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Litter, graffiti creates eyesores for Earth Week

New Hamburg resident Judie Bowlby emailed the Independent recently with some ideas about where she’d like to see private property owners and Wilmot township  spend some time cleaning up.

“While walking yesterday, enjoying our beautiful town and streets, I spotted these areas which seem to be loaded with garbage,” she writes.
Bowlby described the property behind Cerwood Cabinets on Arnold Street as an area that needs attention. The business owns the land down to the river, but much of the junk and scrap wood that’s been dumped immediately behind their fenced-in property is visible from the other side of the river.
The vacant lot adjacent to Formatop on Hamilton Road is another spot that Bowlby says attracts significant amounts of litter, as well as the walking path across private property from Victoria Street to the parking lot at the John Bear Automotive Repair Centre near the corner of Hamilton Road and Highway 7/8.
The graffiti that appears under the Highway 7/8 bridge in Riverside Park is another location that needs attention.
“Hopefully, these areas can be cleaned up,” Bowlby says.

Private property owners are subject to the Property Standards Act enforced when a complaint is made. Upon hearing a complaint, bylaw officers order property owners to clean up the offending space and follow up to make sure it is done within a certain amount of time.

The township is also responsible for maintaining parks and completes annual assessments to determine what needs to be done. Graffiti is usually painted over or removed with chemical cleaners once a year.

The Indy Blog and the New Hamburg Independent would like to highlight things that need fixing in the community in an ongoing feature called The Fix is On.

If you have a concern, or question about something in a public space that is broken, in disrepair, is an eyesore, or poses a hazard, contact the Independent and we’ll look into it and write about it here and in the newspaper.
The Independent wants to help make our communities the best they can be, so drop us a note, give us a call, or send a message detailing your concern and its location.

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Rotting seafood appears on Wilmot farm

What smells and looks a giant sea creature’s barfed-up lunch?

If you guessed a huge, rotting pile of lobsters and king crab, you’d be right.

But this isn’t a photo snapped on some Maritime beach. This expensive mound of spoiled seafood showed up on a Wilmot farm property this week.

To read more about this illegal dump that has the property owners scratching their heads in disbelief, pick up the April 28 edition of the Independent.

Happy Earth Day!

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Cleaning up pays off

New Hamburg Optimist Doug Miller had some practice for the upcoming Optimists’ Road Cleanup on April 24 from Forest Glen School to the Baden town limits.  On Wednesday morning, with the help of wife, Mim, and neighbour, Elizabeth Halliday, as well as canine friends, Griffin and Benjy, he collected all the litter around the perimeter of the ‘lost’ (last) concession of Wilmot Twp.  This included Diamond Road south of Bridge St., Waterloo-Oxford Rd., Oxford Rd. 5 (south of Punkeydoodles Corner), and Concession 4 Wilmot on Bridge Street back to Diamond Road. He used his trusty John Deere tractor to pull the homemade ‘little red wagon’  holding a Blue Box, as well as additional litter bags.  Two hours later the crew arrived back home with the results. However, he left behind the car tire, abandoned last summer, on the south side of Bridge Street, for the Township crew to pick up hopefully sometime this summer. Anybody can easily volunteer to do the same type of litter pickup in their own area, thus beautifying our Township. The pop cans are gratefully accepted by the Heritage Fire Dept. museum members in Baden.  The beer cans and bottles can be taken to any Beer Store and provides gas money for John Deere tractors or a bit of pocket cash, as well as a great deal of satisfaction in a job well done.

Submitted by Mim Miller

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International ambassadors visit New Hamburg

Kitchener-Conestoga MP Harold Albrecht accompanied, Georges de La Roche, Ambassador of Guatemala to Canada, and Manuel Schaerer Kanonnikoff, Ambassador of Paraguay to Canada, on a tour of area businesses of interest to the two countries last Thursday. Here, CEO of Ontario Drive and Gear Joerg Stieber, second from right, greets the ambassadors with ODG’s William Linares, International Sales Manager Latin America / Caribbean, far right.

Photo submitted

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Waterloo-Oxford’s Star Search crowns winners

The winners of Waterloo Oxford’s Star Search competition, which took place April 13 at Waterloo Oxford was “Jemmy Jam and the Funky Bunch.” The group performed a song and dance act and won $200. The members of the group are Jem Mcwhirter, Matt Beauvais, Matt Mcgrath, Brock Yantzi and Scott Malloch. Carly Kowalik (accompanied by Emily Clarke) placed second for singing and Maggie Michaelis placed third for dancing. Both the group and Carly Kowalik are now going to compete in Waterloo Region’s Got Talent competition.

Photo by Everett Bumstead

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Controlled burn draws spectators

East-Zorra Tavistock volunteer firefighters watch closely as a controlled burn east of Tavistock sends black smoke into the morning sky. The property owner was clearing the old barn and other debris from the property Monday.

Doug Coxson, Independent staff

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Second chance for three-legged cat

Margo Montgomerie of New Hamburg wrote us this letter, including with it a picture of her unique cat.

Easter is just around the corner and I think this may be the perfect time to send an open letter to the person(s) who abandond a fragile kitten on The Morningside Village property in New Hamburg one chilly October day.
You left him near the river in an area seldom used where he could be found only by chance, and only by chance was he found.
Aside from his lovely markings, he had little going for him. Born with only one foreleg and unable to “meow”, dehydrated, confused and frightened, he must have been there for what seemed foreever.
I am a Morningside resident who happened to be in the office when his rescuer brought him in. I volunteered to care for him until the right home could be found. A few delightful weeks later, we, Tinker and I, knew the right home was with me.
It might comfort you to know in spite of the harrowing experiences you subhjected him to, Tinker still likes and trusts humans. He is friendly, sociable, frisky and playful.
Were you concerned his deformities might signifiy other problems? Let me reassure you, Tinker is healthy and intelligent and able to leap tall furniture in a single bound.
Did you have doubts about his ability to use a litter box? I’m happy to inform you he mastered the box on day one – a Herculean task for a tiny kitten with only one foreleg. It’s touching to watch him rotating his left shoulder in an attempt to use the limb that isn’t there. And he will not leave the box until the litter is tidied to his satisfaction, he has never had an accident, not once. His courage and perserverence are truly inspiration, admirable traits to boast of at Easter.
You saw Tinker as a special needs cat.
I see him as just plain special.
I hope these words will comfort you. In conclusion, I would ask of you, and others like you, to please reconsider before commiting such a callous and cowardly act again. The next time might not have such a happy ending.
Easter is a time of miracles; Tinker’s discovery and survival were miraculous.
Easter is a time of rebirth – Tinker has experenced a kind of rebirth.
Easter is a time of forgiveness. Well, where you’re concerned, the jury is still out.

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