Standard Freeholder Ed Hugo Rodrigues All Wet on Water Meters for Cornwall Ontario While Big Ben Has No Membrane by Jamie Gilcig

Standard Freeholder Ed Hugo Rodrigues All Wet on Water Meters for Cornwall Ontario While Big Ben Has No Membrane by Jamie Gilcig

jg2CFN– Freeholder Hugo Rodrigues is spouting off about Water Meters for Cornwall in a recent editorial.   Frankly I’m not sure Mr. Rodrigues even lives in Cornwall.  The Poobah from the Canadian Association of Journalists was dropped in to helm the newspaper for Sun Media and after helping improve the paper is starting to come out with policy papers like this.

Frankly in a city like Cornwall Ontario there is no need for water meters.   We have excess capacity which we should use to benefit the tax payers.

Rates should be fair and accommodate the needs of the residents of our city and have some extra built in to support current and future infrastructure.

What is odd that Mr. Rodrigues lack of real concern or knowledge about the real issue facing residents when it comes to water and that is leakage from Big Ben, our dump at the centre of our city into our waters.  A dump that is alleged to not have a membrane which means leachate entering our Bed Rock.

big ben no membrane

“In the early 1970s, Domtar persuaded the City of Cornwall to permit the dumping of its paper mill waste (sludge, bark and lime dregs) behind a shopping mall in the middle of the city. Part of the dump was sodded over while dumping continued, and Domtar funded a “bunny” ski hill there, known as “Big Ben“.

By the mid-1990s this Domtar landfill was rapidly filling up with sludge, bark, and lime dregs from the Cornwall kraft and fine paper mill. The problem was exacerbated when new waste water regulations required the Cornwall mill to also remove lignin and starch—formerly discharged into the St. Lawrence River—from its waste water. In response, Domtar began selling dewatered mill waste to Cornwall and area residents labeled as “Soil Conditioner”.

For some five years—until high levels of fecal coliforms and fecal streptococcus were discovered in the waste—this “Soil Conditioner” was sold for home garden use and was used by local farmers as fertilizer. Domtar at first claimed that their process could not have contributed e-coli and fecal coli from human feces. The company later revealed to the Ontario Ministry of the Environment+ (MOE) that some toilets and urinals at the mill connected with the mill’s waste water treatment process, rather than with the city’s sanitary sewers. Moreover, a stormwater system also emptied into the sludge generating system.

The paper mill site (now a brownfield+) was sold to Paris Holdings of Cornwall in 2006 with undisclosed terms and covenants relating to liability and clean up of soil and water affected, for over 120 years, by mill and human waste. Domtar still maintains control of the adjacent dump which is the source of a leachate+ plume polluting ground water between it and the St. Lawrence River (with the City of Cornwall Water Purification Plant in between). The dump which is officially named, the “Big Ben Landfill And Recreation Area”, currently receives demolition waste and asbestos from the decommissioned paper mill.

In 2007 Domtar Corporation made a request to the MOE to additionally allow the dumping of soil at “Big Ben”, contaminated with coal tar and bitumen waste, from another Dominion Tar and Chemical Co. Limited site in Cornwall. This manufacturing facility at 7th St. W. and Cumberland Street in Cornwall produced “bituminous fibre” pipe, from 1929 to 1976 known variously as; Cornwall “Standard” Fibre Conduit (1929–38), Cornwall Nocrete Conduit (1938–44), and finally No-co-rode Co. Ltd. – Fibre Conduit Division (1944–76).”

That is soil from where our new Wal-Mart Super store is being built.

From Wikipedia:

Cornwall does not enjoy a positive environmental reputation as a result of decades of industrial pollution in the city, the legacy of which is a riverfront contaminated by mercury, zinc, lead, and copper,[14] soil contaminated by coal tar and byproducts,[15] and most evidently, “BigBen“:[16] a 45-acre (180,000 m2), 80 metre tall dumpsite within the city filled with wood bark, paper mill sludge, demolition waste andasbestos.

In September 2008, over public opposition and in spite of Ontario Ministry of Environment (MOE) reports indicating off site leachateimpact from the dump and the likelihood of runoff to the St. Lawrence River, the MOE permitted additional dumping at the “Big Ben” site of creosote and bitumin contaminated soils from Domtar’s former No-co-rode Ltd. site.
Although the area is touted as recreational, it is off-limits until winter when the waste is covered and the odours are subdued. It is then used as a ski hill.

Cornwall still is suffering from a very high rate of Cancer.   We can’t give you that rate as the EOHU refuses to share any numbers although annecdotally people who have been to Ottawa for Cancer treatment report an abnormally high percentage of locals attending those facilities.

For years, the industrial emissions in the Cornwall area, fuelled public health concern about respiratory disease and cancer. In 1995 Health Canada[17] reported the rate of hospitalization for asthma was approximately double that of cities such as Hamilton, Sudbury andWindsor.

From a CFN viewer:

No it didn’t. But the clown that was in charge of shipping all that contaminated coal tar from Cumberland St site was in the freeholder telling the community not to worry because BIG BEN had a membrane installed when it was first developed. I’m showing you that the MOE and the Cornwall public was mislead. And there are alot of toxic chemicals buried in that hill. Not just from the Paper Mill site! And yes test holes where drilled in 2001 and 2002 and confirmed that the leachate had finally reached bedrock and the St Lawrence river.

Much of this came out in opposition to the Benson Centre location which is where run off would occur and where test wells for Big Ben used to be.

From a Freeholder story:

Mayor Bob Kilger and councillors Grant, Carr, Gardiner, Denis Thibault, Elaine MacDonald and Bernadette Clement voted in favour while councillors Mark MacDonald and Kim Baird were opposed. Coun. Andre Rivette was absent, however he has spoken against the Domtar woodyard site in the past.

It’s interesting that Councilor Clement supported the Benson Centre site while also being on the board of the St. Lawrence River Institute which further impeaches its own credibility.
What is more frightening are allegations that soil from the Legion Ball Park next to our current Chem tanks was dumped onto Big Ben without a MOE permit.

Iqaluit’s dump developed an internal fire that cost million’s to treat; but its dump was well outside of the town.  Cornwall’s dump in right near the Seaway International Bridge, a densely populated residential area and has the Benson Centre as a neighbor.

So Mr. Rodrigues, before we add a layer of cost to taxpayers to have Water Meters maybe, just maybe, you should do some homework on the real water crisis facing Cornwall residents and the area?

As for some of the numbers you cited in your editorial, they can be adjusted as necessary without adding meters.  People with pools should pay a bit more although that could also be resolved in their municipal levy.  There are simpler solutions than adding another meter to people’s already over taxed and over burdened lives.

Maybe where you live there are meters everywhere, but is that any reason to bring them to Cornwall?

This writer thinks not.

What do you think Cornwall and CFN viewers?  You can post your comments below.

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43 Comments on "Standard Freeholder Ed Hugo Rodrigues All Wet on Water Meters for Cornwall Ontario While Big Ben Has No Membrane by Jamie Gilcig"

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Furtz
Member

I’m so glad to be living in the boonies where my well water isn’t being polluted with fluoride and other industrial waste. A few years ago, it was floated that rural residential wells should have meters installed and the owners should be charged for the water they used! The tall foreheads that came up with that idea quietly backed down when it was pointed out to them that a lot of rural people are well equipped deer and duck hunters.

mary bray
Guest

Last year I had gone to an open house when still looking for a house in Kingston.The realator asked where I lived ,when I told him Cornwall, the first thing he knew about Cornwall was the high cancer rates & the sexual abuse rates

jules
Guest

Mary Bray my neighbor a few floors down from me who parks her car next to ours in the parking garage said the same things about Cornwall with the high cancer rates and sexual abuse. Cornwall’s reputation is BLACK and I don’t say that lightly. The retired teacher that we speak to in the park has lots to say about Cornwall as well.

jules
Guest

Great article Jamie. I wish that people would open their eyes and ears to this and not remain deaf, blind and stupid. People don’t realize that skiing on that hill or going on the Benson Centre will show more and more signs of cancers to come in the near future. People don’t realize the horrible legacy that was left to them by Domtar and whoever partook in this thing who was mayor of Cornwall at the time.

BEBE REBOZZO
Guest

Great article Jamie, can someone answer my question, regarding the ground up concrete from the deck of the Seaway International Bridge, is it ending up at “Big Ben” ?
Second question, Hugo, do you live in the City, or, like most of the City big-wigs, do you live elsewhere ?

BEBE REBOZZO
Guest

Jamie,,,, just saw your last comment regarding cancer rates, it was actually 2 recent Mayors that succumbed to that dreadful disease, of course , I believe you were referring to Mayor Poirier & not that long ago, Mayor Ron Martelle passed away also. And yes, I too wish Mayor Bob,all the best also, it’s just terrible .

jules
Guest
The three mayors with cancers does not count the rest of the people who are afflicted with cancers and Ottawa and Kingston has plenty of patients coming to their clinics for cancer treatments. Even the soil at the former Courthaulds Mill is heavily contaminated. ICI, BASF and all industrial lands should not be used for building homes nor arenas nor businesses. Cornwall is highly contaminated. People who are using the former industrial lands for homes, arenas, etc. will not later on about the cancers that they will receive from being on those dumps that have not been cleaned and folks… Read more »
jules
Guest
Jamie did I read you right that Bare Ass’s cancer returned. Oh no God forbid. Jamie I would never wish anyone ill health and I had a sister in law that passed away last December with heart condition and she too was a cancer patient. My God I am in tears just now hoping that it isn’t so. I will call him Bare Ass and everything going but never ill health. There is no price tag for good health. My husband’s eldest niece in Sydney Australia was born with type 1 diabetes and a few years ago she contracted cancer… Read more »
jules
Guest
Oh my God Jamie. I had to come off a little to control my tears. I come out with a lot of things but never ever wish anyone ill health ever in my life. Prayer for Bob oh bout that was hard for me not to use the name Bare Ass. Honestly I mean this I hope that Bob pulls through. Just going through these treatments is horrible. Jamie my husband’s nephew who is in his early 50’s a year or two older than you has type 1 brain cancer and is going through treatments in Beirut and has not… Read more »
Hugger1
Guest
Furtz….let me get this straight…..they wanted to install water meters on wells on owner’s property and then charge them to use their own water? BEBE REBOZZO….I think the concrete from the Seaway International Bridge will end up as road aggregate. They crush used concrete up and use it as road base in most cases. This way the company doing the demolition can make even more profit. No more Harpoon Harper? As for Hugo Rodrigues and his suggestion for water meters in Cornwall….they aren’t needed for a number of reasons. One very valid one is the one Jamie pointed out. A… Read more »
Hugger1
Guest

Forgot to add a comment about Jamie’s encounter with the VP. Jamie you do a good job. We may not always agree, but I respect you for having the balls to do what you do. By doing what you do you made a very big impact on Cornwall during the last election. Do you think we would have seen the changes at city council without CFN covering stories the other media outlets refused to cover or were told not to cover?

Furtz
Member

Hugger, not sure if it was a county or local township brainwave, but the idea was to install meters on all private wells and charge for the water used. Legally, property owners do not own what is below the surface.

Hugger1
Guest

I can imagine. Some people for some strange reason liked the turfed members of council. More could have been done, but if people refuse to take off their rose coloured glasses nothing will get done.

David Oldham
Guest
The culprit is not was not Domtar. The province granted permission, if approved by the mayor and council of the the day, or the creation of a toxic dump within the city centre. Leadership was the culprit, Domtar was the benefactor of poor decision making by community representatives. Two communities at one time shared the limelight for the highest rates of cancer in North America. One was Shawville Quebec (Consolidated Bathurst) and you guessed it, Cornwall Ontario (Domtar). In speaking with an actuarial at a meeting in Toronto (1999) it was learned that Cornwall Ontario had the highest incidence of,… Read more »
jules
Guest
Yesterday evening I came off the entire computer feeling very bad about Bare Ass oh Bob and my husband and I were sitting in the living room talking about him and both of us feel bad about his health. We have lost so many family members over this horrible disease and one was my husband’s uncle who was a doctor of internal medicine. We wish Bob well and hope that he retires from work and takes care of himself. Jamie I have heard talk in papers about putting water meters on wells and nothing to do with Cornwall but other… Read more »
jules
Guest
Jamie I have never had more respect for anyone in my entire life than what I have for you and that is the truth. You are not a politician but an excellent journalist and you are getting the truth out there. I wish to God that the people of Cornwall and area would wake up and take their heads out of the sand. We are all in for a mighty rough ride and not just tiny Cornwall but the entire world is at stake just now. Please people pray for our Canada and pray for peace around the world because… Read more »
jules
Guest

Jamie there has to be fluoride in Cornwall’s water and we could taste it when we lived down there. We filter our water here in Ottawa and even when we lived in Cornwall.

jules
Guest

Jamie you are right. I just looked it up a while ago and you cannot taste fluoride. It was the chlorine and it has a strong taste to it. We filter our water since a number of years even for a time in Cornwall.

Hugger1
Guest

David Oldham….I think the culprit is Domtar. It is their sludge, etc. that is sitting on Big Ben. Yes, the province and the city made a big mistake approving the use of the creation of Big Ben. Domtar should be a responsible corporate citizen and clean that crap up.

David Oldham
Guest
Hugger1 you missed the point. If the council of the day had not lobbied for permission from the province on behalf of Domtar for the toxic waste dump site it would not be there. Domtar acted in good faith and did nothing illegal. The cost of the clean up belongs to the party who was pinnacle in the process that landed it where it is. The taxpayers of Cornwall are responsible, they elected the mayor and council who obtained approval from the provincial regulatory body. Credit where credit is due. Domtar only did what the city of Cornwall enabled them… Read more »
Hugger1
Guest

I did NOT miss the point. My point being that even though they had permission they should be responsible to clean that colossal mess, Big Ben, up. We, the city, should go after the province for allowing this and Domtar for the costs involved in cleaning that mess up.

BEBE REBBOZZO
Guest

Morning Hugger, thanks for your response, regarding the crushed concrete from the bridge decking ! I should of been more precise in my concerns, is this product being dumped in our beloved mid-center town dump, that some people refer to as BIG BEN ? Maybe , the demolition company could address this question also ?

Hugger1
Guest

The concrete slabs, etc are being stored on the old Domtar property on Second St. W.

BEBE REBBOZZO
Guest

Hugger, your the man !

I guess that’s my fear, if the slabs are stored at their property (Domtar) & then ground up all at once, WILL it be then trucked conveniently across the street to Big Ben ?

jules
Guest
The culprit is all three levels of government are at fault along with Domtar. Domtar wiped their hands on the matter and the governments of both federal and provincial do not give a rat’s ass about Cornwall and never have and the pollution went on for years and so much so that it would be impossible to make a total clean up. The feds came in and said “use our land for those tanks who cares” so a company came and put in the tanks and Kilger buried everything up on the people as usual and a man walking by… Read more »
jules
Guest
Jamie when you are going through a lot in Cornwall from the haters you know very well that you have them all pinned in their little corner like a child who was caught doing bad things and exposed for the things that he or she did. Other communities everywhere got ahead but Cornwall stayed behind. It is like in the words of Mr. Finnerty where he went to Cornwall in 1956 and the town hasn’t grown since that time and that is so true indeed. Other towns grew, they have art centres, good libraries, a healthy lifestyle, universities and colleges… Read more »
Hugger1
Guest
I don’t think Hugo was / is part of the cover-up(s). He answers to a higher power…..Osprey Media Group, which is owned by Sun Media, which is owned by Quebcor. It’ll even get more interesting when PostMedia completes the purchase of Sun Media’s English language newspapers, specialty publications and digital properties. CFN and Jamie is his own boss, so he doesn’t have to be concerned with what his bosses want and he doesn’t have to answer to higher ups. Hugo I think is being smart and doing what he’s told. Is that always right? Only each individual can answer that,… Read more »
Hugger1
Guest

Jules, the process has started (hopefully). Here’s hoping the new mayor and city council will do what needs to be done to get Cornwall started on to the road of better times.

WoodyWood
Guest

Publish the letters from Ben Stidwell and Gerry Grant!!!!

David Oldham
Guest

The City of Cornwall and the province knew full well the environmental issues of the toxic waste dump (Big Ben) The hazards of asbestos were well known when the city sought provincial approval for the site. What Domtar did with the dump was fully legal why should they pay for a mess that the province and city of cornwall enabled in the first place? They broke no laws.

WoodyWood
Guest
Domtar allowed CIL to use the hill when they had Serious spills. I no this is fact.Cil had a pipe that crossed over 2nd st which carried Chlorine Dioxide. directly to the Domtar Bleach Plant. They where known for helping each other. The new mayors brother Doug, worked on and around the hill. And has seen some crazy shit take place. I can tell you that Toxic drums and refrigerators etc… Where buried in that hill. 2″ steel plates where placed over the concrete vents behind Walmart next to the tracks because of kids smoking cigarettes and throwing there butts… Read more »
Hugger1
Guest

Whether the city and province allowed Big Ben to be created and still maintained is important. But to begin with this was / is Domtar’s mess. No matter. There have been cases in the past and will be in the future where governments have gone after the companies responsible for environment disasters. The city / province needs to get on Domtar’s ass and get this mess (Big Ben and anything related to it) cleaned up.

David Oldham
Guest
Hugger1 what laws did Domtar violate? The dump was licensed for toxic waste, that was its purpose. All parties involved in the approval for this site understood the purpose. This is not Domtars responsibility it is the direct result of poor decision making by the former mayor and council of the day that voted to approve the dump in the first place. Funny how Domtar was the next best thing to sliced bread when they were providing jobs that could sustain an average family life style. Sad that people look to others in an effort to shrug off their own… Read more »
Hugger1
Guest

How about Domtar being a responsible corporate citizen? Or is that concept unheard of now?

jules
Guest
Woody Wood I remember those pipes that went from ICI (formerly CIL) to Domtar and yes both industries helped each other. That highly polluted dump is going to cause more and more cancers throughout time than what most know about. Remember the town in New York State called Three Mile Island or something like that where the people had to leave that town because it was highly polluted. It was situated somewhere near Niagara Falls NY. I fear that the same will hold true for Cornwall unless something is done now. I think that this is one project HUMOUNGOUS PROJECT… Read more »
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