Bart DiPasquale

Richmond Terrace resident celebrating 100th birthday


By Ron Giofu


A resident of the Richmond Terrace Long-Term Care Home is celebrating a milestone birthday.

A celebration was held last Monday for Betty Sul on the occasion of her 100th birthday, with her actual birthday being July 18. Sul said she was surprised for the recognition, though called it “absolutely beautiful” and “absolutely perfect.”

“I’m just so happy that I’m going to cry,” said Sul.

Sul’s tears were held back as she smiled and enjoyed her special moment. A musician in the main floor activity room dedicated songs to Sul to commemorate her 100th birthday.

Dianna Lovell, one of Sul’s two daughters, said her mother also has four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Lovell pointed out that Sul came to Canada in 1946 after marrying a Canadian soldier during World War II.

Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale (left) presented a plaque to Betty Sul last Monday afternoon at Richmond Terrace Long-Term Care Home. Sul was recognized for her 100th birthday with her actual birth date being July 18.

“She’s from England,” Lovell explained. “She was one of the war brides.”

Sul came to North America and originally landed in New York before coming to Canada and settling in Windsor. Lovell said her mother dedicated her life to helping others through nursing.

The celebration at Richmond Terrace was something Sul didn’t expect.

“She’s totally surprised,” said Lovell. “This is a wonderful surprise for her.”

Sul was recognized by the Town of Amherstburg, as Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale was on hand to present her with a framed certificate.

“It’s a proud, proud time for everyone,” DiPasquale told Sul. “It’s a big accomplishment.”

Essex Powerlines plants 250 trees in Amherstburg



By Ron Giofu


As a part of the “Go Green Plant a Tree Campaign” that ran from Jan. 22-March 31, Essex Powerlines (EPL) will be planting 1,000 trees in its shareholder municipalities with about 250 planted in Amherstburg.

The campaign encouraged EPL customers to make the switch to paperless billing and as added green initiative to the community, a tree would be planted in their municipality.

Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale (far right) joined Essex Powerlines staff recently in planting trees in Golfview Park.

“We are truly committed to making our communities greener together,” stated Joe Barile, Essex Powerlines’ general manager. “We have to thank our customers who made this such a success.”

The Essex Power team were out in Golfview Park near the retention ponds planting cedars, maples and oaks. Teams of tree planters have been or will be going out to other member municipalities such as LaSalle, Tecumseh and Leamington.

In addition to these events, EPL have donated a portion of the trees to elementary schools within each municipality. About 150 trees go to schools with the other 100 planted in events like the one recently in the Golfview subdivision.

“It was very important for us to find a way to engage our youth in this initiative. We have seen a great uptake from the elementary schools to take part,” added Barile.

Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale plants one of the trees that were put in Golfview Park.

Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale was one of the people volunteering to help plant trees last week. He said environmental-type work is always welcome in the town and agreed that getting children involved was important.

“Planting trees like this is an important step in the right direction,” stated DiPasquale.

DiPasquale announces he will not seek re-election


By Ron Giofu

The town will be electing a new deputy mayor Oct. 22, as the current deputy mayor has decided to step out of the political arena.

Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale made it official Monday night that he will not seek re-election. His political career lasted eight years, as he was elected as a councillor in 2010 and won the deputy mayor’s job in the 2014 municipal election.

In a statement read during the “new business” portion of Monday’s town council meeting, DiPasquale said that “after careful consideration and discussion with my loving wife and family, I would like to announce that I will not be seeking re-election this fall and (will) be spending more time with my friends and grandchildren. I will also be looking forward to casting my ballot in this year’s election.”

DiPasquale said he enjoyed serving the town as deputy mayor and as a member of Essex County council.

“I have also been truly blessed in serving this community as a municipal employee and also a police officer,” he said.

DiPasquale had a 35-year career with the Amherstburg Police Service, retiring as deputy chief in 2009. His community involvement has also seen him serve with local service clubs and non-profit organizations and has resulted in numerous awards and honours over the years. He recalled starting to work for the town at age 16, grooming baseball diamonds under the direction of former administrator Tom Kilgallin.

Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale announced May 14 that he will not seek re-election.

“During my years of employment with the Town of Amherstburg and as an elected official, I have learned that this community is truly special and resilient. We have persevered through much of our debt load adversity and began updating our aging infrastructure,” he said. “We also began rebuilding our management structure and I am grateful for being part of this and serving together with all the other council members.”

DiPasquale also thanked CAO John Miceli, the management team and employees “that kept this great municipality solvent, the neighbourhoods and roads safe, the water flowing and clean and our parks active. It has been a truly superb performance and thank you.”

Wishing the next deputy mayor and council members well, DiPasquale said he wishes they will have “the same wonderful experiences and lifetime of memories I have acquired” by serving the community.

Following his statement, DiPasquale was met with a standing ovation from all in attendance at Monday night’s meeting, including his fellow council members. Several members of DiPasquale’s family, including his wife Carmen, daughters Luisa and Sandra, their grandchildren as well as other loved ones were in attendance.

Boblo dock still a cause for concern for town council



By Ron Giofu


The condition of the former Boblo Island dock on Front Road South continues to be a cause for concern from the town.

Councillor Diane Pouget addressed the matter at the April 9 town council meeting, adding that she has received reports from nearby residents about its deteriorating condition. The dock became further damaged due to recent wind storms, she said, as residents were reporting debris coming from the dock.

“They said sheets of metal were actually blowing off the roof,” said Pouget.

Pouget said the dock is “getting dangerous” and that “those sheets of metal are wreaking havoc.” With boating and Sea-Doo season approaching, Pouget voiced concern that there could be hazards in the water if material keeps blowing off the dock.

Material is also washing up on people’s property as well, she added.

“It’s in deplorable condition,” Pouget said, of the dock.

The current state of the former Boblo ferry dock is of concern to town council.

Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale agreed, saying winds have continued to damage the dock and caused debris to blow around the surrounding area. He added that he “hopes no one gets hurt” due to material continuing to be blown free from the dock.

CAO John Miceli said he will continue to follow up with the federal government, and see what their latest plans are.

The condition of the former Boblo dock has been a concern of the town for the last number of years, with an asset condition report planned as of two years ago. In 2016, Rosaleen O’Mahony, communications advisor with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, said that “should any safety concerns be identified, Fisheries and Oceans Canada will take the appropriate mitigation steps and notify the community.”

The River Town Times contacted Fisheries and Oceans Canada and relayed the town’s most recent concerns. In an e-mail response sent Monday afternoon, the federal department says they are looking into it.

“The structural deficiency of the Boblo Dock is a concern to Fisheries and Oceans Canada. We are looking at different options to remedy the detaching metal roof tiles as soon as possible,” stated Holly Foerter, regional director of communications with Fisheries and Oceans Canada. “We will notify town council once a plan is in place to address the immediate concern of the tiles.”

There still is the possibility the Coast Guard could have a use for the dock, she suggested.

“The Canadian Coast Guard still has an interest in the Boblo Wharf and is determining possible future uses of the site,” said Foerter. “The results of this study will decide if the dock will be repaired, removed, or divested.”

Essex Powerlines makes annual $10,000 donation under Youth in Community Fund



By Ron Giofu


Essex Powerlines has maintained a tradition it started several years ago to help youth in its shareholder municipalities.

Joe Barile, general manager with Essex Powerlines, attended the April 9 town council meeting and presented the town with its $10,000 share of a $40,000 donation the corporation makes through its Youth in Communities fund. This is the fifth consecutive year for the donation, with similar donations also made in LaSalle, Leamington and Tecumseh. The goal is to advance local, youth related investment. To date, Essex Power has funded a total of $200,000 youth driven initiatives in the communities it serves.

Barile pointed out the attendance of Essex Empowerment Girls Group members Natasha Kitka and Mackenzie Robson. They are organizers and facilitators of the group with that group able to utilize some of the funding.
Robson indicated they mentor girls from Grade 4-8 and the funding will be used for guest speakers and to help fund the operation of the group.

“It runs for ten weeks, once every season,” said Robson.

Essex Powerlines made its annual Youth in Community Fund donation. From left: Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale, Essex Powerlines GM Joe Barile, Mackenzie Robson from the Essex Empowerment Girls Group, manager of recreation services Rick Daly, Essex Empowerment Girls Group member Natasha Kitka and board member Bill Wark.

Kitka pointed out it is a free program, but girls do have to register for it at the Libro Centre.

“It’s beneficial for the girls,” said Kitka, with Robson adding she wishes the program was available when she was younger.

Manager of recreation services Rick Daly said the money will also be used for youth programming and day camps offered at the Libro Centre. He said there is a gymnastics program that is offered there that uses a portion of the proceeds as well.

“Along with providing reasonable rates, consistent power quality and reliability and local accountability, Essex Power is committed to being a good corporate citizen and being socially responsible. The events and programs receiving our Youth in Community funding have elements of education, fitness, art-cultural, or social responsibility.” said Ray Tracey, president and CEO of Essex Power. “At Essex Power, we truly believe that our youth are the key to our future and that investing in young people is an investment in our future.”