🗞 Budgets for the better

Council could change everything about Halifax's budgeting process. Plus, how Halifax made a comedian.

Good morning and happy Friday Halifax!

Believe it or not, one of the highlights of my day is getting to read the feedback left by all of you through our daily satisfaction poll. Hearing how much you appreciate what we do here at The Coast is heartwarming, and reading your feedback and suggestions motivates me to try and make each newsletter better than the one before.

To end the week off I wanted to spread some joy and share some of my favourite comments we received this week:

“I really enjoy reading this newsletter! It's so nice to hear about what is going on in the Metropolis of Halifax and Dartmouth! Enjoy this! ”

“As a long stay visitor this is the best synopsis of current events and happenings that I've come across. I thoroughly enjoyed the read.”

“Thank you for the informative info! Also a great reminder of history not to be forgotten! Keep up the great work!”

Thank you all again for being here and returning day after day. Have a great weekend.

– Alyssa

☀️ Today’s weather: Sunny with a high of -1C (feeling like -12C in the morning and -6C in the afternoon with wind chill) and a low of -7C.

🚗 Driving in the city today? Check out the current traffic conditions and ongoing road closures.


How HRM council might just have radically changed budgets for the better

📸 The Coast

It would be natural to think that Halifax’s five-year Strategic Priorities Plan, a vision set forth to clearly identify HRM council’s priorities—things like a “prosperous economy” with “safe, inclusive and affordable communities” and a “sustainable mobility network”—would have a bearing on how the region determines its annual budget. (Why else call them priorities?) But in recent years, the five-year vision has been just that: A vision, or a “mood board,” if you will. And that’s because—until now—Halifax’s budgets have been determined by prior spending, rather than future goals.

In one single meeting, on Nov. 28, 2023, councillor Tim Outhit flipped that on its head.

In this week’s episode of The Grand Parade podcast, Coast city hall reporter Matt Stickland explains to Martin Bauman why this could change everything about Halifax’s budgeting process—and for the better. The two also discuss the Board of Police Commissioners’ latest meeting, and explored what would happen if advisory board positions were elected like the rest of HRM council.

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Need to know

🏳️‍🌈 The HRM is designating 28 supportive housing units for unhoused individuals in the 2SLGBTQIA+ community.

🥶 We’ve become so used to setting heat records over the past few years, here’s a change: Last month was a colder-than-normal month in Halifax for the first time in 4 years.

😂 Join the Great Outdoors Comedy Festival at the Garrison Grounds to catch the wildly hilarious Nate Bargatze LIVE. Tickets on sale December 8.*

🏆 Our Best of Halifax 2023 winners were revealed this week. Check out who took home gold, silver and bronze in each category.

*Sponsored Post


"Absolutely incredible performance" to herald the season

There is perhaps no sound that heralds Christmas as well as heart-stirring carol-singing by children and adults, pipe organ, and brass. And that’s precisely the musical gift Capella Regalis Men & Boys Choir gives through A Chorister’s Christmas. 

This year, expect to hear cherished classics such as “Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day” mixed with lesser-known gems such as Britten’s “A New Year Carol” and the French traditional, “Noël Nouvelet”. Add in a cheery dose of family-favourite hymns calling for hearty audience participation, and you can imagine how the Christmas spirit reverberates through the great stone arches of All Saints Cathedral!

Dec. 18, 4 pm (SOLD OUT) & 7pm – Cathedral Church of All Saints, Halifax
Dec. 23 – Dec.  31 – Online video broadcast available for streaming (pay-what-you-can)

Get your tickets now!

On The Coast


Support4Culture is a proud supporter of NS heritage

Support4Culture is a proud supporter of the Black Loyalist Heritage Center and other NS museums. Preserving the cultural heritage of communities in Nova Scotia helps to tell the stories of the past and build a better future. See the impact Support4Culture makes here. Learn More.

In other news

🗳 In an attempt to get university students to care about politics and hit voting stations, Dalhousie has welcomed back political societies Dalhousie Conservatives and Dalhousie Young New Democrats.

🌊 Here’s how Halifax university students discovered that microplastics from the ocean could be a source of air pollution in communities during Hurricane Larry back in 2021.

🏗 At the pace construction is going at now, Halifax’s housing shortage could grow to 31,000 units in 5 years. It’s currently estimated that the city is 17,500 units behind its current need.

⚽️ Christine Sinclair has officially retired. Watch her final moments on the pitch with Team Canada here.

🧑‍⚖️ The jury has begun deliberations in the murder trial of Tyler Michael Boyd.


How Halifax turned Run the Burbs’ Chris Locke into a comedian

📸 Matt Barnes

If not for academic probation, Chris Locke might never have gotten into stand-up comedy. Before Run the Burbs, TallBoyz and the Baroness von Sketch Show, and longer still before his starring role in the Atlantic crime caper Who’s Yer Father?, the 45-year-old comedian was on thin ice after a year of general arts studies at Dalhousie University.

“I dropped an English class because it was at 9am,” Locke says with a laugh, on a video call with The Coast from his home in Toronto. At the time, he was living in Howe Hall’s Henderson House. But instead of studying Hemingway or Shakespeare, he harboured dreams of being a deejay.

Sure things

Looking for something to do this week? Check out these Coast picks:

🗓️ Neighbourhood Holiday Potluck: Come with a dish, or go dishless, and enjoy a holiday meal at Every One Every Day’s Neighbourhood Shop. | Dec. 8 | 6pm-8pm | Free.

🗓️ Michael Dalton: Local musician Michael Dalton will be performing at Brightwood Brewery this weekend. Stop by and support Dalton and enjoy 15% off Brightwood Pints. | Dec. 8 & 9 | 8pm | Free admission.

🗓️ The Nutcracker: Symphony Nova Scotia, Halifax Dance and the Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia team up to bring this longstanding Halifax tradition to life at the Rebecca Cohn Auditorium. | Dec. 9 | 2pm & 7:30pm | $35-$75.

Find more Halifax events in The Coast listings

Drink this

☕️ After two years, Ramblers has brought back its peppermint mocha! You can also add a sprinkle of peppermint to any drink on the menu for the rest of December.

Shop this

🛍 Cafe Goodluck has new merch waiting for you in store!


💸 Now until tomorrow (December 9), Long Alley Bikes is offering 25% off apparel and 15% off all in-stock bikes.

Have a local special we should feature? Reply back and let us know!

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