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Niagara Falls
Monday, April 15, 2024
Editorial: Clearing the air

It has come to the attention of the paper’s editorial staff that some residents have been spreading rumours that the paper is funded by Benny Marotta, the owner of Solmar Development Corp. This is defamatory and untrue. The paper is solely independently owned by myself, Richard Harley a.k.a. Harley Davidson and has not received financing from the Marotta family.

While I can understand the leap people might make to that hypothesis, given that Marotta was apparently involved in the opening and closing of a small paper in Caledon, I can assure all readers there are currently no additional investors or share holders in The Lake Report or Niagara Now.

Presently the paper finances itself by selling advertisements, both in print and online, as well as offering sponsored story content.

All sponsored stories are labelled as such.

 The paper also receives some donations from local readers and residents who support independent, hyper-localized journalism.

To this date, our largest donation has been $500.

As the sole owner of The Lake Report and Niagara Now, it is my hope the paper will outlast any particular ongoing development issue.

The Lake Report should thrive in our unique and historical town for centuries, outliving many of its editors.

For those who weren’t at our launch event in September, a common theme throughout the night’s speeches was the impact this area has had on journalism across Canada. The Upper Canada Gazette was Ontario’s first newspaper — the fourth in Canada — and was printed here for a short period before production was moved across Lake Ontario to York (now Toronto). The Mackenzie Printery Museum in Queenston is a landmark of the first editorialized paper in our country, run by William Lyon Mackenzie.

Our town has typically had a strong tradition in print newspapers with strong readerships behind them.

We still have that.

And then there’s another uniqueness of our town, in that so many retired professionals from Toronto (and the world) come to live here.

Many of these people have spent their lives reading, keeping up with current events and staying politically active in the places they’ve lived. 

In short, when you combine all of that, it’s no surprise the town has helped make a success of this paper. It is my intent to keep The Lake Report alive for those residents, and preserve a large part of the history of our town — a part that’s often overshadowed and overlooked.

Anyone who wants to talk  further about the paper is welcome to stop in the office or get in touch with me to ask questions. I believe it is important for newspaper editors to be easy to contact and open to having conversations with residents, and intend to keep communications open.

Instead of believing rumours, give us a call and find out for yourself.


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