Tuesday’s meeting of Council was reasonably short, and wrapped up by 8:50 PM despite a later start and the presentation of Crossing Guard Student Appreciation certificates.
Well, I still don’t agree with Council’s decisions regarding Big Sound Marina. They are in a real ‘pickle’ and have chosen to reach into the pockets of local businesses to solve their problem. Other issues were not controversial in my opinion. Read my separate post “Bear Huntin’ Country” before you wander out on the North Shore Rugged Trail during hunting season. It may not be as safe as a couple of Councillors have assured us.
Councillors Reports and Questions of Staff
Cascade Street will be pretty much blocked off to through traffic next Tuesday (February 25th) as CN contractors install the gates at the crossing. Nothing else of real importance was raised in the councillors reports.
The reconciliation of outstanding water and electricity bills with the transfer of billing responsibilities to the Town has been completed. The Town is writing off about $23,000 as uncollectable, this is down from about $145,000 at the end of 2012. Any future unpaid bills for water and hydro will be applied to the property owners taxes (even if the expenses were incurred by tenants).
2.1.1 – a public meeting to consider a proposed Zoning By-law amendment to rezone Part of Lot 25, Concession 1, Plan 42R-10676, [effectively the Sobeys property]. The rezoning would permit up to 4,270 square meters of total gross floor area, and remove the reference to a retail food store, allowing for the development of a new retail commercial development. [There were no presentations for or against the amendment, and it was reported no correspondence had been received. There is no reason to believe that the amendment request will be denied.]
I made a deputation concerning the proposed lease of seasonal slips at Big Sound Marina that would compete with local marinas.
4.1 – Jerry J. Ouellette, M.P.P, Oshawa regarding Council’s formal position on being excluded from the Spring Bear Hunt Pilot Project. [See item 8.1 below for more information.]
4.2 – Hands The Family Help Network, a request for funding in the amount of $28,000 towards their expansion. [This item was noted as being on the draft 2014 budget. The request was turned down at the budget meeting the next night on the basis that it left the door open to requests from other non-profit organizations.]
4.3 – The Salvation Army, Rainbow Country Church, regarding the relocation of the Friday Night Street Ministry. [The request was noted and forwarded to Staff for follow up.]
4.4 – Veterans and Their Families in Our Community; an invitation to attend the OSUM Conference in Parry Sound April 2nd to May 3rd. [The invitation was noted and forwarded to Staff for follow up.]
4.5 – OSUM (Ontario Small Urban Municipalities) regarding a nomination form to serve on the Executive Board 2014 OSUM Conference being held in Parry Sound. [See item 8.4.]
8.1 – Council’s formal position on being excluded from the Spring Bear Hunt Pilot Project. The Town of Parry Sound requests the Ministry of Natural Resources to include area 46 and 49 in the proposed Pilot Program. [CARRIED. It was an interesting discussion. It became apparent to me that at least a couple of the Councillors didn’t really understand some of the geographical issues as evidenced by their comments. I’m not so sure I am comforted by the comments of two Councillors that there will be no bear hunting in Parry Sound. See my separate post on this issue for a more detailed discussion of the issue. It’s a bit like politics south of the border. In that case you don’t mess with gun control. If you are a politician Parry Sound you don’t mess with hunters and you don’t mess with feral cats. Where would Council would come out on a proposed hunt for feral cats? (I’m kidding. Well sort of.)]
8.2 – a request to schedule a special meeting of Council to discuss the 2014 budget. [CARRIED. Scheduled for February 19th. You missed it. See my separate Budget Meeting notes for the net/net.]
8.3 – the Town of Parry Sound urges the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario to reject (and seek alternatives to) Ontario Power Generation’s proposal to bury radioactive nuclear waste in the Great Lakes Basin. [CARRIED]
8.4 – the nomination of Mayor Jamie McGarvey as a board member of the Ontario Small Urban Municipalities Board Nomination to the OSUM Executive Board. [CARRIED. This is a follow up to item 4.5.]
Resolutions and Direction To Staff
9.1.1 – Panasonic Toughbook computer purchase for EMS. Resolution. [CARRIED]
9.3.1 – Approve Signing Authorities and Corporate Credit Cards. Resolution. [CARRIED]
9.4.1 – Consent Application B1/2014(PS). Resolution. That Council supports Consent Application No. B1/2014(PS) – Garagan – 71 Bowes Street subject to confirmation resultant lots would meet the requirements of the zoning by-law (i.e. servicing and setbacks). [CARRIED]
9.4.2 – Big Sound Marina & Town Dock Operating Contract. Resolution. That Council direct staff to negotiate an operating contract with Massasauga Management Co. Inc., for operation of Big Sound Marina and the Town Dock, per the framework attached as Schedule ‘A’; and that Council approves a usage mix of 25 seasonal slips and 95 transient slips. [CARRIED. I’m disappointed by Council’s decision to move forward with the leasing of 25 seasonal dockage slips. They ask for business studies to determine the impact of development on the Town, but are seemingly immune from similar requirements concerning how their ‘business activities’ might impact local businesses. ‘Do as we say, not as we do!’ I made a deputation outlining the issues and suggested that if they insisted on going forward without further investigation that they might start with 10 slips and then meet with the local marinas to see what impact that had on their business. The results might suggest the opportunity to expand the number or perhaps terminate the program. But the Town doesn’t seem to care too much as to how their actions might impact their tax paying local marinas.]
9.5.1 – Tender, Hanging Baskets. Resolution. That Council accept the tender from Bala Garden Centre for 100 planted baskets in the amount of $88.00 per basket including pick-up of empty baskets and delivery of planted baskets and 20 new galvanized frame baskets in the amount of $27.99 each for a total of $10,576.57 including HST. [CARRIED]
10.4.1 – Waterlot, Declaration of Surplus Lands. By-law. To declare a Town owned waterlot surplus. [CARRIED. No significant discussion.]
10.4.2 – Stockey Centre Catering Service Agreement. By-law. To authorize the execution of an agreement with Now That’s Catering for the provision of catering services at the Stockey Centre. [CARRIED. No significant discussion.]
10.4.3 – Artists Round the Sound Agreement. By-law. An agreement with the Artists Round the Sound (ARTS) for the rental of wall space at the Stockey Centre. [CARRIED. No significant discussion.]
North Shore Rugged Trail – Warmer Days (Parry Sound in Black & White)
These notes review only those portions of the council meeting that I see as having greater importance or general community interest. See my agenda preview posts for additional comments.
The official minutes from council meetings are available at the Town of Parry Sound website, no later than the Friday following the meeting. The full council proceeding are available on video through Cogeco. Schedule details are available from the town office (705-746-2101).