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This week’s agenda includes a couple of issues that have been ‘brewing’ for some time and are reaching the council agenda once again. I don’t imagine that there will be a decision on one of the issues (9.1.3, Public Transit System), but the discussion and report will set the stage for a decision by the newly elected Council as any decision has budget implications.

The issue of fluoride in the water system will be discussed. This was one of the issues that the candidates at the All-Candidates meeting seemed to agree needed review. I hope that the review will not only “review information regarding the hazards of putting fluoride in our drinking water”, but also review the benefits. We are all very ready to return to a more ‘natural’ way of life but let’s be sure we understand the consequences. The Town would be better off without fluoride in the water from a cost and logistics perspective, but let’s get the facts and then make a decision. This is an issue that will certainly be handed off to the new Council.

Here are the more interesting agenda items in my opinion.

4.4 – Correspondence. Resignation from Waterfront Committee. The issue of committees continues to challenge Council and Staff. Committees too often are unable to get the most qualified participants, and when they do they join they don’t last very long. The first step to solving a problem is to admit there is a problem.

5.1 – Deputation. Cascade generation station. I imagine the deputation concerns the proposed architectural design for the new power station.

5.2 – Deputation. All Ontario Native Fastball Tournament – Kinsmen Park. There is a bit of disagreement concerning the service provided by the Town under contract for this recent tournament. It’s also on the agenda as 9.1.2. The supporting documents are worth reading. Perhaps this deputation will provide some clarification from the ‘user’ point of view.

8.4 – Resolution. Provincial Land Tax Reform. This concerns a reform of the provincial land tax process that may result in higher taxes for properties in unincorporated municipalities. This may have something to do with a more equitable cost sharing of certain provincial subsidized services such as Emergency Medical Services (EMS).

9.1.1 – Resolution. James Street and Mary Street Intersection. A recommendation that James and Mary Streets be converted to a 4-way stop.

9.1.3 – Resolution. Public Transit System. This is a big issue and includes a substantial report and recommendation. I urge you to download the Council package and read this section so you can better understand the issues and options to make your own decisions.

9.2.1 – Resolution. Request for Proposals (RFP): Trails Master Plan. This is a recommendation that council accept a trails master plan development proposal from PlanbyDesign for about $23,000.

9.2.2, 9.2.3, 9.2.4 – Resolutions. A series of Stockey Centre facility upgrades amounting to about $56,000.

9.6.2 – Direction. Fluoride in Municipal Drinking Water Systems. As noted above.

9.6.3 – Discussion. Feral Cats. I’m not quite sure what is intended with this discussion  The Council package includes materials from earlier meetings of Council on this matter.

That’s pretty much it. I’ll see you Tuesday night night and I’ll ‘take attendance’. If all the candidates seem similarly qualified perhaps the best way to decide on who to vote for comes down to ‘who shows up’.

The Smoke House and Practice Makes Perfect. (Parry Sound in Black & White)