Tonight’s agenda weighs heavier on the deputation end of things than usual. Most of the items before Council seem related to updating policies and procedures. I’m glad to see the Town is working on issues that may not be urgent but are still important.
2.1.1 – Application B/5/2014(PS). It is proposed to be rezoned from a Marine Residential (RM) zone to a Marine Residential holding (RM-h) zone. It’s hard to figure out from the attached documentation but it appears to be the property across Emily from the recently constructed Habitat for Humanity home, back a hundred feet that doesn’t seem to have access to a public road. It seems the Town is putting additional restrictions on the property rather than loosening them perhaps to permit the owners to sell the property. There is no information in the council package regarding the nature of the holding provision. Additional information may be provided at the meeting.
4.1 – Letter. Fluoridation of the Town’s Water Supply. This letter expresses concern about the addition of fluoride to the Town’s water supply. A couple of thoughts; the difference between a medicine and a poison is the dose, what can heal can also kill if taken in excess. People may be surprised where raw materials for products that are consumed by humans are sourced. A regularly prescribed hormonal supplement for the treatment of post menopausal symptoms is still sourced from the urine of pregnant mares. I expect the Town will look into the available evidence concerning the benefits and risks of public water fluoridation and return with a reasoned response.
4.2 – Belvedere Heights’ 2015 Operating Levy. No surprises here, but it’s interesting to see the relative municipality assessments. Parry Sound is in the fourth spot with $777 million of assessment behind Seguin with $2.9 billion, Archipelago with $1.8 billion and Carling with $870 million. Got to love those high end seasonal residences, don’t call them cottages. Too bad they don’t like to pay for infrastructure, not even the high speed internet they are ‘pining’ for. Perhaps they can get taxpayers from the Province and the rest of Canada to subsidize their ‘need for speed’.
4.4 – Letter. High Water Levels on Lake Manitouwabing.
5.1 – Perry Harris, CEO, Parry Sound Area Chamber of Commerce. Proposed Designated Information Centre, Year in Review. This includes a pitch requesting financial support for the Chamber’s tourism initiative in the Town’s 2015 budget to fill the gap left when the Travel Centre at the 400 was closed a year ago.
5.2 – Tony Romanelli, RCC Media Re: Digital Billboard on the CN Train Bridge crossing Bowes Street. I am concerned that this puts commerce ahead of safety and common sense. My letter to Council is linked here. We have had three traffic related deaths in the Town in the past decade, let’s not create a situation that adds to the number.
5.3 – Petition to construct sidewalks to the new elementary school. Makes sense, let’s keep the kids safe if we are requiring them to walk to school. Shouldn’t this expense be shared with the School Board?
8.1 – Support of Funding Request from Near North District School Board to Ministry of Education regarding joint school campus in Parry Sound. Parry Sound is joining the McDougall initiative in this matter.
Resolutions and Direction to Staff
9.3.1 – Resolution. Stockey Centre Catering Service Agreement. Staff is suggesting the Town contract with a new caterer as the current contract holder has decided not to apply for renewal.
9.5.1 – Direction. Strategic Planning Ad-hoc Committee be established to develop an outline to develop the 2015 – 19. The Plan is based on a similar format to that undertaken in 2011 and submit the outline to Council February 3rd for approval.
10.1.1 – By-law. To appoint a Treasurer for the Corporation of the Town of Parry Sound.
10.1.2 – By-Law. To authorize temporary borrowing to meet the current expenditures of the Town of Parry Sound until taxes are collected and other revenues are received.
10.1.3 – By-law. To approve an Investment Policy for the Corporation of the Town of Parry Sound. This is a bigger issue that is well described in the council package. The proposal is that the Town invest in conservative financial instruments that are not simple interest bearing accounts.
10.1.4 – By-law to define the purchasing policies and procedures for the Corporation of the Town of Parry Sound. This is a large document that defines and refines the Town’s purchasing and contracting policies. A necessary read if you are a current or future supplier.
I will be at the meeting tonight to attend the open meeting and listen to the deputations and Councillor reports. The rest of the agenda seems to offer the prospect of providing little more than what is in the council package.
The Way It Was – Before the Freeze (Parry Sound in Black & White)