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Here is an abridged version of the March 5thminutes of the Town of Parry Sound council meeting. I’ve highlighted the more important items in my opinion. Refer to the full minutes that are available at the town’s website for additional information – http://www.parrysound.ca.

The only interesting item from my perspective is Item 9.3.1. I am not surprised by the decision of Council to top themselves up with the change in deductibility of expenses. I am also not surprised that Councillors Borneman and Keith voted against the top up. They have a sense of duty, but the top up is appropriate in my opinion. The two new councillors and the mayor voted in favour of a report on providing health/dental benefits. It perhaps represents the different personal situations of council members. Some may have these benefits as part of their current or past employment. I think that council should be compensated for the considerable work they do, but it shouldn’t become a job.

I am not providing timing links to the available video of meeting as there really wasn’t anything of note beyond what was included in the minutes.

Questions of Staff

3.2.1 – In response to Councillor McCann’s inquiry about how frequently the fibre bins get emptied as they were full when he was at the Transfer Station recently, Director of Public Works Peter Brown indicated that typically they get removed before they reach or exceed capacity, and that a compactor is being purchased which should help to increase capacity in the future.
3.2.2 – In response to Councillor Keith’s inquiry as to whether there is a plan for snow clearance around various fire hydrants, including having nearby residents participate in clearing them, Director of Public Works Peter Brown indicated that water treatment plant staff typically do the snow clearing, they have been out a couple of times already this year but typically don’t start the snow clearing until it stops snowing. A piece of equipment has been purchased which aids in more efficient clearing around the hydrants. Mr. Brown noted additionally, that “we’re experiencing residents who bury the hydrants” through snow-blowing and asked that residents cooperate by not doing this.
3.2.3 – In response to Councillor Borneman’s inquiry as to the status of the fog testing report as a result of work done last autumn to determine whether and/or where storm water is entering the sanitary system, Mr. Brown noted that the report is on his desk and he hopes to bring it to Council next month, after he has further opportunity to review it.

Correspondence

4.1 – Ed Horba, Project Manager, Transportation, GHD. Noise By-law exemption request for Highway 400 work at Parry Sound. Referred to By-law Enforcement Officer for follow-up.
4.3 – Marsha Rivers, CEO, Belvedere Heights. 2019 Municipal Levy for Belvedere Heights. Referred to Manager of Accounting.
4.4 – Rebecca Pollock, Chair, Parry Sound Active Transportation. Request to allocate in the 2019 budget, monies to determine the feasibility of applying the road diet concept to Parry Sound’s arterial roads, including any necessary engineering and planning reviews. Referred to Director of Public Works and copied to Manager of Accounting.
4.5 – Leah Harris, Town resident. Request that after-hours water service bills to shut off water be removed from their account. Referred to Manager of Accounting

Deputations

5.1 – John Cochrane, Near North District School Board Trustee Zone 4. Update on new Parry Sound High School. John Cochrane Vice Chair of Near North District School Board, accompanied by Jay Aspin, Chair NNDSB; and Craig Myles, Superintendent of Education, addressed Council with respect to Parry Sound High School, noting that the current school is 68 years old and in need of replacing. Mr. Cochrane recommended that Council pass a resolution urging the Education Ministry to quickly approve the plan, get shovels in the ground this spring, with copies to Premier Ford, Minister Lisa Thompson, Vic Fedeli and local MPP Norm Miller.
5.2 – Becky Pollock, Executive Director, Georgian Bay Biosphere Reserve. Proposed “Community Energy Plan” for the biosphere region. Becky Pollock, accompanied by David Bywater, Environmental Scientist with GBBR, addressed Council with a presentation entitled Towards a Regional Energy Plan & Community Climate Action. Ms. Pollock reported on climate change indicators on Georgian Bay over the last 50 to 100 years, resulting in more frequent and severe weather events such as floods, droughts, storms and forest fires causing damage to infrastructure, a psychological toll, and increased insurance rates. Ms. Pollock advocated working together to create corporate and community wide energy plans with the Town, Townships and First Nations throughout the area to combat this and referred to the Partners for Climate Protection (PCP) program, developed by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), as an appropriate standardized framework to use. Ms. Pollock described the steps of using the PCP framework and requested that Council consider the following:
1. appoint a representative to the regional effort;
2. sign on to the PCP resolution;
3. provide seed funding of up to $5,000.
Ms. Pollock concluded noting that these requests were provided in a letter to Council, as follow-up to the deputation.

Ratification of Matters from Closed Agenda

7.1. – EMS Advisory Committee appointments. Resolution 2019 – 016. That the Council of the Town of Parry Sound approve the nomination to the EMS Advisory Committee of; Mayor Jamie McGarvey, Scott Sheard, Rod Osborne, Kim Dixon, Maurice Turgeon, Lyle Hall and Cathy Still for the current term of Council. Carried

Resolutions and Direction to Staff

9.1.1 – 2018 Water System Summary Report. Carried

9.1.2 – RFP – Biosolids Haulage & Beneficial Re-use/Disposal. Carried

9.1.3 – 2019 Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiatives Annual Conference. Carried

9.2.1 – Revision to 2018 Land Ambulance Budget. Carried

9.3.1 – Council Members 1/3 Tax Exemption. That staff be directed to implement remuneration increases of elected officials retroactive to January 1, 2019, as recommended in this report and consistent with Council direction as set-out in By-law 2015 – 6554.
Recorded vote requested by Councillor Keith
Councillor V. Backman Yes
Councillor P. Borneman No
Councillor R. Burden Yes
Councillor B. Horne Yes
Councillor B. Keith No
Councillor D. McCann Yes
Mayor J. McGarvey Yes
Direction Carried 5 – 2
Direction for Staff Follow-up: That staff bring Council group benefits options (health/dental) for consideration to a future Council meeting.
Recorded vote requested by Councillor Keith
Councillor V. Backman Yes
Councillor P. Borneman No
Councillor R. Burden Yes
Councillor B. Horne No
Councillor B. Keith No
Councillor D. McCann No
Mayor J. McGarvey Yes
Direction Defeated 3 – 4
Direction for Staff Follow-up:
That upon approval of Council direction regarding remuneration increases retroactive to January 1, 2019, staff present a comprehensive compensation by-law for Council members to the next Council meeting. Carried

9.3.2 – Request for Faster Response time from Provincial & Federal Grant Funding Authorities. Carried

9.3.3 – Director of Finance Recruitment – Sub-Committee of Council Appointments. That pursuant to the Town hiring policy, the Sub-Committee for the hiring of the Director of Finance position be composed of the following Members of Council:
Councillor Borneman
Councillor Horne
Councillor Keith
Carried

9.4.1 – Motorized Mobile Ice Cream Truck. Carried

9.5.1 – “Right to Approve” Landfill Developments. Carried

By-laws

10.2.1 – Appointment of Will Williamson as a Building Inspector. Passed, Signed and Sealed this 5th day of March, 2019.

10.2.2 – Site Plan Development Agreement with Infrastructure Ontario (OPP Station – 1 North Road). Passed, Signed and Sealed this 5th day of March, 2019.