Council Agenda Preview – September 3, 2019

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There are some interesting developments as noted below.

Closed Session f) and 4.2, – Canadore and French School. Things are clear with respect to what comes next. The French School will be in Canadore for at least the next year after an Ontario Superior Court injunction. I don’t have a dog in this fight as my kids finished primary school a couple of decades ago. That being said we probably would have sent our kids to a French school had it been an option. I think Town of Parry Sound Council shot themselves in the foot with their decision. Had I been at the table with the same interests of Council I would have agreed to the one-year occupancy in exchange for a ‘standstill’ agreement with the French Board that would have prevented the French Board and Canadore from entering into any future agreement to sell/transfer the Canadore campus to the French Board at some future date. I suspect that Canadore is interested in retreating from Parry Sound given the financial realities of providing adult education. Unless the Town of Parry Sound, and possibly the surrounding municipalities, is willing to subsidize adult education it is likely that there will not be any local post-graduation education opportunities in the area. Is Bracebridge really that far away for people who want an education? It would make it tougher but not impossible. The letter, Item 4.2, is worth reading for context from one side of the discussion.

5.3 – Jo Bossart. Request for Closed Report & Recommendation item. I’m asking for the background information related to the recent acquisition of Big Sound Marina and future plans. I’m getting questions from members of the community about what’s going on at the Waterfront for which Council has not provided public information. (Democracy Dies in Darkness – Washington Post)

9.1.1 – Big Sound Marina Agreement One Year Extension with Massasauga Management Co. Resolution. The interesting thing in this item is the passing mention that while Big Sound Marina will be acquired by the Town, the Town Dock isn’t part of the deal. There is mention of a lease of the Town Dock.

9.2.1 & 9.2.2 – Wellness Centre & Pool. Based on the documentation in the agenda package I am beginning to believe that the area will have a pool complex, and I’m not against it. The documentation seems to suggest that the area communities are considering a joint funding agreement presumably for construction costs and operations that allocates funding support on the basis of a number of parameters, notably population, assessments and distance from the Town of Parry Sound. The Town’s share would be the highest at about 25% with Whitestone at the low end at a 6.1% commitment. These are the figures for the sharing of the due diligence expenses but might point to where the final cost sharing could be agreed. (Many hands make light work.)

Be sure to take a look at the agenda package available at the Town’s website for the full agenda and supporting documents.

Closed Session

f) the receiving of advice that is subject to solicitor-client privilege, including communications necessary for that purpose (Rezoning – 1 College Dr.)

Correspondence

4.1 – Eric McIntyre. Request for sidewalks at Isabella-Wood Street/St. Charles Crossing area.

4.2 – John & Christine Gilbert. Disappointment with Council’s zoning decision re: 1 College Drive.

4.3 – Parry Sound Area Food Collaborative. Support offered as the Town progresses through the Partners for Climate Protection Program, vis a vis food systems.

4.4 – Marianne King-Wilson and others. Request to proclaim September 28th as British Home Child Day.

4.5 – Peter Culkeen. Concerns with trees cut down near Champagne St. launch

Deputations

5.1 – Oren Scott. Lighthouse Condominium Development.

5.2 – Nadine Hammond, Jim Marshall, West Parry Sound District Museum. Request for relief from part of museum’s water bill from first quarter, 2019.

5.3 – Jo Bossart. Request for Closed Report & Recommendation item.

Resolutions and Direction to Staff

9.1.1 – Big Sound Marina Agreement One Year Extension with Massasauga Management Co. Resolution. That staff negotiate a one-year extension with Massasauga Management Co. for the operation of Big Sound Marina similar to the current terms and conditions and prepare an RFP process to be run throughout the winter for the operation of BSM and Town Dock from October 2020 to October 2024.

9.1.2 – Land Ambulance Contract. Resolution. That upon the recommendation of the EMS Advisory Committee, the Town of Parry Sound Council authorize the extension of the Land Ambulance Contract (same terms and conditions) with the West Parry Sound Health Centre for an additional year ending December 31, 2020.

9.2.1 – Wellness Centre & Pool. Resolution. That subject to all area municipalities agreeing to participate as outlined in this report to Council entitled Wellness Centre and Pool dated September 3, 2019, the following recommendation be approved:
That the Decision-Making Model, Schedule A (Attachment 1 to report) be approved;
That the Wellness Centre and Pool Committee Terms of Reference, Schedule B (Attachment 3 to report) be approved;
That the Mayor/Reeve or other member of Council be appointed to the Wellness Centre and Pool Committee;
That Council appoint _____________ as an alternate member of Council in the event the designate cannot attend a meeting;
That the Wellness Centre and Pool Committee be allocated a budget of $170,000, excluding HST to fund the due diligence and governance work; and
That the cost sharing formulae, as outlined in the report, Schedule C (Attachment 4 to report) be approved for the purposes of funding the due diligence work covered by the RFP and preparing a governance framework.

9.2.2 – Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program – Community Culture and Recreation. Direction. That a request be forwarded to the six (6) area municipalities and the First Nations of Wasauksing and Shawanaga to submit a joint funding application under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program: Community Culture and Recreation for the Wellness Centre and Pool project.

9.3.1 – Water and Wastewater Rate Study and O.Reg 453.07 Water Financial Plan. Resolution. That Council hereby approves the undertaking of a Water and Wastewater Rate Study followed by a Water Financial Plan by Watson & Associates Economists Ltd. (Watson) for the estimated cost of $34,920 before HST. The Water and Wastewater Rate Study with the Financial Plan is to be funded 50% from the Water Stabilization Reserve and 50% from the Wastewater Stabilization Reserve.

9.3.2 – Financial Variance Report for Mid-Year 2019. Resolution. That Council hereby receives and accepts the variance report for Mid-Year 2019 (June 30, 2019); and Further that Council hereby approves the expenses for Council members for the period from January 1, 2019 to June 30, 2019.

9.4.1 – Conservation and Demand Management Plan. Resolution. That Council approves the 5-year Conservation and Demand Management Plan, attached as Schedule “A”, for the Town of Parry Sound’s facilities and infrastructure as per Ontario Regulation 507/18.

9.4.2 – Bowes Street Storm Sewer Replacement Tender Award. Resolution. That upon the recommendation of Tatham Engineering Limited, Council accept the tender from Fowler Construction Company Limited for the storm sewer replacement on Bowes Street, in the amount of $106,473.80, excluding HST, this tender being the lowest of two tenders received.

9.4.3 – Commitment and Endorsement of Drinking Water Quality Management Standard. Resolution. That Council authorize the Mayor and CAO to endorse and approve the Town of Parry Sound Drinking Water Quality Management Standard and Operational Plan by signing the Commitment and Endorsement of QMS and Operational Plan, attached as Schedule “A”.

9.5.1 – Opposition to Changes in 2019 Provincial Budget and Planning Act – (as postponed from August 13, 2019 meeting). Resolution. BE IT RESOLVED that Council for the Corporation of the Town of Parry Sound, accepting the facts and sentiments expressed in the City of Stratford’s resolution attached as Schedule A regarding opposition to Changes in the 2019 Provincial Budget and Planning, does hereby request a meeting with MPP Norm Miller, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark, and other related ministries on the effects of downloading onto municipal governments;
and THAT this resolution be forwarded to the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), to initiating municipality the City of Stratford, and to all other municipalities in Ontario.

By-laws

10.4.1 – Cellular phone contract renewal / refresh with Bell Mobility Inc. By-law 2019 – 6946. Being a by-law to authorize the execution of a contract with Bell Mobility Inc., for the purpose of updating / renewing / refreshing the cellular phone, voice and data contract for the Corporation of the Town of Parry Sound and repeal Bylaw 2016-6627.

10.4.2 – Cemetery By-law. Direction. That staff be directed to forward this by-law to the Bereavement Authority of Ontario for approval.
By-law 2019 – 6952. Being a By-law to establish the maintenance, management, regulation and control of the Hillcrest Cemetery and Sylvan Acres Cemetery and to repeal By-law 2019-6940.

 

Big Sound Marina – Quick Note

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I have just had a chance to see the proposed agreement between the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Town of Parry Sound. It looks like a win-win and requires me to revise my initial comments after reviewing last week’s council meeting minutes. (Note: It’s always a good idea to check the source documents when they are made available.)

My reading of the agreement indicates that Big Sound Marina will be transferred to the Town for a nominal sum, $1.00. In addition the Federal Government will provide the Town with a grant of about $1.3 million to pay for the necessary improvements to the marina.

The Town has certain obligations to keep the marina operating for a defined period of time that will with time hit our taxes, but will probably be paid for indirectly by the increased traffic in Town. Overall then, I think it’s a win for the Town. I’m not happy subsidizing rich boaters at the expense of our local community but it seems that this is not the case here.

I would like to congratulate Staff and Council for getting this deal done. With Big Sound Marina under direct Town control I look forward to seeing the bigger vision and plan for the waterfront.

Counci lMeeting Minutes (Abridged) – August 13, 2019

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There is quite a bit to unpack from the decisions of the Town of Parry Sound Council’s August 13, 2019 meeting.

Closed Session. multiple items are ongoing of which a couple have been decided and are included in the decisions coming out of the Closed Meeting. Among the ongoing items not yet disclosed it seems that the discussions with Seguin about a boundary change are still active.

7.1 – Wellness Centre & Pool Committee. It seems that things are still moving forward.

7.2 – Big Sound Marina Divestiture. Carried. This is an interesting issue. Because it came out of the Closed Session there is no documentation regarding the terms of the agreement to acquire the facility. I have requested a copy of the agreement and will provide an analysis once it has been received and reviewed.

9.4.1 – Big Sound Marina – Floating Breakwater and Dock C replacement. Carried. I would like to better understand where the Town is going with this major investment which is linked to 7.2 above.

10.4.1 – Rezoning Application – Z/19/08 – 1 College Drive (Canadore College Board of Governors). By-law 2019 – 6949. Defeated. I have commented on this in an earlier post and I have nothing more to offer on the subject. I will be interested to see how this plays out and what comes next. Municipal Chess? Perhaps it’s just Municipal Checkers. Hopefully it’s not Municipal Hangman.

Closed Session

b) personal matter about an identifiable individual, including municipal or local board employees, (conflict of interest opinion);
c) a proposed or pending acquisition or disposition of land for municipal or local board purpose, (potential property disposal), (2 potential property purchases);
e) litigation or potential litigation, including matters before administrative tribunals, affecting the municipality or local board, (municipal election court application update), (contractor services);
f) the receiving of advice that is subject to solicitor-client privilege, including communications necessary for that purpose (municipal election court application update), (conflict of interest opinion), (servicing agreement);
n) a position, plan, procedure, criteria or instruction to be applied to any negotiations carried on or to be carried on by or on behalf of the municipality or local board, (potential property purchase), (boundary negotiations).

Disclosure of Pecuniary Interest and the General Nature Thereof
1.4.1 – Mayor McGarvey declared pecuniary interest on item 10.4.2 Home Hardware Lease Agreement as he works for another Home Hardware store. Mayor McGarvey left the room for the item, did not participate in discussion nor vote on the item.

Public Meeting

2.1 – Official Plan Amendment No. 3 and Zoning By-law Amendment – Z/19/6 – Smith Crescent (YMCA/Wickman). Subsequent to an explanation of how the public was notified of application Z/19/6 Smith Crescent (YMCA/Wickman), Manager of Building & Planning Services Taylor Elgie gave an explanation of the purpose of the proposed concurrent Official Plan Amendment (OPA) and Zoning By-law Amendment (ZBA), being to re-designate the lands from Public Open Space to Rural Residential.
Mayor McGarvey invited those in favour of the proposed OPA and ZBA to address Council. No one spoke in favour.
Mayor McGarvey invited those in opposition of the proposed OPA and ZBA to address Council. June Smith addressed Council on behalf of herself and husband Verne who live at 40 Smith Crescent in a house built by her husband`s family 60 years ago, and separated from the open space by the driveway on Smith Crescent going into the YMCA property. Ms. Smith expressed concern about the potential for environmental harm as a result of the proposed rezoning and development, including the loss of wetlands which are a critical part of the environment and have a complex ecosystem. Ms. Smith also expressed concern that blasting might compromise the structure of their house, and well.
In conclusion, Ms. Smith requested that the proponents provide a detailed environmental assessment and engineering report outlining the impact of a building project on the ecosystem and existing neighbourhood buildings, prior to considering the zoning by-law amendment.
Mr. Elgie reported that one letter had been received in opposition, also from June & Verne Smith outlining similar concerns to that given orally by Ms. Smith this evening. Mayor McGarvey concluded the public meeting with notice that objections to the passing of either of the amendments will be received by the Clerk within 20 days from the date such notice is given, which objections will be forwarded to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal. If an appeal is submitted and the appellant has not provided Council with an oral or written submission before the passing of the by-law, the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal may choose to dismiss the appeal

Questions of Staff

3.2.1 – In response to Councillor Keith’s inquiry regarding a strong odour coming from a storm drain experienced in particular during dry spells, on the east side of James Street near the theatre and County Gourmet, Director of Public Works, Peter Brown said that this problem has been noted in a few other locations in the downtown and the concern is that it may be an illegal sanitary sewer connection into the storm sewer. Mr. Brown said that the Town has hired a contractor to run a lateral camera up the storm sewer, and the work is scheduled in the next week or so, early morning before traffic starts with results expected within a few weeks after the camera work.

3.2.2 – In response to Councillor Borneman’s inquiry as the status of Waubeek and Isabella Street projects, Mr. Brown provided some details on project status supporting his summary that the projects were going well, on time, and should be finished before end of the construction season.

3.2.3 – In response to Councillor Borneman’s inquiry as to the status of the BOCC renovation project, Manager of Parks & Recreation April McNamara reported that the BOCC renovation project is going well and on time, with walls painted last week, boards up this week and that ice should be in ready for the season start in September.

3.2.4 – In response to Councillor Backman`s inquiry as to the tree planting program, Manager of Parks & Recreation April McNamara reported that a tree assessment was undertaken in early summer, with some trees removed in Market Square and on William Street, and that trees will be replanted in late fall at two trees for every one taken down.

Correspondence

4.1a – Peter Scully. Request for traffic calming sign on Church St. at McMurray referred to Director of Public Works for follow-up.

4.1b – Peter Scully. Appreciation for traffic calming sign on Church St. at McMurray

4.2 – Barbara O’Brien. Advocacy for Splash Pad. Circulated to members of Council and Manager of Parks & Recreation.

4.4 – David Coles, Chair, Downtown Business Association. Advocacy for Reinstatement of Waterfront Advisory Committee. Circulated to members of Council and the CAO for consideration.

4.5 – Dave Coles, Chair, Downtown Business Association. Request Town’s assistance in helping keep downtown clean and beautiful. Circulated to members of Council, to the Director of Public Works and Manager of Parks & Recreation.

4.6 – Dave Coles, Chair, Downtown Business Association. Request Town`s assistance in addressing safety in the downtown area, including an invitation to participate in a walk-about tomorrow evening to go over issues. Circulated to members of Council with some available to attend the walk about.

4.7 – David Sweetnam, Executive Director Georgian Bay Forever. Responses to Council 3 questions raised at GBF June 4th, 2019 deputation regarding: Phragmites and invasive species funding, Parry Sound deployments of the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV), and data sharing from shoreline cleanups. Circulated to members of Council and filed.

4.8 – Indigenous Services Canada. Wasauksing Swing Bridge – Public Consultation re: future operations, to be held 6 PM Wednesday, August 21st at the Bobby Orr Community Centre. Circulated to members of Council and posted on bulletin board.

4.9 – Michelle Sims. Request for 4-way stop at James/William/Rosetta intersection. Circulated to Council members for consideration on direction and to the Director of Public Works.

Deputations

5.1 – Linda West, Hands Off Our Trees. RE: Potential loss of trees along Fitness Trail as a result of proposed development. Linda West addressed council from a power point presentation requesting that the existing open space zoning as identified just west of the Fitness Trail remain so. Ms. West referred to the Town’s website which references the Town’s Trail Master Plan of 2015 listing the Waterfront Trail as one of the Amazing Places. Ms. West also noted that the Waterfront Trail contributes to the Town economy, as tourist trail users purchase goods and use services in the community. Ms. West also referred to the physical and mental health benefits of walking and that a return walk along the Fitness Trail between Salt Dock Road and Bay Street is the equivalent of 2 miles, a recommended daily minimum exercise.
Ms. West expressed concern that the proposed development will not improve Waterfront Trail users’ health, and instead will likely have negative results. Ms. West concluded by noting that many communities are trying to achieve what Parry Sound has done with respect to physically connecting greenways, trails, open space corridors, waterways and natural areas; and asked why not leverage the Trail Master Plan.

5.2 – Vince Kulchycki – Chief Operating Officer, and Jennifer Montpetit – Advanced Planning and Communications Lead, Lakeland Holding Ltd. SPEEDIER and DEMOCRASI projects as part of ToPS-Lakeland solar agreement Vince Kulchycki and Jennifer Montpetit addressed Council from a prepared power point presentation on two new projects.
The project objective of SPEEDIER (Smart, Proactive, Enabled, Energy Distribution; Intelligently, Efficiently, Responsive), is to shift towards a net-zero smart community through among other initiatives: increasing solar and energy storage; reducing load on locally constrained transmission stations; electric vehicle (EV) adoption reducing greenhouse gas; developing a net metering solution utilizing solar and waterpower; developing greater automation and integration within the utility environment; developing smart residential demand management via controllable hot water tanks EV chargers and battery storage.
The problem identified in the project DEMOCRASI is that Distributed Energy Resources (DER) aggregators provide their services through the distribution network to the system operator at a cost to local distribution companies, leading to grid instability and asset degradation, thereby increasing the need for higher capital expenditures borne by ratepayers.
The project objectives are to expand from single feeder to complete network, leading Parry Sound to reach the net-zero goal; and management and control of various DERs (Hydro, hot water heaters, demand response, solar, EVs, batteries (residential and substation).

Ratification of Matters from Closed Agenda

7.1 – Wellness Centre & Pool Committee. Resolution. That Council supports the CAO continuing in his role on the CAO Wellness Centre and Pool Committee. Carried

7.2 – Big Sound Marina Divestiture. By-law 2019 – 6947. Being a By-law to authorize the execution of an agreement with Her Majesty the Queen in right of Ontario as represented by the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans for the divestiture of the Big Sound Marina. Passed, Signed and Sealed

Resolutions and Direction to Staff

9.1.1 – Civic Scholarship Award. That upon the recommendation of the Scholarship Committee, Council awards the 2019 Civic Scholarship to Nicole Babcock-Ritchie in the amount $500.00. Carried

9.1.2 – Parks & Recreation Master Plan: Letter of Invitation to Participate. Direction. That staff send the invitation to the Municipality of McDougall & Seguin Township to participate in an Area Parks & Recreation Master Plan (or update) per Schedule A.
The following amendment was moved:
That the invitation to the Municipality of McDougall and Seguin Township to participate in the update of the Parks and Recreation Master Plan be extended to the other 4municipalities in West Parry Sound and to the First Nation Communities of Wasauksing and Shawanaga. Amendment Carried. The amended direction was voted on: Direction carried as amended

9.1.3 – Market Square Park – Public Wi-Fi Hours of Service. Direction. That Council direct staff to contact Vianet and have the public Wi-Fi hours in Market Square Park amended to be available from 7am – 7pm daily. Carried

9.1.4 – Memorial Bench & Tree Policy. Resolution. That Council approve the combined Memorial Bench & Tree Program, per Schedule A. Carried

9.1.5 – Appointments to Library Board and EMS Advisory Committee. Resolution. That Resolution 2018-142 appointing individuals to various Boards and Committees, be amended by ratifying Parry Sound Public Library Board appointments of Tom Lundy representing the Township of The Archipelago, Susan Murphy representing the Township of Carling, Lynne Gregory representing the Municipality of McDougall; and that Colleen O`Hare be appointed as a member at large instead of representing the Town of Parry Sound; and
That Resolution 2018-143 appointing members of Council and staff to various Boards and Committees be amended by removing Dave Thompson from the Parry Sound District Emergency Medical Services Advisory Committee, as Mr. Thompson is a staff resource person, not a Committee member. Carried

9.1.6 – Exemption Received from Provincial Approval of Official Plan Amendments. Direction. That the report be received for information purposes. Carried

9.4.1 – Big Sound Marina – Floating Breakwater and Dock C replacement. Resolution. That the Council for the Town of Parry Sound authorize staff to develop a Request for Design Build services in conjunction with Tatham Engineering for the replacement of the floating breakwater and Dock C at Big Sound Marina; and further further that staff release an RFP for replacement of the Floating Breakwater and Dock C as a Design Build project. Carried

Other Business

9.5.1 – Deposit/Return Program for Single Use Plastic/Aluminum/Metal Drink Containers. Resolution. WHEREAS the Province of Ontario, through the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, has posted a discussion paper entitled “Reducing Litter and Waste in our Communities”; and WHEREAS producer responsibility has not been adequately addressed by the Province of Ontario; and WHEREAS a successful deposit-return program for single use plastic, aluminum and metal drink containers has been in existence in other Provinces in Canada including Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and British Columbia; and WHEREAS these successful programs have eliminated many of these containers from the natural environment;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Council of the Town of Parry Sound endorses the Corporation of the Town of Halton Hills’ Resolution 2019-0141 calling upon the Province of Ontario, through the discussion paper entitled “Reducing Litter and Waste in our Communities”, to review and implement a deposit/return program for all single use plastic, aluminum and metal drink containers; and further THAT that the Province of Ontario review current producer requirements and look for extended producer responsibility for all packaging; and further THAT a copy of this motion be sent to the Premier of Ontario; the Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks; the Minister of Municipal Affairs; the Association of Municipalities of Ontario and all municipalities in the Province of Ontario. Defeated
The following direction was moved:
That staff draft a resolution for the next Council meeting, incorporating information from Halton Hill’s Resolution 2019-0141 regarding deposit/return program, in addition to new information as provided by Special Advisor David Lindsay in his report on Recycling and Plastic Waste, Direction Carried

9.5.2 – Opposition to Changes in 2019 Provincial Budget and Planning Act. Resolution. BE IT RESOLVED that Council for, accepting the facts and sentiments expressed in the City of Stratford’s resolution attached as Schedule A regarding opposition to Changes in the 2019 Provincial Budget and Planning, does hereby request a meeting with MPP Norm Miller, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark, and other related ministries on the effects of downloading onto municipal governments; and
THAT this resolution be forwarded to the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), to initiating municipality the City of Stratford, and to all other municipalities in Ontario.
The following motion to postpone was made: That the resolution be postponed to September 3rd, 2019. Carried to postpone

By-laws

10.1.1 – Agreement: Nipissing-Parry Sound Student Transportation Services. By-law 2019 – 6948. Being a by-law to execute an agreement with Nipissing-Parry Sound Student Transportation Services for the provision of a school bus transfer site at the Kinsmen Park. Passed Signed and Sealed

10.4.1 – Rezoning Application – Z/19/08 – 1 College Drive (Canadore College Board of Governors). By-law 2019 – 6949. Being a Temporary Use By-law to amend By-law No. 2004-4653 (The Zoning By-law), as amended, for 1 College Drive (Canadore College Board of Governors and Conseil scolaire public du Nord-Est de l’Ontario).
Councillor Borneman requested a recorded vote.
Councillor Backman no
Councillor Borneman no
Councillor Burden no
Councillor Horne no
Councillor Keith no
Councillor McCann no
Mayor McGarvey no
0-7. By-law Defeated

10.4.2 – Lease Extension Home Hardware Reciprocal Lease for Fitness Trail. By-law 2019 – 695. Being a By-law to Renew a Lease with Home Hardware Stores Limited until December 31st, 2029 for lands known as the Rotary Algonquin Regiment Fitness Trail and Town Owned Lands. Passed, Signed and Sealed.
The following direction was moved: That staff be directed to approach the property owner with respect to a formal land swap with respect to these properties. Carried

Town of Parry Sound v. Canadore and French School Board

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Well this has become interesting if you are a fan of municipal politics and zoning.

Please take my comments in the same light as you would a sportswriter who follows the Maple Leafs and is offering an analysis of the team’s prospects; who might be traded and possible changes in team management. I’m just watching and offering some thoughts on what is likely to happen. I’m not particularly interested in the outcome. This may seem a bit cold to some but as you may discover it’s easier covering the Leafs if you’re not a Leafs fan. It allows for a little bit more perspective. I realize that there are people involved who will be impacted whatever the final decision.

I am of course referring to the request from The French School Board and Canadore College in Parry Sound to permit the use of the Canadore facilities for French elementary school education in Town. I will not rehash the arguments for, or against, the request but start with the decision of Parry Sound’s Council last night and forecast what I see as the near and longer term outcomes.

Last night Council resoundingly rejected Staff’s recommendation that the necessary rezoning request be approved to permit the use for a one year period of the Canadore facilities for a French elementary school. With a recorded vote the proposal was unanimously defeated.

In my experience the proposal of Staff was made in the best interests of Town resources and existing best municipal practices as outlined below and provided the opportunity for a negotiated settlement in the next twelve months. The decision of Council was political. They are after all politicians. They might like to think of themselves as judges weighing the facts and making decisions in the best interests of the community. But the request for a recorded vote clearly indicated that they didn’t want to be on the ‘wrong’ side of an unpopular issue. Having watched and followed Council for about nine years now I have come to realize that they really don’t want to oppose vocal organized groups – witness the fluoridation vote. If possible, they prefer to hand off the decision.

My belief is that the French School will be located at Canadore for the coming school year. The French Board is interested in renting the space and Canadore is interested in renting it to them. We have a willing seller and buyer. There is little or no time to make alternate arrangements on the part of the French Board and the basement of a church is not at all practical. It’s like asking them to move to the back of the bus. Terrible optics even if they are not real.

Canadore is not going to call the police to have the students, teachers and administrators removed from the campus. The Town won’t either, even if it had the standing to do so.

I am sure that the French Board will appeal Council’s decision last night, or I would in their position. This means the issue will be brought before a municipal tribunal for review and a final decision. It will take at least twelve months for the necessary hearings to take place and a decision to be rendered. The coming school year is safe. The French Board can in the interim make arrangements for the following year although I expect that it won’t need to.

I mentioned earlier that I think Staff made the ‘safe’ recommendation for a one-year use of Canadore. That’s because it will be very hard for the Tribunal to deny the appeal of the French School Board and reject their rezoning application. They may even suggest that it be extended to two years or more. I’m sure Canadore will present information that they do not have enough students to use the complete facility and that the French School can be accommodated without compromising their services. I suspect that Canadore will also argue that the revenue from the rental is critical to their financial future with the many Provincial Government cuts to education. The overall argument will be that there is unused space available and there is a group interested in renting it. It’s not as though the space is being rented for use as a Cannabis Store, a fast food establishment or a bank. The proposed rezoning is quite consistent with the established zoning and existing use.

What does the Town argue in return? Probably something like, the French School will make it more difficult for Canadore to deliver the post graduate and adult education services that were part of its charter. Canadore will probably respond that the remaining facility resources are quite sufficient to meet the education needs of the community. Canadore will likely argue that having excess unused capacity will not increase enrollment or programs but may in fact cause them to reduce offerings because of the financial squeeze brought on by the loss of a committed tenant.

The Town also will have a bit of a cost issue related to any appeal. Because Staff recommended that the property be rezoned, they will not easily be able to argue that the rezoning shouldn’t be approved. That means Council will need to go to outside counsel to defend their decision. The cost may be on the order of $50K or more. The French Board on the other hand has greater resources and I would imagine at least one staff Planner and Lawyer to organize and present their case. Parry Sound Council faced a similar situation about 7 years ago but dodged a bullet when the party who lost the rezoning request chose to fold their tent and not take it any further. More recently there was the case of the Royal Bank of Canada move to the south end. I was the person who opposed the move and appealed the decision. It cost me about $1K to win the first round but I folded after realizing that it would cost $40K to move to the next stage and parties that had initially offered support did not step up. The Town in the RBC move case had no financial liability because the developer picked up the costs that I expect were on the order of $40K just for taking me on in the first round and not winning. You’ve got to know when to hold them and know when to fold them.

That’s how I see it playing out in the near term. In the long term I think Canadore will wind up their operations in Parry Sound and retreat to North Bay in the next few years. What are you going to do about that Council? Have you unintentionally killed formal adult education in Parry Sound because of politics? But come election year they won’t have to take criticism for making a tough decision. They can blame the Tribunal.

Bonus prediction – the Leafs will be better than the Senators. Actually they have to be better. This prediction thing isn’t too hard if you consider the issues, identify alternatives, and don’t have a stake in the outcome.

Council Agenda Preview – August 13, 2019

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Is there anybody out there?

While it’s the middle of the summer there are still interesting/important topics on the upcoming Town of Parry Sound council meeting agenda. I want to remind people that I abridge the agenda presented below to exclude items that I think are neither controversial nor particularly interesting. Always refer to the full agenda at the Town’s website for the full agenda and the accompanying agenda documentation.

The top items on the agenda this week as far as I’m concerned are the following:

Closed Session c) – a proposed or pending acquisition or disposition of land for municipal or local board purpose, (potential property disposal), (2 potential property purchases)

Closed Session e) & f) – litigation or potential litigation, including matters before administrative tribunals, affecting the municipality or local board, (municipal election court application update), (contractor services). The receiving of advice that is subject to solicitor-client privilege, including communications necessary for that purpose (municipal election court application update), (conflict of interest opinion), (servicing agreement). There may be more of an issue here than I had ever imagined.

9.1.6 – Exemption Received from Provincial Approval of Official Plan Amendments. Direction. That the report be received for information purposes. This is a big ‘issue’. The Town is now able to approve items that are in conflict with the existing Official Plan without requiring Province of Ontario approval. It is possible that the Town may take advantage of this new power to approve items that are in conflict with the Official Plan and at odds with the wishes of impacted businesses and residents. It will make the approval process much quicker and hopefully promote more ‘appropriate’ development. Residents and businesses will still be able to contest any approvals by appeal to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal. There will be recourse through the Tribunal but there presumably won’t be any appeal to the Province on the basis of a conflict with the Official Plan. Overall, I guess it’s okay.

9.4.1 – Big Sound Marina – Floating Breakwater and Dock C replacement. (Direction or Resolution?) That the Council for the Town of Parry Sound authorize staff to develop a Request for Design Build services in conjunction with Tatham Engineering for the replacement of the floating breakwater and Dock C at Big Sound Marina; and further further that staff release an RFP for replacement of the Floating Breakwater and Dock C as a Design Build project. Okay, I have a big issue with this item. It proposes to look into an upgrade to Big Sound Marina that would cost on the order of $1.3 million. The are dire warnings of “imminent failure” of the breakwater without further explanation or reasoning for this investment. This would be about the third upgrade we’ve made to Big Sound Marina in the past 10 years and I estimate total costs with this new improvement would bring the expense up to $2.5-$3 million. This is to support transients with their 30-, 40- and 50-foot boats for a period of about two months. In theory the season is longer than that but in June and September we see less traffic and the marina is never filled to capacity, so there is no extended need for dockage. Yet we can’t find $150,000 to invest in a splash pad for the kids. I think before going and requesting engineering proposals, which will also be expensive, the Town should present the financial benefits of making this upgrade and the proposed payback. Is the Town itself making any money with Big Sound Marina? The contract with the operators is confidential so we have no idea who is benefiting financially from the upgrade. Full disclosure: my brother-in-law owns and operates Sound Boat Works. The proposed investment in Big Sound Marina from what I understand will neither benefit nor damage his business. Nonetheless, I’m sure he would be delighted if the town were to invest $1 million in his business so that he can better serve his customers who also come to Parry Sound, spend money in Parry Sound, and come back year after year. They are certainly not transients.
Let’s get information on the financial benefits for making this investment. Assuming a 10-year amortization for the $1.3 million suggests that our taxes will need to go up by about 1.5-2% for that period. Or equivalent services will need to be cut.
Yet Council quibbles and debates about $150,000 for the kids and people who can’t afford these half million dollar boats. Where are our priorities?

10.4.1 – Rezoning Application – Z/19/08 – 1 College Drive (Canadore College Board of Governors). By-law 2019 – 6949. Being a Temporary Use By-law to amend By-law No. 2004-4653 (The Zoning By-law), as amended, for 1 College Drive (Canadore College Board of Governors and Conseil scolaire public du Nord-Est de l’Ontario). Staff is proposing that Canadore be permitted to host the French language school for one year. After that, who knows. Given that it is the middle of August I’m glad some accommodation has been reached. Not ideal, but it seems reasonable.

10.4.2 – Lease Extension Home Hardware Reciprocal Lease for Fitness Trail By-law 2019 – 6950. Being a By-law to Renew a Lease with Home Hardware Stores Limited until December 31st, 2029 for lands known as the Rotary Algonquin Regiment Fitness Trail and Town Owned Lands. Well this was news to me. The Town doesn’t own the trail that runs by ‘Beaver Lumber’ but does own land that runs through the lumber yard. The two entities have been swapping access rights for the past 20 years and the agreement is up for renewal. It seems to be a win-win with the bigger win for McNabb Lumber Home Building Centre. I was totally confused reading the agenda item summary until I read the supporting documentation.

Closed Meeting

c) a proposed or pending acquisition or disposition of land for municipal or local board purpose, (potential property disposal), (2 potential property purchases);
e) litigation or potential litigation, including matters before administrative tribunals, affecting the municipality or local board, (municipal election court application update), (contractor services);
f) the receiving of advice that is subject to solicitor-client privilege, including communications necessary for that purpose (municipal election court application update), (conflict of interest opinion), (servicing agreement);
n) a position, plan, procedure, criteria or instruction to be applied to any negotiations carried on or to be carried on by or on behalf of the municipality or local board, (potential property purchase), (boundary negotiations).

Public Meeting

2.1 – Official Plan Amendment No. 3 and Zoning By-law Amendment – Z/19/6 – Smith Crescent (YMCA/Wickman).

Correspondence

4.1a – Peter Scully. Request for traffic calming sign on Church St. at McMurray.
4.1b – Peter Scully. Appreciation for traffic calming sign on Church St. at McMurray

4.2 – Barbara O’Brien. Advocacy for Splash Pad

4.4 – David Coles, Chair, Downtown Business Association. Advocacy for Reinstatement of Waterfront Advisory Committee

4.5 – Dave Coles, Chair, Downtown Business Association. Request Town’s assistance in helping keep downtown clean and beautiful.

4.6 – Dave Coles, Chair, Downtown Business Association. Request Town`s assistance in addressing safety in the downtown area.

4.7 – Georgian Bay Forever. Responses to Council questions raised at GBF June 4th, 2019 deputation.

4.8 – Indigenous Services Canada. Wasauksing Swing Bridge – Public Consultation on future operations.

4.9 – Michelle Sims. Request for 4-way stop at James/William/Rosetta intersection.

Deputations

5.1 Vince Kulchycki – Chief Operating Officer, and Jennifer Montpetit – Advanced Planning and Communications Lead, Lakeland Holding Ltd. SPEEDIER and DEMOCRASI projects as part of ToPS-Lakeland solar agreement.

5.2 – Linda West, Hands Off Our Trees. Potential loss of trees along Fitness Trail as a result of proposed development.

Resolutions and Direction to Staff

9.1.1 – Civic Scholarship Award. Resolution. That upon the recommendation of the Scholarship Committee, Council awards the 2019 Scholarship to Nicole Babcock-Ritchie in the amount of $500.00.

9.1.2 – Parks & Recreation Master Plan: Letter of Invitation to Participate. Direction. That staff send the invitation to the Municipality of McDougall & Seguin Township to participate in an Area Parks & Recreation Master Plan (or update) per Schedule A.

9.1.3 – Market Square Park – Public Wi-Fi Hours of Service. Direction. That Council direct staff to contact Vianet and have the public Wi-Fi hours in Market Square Park amended to be available from 7am – 7pm daily.

9.1.4 – Memorial Bench & Tree Policy. Resolution. That Council approve the combined Memorial Bench & Tree Program, per Schedule A.

9.1.5 – Appointments to Library Board and EMS Advisory Committee. Resolution. That Resolution 2018-142 appointing individuals to various Boards and Committees, be amended by ratifying Parry Sound Public Library Board appointments of Tom Lundy representing the Township of The Archipelago, Susan Murphy representing the Township of Carling, Lynne Gregory representing the Municipality of McDougall; and that Colleen O`Hare be appointed as a member at large instead of representing the Town of Parry Sound; and
That Resolution 2018-143 appointing members of Council and staff to various Boards and Committees be amended by removing Dave Thompson from the Parry Sound District Emergency Medical Services Advisory Committee, as Mr. Thompson is a staff resource person, not a Committee member.

9.1.6 – Exemption Received from Provincial Approval of Official Plan Amendments. Direction. That the report be received for information purposes.

9.4.1 – Big Sound Marina – Floating Breakwater and Dock C replacement. (Direction or Resolution?) That the Council for the Town of Parry Sound authorize staff to develop a Request for Design Build services in conjunction with Tatham Engineering for the replacement of the floating breakwater and Dock C at Big Sound Marina; and further that staff release an RFP for replacement of the Floating Breakwater and Dock C as a Design Build project.

9.5.1 – Deposit/Return Program for Single Use Plastic/Aluminum/Metal Drink Containers. Resolution. (Introductory text removed.)
THERFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Council of the Town of Parry Sound endorses the Corporation of the Town of Halton Hills’ Resolution 2019-0141 calling upon the Province of Ontario, through the discussion paper entitled “Reducing Litter and Waste in our Communities”, to review and implement a deposit/return program for all single use plastic, aluminum and metal drink containers; and further
THAT that the Province of Ontario review current producer requirements and look for extended producer responsibility for all packaging; and further THAT a copy of this motion be sent to the Premier of Ontario; the Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks; the Minister of Municipal Affairs; the Association of Municipalities of Ontario and all municipalities in the Province of Ontario.

9.5.2 – Opposition to Changes in 2019 Provincial Budget and Planning Act. Resolution. BE IT RESOLVED that Council for the Corporation of the Town of Parry Sound, accepting the facts and sentiments expressed in the City of Stratford’s resolution attached as Schedule A regarding opposition to Changes in the 2019 Provincial Budget and Planning, does hereby request a meeting with MPP Norm Miller, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark, and other related ministries on the effects of downloading onto municipal governments; and
THAT this resolution be forwarded to the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), to initiating municipality the City of Stratford, and to all other municipalities in Ontario.

By-laws

10.1.1 – Agreement: Nipissing-Parry Sound Student Transportation Services. By-law 2019 – 6948. Being a by-law to execute an agreement with Nipissing-Parry Sound Student Transportation Services for the provision of a school bus transfer site at the Kinsmen Park.

10.4.1 – Rezoning Application – Z/19/08 – 1 College Drive (Canadore College Board of Governors). By-law 2019 – 6949. Being a Temporary Use By-law to amend By-law No. 2004-4653 (The Zoning By-law), as amended, for 1 College Drive (Canadore College Board of Governors and Conseil scolaire public du Nord-Est de l’Ontario).

10.4.2 – Lease Extension Home Hardware Reciprocal Lease for Fitness Trail By-law 2019 – 6950. Being a By-law to Renew a Lease with Home Hardware Stores Limited until December 31st, 2029 for lands known as the Rotary Algonquin Regiment Fitness Trail and Town Owned Lands.

Council Meeting Minutes (Abridged) – July 16, 2019

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Woof. Reading the minutes from the July 16thmeeting are enough to keep you busy for a half hour. It takes less time than watching the video linked in my last post. I won’t wade into the two Open Meeting topics with an opinion but two thoughts:

  1. The proposed development on Salt Dock Road would mean about $200,000 to $250,000 in additional annual revenue for the Town when you consider municipal taxes and water services.
  2. NIMBY (Not in My Back Yard), literally, not figuratively.

Read on. My thanks to the Clerk for the summary of the Open Meeting presentations. It’s a time saver and not something we would have received in the past.

Closed Meeting Items
Council move to a meeting closed to the public in order to address matters pertaining to:
e) litigation or potential litigation, including matters before administrative tribunals, affecting the municipality or local board (storm water easements on private property) Carried

Public Meeting

2.1 – Official Plan Amendment No. 2 and Zoning By-law Amendment – Z/19/4 (Morgan Planning and Developments Inc. on behalf of Greystone Project Management Inc. for Salt Dock Road, the Lighthouse) to re-designate the lands from public open space to residential high density.
Discussion Summary:
Subsequent to an explanation of how the public was notified of application Z/19/4 (Morgan Planning and Developments Inc. on behalf of Greystone Project Management Inc. for Salt Dock Road, the Lighthouse), Manager of Building & Planning Services Taylor Elgie gave an explanation of the purpose of the proposed concurrent Official Plan Amendment (OPA) and Zoning By-law Amendment (ZBA), being to re-designate the lands from public open space to residential high density. Mayor McGarvey invited those in favour of the proposed OPA and ZBA to address Council.
Speaking in Favour:
1. Lisa Lund spoke in favour, noting that she is aware through her membership on the Community Business & Development Corporation (CB&DC) Board, of a lack of housing. She noted that while the price point of the proposed units may not suit everyone, the development will free up a number of affordable properties for people moving to Town for work. The lack of housing is a barrier for growth and economic development as was identified at the recent area Housing Summit.
Ms. Lund reported that it was her understanding that the Town put out an RFP to place housing in this area to accommodate up to 42 units and that this developer has taken that up. Ms. Lund noted that while she understood the objections related to view that residents of Beaconview might have, she hoped that the developer has addressed these concerns.
2. Pat Dube, development applicant and Josh Morgan, land use planning consultant addressed Council from a prepared power point presentation with an overview of the proposed development.
Mr. Dube reported that The Lighthouse development design respects the boundary and neighbourhood and has been modified from the first submission in terms of location and building size to address concerns from Beaconview residents. Mr. Dube noted that they will be using materials that are dark in colour and a profile that blends with the surroundings and the rock of the site, and the building is proposed to be below the sightlines of Beaconview. The design works well with the topography minimizing the amount of rock to be blasted. The grades work well, with five floors at the façade for a three-storey building, a parking garage on the second level and a terrace on the lowest level near the walking trail. Mr. Dube pointed out a proposed extension of the walking trail up the side of Salt Dock Road giving some direction regarding continuation of the trail, and a crosswalk proposed across Salt Dock Road to tie in with the parking built for the other end of the trail while building Granite Harbour.
Mr. Dube noted that the plan maintains the old rail spur line, which is a change from the previous plan; the grade of the railroad spur doesn’t change, nor does the bank to Beaconview. This respects the landscaping work that Beaconview has done. All of the new development work will happen in front of the rail spur line which effectively uses the rock drop off for various entry levels.
From a cross section view of the property, Mr. Dube pointed out the height of the bottom floor of Beaconview at 203.95 metres with the normal height of a person standing at 205.45 metres and roof level of the Lighthouse at 203.4 metres, a meter below eye level of an average person standing on the first floor of Beaconview. Mr. Dube said that a 3 ft elevator projection on a 5 foot-wide box will protrude; however there will be no airconditioning units on the roof. A green membrane will be used on the roof, so that people on the Beaconview terrace aren’t blinded by reflection of a white roof. Mr. Dube noted that currently there are lots of trees in front of Beaconview, and therefore this development will improve the view of the Bay.
Mr. Dube briefly referred to the floor plans available and the functional servicing report which identifies how to get sewer and water to the site and how to deal with drainage off the site.
Josh Morgan, land use planning consultant who has worked on behalf of Greystone before, noted that the entirety of the subject property is designated as Public Open Space in the OP and that the proposal is to re-designate it to Residential High Density (RHD). Mr. Morgan noted that the Beaconview property immediately to the east, is also designated as RHD. While RHD permits density of 75 units per hectare, the proposed development has a density of 47.6 units per hectare.
Under the Town’s Zoning By-law, the property has two parts, with the west side (Bay side) zoned Transportation and Utilities and the east side zoned Open Space 1. In order to accommodate the 40-unit development proposal, the proponents have applied to rezone both parts as R3, which is same zone as the Beaconview Condominimums.
Site specific zoning by-law provisions requested include: permitting a height of 14.2 metres; interior side yard set back to the west (the Bay side) of 3.47 metres; utilization of the front yard for a combination of parking, snow storage and landscaped open space; permitting parking spaces in the front yard, (i.e. north side of property between the building and Salt Dock Road); and reducing the standard parking stall widths of the inside parking spaces of which there are 33, from 3 metres to 2.7 metres, being a reasonable parking stall width used even in the north where larger vehicles are common.
Referring to a zone matrix, Mr. Morgan noted that the total area of the property is 2 acres, the frontage is 44 m, lot coverage by the building is 22.8% which is quite a low number, and the number of parking spaces provided is 59, while the zoning requires a minimum of 50 spaces at 1.25 parking spaces per unit.
Mr. Morgan noted that it is not only important to have regard for what policies say, but to consider how a proposed development relates to adjacent properties. Mr. Morgan stated that in considering the built form on the north side of Salt Dock Road, which are the three phases of the Granite Harbour Development, and the built form immediately east, which is Beaconview – a multi-unit multi-story residential condominium building, in his opinion, the 40-unit condominium development proposed is compatible.
Mr. Morgan noted that the property is bound to the south by a recreational trail and sanitary pump station, to the west by the same recreational trail, and to the southwest by a water treatment facility, all adjacent uses in his opinion compatible with a 40-unit residential development.
Mr. Morgan reported that a traffic impact study was undertaken. Its purpose was to look at how Salt Dock Road functions currently and how it would be impacted by 40 new residential units. The result of the engineer’s study was that there would be no negative impacts on the road fabric to accommodate this development.
Mr. Morgan noted that there was much discussion between himself and Mr. Dube on the height of the building, and the conclusion was that it should be no more than 14.2 metres, so that the top of the building is no higher than the bottom of the first floor of Beaconview, making the views of the Beaconview condominium residents top of mind.
Lastly, Mr. Morgan referred to planning documents consulted to prepare his planning justification report, namely the Provincial Policy Statement, (PPS); the Growth Plan for Northern Ontario; and the Town of Parry Sound’s Official Plan. With respect to the PPS, which is the highest-ranking provincial planning policy document, Mr. Morgan noted that section 1.1.3.1 directs that growth and development are to be focused in settlement areas, and the Town of Parry Sound is a settlement area as defined by the PPS. The PPS focuses growth through a mix of densities and land uses to encourage more efficient use of land and resources. Mr. Morgan reported that in his opinion the development conformed to the direction provided by the Growth Plan for Northern Ontario, as the subject lands are vacant, underutilized, and provide an opportunity for residential intensification within the built boundary of a fully serviced settlement area, optimizing existing municipal infrastructure. The applicant has a proven track record of developing high quality residential buildings within the Town. Future residents will be able to enjoy dramatics view of Georgian Bay and make use of the adjacent residential trail network, and the development will accommodate a growing demographic of “empty nesters” who are seeking smaller homes.
With respect to the Town’s Official Plan, Mr. Morgan pointed out that section 8.3.4 enables the Town to pass by-laws authorizing increased height and density. Mr. Morgan concluded noting that it was his understanding that the Town advertised the subject property for sale with the intention that it be developed with medium to high residential development and that therefore the existing OP designation of Open Space does not reflect the desired land use of the property.

Mayor McGarvey invited those in opposition to the proposed OPA and ZBA to address Council.

Speaking in Opposition
1. Sue Ferguson of Salt Dock Road reported that she is not in favour of this fourth phase of the development unless the Town and developer work together to improve what is already there. Ms. Ferguson noted that there is not an address number at the entrance to the building, and there are no sidewalks, nor streetlights, and that she almost hit a person coming around a turn in the road.
2. Elizabeth Weeks, an owner at Beaconview Condominiums, read from a prepared statement citing concerns that as an adjacent land owner, she would not necessarily receive formal notice because the development is a condominium, and that she and other residents have received unclear and confusing information from the developer and his agent regarding the status of land ownership. Ms. Weeks outlined the following objections and concerns with the proposed development:
– loss of open green space as a loss to the serenity of the area to the community at large;
– underestimation of the effect of a 14.2 metre height building, with respect to devaluation of Beaconview and surrounding properties, and devastating effect on the privacy, air quality, noise level and habitat in the area;
– addition to the roof height of the 5′ x 8′ x 3-4′ high elevator shaft and 18″ high sewer pipes at 4″ diameter;
Ms. Weeks concluded her list of objections and concerns with an assessment that the proponents had not proven the project worthy of a shift in policy from open space to high density residential, and that they had done a weak job of determining or assessing impacts. Ms. Weeks then read from a prepared statement, providing more detailed information on her opposition to the zoning by-law amendment and proposed condominium development with reference to the Town’s Official Plan and Zoning By-law per the following:
– the value of the existing open space, or green space reserve, and the mental and physical health benefits of parks and green spaces;
– the value of green space to offset the effects of air pollution by improving air quality as well as reducing noise and excessive heat;
– the requirement to maintain the special features and characteristics of the Parry Sound shoreline, including public access and vistas as part of the identified waterfront area;
– the requirement for regard to planning principles of the OP relevant to scale of development – being low profile, with structures blending in to their surroundings, and building height regulated through the zoning by-law to represent the existing character of the Town and of the specific area in which the development is proposed;
– concerns that the Traffic Impact Study undertaken has failed to assess general traffic concerns related to bulk salt and the recreational trail and salt dock users;
– concerns that the area is overwhelmed with surface water and springs that cause frequent washout impacts at the entrance to the trail;
– concerns that the impact on the environment has not been adequately assessed;
– notwithstanding the general belief that a development which does not preserve the public open space is inappropriate, concern that affordable housing has not been considered as part of the proposal, nor was it considered part of previous phases.
– recommendation that the site have an assessment to determine if there is soil contamination due to hazardous waste, to ensure that the Town does not become responsible for cost sharing of clean-up as was the case for the development of Granite Harbour.
Ms. Weeks said that certain studies should be undertaken including: planning justification; market/need; landscape; archaeological; heritage impact; environmental; tree preservation; flood plain; site remediation-brown field; noise/vibration; storm water; traffic impact; hydrogeological; financial impact.
Ms. Weeks suggested that in order to protect the Town’s control, the subject lands should be zoned with “H” symbol, putting a hold on the project until certain tasks are completed including: all studies at developer’s expense; preparation of site condition, clean-up or removal of soil at developer’s expense; storm water management study; no relief from R3 zone maximum height of 10.5 metres; no relief from parking space requirement; roof design plan be filed with the Town to allow neighbouring owners to visualize the new views; land be surveyed, staked including elevation shown by an Ontario Land Surveyor; slope of hill along the eastern boundary of Beaconview be retained and not blasted to eliminate need for fencing or barrier; no balconies facing Beaconview; tree in front of 100 Beaconview not be removed or damaged.
2. Mackenzie Taylor, owner at the 200 Beaconview condos, and representing the Board, addressed Council, noting that the Board had originally submitted a letter saying that it was not opposed to the development and rezoning, except for the height going past the 10.5 metre maximum to 14.2 metres. Ms. Taylor reported that with additional information received in the last couple of weeks, and very different building plans seen today, the Board rescinds that letter and has submitted a new one opposing the rezoning altogether. Ms. Taylor reported that although a resident had a meeting with the developer, the Board has not been able to obtain a meeting, and that getting information was like prying.
Ms. Taylor rejected the developer’s assertion that the view of the Bay would be improved by the development, saying that she has a view of the parking lot and one of the worst views of the Bay, but that in summer she can still enjoy that view from her deck, and will be sad to lose it.
Ms. Taylor noted that the Board is encouraging all tenants to speak out today in opposing this rezoning, a change from the Board’s earlier advocacy of supporting the rezoning except for the 14.2 metre building height. Ms. Taylor noted that the 14.2 metre height will block Beaconview residents’ view and reduce the value of their units. Ms. Taylor also noted that the development will destroy the topography of the area, have an impact on the Fitness Trail, and reduce the green space which residents believe is important to maintain.
Ms. Taylor noted that from a meeting one of the Beaconview residents set up with the planner, she understands that the planner believes the traffic, the environmental and the storm water studies have either not been done or are inadequate and that the planner believes that the development contradicts the Town’s Official Plan.
If Council does approve the zoning by-law amendment, Ms. Taylor urged Council to maintain the 10.5 metre maximum building height and revisit the different studies that need to be conducted to ensure they’re done correctly and independently. Ms. Taylor said that although she agrees that housing is needed, there are other locations where a bigger size could be accommodated and have less impact.
3. Gary Bradley, condo owner at 200 Beaconview questioned the building height reported at 14.2 metres, saying that from what has been presented, he understands the height to be 16.4 metres. Mr. Bradley indicated that how the height is arrived at is an outstanding question for him, and that his main objection is that the building is too high.
4. Nancy Cunningham of the Beaconview apartments, indicated that she would address Council from the point of view of the Official Plan. Ms. Cunningham reported that it took months and perhaps years to get the OP passed with a lot of public input, which ultimately put most high-rise intense residential development on the southeast side of Seguin River. North of the Seguin River and north of marinas would be mostly natural and it was important to keep it that way, so it was designed open space. The proposed development is a part of what is designated as the waterfront area. The waterfront area is preserved to enhance the natural aesthetics of the area, to encourage tourism, to preserve the natural setting. Ms. Cunningham said that she can’t see how the proposed development does any of that.
The OP says the shoreline helps to define the inherent character of the Town and coast, and appearance of the Town from water is important. This development will change the view from the water as it will remove huge swaths of trees, and blast bedrock. Ms. Cunningham said that it was hard to believe that within the 25′ between the fitness trail and the edge of this property, trees won’t be knocked down during the course of construction. Ms. Cunningham also anticipated that new owners on the ground level will want to have trees cleared so they can see water.
Ms. Cunningham said that studies have proven that residential development doesn’t pay for itself. Municipalities have adopted development charges which are not popular, and Council has removed them. The reason for development charges is that each new household requires more services such as library, emergency services, ambulance, police streetlights, sidewalks. New residents don’t pay for that on their own; the rest of the taxpayers do, so residential development actually costs the taxpayer.
Ms. Cunningham noted that there will be various structures on the roof which will be unsightly particularly for Beaconview residents as well as unsightly snow storage next to the road. Ms. Cunningham said that she expected this development would not cater to the average Parry Sound income and that those relocating here from a community where they had more services would likely expect additional services; and that Council has a duty to protect the interests of existing citizens of Town.
5. Karen Walker from Waubeek Street addressed Council, noting that with the proposed development on some of the last bit of available property in the area, she was concerned with traffic on Waubeek Street. Ms. Walker said that people from the condos drive down Waubeek Street to avoid the train on Church Street, the two stoplights and the high school children. There is a large daycare centre on Waubeek Street and she is concerned for them and concerned for the snowmobilers who use the trail all winter and cross at the Salt Dock. Ms. Walker concluded with saying that she hopes that there are no deaths, because more houses are wanted.
6. Lynne Atkinson of Salt Dock Road reported that she had nothing new to add to comments already made, and that she had submitted a letter already and brought a letter from Waubeek Street resident Anne Hoelscher, who also feels the Official Plan should be honoured. Ms. Atkinson noted that she was previously on the CBDC Board, so knows that housing is an issue for the town, but believes that the Town has other property, such as the approximately 50 acres by Canadore College that could be developed instead of the last green space by the Salt Docks.
7. Mary Thompson, owner of an apartment at 200 Beaconview, reported that she lives on the ground floor, and at her height of 4’7″, she will have to stand on a chair on her tiptoes to see beyond the proposed development. Ms. Thompson said that currently she does not see the Fitness Trail, nor the shore, but she does see beautiful rocks and trees, and it is her bit of paradise. Ms. Thompson concluded with saying that she thinks this is the worst plan she has ever heard of for that piece of property.
8. Jody Brunatti addressed Council noting that she and her husband live at 11C Salt Dock Road, and that her concerns about traffic safety are with the Town. Ms. Brunatti said that she didn’t think the traffic study would see that people park at the top of the hill a lot of times, and that trying to get by with salt trucks on the road is difficult. Kids swim at this time of year at midnight at the Salt Dock. People in walkers, with strollers, with dogs, the elderly, and young kids walk the road with no sidewalk and cross to the salt dock trail. The running club from the high school comes down Isabella, to Wood, to Salt Dock Road and then on to the trail. Additionally, Ms. Brunatti noted that most condo owners have two vehicles which doubles the number of people driving and increases the possibility of an accident waiting to happen.
9. Kim Marshall, one of the owners at 200 Beaconview Hts commented that she appreciates everything the builder has done to address concerns; however, her concern still remains regarding the height of the building. Ms. Marshall said that she believed the height should be 2 meters below the ground floor level of Beaconview to accommodate the elevator and pipes that come up.
10. Leanne Coniam of 100 Beaconview addressed Council noting that she has many of the same concerns that have already been brought forward this evening, particularly with respect to traffic. Ms. Coniam noted that the road is narrow and winds, and she questioned how additional units could be accommodated. Ms. Coniam noted that she believed the development would pose a great loss to the natural area and shoreline. Ms. Coniam suggested that the developer acknowledges that the roof will be unsightly, so is making it a different colour, but that this won’t add; it will only detract.
Ms. Coniam said that the development is not affordable housing and is only for people who can afford a waterfront view. Ms. Coniam also said that at the very least the height must be reduced; however, that would not address all the other issues with respect to traffic, and the absence of lighting. Ms. Coniam concluded with her concern that there are too many people in one small area with one small utility road feeding it.
11. Terry McNabb of Georgina Street, adjacent to the development behind Beaconview, noted that a lot of the concerns that he has have been addressed by others. Mr. McNabb noted that he has environmental concerns that the property will be clear cut, concerns with traffic and the aesthetics of the area after the trees are gone. Mr. McNabb questioned the Town’s commitment to the Biosphere Reserve and to the fitness trail which is used by many people. Mr. McNabb said that he is opposed to the proposed development for the sake of the trees and for the sake of the aesthetics.
12. Lorrie Kerr of 11C Salt Dock Road, addressed Council noting that she owns a Beaconview unit and lived for 19 years at 200 Beaconview. She said that for many years Beaconview tried to buy the green space proposed for development, to keep it as green space and were denied. Ms. Kerr said that she sees lots of animals in the area including bears and deer and is concerned that the habitat will be lost for those animals.

Manager of Building and Planning Services Taylor Elgie reported that 13 letters of opposition have been received, in addition to a 36-page redacted form letter; and 1 letter in favour has been received requesting sidewalks going up Salt Dock Road. With respect to the reasons for opposition, Mr. Elgie reported that they were similar to what had been heard this evening, including loss of green space; impact on the Fitness Trail; building height; negative property values; traffic study; environmental concerns with species and habitat loss.

2.2 – Proposed Zoning By-law Amendment – Z/19/08 – 1 College Drive (Canadore College Board of Governors) to permit Conseil Scolaire Public du Nord-Est de L’Ontario to locate a French Public School at the campus for two years.

Subsequent to an explanation of how the public was notified of application Z/19/08 – 1 College Drive (Canadore College Board of Governors), Manager of Building & Planning Services Taylor Elgie gave an explanation of the purpose of the proposed Zoning By-law Amendment (ZBA), to permit Conseil Scolaire Public du Nord-Est de L’Ontario to locate a French Public School at the campus for two years.
Mayor McGarvey invited those in favour of the proposed ZBA to address Council.

Speaking in Favour:
1. Simon Fecteau, Director of Education, Conseil Scolaire Public du Nord-Est/French Public Board said that he would attempt to provide facts about the French school coming to Parry Sound in order to help Council make a decision:
Fact 1 – the request for the French public school did not come from the Board, but rather from parents. The Canadian Charter of Rights guarantees French education wherever the numbers are sufficient and the numbers in Parry Sound are sufficient, so there is a legal responsibility to offer the program in Parry Sound;
Fact 2 – thirty students have registered already; parents have written a letter and indicate that they are comfortable with having the school located in the College;
Fact 3 – the Board’s Director of Capital Assets visited more than ten possible locations and none were suitable for a school. Bayside Family Church was considered, but is not available and the Board therefore feels that Canadore is suitable for a temporary location;
Fact 4 – this is a temporary solution for two years; during those 2 years the Board will review with the Ministry of Education to look for a more permanent solution;
Fact 5 – the business of the Board is to provide quality education while ensuring that the learning environment is safe and positive for all students. In Hearst for example there are 130 students JK to Grade 6, housed in La Place des Arts, which is a French community centre where weddings and funerals go on. There are protocols in place to make sure there are no issues, therefore the Board is confident that being at Canadore College also won’t be a problem;
Fact 6 – as of September, the intention is to have eight employees from principal to secretary, with a belief that this number will grow in the future and the school will become an important part of the economic and cultural development of the community;
Fact 7 – the Board has been assured that the French school presence at Canadore will not result in programs being cut, and in fact, in hearing concerns from members of the public regarding the shop, plans have been changed, and the French school will not be using the shop as a classroom.
Mr. Fecteau concluded by requesting that the Town approve the rezoning in a timely manner so that everything necessary could be done to set up the school for opening in September, 2019.

[Mayor McGarvey excused himself from the public meeting during Mr. Fecteau’s submission in order to deal with an urgent personal matter.]

2. George Burton, President and CEO of Canadore College noted that the proposal is to provide a temporary location to the French Board, until a more permanent location can be established. The campus is designed for 176 students; the largest enrollment to date, has been 81. Given the academic plan for the next two years, Mr. Burton said that there is more than enough physical space to accommodate both operations; the leasing of space will not affect programming for 2019 to 2021. Canadore will retain the shop, since seeing an increased demand for pre-apprentice and apprenticeship programs in the area.
Mr. Burton said that the College does rent space out to various education operations ranging from Contact Nord-Contact North, to children camps, and research companies throughout the year on an ongoing basis. Mr. Burton noted that the prime concern of Canadore is to provide quality education in a quality setting; that will continue; student safety is pre-eminent in all decisions.
Mr. Burton noted that he is charged with ensuring the operation of the College runs smoothly and is meeting the needs of the job market. Part of that mandate is ensuring its sustainability as a college; renting space is a key component of that sustainability. Mr. Burton concluded asking for support of the change in rezoning to allow Canadore to accommodate the School Board for two years, while more permanent plans can be put in place.
3. Sally Labath of Waubuno Road addressed Council regarding the safety of students at the French school. She said that all parents enrolled their children knowing the proposed location and that all parents were fully capable of identifying an acceptable safety threshold for their most precious family members.
4. Forrest Pengra addressed Council noting the process has had some stress, with parents of children enrolled in the French School being personally attacked. Mr. Pengra said that he and the families want what’s best for their children and for the community. With respect to developing the community, Mr. Pengra said that the French school is a piece to the puzzle, and something to build upon to attract professionals and appeal to young families.
5. Elizabeth Weeks addressed Council saying that there has been a lot of confusion and negative information spread. She has found the question as to whether she would want her grandchild using the same bathroom as a PSW offensive; personal support workers are the backbone to the health community; and transgendered washrooms are now part of many public schools. Ms. Weeks expressed that she personally wants to learn French and is excited that French is being offered in the community.
Deputy Mayor Backman invited those in opposition to the proposed ZBA to address Council.

Speaking in Opposition
1. Jocelyn Shipman addressed Council noting that she is from Sudbury, attended a French school and welcomes a French school as do the more than 500 people who signed a petition welcoming the school, but asking that it be built in a different spot than the College which was built for the community. Ms. Shipman said that Canadore College received $6.2 million as a result of volunteers who lobbied both governments for construction of a community college campus. In good faith, the Town of Parry Sound built infrastructure, roads, and sidewalks to accommodate the campus, assisted with land acquisition and provided interest free mortgage. Ms. Shipman said that as a result, people have graduated; some of whom might have been on EI assistance are no longer on that and this produces relief to many taxpayers. Ms. Shipman said that these efforts at improving the local economy and wellbeing are at risk if an elementary school is permitted to occupy the college campus location, as it is not in line with the planned use of the building or location.
Ms. Shipman noted that the French Public School Board is looking to rent for two years. In 2019-2020 there are 30 students registered, and in 2020-2021 more students will enter. If potential college student applicants, paying $4000 – $6000 tuition were to visit the campus and learn that it is shared with an elementary school with no quiet study space, they will not register for future programming, thus beginning the decline of registration. Ms. Shipman noted that in an April radio interview, the President’s office stated that it did not plan to alter the delivery plan of college programs unless there is a shortage of applicants. Ms. Shipman questioned how the local campus can maintain or even increase programs when there is a tenant such as an elementary school taking up more than a 1/3 of classroom space.
Ms. Shipman said that the decision for the proposed French school to be in the existing College was made in North Bay by Canadore College and the French School Board with no consultation with stakeholders, i.e. municipalities, planners and users of the facility, which shows a blatant disrespect to the community.
Ms. Shipman referred to an Ontario Government discussion paper issued in 2017 called Supporting Students in Community, the purpose of which is to strengthen education in Ontario’s rural and remote communities. The paper highlights community planning and partnership guidelines adopted in 2015 which require school boards to hold at least one public meeting a year to discuss potential planning and partnership opportunities with public and community organizations. School boards are expected to notify municipal government, community partners, and the general public about the annual meeting.
This is a directive for school boards, including Conseil Scolaire Public du Nord-Est de L’Ontario, yet no meeting was held. Ms. Shipman said that the directive should be followed by Canadore College as well, because it encourages and supports sustainable use of educational facilities in rural communities such as ours.
Ms. Shipman said that construction of the West Parry Sound Campus helps provide for the economic well being for people in the area. The College and the French Public School Board announced its deal in February without consultation with local stakeholders. Response from the community began in March, yet they have continued to set in motion the plan for elementary school occupancy in September. Ms. Shipman concluded by expressing the hope that Town council would listen to community concerns, and base its zoning decision on sound planning and economic benefits for the entire West Parry Sound Area.
2. Jim Beatty noted that he has been involved in discussions about the potential for change in usage of the College. He understands that this is a difficult decision and that it seems the College sees need for flexibility around its decisions in order to make it economically viable.
Mr. Beatty noted the importance of a college to the community, originally Georgian and then Canadore in providing post-secondary educational opportunities for students who might not otherwise be able to obtain them, as they simply couldn’t afford to attend outside of the Parry Sound Area.
Mr. Beatty, referred to his work as a school trustee on the Near North District School Board encouraging students to take advantage of programs such as internship and apprenticeship programs – the types of programs that Canadore can offer, not all of which had resulted in 100% occupancy, but have meant a lot to the community and those who participated.
Mr. Beatty noted that he encouraged the Near North District School Board to go beyond the extended French program, and to offer French immersion. Mr. Beatty said that when the grade 7 and 8 French immersion program moved from William Beatty to the High School, there was a separate area for it, and it worked relatively well. He suggested there might be room at the high school, although it may not yet be suitable for JR kindergarten to be together with students who are in grade 12. Mr. Beatty said that there were other opportunities for the French immersion program to operate in Town. Mr. Beatty concluded by suggesting that the College is encouraging the French immersion program at Canadore because of a lack of 100% occupancy in college programs, however Council will need to consider the college program opportunities that will not be available should it be used for the French immersion program.
Mr. McGarvey resumed the chair during Mr. Beatty’s submission.

Manager of Building and Planning Services Taylor Elgie reported that 34 letters have been received to date, with one letter including 15 signatures of support, and one petition of approximately 500 signatures in opposition. There are 29 letters of opposition including one with 12 signatures on it
Mr. Elgie reported that a letter of support signed by parents includes the follow reasons: this is a short term solution; they trust the school board with the safety of their children; they were aware of the school accommodation scenario and conducted their own due diligence in assessing that, the school brings good paying jobs; it offers new choices to parents; and promotes diversity and inclusion.

Mr. Elgie reported that the letters received in opposition include the following reasons: Canadore received funding from multiple layers of government to be a college; the Town built infrastructure to support the College; fears that this enables Canadore to exit the Town and transition into an elementary school; not appropriate to share space as it requires sacrifice for both users; bathroom facilities are not appropriate; it will negatively impact the economy; the process to select the site did not have public consultation; it is against the Ministry of Education’s community planning and partnership guidelines; and even a two-year temporary use will harm long-term success of the College.

Mayor McGarvey concluded the public meeting with notice that the public should contact staff or check the Town’s website to see when these amendments will come back for a decision. Council, at its discretion, may approve either of the proposed zoning by-law amendments or Official Plan Amendment. If so, it must either circulate notices of passing of the by-laws or give notice in the local press.
Objections to the passing of either of the amendments will be received by the Clerk within 20 days from the date such notice is given; such objections will be forwarded to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal. If an appeal is submitted and the appellant has not provided Council with an oral or written submission before the passing of the by-law, the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal may choose to dismiss the appeal.

That we do now declare the public meeting closed. Carried

Correspondence

4.1 – Jane Hinchcliffe. Concerns with communication regarding Waubeek Street reconstruction project; and specific property concerns affected by the reconstruction. Letter referred to Director of Public Works for response.
4.2 – Brandy Harris-Green, Treasurer, Rotary Club of Parry Sound. Delivery of cheque for $2,500 towards a Splash Pad with caveat to retain right to reallocate funds if the splash pad is not built. Letter and cheque referred to Manager of Parks & Recreation; and to Director of Finance for funds management. A letter of appreciation has been sent to the Rotary Club on behalf of Council for their fundraising efforts.
4.3 – Bill Liggins. Request for the installation of audible traffic signals at the Church/Isabella Street intersection Letter has been referred to Director of Public Works for response.
4.4 – David Pearce, Supply Chain Officer, Stewardship Ontario. Industry Funding for Municipal Blue Box Recycling for the first quarter of the 2019 Program Year, with enclosed cheque in the amount of $14,729.12. Letter filed, and cheque forwarded to the Finance Department.
4.5 – Joe Beleskey. Concerns with effects of blocked culvert on his property Letter referred to Director of Public Works for follow-up.
4.6 – Stephen Covey, Chief of Police, Corporate Services, CN. Rail Safety Week, September 23-29, 2019. Referred to Consent Agenda with a resolution prepared.
4.7 – Chris Pettinger, Trestle Brewing Company. Explanation of parking relief request in support of zoning by-law amendment application and measures being taken to ensure maintenance of sufficient parking. Referred to Manager of Building and Planning Services for consideration of the zoning by-law amendment request, the subject of By-law 2019-6944 on the agenda.

Mayor McGarvey moved forward agenda item 10.4.1 regarding a rezoning application for 9 Great North Road. Subsequent to dealing with that matter, Mayor McGarvey turned the Chair over to Councillor Backman and left the meeting.

Resolutions and Direction to Staff

9.1.1 – 2019 AMO Delegation Requests to the Province. Direction. That the staff report on delegations with Provincial Ministers that the Town has requested during the 2019 AMO Conference be received for information purposes. Carried

9.3.1 – Pedestrian Crossing – Isabella Street and William Street. Direction for Staff Follow-up. That Council direct staff to instruct the Engineer to install an appropriate pedestrian crossover at the intersection of Isabella Street and William Street using Option A of staff report, being a crosswalk located at the north end of the radius to Isabella Street, including a hard-wired corresponding flashing light at the top of the hill on William Street. Carried

9.3.2 – Bottled Water Report. Direction. That Council receive the Bottled Water Report for information only. Carried

9.3.3 – 2019 Suez Ultrafiltration Users’ Group Conference. Resolution. That Council authorizes the Manager of Water Systems to attend the 2019 Suez Ultrafiltration Users’ Group Conference to be held in Rapid City, South Dakota, September 29 to October 1, 2019, pursuant to Schedule C, Section 5e of By-law 2019-6902, which requires prior Council approval for attendance at seminars, conferences and conventions outside the Province of Ontario. Carried

By-laws

10.4.1 – Rezoning Application – Z/19/07 – 9 Great North Road (1929330 Ontario Inc.). By-law 2019 – 6944. Being a By-law to amend By-law No. 2004-4653 (The Zoning By-law), as amended, for 9 Great North Road (1929330 Ontario Inc.). Passed, Signed and Sealed.

The following motion was made: That in the near future, we re-evaluate our cash-in-lieu of parking by-law. Carried

The Mayor Pulls Wool

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While reviewing the council meeting video of this past Tuesday I was astounded to hear the comments of Mayor McGarvey regarding parking and Trestle Brewing Company (Trestle). I think he showed poor judgement in how he handled the discussion. What is going on?

You can watch the session at this link on YouTube – the action starts at 2:21:43.

Councillor Bachman raised a fair proposal to defer a decision, with a waiver, for two years while things could be worked out. Either Council could revisit the fee in lieu of parking by-law, the company could join and be accepted by the DBA, or the company would pay the required fee.

Rather than consider the suggestion and its implication the Mayor chose to suggest the Councillor did not understand the process. As a rookie, Councillor Bachman deferred to the Mayor. I would have liked to have seen him try and pull that on Councillor Keith, who was strangely silent.

Let’s be clear ‘everyone loves Chris’ and I am among them. But this decision by Council is a precedent setting decision. Can other businesses who paid a fee in lieu of parking now ask for a refund? What was the reason for the exception? The Mayor offered no support for waiving the requirement.

Don’t ask for permission, beg for forgiveness. And make sure the Mayor is there to cover you.

The Mayor’s actions perhaps can be explained by a bit of tiredness; there was more than an hour of deputations earlier in the meeting that will require difficult decisions. And I’m sure he has a heavy schedule with work and his provincial obligations. But, that’s an excuse and not a reason for his behaviour. I have no issue with the Council’s decision, they are elected to make decisions like this. Rather my concern is how the Mayor handled the meeting and his treatment of a councillor who disagreed with what was obviously his preferred, or the most expedient, decision.

The Mayor said that this parking item had been in process for some time and that there was no need for this type of surprise. Yes – but! Staff’s recommendation only was provided on Friday, about two business days before the meeting. The whole issue that $40,000 was at stake was not presented or discussed at the public meeting held two weeks earlier. I think there would have been more comment had the public been informed of the ‘gift’ that was being requested. At this point there is absolutely no reason for the Trestle Brewing Company to join the Parry Sound DBA, they received what they wanted and will be able to avoid the additional financial responsibilities that come with DBA membership.

Councillor Bachman’s suggestion was not a surprise to me at least. We had happened to cross paths at Hillcrest Cemetery the Saturday before the meeting after I had read the council agenda. I was attending an interment and she was out for a run. Let’s discuss the underlying reasoning behind her proposal.

If you establish a business or a residence you are required to provide for appropriate parking. There are two choices, you can provide the proscribed number of parking spots or you can pay a fee in lieu of the parking. There was similar topic before Council perhaps five years ago when an apartment conversion was done in the downtown and the landlord hoped to get a waiver for the parking obligations. I’m pretty sure Council didn’t grant it. It was a little different because the parking would be required overnight and that would cause an issue with snow removal and similar services.

In the case of Trestle Brewing Company, the additional 25 spots were required because they opened patio seating. The parking number was based on the number of seats in this expansion. The patio though is likely to be open or used from perhaps mid-May to mid-October, tourist season. The rest of the year that parking would not be used or required. That would suggest there was some basis for exempting in part Trestle’s parking requirement.

What I have seen to date is that there are very few people sitting in the patio area. That may be because the business does not yet need the extra capacity. It could be that the business never expects to use that extra capacity but wanted to give patrons a place to sit closer to the water, or to spread out the crowd. If this is the case the existing parking is tight but manageable. Then again, it’s possible that the business will be inundated with customers using all of the available seats and cars will be parked up and down Great North Road blocking views and possibly creating safety issues. Or people will start parking at other businesses in the area. There is little or no on street parking in the area at present.

The suggestion to provide Trestle with a two-year waiver of the requirement to provide parking or pay the full fee seems reasonable. Perhaps there will be no issue and the patio seating will offer patrons options on where to sit and not double the number of folks there at any given time. Or, it may be a real issue with business booming and the Town needing to somehow provide additional parking in the area, at taxpayers’ expense, to manage safety and congestion issues. Or, Trestle could be accepted into the DBA and there would no longer be an issue of a parking penalty, although there might still be a parking issue that would hit the Town’s taxpayers. Or perhaps it’s a 50-50 and the Town would need to find a compromise that fits the situation. Parry Sound is a small town and we need to be flexible. A two-year window would have provided everyone involved, especially the taxpayers and other businesses in similar situations, the opportunity to create a solution that best fit the situation.

Mayor McGarvey can blame me for the suggestion. After sitting through, and watching, about two and a half terms of Council deliberate on a wide variety of issues I know that Councillor Bachman’s suggestion was not out of line. She was reflecting her own, and at least one other taxpayer’s suggestion. I will take the blame for the suggestion. I can tell when I’m being misled, even when it comes to council procedures.

Mayor McGarvey owes Councillor Bachman a public apology for the way he treated her at the meeting. He has done it before. A mayor is there to preside and assist, not decide. Decisions are the responsibility of the councillors. It is likely that her suggestion would not have gained traction, but it deserved to be heard and properly processed. It seems however, that the decision had already been reached and her suggestion was an unnecessary distraction.

Trains, Trestles and Cold Reality – A Trilogy of Sorts

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Not quite a Gord Lightfoot trilogy of course.

A couple of things popped up in the last few days that stimulated this post.

Trestles

Yesterday evening was quiet around my house, certainly in the backyard. The heat and humidity lifted and there was blessed silence. Why the silence? It appears that a truck ran into the trestle on William Street possibly causing damage and necessitating a stop of operations on the CN Line that runs behind our house.

Why did the truck hit the trestle? It clearly was an issue of human error. Was it avoidable? In my opinion quite possibly. A couple of years ago I was sitting at an open house in the Town of Parry Sound town hall and had a discussion with a couple of members of Council and Staff about the William Street trestle. I told them that I had gone out with a tape measure and measured the height of the trestle and the height of the frames that sit about 5 metres in front of the trestle on both sides. The yellow and black striped frames were at least a foot taller than the trestle. That might allow a ‘rookie’ truck operator who was unsure of the height of their vehicle to assume that if they were able to get under the frame that they would fit under the trestle. The driver would not only be wrong I suggested; they might even be deceived by these frames.

During the discussion at town hall I suggested the town suspend a swinging bar or chains at the same height as the trestle or even a little lower. My thinking was that a driver who approached the trestle and heard/felt the top of the vehicle strike something would hit the brakes and either stop before hitting the trestle or at least hit it with much less force.

My idea was not original. I have been to enough parking garages to have seen the signs that tell me the maximum height inside but also have some sort of structure at the entrance that prevents vehicles from entering that exceed the lowest height in the parking garage. The folks that run these garages don’t want to be pulling cars that are stuck on the third floor.

The Councillor thought that this was a good idea. The Staff member disagreed. He suggested that there might be a Town liability if a vehicle was damaged by this hanging bar or chains. Would there be a liability if they hit the current structure? How much damage might be caused by hanging chains? Jeez – “You can’t tell a Heinz pickle nothing”. I will note that this individual was also against crossing arms at the Cascade Street crossing when the Railway Safety Committee I participated on made the suggestion. He said people would just go around them. Thank goodness Council did not agree. One life lost is too many.

We all make errors of inattention, young, old and especially impaired. I think it behooves us as a community to help people make the right decisions when we know there is a serious risk involved.

Lac Megantic

You have forgotten about it haven’t you? Well the New York Times published an article a couple of days ago about the accident and what has followed in the years since. It’s worth reading and understanding the risks we all face. What would happen if a larger truck were to barrel under the William Street trestle while one of the ‘oilers’ was running across?

Here is a link to the article at the New York Times. If you can’t access it at their site, I have posted a copy here. (Note: PDF reader required.) I have a subscription to the Times and feel this article needs to be shared. A New York Times online subscription can be had for $4 CDN per month; cheaper than the North Star.

Train Noise

In an earlier post I had expressed my position that chasing the railways about the non-airhorn noises was a fool’s errand. I’ll expand on this. The engines do not squeal, they make lots of noise related to the propulsion system, but that’s it. They pass quickly. In contrast it is the rail cars that squeal. Not all of them, perhaps one in ten. You can hear the squealers coming down the track. So, it’s not a consistent noise like airhorns. Figuring out which rail cars are squealing would be a challenge. No company wants the bother and expense of fixing all of them for a non-safety issue.

The real reason this is not an issue that can be easily addressed is because – the railways don’t own the railcars in most cases. The railways transport the railcars, but they don’t own them. They may own some of the container carriers, but they rarely own the oil and chemical cars, or the potash cars, or the grain cars. These railcars are probably not even owned by the companies whose goods are being transported but rather by leasing companies. No business except a financial services company wants to have that much capital invested in rolling or flying stock.

I hope Council will get Staff to do the bare minimum work necessary to convince themselves that attacking the squeal of the railcars is a waste of time and energy. You will end up chasing a dozen or more companies. Time is better spent on things under their control, like preventing crashes into the trestle on William Street, or stopping airhorns in Parry Sound.

Council Agenda Preview – July 16, 2019

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A light agenda this week but two open meeting items are sure to guarantee a large public turn out at the meeting. These are:
(2.1) The expanded development on Salt Dock Road.
(2.2) The proposal for a French Public School at Canadore College.
Trestle Brewing Company parking is the only by-law item on the agenda and Staff is recommending that requirements for additional parking for their seasonal patio be waived (4.7, 10.4.1). A couple of residents seem to have legitimate concerns with Town services as expressed in their letters (4.1, 4.5).

Public Meeting

2.1 – Official Plan Amendment No. 2 and Zoning By-law Amendment – Z/19/4 (Morgan Planning and Developments Inc. on behalf of Greystone Project Management Inc. for Salt Dock Road, the Lighthouse) to re-designate the lands from public open space to residential high density.

2.2 – Proposed Zoning By-law Amendment – Z/19/08 – 1 College Drive (Canadore. College Board of Governors) to permit Conseil Scolaire Public du Nord-Est de L’Ontario to locate a French Public School at the campus for two years.

Correspondence

4.1 – Jane Hinchcliffe. Concerns with communication regarding Waubeek Street reconstruction project; and specific property concerns affected by the reconstruction.

4.2 – Brandy Harris-Green, Treasurer, Rotary Club of Parry Sound. Delivery of cheque for $2,500 towards a Splash Pad with caveat to retain right to reallocate funds if the splash pad is not built.

4.3 – Bill Liggins. Request for the installation of audible traffic signals at the Church/Isabella Street intersection.

4.5 – Joe Beleskey. Concerns with effects of blocked culvert on his property.

4.7 – Chris Pettinger, Trestle Brewing Company. RE: Parking Relief Request explanation in support of zoning by-law amendment application.

Resolutions and Direction to Staff

9.1.1 – 2019 AMO Delegation Requests to the Province. Direction. That the staff report on delegations with Provincial Ministers that the Town has requested during the 2019 AMO Conference be received for information purposes.

9.3.1 – Pedestrian Crossing – Isabella Street and William Street. Direction. That Council direct staff to instruct the Engineer to install an appropriate pedestrian crossover at the intersection of Isabella Street and William Street using Option A of staff report, being a crosswalk located at the north end of the radius to Isabella Street, including a hard-wired corresponding flashing light at the top of the hill on William Street.

9.3.2 – Bottled Water Report. Direction. That Council receive the Bottled Water Report for information only.

9.3.3 – 2019 Suez Ultrafiltration Users’ Group Conference. Resolution. That Council authorizes the Manager of Water Systems to attend the 2019 Suez Ultrafiltration Users’ Group Conference to be held in Rapid City, South Dakota, September 29 to October 1, 2019, pursuant to Schedule C, Section 5e of By-law 2019-6902, which requires prior Council approval for attendance at seminars, conferences and conventions outside the Province of Ontario.

By-laws

10.4.1 – Rezoning Application – Z/19/07 – 9 Great North Road (1929330 Ontario Inc.). By-law 2019 – 6944. Being a By-law to amend By-law No. 2004-4653 (The Zoning By-law), as amended, for 9 Great North Road (1929330 Ontario Inc.).

Council Meeting Minutes (Abridged) – July 2, 2019

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Nothing to comment on at this past meeting. Take a quick look in case there is something decided that you have an interest in.

Additions to Agenda/Notice of Motion

1.1.1 Recreation Master Plan. THAT staff be directed to bring back a letter in a later meeting to invite municipalities of West Parry Sound to participate in the upcoming recreation plan. Carried

Other

1.4 Disclosure of Pecuniary Interest and the General Nature Thereof. Mayor McGarvey Declared Pecuniary Interest on item 6.4.2 in the Closed Meeting as his wife works for the Festival of the Sound.

Public Meeting

2.1 – Zoning By-law Amendment – Z/19/07 – 1929330 Ontario Limited (9 Great North Road). Subsequent to an explanation of how the public was notified of application Z/19/07 – 1929330 Ontario Limited (9 Great North Road),Taylor Elgie, Manager of Building & Planning Services gave an explanation of the purpose of the proposed Zoning By-law Amendment, reporting that the applicant, Trestle Brewing Company has requested to amend the C3 zone to reduce the on-site parking spaces requirement by 25 spaces and permit an accessory structure between the roadway and the main building. The request is to meet parking requirements due to a proposed patio.
No member of the public responded to the Mayor’s invitation to speak in favour of the proposed zoning by-law amendment. Vivian Ibey of 24 Great North Road, living directly across from Trestle Brewing Company reported that she is opposed to the motion as there is not enough parking for what is currently there and she questions whether in future there will be enough parking for the Company as well as the public parking for the walking trail.
Mr. Elgie reported that one letter from Diane Waters of 22 Great North Road has been received in support of the zoning by-law amendment, noting that Trestle Brewing Company has been a huge asset to the Town, including their community outreach and fundraising events. Ms. Waters expressed that she believed the addition of a patio would provide more opportunity for locals and tourists to enjoy Seguin River and the historic trestle bridge and will be a benefit to the Town.
Mayor McGarvey concluded the public meeting with notice that the public should contact staff or check the Town’s website to see when this amendment will come back for a decision. Council, at its discretion, may approve the proposed Zoning By-law Amendment. If so, it must either circulate notice of passing of the by-law or give notice in the local press. Objections to the passing of the by-law will be received by the Clerk within 20 days from the date such notice is given, which objections will be forwarded to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal. If an appeal is submitted and the appellant has not provided Council with an oral or written submission before the passing of the by-law, the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal may choose to dismiss the appeal

Questions of Staff

3.2.1 – In response to Councillor Keith’s inquiries, Director of Public Works Peter Brown reported that River Street is basically done; it has been resurfaced with line painting all the way through and staff will monitor to ensure there is sufficient drainage. With respect to Waubeek Street, Mr. Brown reported that the work is on schedule and that he expects the work will be move to another phase within the next three weeks. The paving company is following behind, and expectations are to have single surface done in late- August.
With respect to the intersection and top of the Waubeek Street hill at Avenue Road, Mr. Brown reported that he will be bringing a report back to the next Council meeting for information, as well as a report regarding a pedestrian crossing at Isabella and William Street as previously requested by Council.

3.2.2 – In response to Councillor McCann’s inquiry regarding paving on Hillcrest Street, Mr. Brown reported that the asphalt paving budget for 2019 has been exhausted, but that Hillcrest Street is on the list with others that need work. Mr. Brown noted that the Town has the opportunity of taking advantage of federal gas tax funding that was just announced. Mr. Brown also pointed out that the Town just hired a company to do a complete roads assessment review, and that once completed, there will be a better handle on the priority of roads that need to be done.

3.2.3 – In response to Councillor McCann’s inquiry regarding garbage pick-up time, Mr. Brown reported that it is not recommended to put out garbage in the evening, but rather by 7:00 A.M. the day of garbage pick-up.

3.2.4 – In response to Councillor McCann’s inquiry regarding blue recycling bins, Mr. Brown concurred that a reminder to the public through the Town’s website on what can go in them would be useful and that this information is also already posted on the blue recycling bins.

Correspondence

4.1 – Bayside Family Church – Concerns with municipal service causing flooding at 4 Parry Sound Drive. Referred to the Director of Public Works for investigation and follow-up.

4.2 – Lori & Doug Kerr. Objection to Greystone Project vis a vis building height as it will block view. Referred to the Manager of Building & Planning, with the project the subject of a public meeting at the next Council meeting.

4.3 – Lynn Martin. Concerns with and suggestions for Stockey Centre recycling/waste practices Referred to the Programming & Events Manager at the Stockey Centre for follow-up.

4.4 – Jeremy Cross, Executive Director, National Coaches Association of Ontario. National Coaches Week September 21-29, 2019. Covered by a resolution on the Consent Agenda this evening.

Deputations

5.1 – Rita Orr, CEO, Hartley Hutchinson, Parry Sound Public Library. Library Commercial & Cottage Dockside Reads. Library CEO Rita Orr and Hartley Hutchinson, through a 2-minute library commercial and verbal report, advised that the Library was undertaking a new outreach program this summer with various authors featured at Cottage Dockside Reads being held at the new Carling Community Recreation Centre starting next Thursday, July 11th.

Resolutions and Direction to Staff

9.1.1 – Caitlin Dyer appointed VP Communications to CASH (Canadian Association for Sports Heritage). Direction. That the announcement of Bobby Orr Hall of Fame Curator Caitlin Dyer’s appointment as VP Communications to the Canadian Association for Sports Heritage be received. Carried

9.2.1 – 2019 Budget Analysis in relation to 4 per cent challenge. Direction. That the Report be received for Information Purposes. Carried

9.4.1 – Façade Improvement Project Recommendations. Resolution. That upon the recommendation of the 2019 Façade Improvement Review Committee, Council approves:
97a Bowes Street (Maurizio’s Pizzeria) in the amount of $10,750.50;
47 Gibson Street (Don Corbett) in the amount of $12,427.20;
69a Bowes Street (Parry Sound Insurance) in the amount of $562.50;
42 Gibson Street (Georgian Bay Software) in the amount of $1,250.00;
19 James Street (White Squall) in the amount of $1,525.00; and
67 James Street (FAD Architects) in the amount of $9,570.00.
And that Agreement Letters be drafted and executed by the successful applicants. Carried

By-laws

10.3.1 – The Cemetery By-law. By-law 2019 – 6940. Being a by-law to establish the maintenance, management, regulation and control of Hillcrest Cemetery and Sylvan Acres Cemetery. Passed, Signed and Sealed.

10.4.1 – Transfer of surplus lands to the Township of The Archipelago.By-law 2019 – 6941. Being a By-law to declare property surplus to the Town’s needs and to identify a means of sale for Town-owned property legally described as HARRISON LOCATION CL 16222; CON 2 PT LOTS 24 AND 25 RP;42R19262 PART 1 RP 42R19322;PART 1 now located in the Township of The Archipelago. Passed, Signed and Sealed.

10.4.2 – Municipal By-law Enforcement on call service agreement with Gary Kloetstra. By-law 2019 – 6942. Being a By-law to enter into agreement for municipal by-law enforcement on-call service and appoint Gary Kloestra as a Municipal By-law Enforcement Officer. Passed, Signed and Sealed.