Northeast Town Council Notes

Planning consent application

Council reviewed an application for consent from Bruce O’Hare and Kelly Bolduc to create an easement to allow for a sewer line connection from their 42 Robinson Street location to the adjacent property fronting on Park Street.

CAO Dave Williamson said there were no issues with the application but should it be granted, that it be with two conditions: that no work begins until a previous consent filed (to sever a lot) is granted and that an easement agreement between the property owners, stipulating exactly what the easement is for, is created.

The application was approved.

Administration and finance

Council approved the cheque registry for June in the amount of $1,131,830.36 and payroll, $112,096.39.

For the month of June, $17,935.09 in water/sewer payments had been received. There is currently one outstanding account of over $400 and arrangements had been made for payment.

Also for the month of June, $155,424.17 in tax payments had been made to the municipality.

Community Safety and Well-Being Plan

Manitoulin’s eight municipalities joined together to develop the Manitoulin Community Safety and Well-being Plan, as legislated for municipalities in Ontario.

“This plan represents a shared commitment to make the communities on Manitoulin Island a place where individuals and families feel safe, have a sense of belonging and access to services to meet their needs,” the plan’s executive summary states.

Through community engagement and data analysis, four main priority areas of focus for all of the communities emerged: mental health and addictions, housing, seniors and domestic violence.

The Expositor will explore these areas of focus in more detail in the weeks to come.

Request for work on municipal property

Council received a request from Anthony McRae of Cablewave Utility Services, a contractor for Vianet, requesting permission from the municipality to install cable from the corner of Harbour View Road and Highway 6, south side, to the Manitoulin Country Fest and radio station offices.

Mr. Williamson explained that this would service Country Fest and the radio stations, as well as the Vianet tower located on McLean’s Mountain and the new Killarney Vianet tower.

Mr. Williamson told council he spoke with Northland Power, whose hydro lines run the length of that same stretch of road, and was informed that cable cannot be placed within a meter of their hydro poles.

Mr. Williamson informed council he had also approached Jim McBane of Streetwise Holdings Inc. as the cable would run along his property, located directly across from the recreation centre, but had yet to hear back.

“At this point, staff aren’t recommending it,” Mr. Williamson advised council.

Councillor Michael Erskine asked how deep the cable could be buried to which Mr. Williamson responded “one metre deep.”

“That’s not deep enough for staff?” Councillor Erskine asked, noting Mr. Williamson’s concerns with spring ditching. “Not always when ditching,” Mr. Williamson replied.

The CAO said public works staff would try their best to avoid the cable, but that if council approved the project it be with the caveat that the municipality is not responsible should the cable be accidently severed or damaged.

Councillor Bruce Wood asked if the cable could run behind the poles and on private property. Mr. Williamson acknowledged that this is an option that could be explored. He also suggested it be buried at two metres at the original asking location.

Councillor Erskine said that if the company is willing to accept the risks, he believes the municipality should go along with the request as more bandwidth is always important.

The motion to approve the request, with the caveat that the municipality not be found liable in case of cable damage, was carried.

Sheguiandah parking concerns

Council received a letter from Lara Foucault, a long-time visitor to Manitoulin and frequent user of the government dock boat launch in Sheguiandah.

Ms. Foucault expressed her concerns with the placement of large rocks along the ‘beach’ side of the government dock area.

“This reduction in safe and tidy parking has resulted in people having to park on the grass, the road, the turnaround…anywhere they can fit, basically,” she writes. “This, I believe, is a safety hazard as the congestion causes much difficulty in maneuvering in and out of not only the launch, but the parking area as well and quite frankly does disservice to a lovely area. Who wants to have a picnic or a rest in the new gazebo surrounded by vehicles?”

Ms. Foucault suggested council revisit the matter and have the boulders removed.

Councillor Michael Erskine asked if there were any alternatives to increase the parking, to which Mr. Williamson replied that there were no easy fixes to the parking problem.