Northeast Town Council Notes

Asset management

Council carried a motion directing staff to apply for a grant opportunity from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Municipal Asset Management Program for the Northeast Town to hire an individual to development the town’s Asset Management Program. Staff noted that the municipality’s intern has been working on the plan, but that they would like to create a full-time position for her to continue to develop the plan once her current position with the municipality ends.

Prior to the motion being moved by Councillor Michael Erskine, seconded by Councillor Marcel Gauthier and carried by council, CAO Dave Williamson explained that the funding would cover the majority of the position while the remaining funds of $8,840 would come from the 2018 budget.

Wildlife damage

Council reviewed a resolution from the Township of Oro Medonto concerning Ontario’s Wildlife Damage Compensation Program (OWDCP).

The resolution calls on the province to “expand the OWDCP to include evidence of partial carcass’ to allow eligible producers to process legitimate claims and relay more heavily on the opinions of the municipal investigator, as they are experienced, familiar and knowledgeable with the municipality’s produces, as they continue to process genuine and valid applications.”

Councillors Michael Erskine and Paul Skippen suggested that the Northeast Town council support the resolution and forward it to the premier and Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

Council carried a motion to support the resolution and forward it on to the suggested parties.

Municipal training

The Township of Tehkummah contacted the Northeast Town asking for the municipality’s support in petitioning the Association of Municipal Managers, Clerks and Treasurers of Ontario (AMCTO) to host training sessions on Manitoulin Island.

“The training sessions provided by AMCTO are timely and well worth attending,” states the letter from Tehkummah to the Northeast Town. “Although it would be beneficial to have more than one staff member or council member attend training sessions, it is not affordable to send anyone.”

Tehkummah made a resolution: “That the AMCTO be petitioned to host training sessions on Manitoulin Island so that more staff and council members of the municipalities in the district can attend these sessions; and that this resolution be circulated to Manitoulin Island municipalities for their support.”

The Northeast Town carried a motion to support Thekummah’s resolution.

Land exchange

Steve Rolston made a deputation to council on behalf of Dr. John Skilling. He explained that Dr. Skilling is proposing a land exchange with the municipality. In exchange for granting him ownership of Macaulay Street (approximately 1.9 acres), Dr. Skilling will donate Lot 1, North Side Campbell Street (five acres) to the municipality.

The five acres of land that Dr. Skilling is proposing to exchange with the municipality  is a portion of the Sheguiandah historical site.

Mr. Rolston said that if the town was to go forward with the exchange, Mr. Rolston would pay for all legal fees the municipality incurs in transferring the title of both properties.

Dr. Pat Julig, who has worked on the archeological site, spoke to council about the historical importance of the property and how it would make access to the rest of the historical site easier in the future if the town was to develop a trail.

Town Mayor Al MacNevin explained that council’s policy is not to make decisions on issues presented to council through deputation until its next scheduled meeting (Tuesday, November 7).

Fire department

Northeast Town Fire Chief Duane Deschamps presented the October department report to council. He listed that there were eight calls for service since the last report including: September 24, structure fire at 47 Worthington Street in Little Current; September 27, a sailboat collided with the swing bridge; September 30, a report of smoke in Sheguiandah; October 1, a motor vehicle collision on Highway 540 west of Aundeck Omni Kaning; October 6, an alarm call at 120 Harbour View Road, Manitoulin Transport; October 9, a report of a structure fire on Highway 6 that ended up being a burn barrel; October 11, a vehicle accident involving a cement truck rollover at the corner of Highway 540 and Bidwell Road; and October 16, a house fire on Bidwell Road.

He noted that there had been 40 calls for service to date and that all the fire department’s apparatus and equipment was in good working order.

Community services

Community Services Manager Reid Taylor reviewed the October report with council. He said that the arena ice is being well used and that staff are completing regular maintenance.

“Little Current Howland Minor Hockey starts on October 23, while the public skating schedule starts on October 22,” said Mr. Taylor. “The Manitoulin Panthers are having an alumni game on November 10.”

He also noted that Spider Bay Marina is closed for the season, as is the Port of Little Current.

“Parks are being inspected regularly and the washrooms are closed and will be winterized shortly,” said Mr. Taylor. “Town docks will be moved by month’s end, weather permitting.”

He added that the Robinson Street trees have arrived (to replace the ones that were removed).

Public works noted that the roadside brushing has started. He also noted that operations were going well at the landfill and that fence has been put up around the active area of the cell.

Regular maintenance and repairs were being done on public works equipment as requested and work has started on the expansion of the Cup and Saucer parking lot.

Building controls

The October building controls report stated that there were a total of 56 permits issued to date this year. It also noted that the total construction to date is $5,141,215 with a total building permit  revenue of $64,900.29.

Cat program

Council received a letter from Bleu Fisher of Rainbow Rescue reporting on the first year of the partnership pilot project between her organization and the municipality.

“I was given $1,500 for a pilot program for stray cats in the area,” she wrote. “It has been a huge success. I was able to trap 14 strays and get all 14 spayed/neutered, shots, dewormed, de-flea and some FIV tested.”

“Along with these 14 strays, there were over 60 kitten litters which were also trapped and sent to Pet Save Sudbury,” Ms. Fisher continued. “I believe this program has stopped the population of strays by the thousands. I am requesting that the town contribute another $1,500 so I can continue the work.”

Staff said that the item had been added to the 2018 budget donation line discussions.