Northeast Town Council Notes

Sheguiandah resident requests

Council received two pieces of correspondence from Pam Lehman of On the Bay Bed and Breakfast in Sheguiandah. 

The first asked council for permission for use of the Sheguiandah Bay shoreline road allowance which fronts the B&B property. Ms. Lehman said she hoped to create a path that would run alongside the property line, continuing onto the shoreline road allowance and onto the peninsula that juts into Sheguiandah Bay. “The peninsula needs some resurfacing,” she writes.

Ms. Lehman noted that the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry had been notified, which stated that they did not need ministry approval, but did require municipal approval.

“Our intention is to create a picturesque walking path for our customers to access the waterfront for their enjoyment,” she explained.

Councillor Jim Ferguson, a Sheguiandah resident, said he believed that Ms. Lehman had already completed the work, without permission, and suggested habitat destruction may have occurred. The councillor said he worried about liability issues. 

CAO Dave Williamson said liability is not a concern as anyone can use a road allowance.

Councillor Ferguson said he would like to see public works check on the work as he believed clearing had been done. He also asked for a recorded vote on the motion to approve, however the motion was deferred until council receives a report from the public works inspection.

Ms. Lehman also approached council about a potential land donation.

“A portion of our property is located on the north side of the Bass Creek along Mill Street where the fish viewing station is located,” she writes. “With this portion of property being used as a tourist attraction, we would like to donate this property to the town in exchange for a tax receipt in the amount of $20,000. Please note that the town would be responsible for the survey and any costs in the transfer of the ownership.”

Councillor Ferguson said he had concerns that this could end up costing the township more.

“Why do this for a property we currently have a lifetime use on?” he asked, noting what he deemed as a risk with the fish viewing station.

Mr. Williamson said as the property owners, they would have the right to tear the fish viewing station down if they so choose.

Councillor Michael Erskine said he was in favour of the transfer, noting the great benefit it has to the community of Sheguiandah and the municipality as a whole.

Councillor Ferguson said he wanted more research as he believed there is a binding document that allowed use by the municipality in perpetuity.

Mr. Williamson said that would be easy enough to find out. “If it’s not registered, it doesn’t exist,” he said.

Councillor Erskine again reminded council of the fish viewing station’s importance. “If it’s something we’re using that’s to the benefit of the community, I think we should step up.”

Mr. Williamson said he would search municipal records as well as title and report back to council. The motion was deferred.

Fire department report

Fire chief Duane Deschamps gave the Northeast Town Fire Department’s monthly report, noting that the department responded to five calls for service between April 20 and May 18: A carbon monoxide alarm in Bay Estates, a structural fire in Sheguiandah First Nation, a lift assist in Little Current, a false alarm in Little Current and a fire that had been put out by the time crews arrived, also in Little Current.

Public works report

Manager of public works Wayne Williamson offered the public works report to council, noting that staff has been busy patching, grading and sweeping roads. Culverts have been changed on Green Bush Road and on Bay Estates Road. 

Mr. Williamson reminded council that the landfill is now open on Sundays and that cleanup week was underway.

Community services report

The recreation centre remains closed, except for use for vaccination clinics, manager of community services Reid Taylor explained. The Lions Den is being used for Drive Test tests with the curling club side utilized for weekly AA meetings.

Spider Bay Marina opened on Saturday, as per the province’s new directives, with the launch ramps in Sheguiandah and Green Bay also in operation.

Mr. Taylor noted that the town docks have been moved out of Spider Bay to be readied for their downtown locations. The marina washroom upgrades have almost been completed, he noted, with the waterfront public washrooms now open.

Councillor Bill Koehler commented on the beautiful flower gardens in downtown Little Current, encouraging his fellow councillors to go and have a look, and asked Mr. Taylor to offer his thanks to the garden club which takes care of them. Mr. Taylor said he would.