Welcome to the Howe Island Ratepayers Association Web Site
The Howe Island Ratepayers Association, incorporated as a non-profit organization, is a Community Association run by volunteers. Howe Island is one of the worlds renowned 1000 Islands located on the St Lawrence River mid-way between Kingston and Gananoque, Ontario.
This is a brief report to HIRA members on the Township of Frontenac Islands Council meeting which took place on April 9th 2018 at the Township offices on Howe Island. One of our directors attended the meeting. Only matters with particular reference to Howe Island or of general relevance are highlighted here.
- Severances—In the past, one could apply for a land severance for a new non-farm single dwelling if you could show that the land was poor agricultural land and the effect of the severance would not interfere with or restrict the viability of adjoining farm activities or other adjacent land uses. Only three severances are allowed from any lot as it existed on January 1, 1985.
In April 2017, Council asked staff to research the history of severances granted on both Wolfe and Howe to determine if the date January 1, 1985 might be changed as (a) it was thought that keeping that date might be restricting development on the two Islands and (b) members of the public were voicing concerns that they were unable to sever lots for family.
Staff has reported to Council and recommended that FOR WOLFE ISLAND ONLY the date January 1,1985 remain unchanged but that four instead of three severances be allowed from any lot as it existed on January 1,1985.
For Howe Island, the staff report to Council said that comments received at the public meeting held on Howe last June 2017 and written submissions received indicated that residents of Howe did not support additional severances. Staff told Council at the meeting held April 9, 2018, that before additional development on Howe, the transportation concerns need to be addressed first.
NOTE: Public meetings will be held to review the severance matter on Monday May 7, 2018 at 6:30 pm on Howe island and on Tuesday May 8, 2018 at 6:30 pm on Wolfe Island.
- Budget—The Township budget for 2018 was passed by Council. The increase for the year is 2.47% over last year. The average residential assessment rose from $531,368 in 2017 to $537,584 in 2018.
- Foot Ferry—The foot ferry is still scheduled to be out of service starting April 16, 2018 for deck refurbishment and a few other repairs. It is expected to be out for three months (until mid July).
- Pitch-In— It was noted that the Pitch-in date sponsored jointly by HIRA and the Township, for clean-up of Howe Island roadsides will be held on Saturday April 21, 2018. Clean-up bags are available at the Township Offices. Volunteers are needed. HIRA director Bill Worona is the contact for volunteers to sign-up (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Saturday, April 21 (Rain day, April 22)
Once again the Township of Frontenac Islands and the Howe Island Ratepayers Association (HIRA) are partnering to organize the 2018 Pitch-In Canada event on Howe Island. We encourage all Howe Island residents to celebrate the start of spring by cleaning up waste from the Island roadsides.
All participants are encouraged to register for this community event by contacting Bill Worona at 613-549-4617 or email@example.com. Upon registering you will be assigned a section of road for waste pick-up.
Official Pitch-In garbage bags are now available at the Township Office, Baseline Road, during business hours. Collected waste may be dropped off at the Township Recycle Depot the morning of the Pitch-In. Members of HIRA will be at the Township Recycle Depot on April 21 from 8:00 AM until noon to hand out garbage bags and assist in garbage drop-off.
Through the efforts of volunteers, this initiative continues to enhance the natural beauty of our community.
Join us and pitch-in on April 21, 2018.
Click here to read the council proceedings from the March 12, 2018 meeting.
A HIRA BRIEFING NOTE
February 13, 2018
This is a brief report to HIRA members on the Township of Frontenac Islands Council meeting which took place on February 12 2018 at the Township Offices on Howe. Only matters with particular relevance to Howe Island are highlighted here.
- Planning- The Director of Planning for the County of Frontenac addressed Council requesting their concurrence in increasing the staff resources by one senior planner for a 3-year contract position. He noted that their workload was forcing a lot of staff overtime. He noted that the cost would be apportioned among three of the four Townships comprising the County. South Frontenac Township has their own in-house planning staff and does not use County planners for South Township planning. The Township of Frontenac Islands’ (that’s Wolfe, Howe and Simcoe) portion based on assessment is about 10%. The cost will be phased in over 3 years and it is estimated that at the end of the three years the cost to the Township of Frontenac Islands will be approximately $36,000. Council supported the increase in staff (and with it the additional cost) and the Mayor noted that the level of planning service from the County is better than the previous contract planners.
- Official Plan Amendment-Council approved an Official Plan Amendment changing the St Philomena’s Church property on Howe Island Drive from Agriculture to Rural. This amendment is to recognize the existing land use and had been in the works for some time.
- Road Race Plan-A representative from the Kingston Road Runners addressed Council to inform Council of their plans to hold a road running race on Howe on May 12 2018. Council was informed that the money raised from these races is directed to various charitable or community initiatives. On Howe Island they are proposing to direct funds towards a tennis/basketball/pickle ball court. It was noted that in order to see such a facility becoming a reality in the foreseeable future it would require partnerships with external grant agencies. Council decided to discuss this item during their budget deliberations and Council may recommend the formation of a Committee to advance this initiative.
- Road Side Garbage Pickup Contract- Council awarded the contract to Island Properties Management (Rob Feeney) and while they were the low bidder the increase over the present contract is approximately 63%. Councilor Higgs noted that this was a significant increase that could have the effect of a 2% increase in the tax rate and therefore Council should look to ways to decrease the cost by changing to pickups every two weeks rather that every week and encourage more recycling. Deputy Mayor and Councilor Nossal suggested this was a “cost of doing business” and felt that monies to offset this additional cost could be found through the budget negotiation process. (Editor’s Note: From Council’s Agenda material it appears the cost per year for pick up going forward will be $73,467(the competing tender from Manco Recycling and Waste was $74,858). Stark Battens who has been doing the road side pick-up for several years charged $45,000 in 2017)
HIRA- HOWE ISLAND RATEPAYERS ASSOCIATION
A HIRA BRIEFING NOTE
This is a brief report to HIRA members on two Township Council Meetings which took place on December 11 2017 at the Township Offices on Howe. Only matters with particular relevance to Howe Island are highlighted here.
Council Pre-Budget Meeting at 2:00pm-
- Pre-budget discussion centered on what is hoped will be accomplished this year and next.
- Trail benches were identified for installation this year but will be postponed until next year.
- Signage made with composite material will be installed to replace some existing Island identification signs.
- The deck rebuild for the Foot Ferry is moving forward with the MTO taking the lead on the tendering process. The MTO has said no to extending the length of the Foot Ferry due to engineering concerns and capacity. Timing is targeted for March-April 2018. Ramp work will be done by Township employees with assistance from the MTO.
- Deputy Mayor Nossal has suggested setting up an internal working group of Township and County representatives to review the ferry fee structure.
- Spithead road work is to move forward in two phases with the first part for ditching and drainage and the second for road reconstruction. A separate meeting with the Spithead group is to be held to set out next steps.
- Recreational enhancements are under consideration for the ball diamond. The Road Runners organization which has held some events on Howe has some funds to contribute to these enhancements including for basketball, tennis and pickle ball.
- Policy work is to be undertaken regarding septic and water systems in case any large scale development is proposed on Howe.
- The HIRA ferry camera proposal was raised. It was met with a positive response but nothing definitive at this point.
Regular Council Meeting at 6:30 pm-
- During a discussion of a severance application, Council reiterated its policy to secure a 33’ from centre road allowance for the applicant where the property abuts the Township road.
- The St Philomena Church property has been re-designated rural from agricultural to allow future severance of the church lands.
- Council indicated it is reviewing the recent slowdown in the speed of the County ferry since its return from its four year inspection.
- A review is underway regarding school bus scheduling.
- It was noted that while the Township set ferry fees for this year, the County set different fees. Council will review.
We wish to report to the members of HIRA and to potential members what HIRA has been doing over the past year and our plans for the ensuing period.
Your Board of Directors is hopeful that you will continue to support HIRA, your Howe Island community association. If you are not a member please consider joining HIRA. If you are a new member of HIRA, welcome.
Dues for one year are $10, for two years $20 or for a life time $100.If you have not paid your dues for this year (July 1 2017-June 30 2018) please do so.
Cheques for membership should be payable to HIRA and sent or delivered to HIRA’s Treasurer, Peter Tucker at 2392 Howe Island Drive, Howe Island K7G 2V6 or delivered to one of the following HIRA Directors: Bill Robertson, Jim Mills, Brian Humphrys, or Bill Worona.
THIS PAST YEAR, HIRA HAS:
- Arranged a Pitch-In campaign to clean roadside rubbish from all Howe Island roads; Pitch-In for 2018 will be April 21,2018
- Made representations to Township Council regarding possible amendments to the Official Plan on lot sizes for Howe Island
- Arranged for an OPP Officer and Community Support Officer to attend HIRA’s Annual General Meeting to speak about various forms of SCAMS
- Conducted a Howe Island photo contest
- Provided updated news about the Island on the HIRA Web site at www.howeisland.org
- Made representations to Township Council regarding ferry fees both before and at Council’s public meeting on August 29th 2017
- Made representations to Township Council regarding the installation of internet connected cameras at ferry terminals to give ferry users real time views of each ferry’s position and line up status.
HIRA NEEDS YOUR SUPPORT FOR
- Continuing to represent Islanders in assisting and occasionally persuading Township Council on matters that come before Council
- Updating the HIRA Web site at www.howeisland.org, including creating a community notice board for members to announce upcoming events on Howe Island
- Communicating with members on important matters affecting Howe Is.
- Conducting community events that bring Howe Islanders together
- Attending Township Council meetings in order to keep HIRA members informed of matters being dealt with at Council
- Arranging meetings with interesting outside speakers on a range of subjects from health care to current events.
- If you would like to get involved with any of our ongoing projects please let us know.
If you have an interest in joining the HIRA Board please speak to Jim Mills at 613-546-7536.
Many thanks for your continued support. The more members we have the louder our voice in communicating with all levels of government.
HIRA Board of Directors
I have attached a letter from HIRA relating to your taking steps to improve ferry service for Howe Island.Click here to read the letter
We ask that you give very serious consideration to our request. HIRA would be pleased to assist in any way we can to see to the implementation of our request.
The improvement of ferry service will necessarily involve a number of steps (such as improving the speed of the County ferry, building a fund to replace the Township ferry, determining fares, deciding whether to charge vacant landowners etc). We believe that the installation of cameras at the Howe Island terminals will be an important new first step.
Howe Island Ratepayers Association
Click here to read the Letter to Council regarding Howe Island Ferries: Fees and Fare Structure.
Howe Island Ratepayers Association
Annual General Meeting
August 24, 2017 7:00PM
St. Philomena’s Parish Hall
All islanders welcome, you do not have to be a HIRA member to attend.
The AGM will feature:
– A recap of HIRA initiatives
– Election of the 2017/2018 Board of Directors
The keynote speaker will be Judy King from the OPP who will speak on “Scams ie fraudulent solicitations.” Judy will also be available for questions from the audience.
Not a member of HIRA? Please consider joining: we are a community association that works with local government for the improvement of Howe Island.