This is a brief note to HIRA members and other residents of Howe Island
about the Township of Frontenac Islands regular council meeting held on
Monday December 11, 2023.
Only matters of particular interest to Howe Island residents are highlighted
2024 Township budget not finalized yet:
In our December 2023 briefing note HIRA was mistaken when we advised
the Township’s 2024 budget had been finalized. We have been told the
budget document that was posted on the Township website in early
December was, in fact, only a proposed draft budget.
Further meetings are to be held throughout January 2024 to finalize this
year’s budget. Those meetings will be open to the public. HIRA will
monitor the Township website through the month of January. We will
advise Howe Island residents as to dates, time and location for these
meetings as details become available.
By-law #49-2023 to restrict trailer access on Township (East) ferry:
Council proposes to remove trailer access on the Township (East) ferry. In
future, access to the Township ferry is to be restricted to passenger
vehicles only. Allowing trailers to access the smaller Township ferry
introduces safety concerns and increases congestion at the ferry landing.
The by-law received first and second reading at the Council meeting held
on November 14, 2023. Third reading was expected to take place at the
regular Council meeting on December 11, 2023.
Third reading of the by-law has been deferred for the time being. On the
advice of Mike Quinn, Public Works lead hand for Howe Island, all trailer
access to the township foot ferry (east end) is suspended until further
notice due to extremely low water levels. The low water levels introduce
safety concerns with respect to boarding towed vehicles on the township
Delegation re trailer access on Howe Island ferries:
Two Howe Island residents made a delegation to Council to request the
Township allow unrestricted access on the Township (East) ferry for
vehicles towing trailers no wider than 8 ft. The request was made in view
of the fact access is restricted on the County ferry to passenger vehicles
only from 6:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. when leaving the island and from 4:30
p.m. – 6:30 p.m. when returning from the mainland.
The delegation argued the restrictions proposed by the pending by-law
noted above would make life difficult for Howe Island residents who have
commercial operations that require daily use of trailers.
In response to the concerns expressed by the delegation, Council passed
Resolution #215-23. The resolution, proposed by Councillor Ackley and
seconded by Deputy Mayor Saunders, directed Township staff to contact
the County of Frontenac to request removal of the existing restrictions on
the County Ferry and to report back to Council on the outcome of the
request at the next Council meeting scheduled for January 8, 2024.
Request to MTO for transportation study re Howe Island ferry service:
Resolution #223-23. Motion made by Mayor Greenwood-Speers and
seconded by Councillor Hulton.
Motion proposed that the Township request the County request the MTO
conduct a comprehensive study to give a full and proper assessment of
the ferry service required by Howe Island residents.
After some discussion of the topic, it was decided to postpone this motion
to the Council meeting scheduled for January 8, 2024. The deferral is to
be used to allow the Township CAO to confer with the County CAO as to
the most desirable course of action to pursue i.e. full blown transportation
(which has been conducted in the past) or a more restricted study as to
the capacity of the existing County ferry (i.e. 10 cars or 15 cars).
Proposed change to Township Council meeting schedule for 2024:
Resolution #222-23 was moved by Councillor Jablonicky, seconded by
Resolution provides for change to the schedule for regular Council
meetings in 2024 as follows:
January 8, 2024 meeting to start at 4:30 p.m.
All other 2024 meetings to begin @ 9:30 a.m.
Reason given for the change in start time for meetings was to cut down on
overtime costs arising from evening work required by Township staff with
END of COUNCIL BUSINESS
END OF BRIEFING NOTE
PLEASE NOTE: If you are a member of HIRA, thank you for your support. If
you are not a member, please consider joining at $10 per year. Yearly
membership dues are due on January 1 of each year. If you have paid, thank
If you have not paid, please send or deliver a cheque payable to HIRA to one of
our Directors or place a cheque into the HIRA mailbox at the roadside at the
Township Office. You can also pay by e-transfer to