Click here to read the council proceedings from the March 12, 2018 meeting.
Executive and Committees
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
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.
Members of Frontenac County Council
C/O Jannette Amini
Manager of Legislative Services/Clerk Frontenac County
2069 Battersea Rd.
Glenburnie On K0H 1S0
Re Howe Island County Ferry Lifting of the Farm Vehicle Restrictions
I am writing in my capacity of Chair of the Howe Island Ratepayers Association (HIRA). HIRA has a paid membership of approx. 100 households on Howe Island which is approx 40% of all households. As HIRA represents all taxpayers we don’t generally take positions that will pit one side against another, we do however object to the process that the County has employed in this matter. More specifically we object to the lack of transparency, the lack of opportunity for community input and the fact that Council apparently had no regard for the Township Official Plan when Council made the decision to lift the restrictions. More particularly, section 3.4.3 Ferry Services of the Official Plan reads in part:
“Council’s policy is to continue to work towards improving transportation services………… by making efficient use of existing infrastructure to help reduce wait times at the ferry docks”
We fail to see how this relief to the farm vehicles meets this policy of the Official Plan. HIRA also notes that the policy in the Official Plan is in concert with the stated policies of the Provincial Policy Statement Section 188.8.131.52 states “ Efficient use shall be made of existing and planned infrastructure”.
We believe it is incumbent upon Council to seek a solution that ensures the most efficient use of the ferry as enunciated within their OP. Further we believe the commuters have a right to reasonable, timely, and predictable access to the ferry.
HIRA has also been made aware that the ferry operators have expressed concern as how they will differentiate between farm and other vehicles some having stated they will just let all vehicles on regardless.
HIRA would therefore urge Council to re-examine and reverse their decision. If Council is inclined to bring this matter forward again, that Council act in a manner that best serves the needs of the Howe Island community at large.
Cc Kelly Pender