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, February 14, 2022. In light of Covid-19 restrictions, the meeting was virtual. The public was provided with Zoom access to the meeting and a couple of our HIRA directors called into the meeting. Only matters of particular interest to Howe Island residents are highlighted here.
- By-Law 2022-04:
Council passed by-law 2022-04, being a by-law authorizing the township to levy taxes for the 2022 tax year.
- 2022 Budget Finalized:
The 2022 township budget was finalized and approved by council. The budget provides for an estimated property tax increase for Howe Island residents, net of development charges levied on new construction in 2021, of 3.0% (vs. an estimated net increase of 2.6% for Wolfe Island residents).
Given that Statistics Canada reported a year-over-year increase of 4.8% in the Consumer Price Index at the end of December 2021, we think township council is to be commended for bringing in the 2022 budget that has been passed.
- Progress re Drive System Upgrade for County Ferry:
Responding to a question from Deputy Mayor Bruce Higgs, Rob Dillabough, Public Works Manager, advised that bid specifications for a new drive system for the County ferry are now with Procurements Ontario and he expects the project to go out for bid within the next month. Stay tuned.
- Update on Norris Park upgrades:
As we reported previously, a final Site plan has been completed and
playground equipment has been ordered and will be installed in the spring of this year.
As we reported previously, fencing work has been completed.
The bid process for the tennis/pickleball court and the basketball court has been completed. Installation is expected to be completed in the spring of this year.
With respect to the picnic/concert pavilion, staff are engaged in preparing a Request for Proposal.
Staff are also engaged in preparation of a Request for Proposal for the accessible washroom/storage building.
North Shore Road project: complete surface treatment. Bid has been advertised. Public Works Manager expects to have report before Council for award before the end of March.
Lower Side Road: application of 2” of gravel to stabilize surface to be completed as soon as stone is available from supplier on Howe Island (cost considerations require use of a local supplier as it is very expensive to bring stone from the mainland).
Howe Island Recreation Trail: application of stone to be completed as local stone supply becomes available. It is expected to take place in the spring of this year.
New marine building at the township ferry landing: Township staff are preparing documents to request bids for design work.
Grass Cutting Contract 2022-2023: Contract to cut grass at all township properties through the 2023 season has been awarded to Island Property Management.
New Firefighter Recruits: Fire Chief Mike Quinn reported, after conducting a community wide campaign to recruit additional firefighters, that eleven (11) new firefighters will be joining the fire department and will undergo a one-year probationary period.
END of COUNCIL HIGHLIGHTS
END of BRIEFING NOTE