Performing Arts Lakefield (PAL) held it’s final concert of the 2018-19 concert series on Friday, April 12 hosting the rousing Lemon Bucket Orchestra. The PAL concerts are held at the Bryan Jones Theatre at Lakefield College School. The 2019-20 concert series starts on September 28 and information and tickets can be found at: www.performingartslakefield.org.
by Terry McQuitty
Septic inspections were once again the topic of conversation at Douro-Dummer council. On April 2 Brian Fawcett, Chief Building Official (CBO) for the township of Douro-Dummer tabled a report outlining the pros and cons of the municipality taking over responsibility for sewage systems.
According to the report section 3.(1) of the Building Code Act, the municipality is responsible for the enforcement of the Act within the municipality, except where otherwise provided. Currently the township has an agreement with the Peterborough Health Unit through the County. The responsibility of the Health Unit is to review and inspect all sewage systems within the municipality.
The present agreement with the County is set to expire in May 2019. Fawcett pointed out that the agreement with the county could be renewed or the municipality could take over the responsibility of sewage inspection. Fawcett stated “There are both advantages and disadvantages to either option.”
Fawcett pointed out that the only township within Peterborough County that presently looks after their own septic inspection is North Kawartha. All other townships are involved in the county agreement. Fawcett stated that the two municipalities are similar in size.
The report pointed out that Peterborough Health has done a good job and offered good service, however the costs have been questioned. The going rate for a county inspection is $325 per unit.
Fawcett stated that he has not heard many complaints regarding the service of the Health Unit, but did point out that he did hear complaints that ratepayers had to go to two locations for permits. The sewage permit is required prior to the building permit which means presently a person would have to go to two locations to obtain permits. If the township looked after sewage inspection the permits could both be obtained at the municipal building in Warsaw.
Fawcett also told council that one of the biggest disadvantages to the municipality taking over septic inspection is the risk of liability to the township. If there are any issues with the inspections the municipality may face litigation.
The other negative issue with taking over the responsibility is staffing. Fawcett told council that the building department is presently under staffed. Presently the department operated with a CBO and administrative assistance from the general pool. If the township were to take on these added responsibilities more staff would be required.
Fawcett said to preform minimum duties the department would require three full time staff members.
Mayor J Murray Jones asked if they decided to go it alone could they partner with a neighbouring municipality to help with costs.
Fawcett responded that this would be contrary to the Building Act, therefore not allowed.
Deputy Mayor supported the report in principle, but requested more numbers to make an educated decision.
A second report was presented to council at the April 16 council meeting. This report was designed to show how the department would function on a full cost recovery model.
Fawcett presented a chart covering expenses and revenue for the past four years (2015-2018). The chart showed a deficit of $6,879.96 in 2015 and a surplus of $32,092.97 in 2018.
Fawcett said that the current balance of the reserve is $32,092.97, however the expenses are higher than normal with $30,000 going towards legal fees and the indirect costs are approximately $25,000 due to heavy reliance on administrative staff..
Fawcett projected sewage disposal revenues based on the number of permits issued over the past five years and surmised that the fees projected would be the same as North Kawartha. The price would be $680.00 for a sewage permit and $225 for an inspection. This would put revenue at $43,390.
Fawcett also pointed out that the township was considering a re-inspection program that would see private septics inspected every ten years. The estimate on this revenue is $38,000.
The combined revenue between the two programs would be $314,151 in 2019.
Fawcett concluded that regardless of which way council chose to proceed, the building department would still operate in a tax neutral manner.
The recommendation to council was to take over the responsibility of sewage inspection and hire one new full time employee.
Mayor Jones commented that the major kick-back from the proposed septic reinspection program was the Health unit price at $325.
Fawcett responded that he was not proposing a price for the complete reinspection program, but was using the North Kawatha equation. Before a reinspection program would be instated a full report would have to be brought to council and public consultations would take place.
Mayor Jones pointed out that the county was looking at a committee to address the health unit pricing and wanted clarity if Douro-Dummer should take part in those meetings or not.
CAO David Clifford said that there would be risk in taking over sewage inspection, but the risk would be minimal.
Councilor Heather Watson moved to follow the recommendation which was passed unanimously.
by Marnie Clement
Trent Lakes Municipal staff were instructed to approach the Buckhorn Community Centre (BCC) to see if they would consider selling the municipality a parcel of land covering the current Buckhorn Rink, the adjacent ball diamond, the parking lot in front of the rink and the driveway leading onto the property.
This direction was the result of a report prepared by municipal CAO Peter Avgoustis outlining the issues and the steps needed to add refrigeration to the current rink so that it can be used for a longer period over the winter.
Peter Clarkson of the Buckhorn Sports Pad Committee told council at the February 19, 2019 meeting that changing weather is reducing the number of weeks that the rink can be used. After his presentation, council passed a resolution for staff to work with the committee members and look into the cost of adding a refrigeration unit to the rink.
Members of the committee and staff met with an arena ice rink refrigeration system manufacturer. Just the purchase and installation of a system would likely cost $1 million.
Avgoustis told council that one significant assumption made at the beginning of this exercise was that the municipality would be able to apply for and receive provincial/federal grants to help offset construction costs. However, staff have found out that the municipality would have to own the land the rink is on to qualify for these grants. Land acquisition costs are not eligible for grants, so the land would have to be purchased by the municipality.
Currently the BCC owns the land the rink is on, and rink users are able to access the washrooms in the BCC facility.
So to qualify for the grants, the municipality would have to buy enough land for the rink, washrooms, septic systems, parking and a driveway to access the rink.
Avgoustis also pointed out that although the current rink is run by volunteers, a refrigerated system requires different insurance and has to meet additional regulations.
Councillor Kim Letto questioned whether the refrigeration will be a band aid solution and not be what the community needs 10 years down the road.
“Should we have built a full arena?’ she asked.
Councillor Carol Armstrong acknowledged the rink is an asset, but said it is not necessarily prudent to spend that much money without taking a broader look.
“I don’t see the business case to spend more money on the rink without doing an assessment,” she said. “We don’t know the future, we have an aging population and we don’t know the future of the Buckhorn school.”
Council agreed that the first step is to see if the BCC would sell the required land to the municipality.
Staff were instructed to talk to the BCC to see if they might be willing to sell the land. Council told staff that if a land sale is possible, to then hire an experienced professional ice facilities architect and construction cost estimated to prepare permit construction drawings. The estimated cost for this is $50,000.
by Angela Lavallee
The first stages of fish monitoring is taking place along the eastern side of the James A. Gifford Causeway. In partnership with Curve Lake First Nation and the County of Peterborough, Cambrian Services, a sub-consultant on the project is doing a five year long project of fish monitoring that will include counting adult walleye, doing water quality tests, egg collection and night monitoring. Spawning areas will also be monitored. According to a joint memo put out by Curve Lake First Nation and Peterborough County, equipment is already placed along the eastern side of the causeway. During the month of April staff from Curve Lake First Nation along with the County of Peterborough and Cambrian will be out from 6:00 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. to conduct the tests. The County has reminded residents of the monitoring in a letter sent out. The county will also be placing signs on both side of the causeway to alert of the monitoring taking place. Doug Saccoccia, P. Eng, Assistant Manager Engineering and Design for Peterborough County says fish monitoring will not happen until the walleye and other fish species have finished spawning which can take up to two weeks.
“We are in the very early stages, this more of pre-monitoring. The temperature of the water, installing the egg mats and going out at night is all part of the early stages,” says Saccoccia. Saccoccia also says the rock that is being put in the lake is what fish are used to. “We’ve matched the material that is already in place for years. The fish seem to live in and around the causeway already. It’s a great habitat for them and we are fairly confident fish will remain in the area.”
Douro-Dummer to take over sewage inspection duties
$1 million for refrigeration
Fish monitoring begins along the causeway
"Unheralded" chronicles a week in the life of "The Lakefield Herald", a local newspaper published in Lakefield, Ontario. Whether writing about dog shows and 100th birthdays, or telling stories of citizen opposition and community loss - local news reporters have a difficult job, especially when the readers are their neighbours. "Unheralded" is an NFB-TVO Calling Card production.
Unheralded the documentary
In this week's print edition
Fish monitoring begins along causeway
Wedding venue receives re-zoning approval
Parks Canada seeks proposals for Lakefield property
Trail work day this Saturday
Low cost rabies clinics
Cuddles for Cancer heading back the the UK
Singing for Seniors - Abbeyfield Gala
Regular Columns and Features:
Editorial by Terry McQuitty
Accidental Columnist by Marnie Clement
Bird Column by Rachel Lancashire
Mature Living by Terri Williams Kinghorn
Book Review by Barry Mutter
@yourlibrary by Kacie Gardiner
Story Time at the Buckhorn Library
Golden Years Club Update
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