Friday, February 5, 2016
Canadian Publications Agreement No. 40727545
Welcome to PolarFest Weekend 2016. This year marks the 10th Anniversary of Selwyn’s Winter Carnival. Jen MacKenzie, owner of the Lakefield Pantry and organizer of the Polar Paddle and Lakefield Ice Carving Competition and People’s Choice Awards is pictured above helping the PolarFest Bear get ready for all the fun winter activities. PolarFest is going ahead as planned so please visit www.polarfest.ca for up to date information.
Tree Committee hosts Public Meeting
On Tuesday evening (Feb. 2) at 7:00 p.m. approximately 75 people gathered at the Village Inn in Lakefield at the invitation of the Tree Committee of Urban Selwyn Township (The Tree Committee).
Guests, including Mayor Mary Smith, Deputy Mayor Sherry Senis and Councillor Gerry Herron, were provided with the knowledge and suggestions of three experts in different areas, who discussed the local, national and global need to preserve our trees in urban and forested settings, for the health of our community in every sense of the word.
The Tree Committee was established in the Spring of 2015 with the mandate to formulate a by-law to protect heritage trees, conserve healthy trees and to ensure the tree canopy and population is substantial and robust, in Lakefield, Bridgenorth and Wooodland Acres. The intent is to present a completed by-law to Selwyn Township Council.
The Tree Committee members consulted with other municipalities on their tree by-laws, talked with experts and is now at the stage where they are seeking to educate the community and incorporate public input, ideas and suggestions.
Tuesday nights speakers included Peter Wynnyczuk, President of P&A Urban Forestry Consulting Inc., Dr. Rosana Salvaterra, Medical Office of Health, Peterborough County-City Health Unit, and Matthew Logan, President of Logan Tree Exerts and ISA Certified Arborist.
Selwyn tables three
per cent tax increase
When it comes to budgeting $16,000,000 there’s a little more to it than balancing a cheque book. Municipal council members are entrusted with their constituents’ money and have a duty to allocate those dollars in the most efficient and effective manner at that particular time (i.e. budget time). Priorities must be set and choices must be made as to what projects take precedence for the coming year.
In Canada, 83 per cent of the municipal government revenue is raised through their own sources, and legally their accounts cannot go into deficit, safeguarding the provinces from unintentionally guaranteeing their municipal governments’ debts. The majority of funding for Canadian municipal governments comes from property taxes. Additional funding sources include Reserve Transfers, User Pay Charges, and Grants from other levels of government.
It is the Treasurer’s job (Lane Vance, Manager of Finance) to pull all the revenue and expenses together into a report and present a Budget to Council.
A consideration for all municipalities is the possibility of some provincial funding sources being discontinued after 2018. In order to prepare for this possibility, the Treasurer, with Council’s approval has been putting a few pennies (thousands in municipal terms) away for the possibility. Should O.M.P.F not be renewed in 2019, taxpayers won’t be asked to tighten their belts further and help make up the lost revenue. Selwyn’s administration is thinking ahead.
However, for this year, Economic Wage Increases, Organizational Changes, Waste Management Contract increases, ORCA increases and rising operational costs will result in the need for a tax increase.
The proposed overall net tax increase of $188,739 translates into a 3 per cent hike in property taxes for 2016. This 3 per cent is calculated as follows: One percent of the $6,305,227 in tax revenue received is equal to $63,000. Thus, for every $63,000 in new municipal expenditures, the tax levy increases by 1 percent. So, for the required $188,739 in new expenses for the coming year, 3 per cent more revenue has to be passed on to taxpayers.
The 2016 tax levy is a 2.44 pe rcent increase for the average residential property in Smith-Ennismore and Douro-Dummer Wards (rural) and 1.13 percent increase for property owners in Lakefield Ward (village) over the 2015 rate.
When it comes to an increased tax levy, people want to know exactly what they’re being asked to pay for, and why.
Here is a breakdown of the expenditures proposed, and approved for this coming year (not a complete description of expenditures):
P-I-Ls & OMPF Offset $57,803 (Grant reductions)
General Government $23,840 (salary and wage increases, equipment, etc.)
Economic Development $1,530 (new position and strategy portion not covered by grant)
Fire Services $32,098 (equipment, training and improvements)
Conservation Authority (ORCA) $7,848 (Levy increase)
Roadways $19,636 (maintenance and road construction and preparation)
Waste Management $24,595 (Increased contractor fees)
Parks $16,883 (Ennismore waterfront park, Emerald Ash Borer program)
Lakefield-Smith Arena $5,000 (Miscellaneous)
Ennismore Arena $5,000 (Miscellaneous)
Libraries $20,080 (Integrated Library System, community outreach)
Planning $ 21,719 (Implementation of Organizational Review recommendations)
For anyone keeping track with a calculator, the total expenditures proposed for 2016, as noted above, is $236,031. However, there is an adjustment for Real Assessment Growth of $47,292 to be deducted for the total equalling $188,739.
Included in the overall property tax increase are the 2016 Policing cost increases (or decreases). The O.P.P. Area Rate Increase of $40,864 will result in a 1.87 percent increase for Selwyn Township, excluding Lakefield. For Lakefield, the Peterborough Policing rate will not increase.
Council receives a huge black binder full of information, numbers and calculations each year, prepared by the Financial Department for their budgeting and taxation consideration and approval. What is in these few paragraphs is just the tip of the iceberg.
For more detailed information and a look at the complete budget, visit www.selwyntownship.ca.
Last summer (2015), as reported in the July 17 edition of the Lakefield Herald, Selwyn Council approved the early opening of the Ennismore Arena.
At the July 14, 2015 Council meeting, Mike Richardson, Manager of Recreation Services, submitted a report summarizing the operating costs for both the Lakefield and Ennismore Arenas and which recommended the opening of the Lakefield Arena on August 31, 2015.
According to the report, “From the financial perspective, opening the Lakefield Arena early would have the most positive impact on the budgeted operating deficits in the Selwyn arenas.”
At the July 14, 2015 Council meeting, following Mike Richardson’s presentation, Stephanie Serra, representing the Ennismore Girls Hockey Association and Andrew Winslow, President of the Ennismore Minor Hockey Association appealed to council for the arena in their area to be the one opened on the early date (August 31, 2015).
Councillor Donna Ballantyne and Councillor Gerry Herron put forth and seconded the motion that the Ennismore Arena open first on Monday, August 31, 2015 based on past and present community support for an earlier opening.
All members of Council, except Mayor Smith, voted in favour of the motion and it was carried.
On Friday, December 11, 2015, a meeting took place with representatives from EMHA, EGHA and the LMHA to discuss the future opening schedule of the Township of Selwyn arenas. The representatives for the three minor hockey associations were provided with the operating expense reports for staffing and utilities at each of the arenas for August and September 2015.
After reviewing the number of minor hockey players each association has; (EMHA –300, LMHA –140, EGHA –125), the September ice rental needs for each association and the operating expenses of each arena, it was recommended by the presidents of the minor hockey associations that the arena opening schedule should be a two to one ratio starting with 2015.
Therefore, the associations have agreed to request that council consider opening Ennismore Arena early in 2016, Lakefield Arena in 2017 and Ennismore Arena early in 2018. After this time, the associations would like to meet again to review this schedule and staff would provide council with an update at that time.
At the January 12, 2016 Regular Council Meeting, Manager of Recreation Services, Mike Richardson, presented a report for Council’s consideration and direction outlining the future arena opening schedules as discussed at the December 11 meeting.
The Lakefield Chiefs and Little Britain Merchants face each other in a COJCHL quarterfinal series which began Tuesday night in Lakefield. The Chiefs scored a 3-2 decision over the Merchants to lead the best of seven series 1-0. The Chiefs earned full marks for the win as they held a slight edge in play throughout most of the game. Goaltender Michael Christie came up big with key saves when called upon to keep the Merchants off the score sheet especially during the third period. The game was scoreless until the mid point of the second period when the Chiefs Aaron Vatcher scored on a Chiefs power play. The Merchants had two players in the penalty box at the time. Jayd Killingbecks assisted on Vatcher’s goal.
Little Britain tied the game three minutes later on their own power play as Aidan Renouf put a shot past Christie with Keegan Cairns and Terry Snoddon drawing assists. An even strength goal by the Chiefs Ethan Schott from Riley Campbell put the Chiefs up by a goal. Koel Newton scored what would be the winning goal at 16:16 on another Chiefs power play with Riley Campbell getting the lone assist. After two periods of play the Chiefs had out shot the Merchants 31-21.
The third period was scoreless until the 15:52 mark when the Merchants top line scored to bring them within a goal of the Chiefs. Keegan Cairns scored from Terry Snoddon and Kenzie Smith. The Merchants out shot Lakefield 16-4 in the third. Games 2 and 3 are in Little Britain this weekend, Saturday night at 7:30 and Sunday afternoon at 5:00 respectively.
Previously, the Chiefs had finished their regular season play last Saturday night in Little Britain losing to the Merchants 6-4. The Chiefs were led by Aaron Vatcher’s three goals and Ethan Schott scored the fourth Lakefield goal. The Merchants Terry Snoddon has a big offensive night scoring four goals and one assist.
The Port Perry Mojacks are playing the North Kawartha Knights in the COJCL’s other quarterfinal series. The first place Clarington Eagles and second place Uxbridge Bruins received byes and they will play the winners of the quarterfinal series winners.
The Selwyn Fire Department urges everyone in the community to take a few minutes to make sure their smoke and CO alarms are working.
The Selwyn Fire Department responded to their first Structure Fire of 2016 at 4:19 am on February 1 in the area of Buckhorn. The call came in as smoke in the home and the occupants were exiting the building.
The first arriving Selwyn firefighters were able to report that the fire had been stopped by the use of a portable extinguisher and that all occupants were out of the building. The fact that there were working smoke alarms in the home gave the occupants the time required to take action.
The fire was in the area of the chimney pipe and the ceiling as well as the wood around the brick chimney. The Selwyn Fire Department would like to take this time to ask its residence to have their chimney cleaned and inspected by a qualified professional.
“Too many people are complacent about fire safety,” said Fire Prevention Officer Howard Jinkerson “People need to remember there is a one in ten chance of having a fire in their home. With all the plastic and synthetic materials we put in our homes today, fire burns hotter and faster than ever before. You may have just seconds to get everyone out of your home safely.”
Working smoke alarms provide the early warning of fire so that people have those extra seconds needed to escape a fire emergency.
CO alarms placed outside your sleeping areas and on every level are great life savers as well, just remember to change the batteries and that they can have a seven year life span. It’s up to you to keep your Smoke/CO alarms ready for the unexpected!
For more information, please contact:
Howard Jinkerson, Fire Prevention Officer, Selwyn Fire Dept. 705 292 7282.
Sunblockers offers warm service all year round
For the past twelve years (now into the thirteenth) the sun on the Sunblockers sign at 23 Queen Street, Lakefield, invites thoughts of summer, swimming and exceptional customer service.
Owner Nicola Cowie started the business because she identified a need for quality sun protection. Over the years, the needs of her customers changed and swimwear was introduced as a complimentary product line. Now, in 2016, Sunblockers has grown and developed into a regional specialist in swimwear, with complimentary beach accessories and sun protection products.
During the first couple of years, the business went through growing pains and trial and error. During the first year, 2003, the store was closed January and February. Nicola reopened for March Break. Feedback from the community prompted her to stay open year round, and so, in 2004 Sunblockers was open all year from Wednesday to Saturday. By the following year, comments, growth and public support encouraged her to offer swimwear and sun protection every day, throughout all seasons.
Nicola told the Lakefield Herald that, “we couldn’t have survived without the support of the local community. They kept us going through the off season,” during the first years.
Sunblockers draws clientelle from areas as far away as Whitby and Bomanville, as well as Peterborough County. People come for the selection and the personal attention the team at Sunblockers gives each customer in order to find the perfect suit that compliments the individual’s body type.
Nicola says, “the fun part is the satisfaction,” she derives from being able to offer the right swimwear and accessories for everyone.