There is no lack of snow presently, but people had to be creative to enter the PolarFest Snowman Competition. Pictured above is winning entry of the 2019 #SnowmanChallenge from Lisa Mattucci! The goal of the PolarFest committee is to make enough snowmen to rate the world record.
by Terry McQuitty
There seems to be a problem with some of the gravel being used to build and repair Douro-Dummer Roads. Public Works manager, Harold Nelson submitted a report to council last Tuesday outlining some of the issues along with a recommendation to address the above mentioned.
The overview of the report reiterated that there have been complaints regarding the gravel that has been laid on some of the township roads. The product has been labelled substandard by a number of ratepayers. Staff have been in touch with WSP, a Peterborough firm that carries out tests on aggragate. The contact was to confirm that there is no organic material in the township gravel pile, which according to WSP, there is not.
Staff has also had the gravel tested to meet ministry specs, which it does. There are no MTO specs for gravel that require testing for organic matter. WSP proposed using tests that are done on concrete sand which will determine if there is any organic matter.
Nelson recommended to council that testing be done by WSP and the report be returned to council at a later meeting. The financial impact for the recommendation was $2540 plus taxes. This testing is to be done on the gravel piles. Nelson stated that if they wanted further testing, for example the roads where the gravel has been laid, they would be looking at further costs.
Deputy mayor Karl Moher was quite concered with the problem and submitted a report of his own. Moher started by explaining that he had a lifetime of experience on Douro-Dummer roads, however he has never experienced the serious issue of cement like material getting collected on vehicles during wet days in recent years.
Moher explained that in the past vehicles got dirty on the gravel roads, but this dirt could be dealt with by visiting a car wash. Historically there were no major deposits being collected in wheel wells and undercarriages of vehicles that needs to be chipped away at times.
Moher pointed out that road surfaces seem to take an extended period of time to form a crust that would allow the surface to she water. If there is a couple of days of percipitation the crust seems to break down and the mud issue arises again.
Moher told council that he had a sample of the mud tested at his own expense at SGS Lakefield. SGS technicians found the material to be 70 per cent fine sand and 30 per cent in the silt or small range. Some of the material was smaller than the size of Portland Cement. And we know what wet cement does in time.
Moher also took time to do some research on “good gravel”. This research led to the following questions and observations:
• Is the gravel crusher not set-up correctly. Is the sand and fines components of the gravel being crushed too fine?
• Is the per cent mix of stone, sand and fines at the low end of the provincial standard range?
• After Moher’s research of the subject at length, he noticde in the January 2017 WSP Canada Inc. Geotechnical Survey and Testing Report on the Edwards Property on para 1 page 7 “When respect to unconsolidated (esker) materials, the material has less than 8 per cent fines content relative to OPSS 1010 granular standards and is non-plastic.” Might the non-plastic nature of the fines be part of the problem of road crust experiencing difficulty in formation?
Moher also stressed that he is pleased that staff had sourced a gravel deposit within the township which is scheduled to produce gravel for the municipality for generations to come. Moher did state that “If we have chosen a location with issues, I really do not want my name associated with a legacy that may be a burden on future generations”.
Following Moher’s presentation he put forth the following resolution:
Whereas large amounts of material deposits are being collected on vehicles during wet weather from some Douro Dummer gravels roads and especially from roads where new gravel was placed during 2018 from the Edwards pit.
And whereas the collected very fine material dries in vehicle wheel wells and under vehicle carriage resulting in added weight to the vehicle in time.
Any whereas the material collected on vehicle requires most often a tool to chip away the hardened material from the vehicle wheel wells and undercarriage.
Be it resolved that detailed representative gravel test samples be taken and detailed analysis be completed:
• from roads where gravel was placed in 2018 from the Edwards pit
• from stock-piled gravel crushed and stored at the Edwards pit.
• for comparison, from Dummer 12th line where gravel was placed in 2018 from the Drain pit.
• gravel testing details to include % mix of stone, sand and fines and where the results fit into the acceptable result range of the government standard.
• individual analysis of the specific stone, sand and fines and where the results fit into the acceptable result range of the government standard.
• testing the plasticity of the fines material and where the results fit into the plasticity index and acceptable result range of the government standard.
And further be resolved that company completing the study be a qualified company other than the companies who have completed work associated with the Edward’s pit for the Township.
And further that the qualified company, hired to do the work, be asked to present recommendations for all deficiencies if the study identifies some issues.
Trent Lakes Public Library was honoured to accept the accreditation award at the Public Library Awards Gala in Toronto on January 31. The Ontario Public Library Guidelines provide a voluntary, self-regulated process, designed to analyze the state of development of a public library and enable it to plan for, attain, and maintain consistently strong levels of service.
Accreditation can demonstrate that the library is using public money effectively and is a good place to invest, and ultimately allows the library to be recognized by fellow libraries as a leader in the field. The Ontario Public Library Guidelines Monitoring and Accreditation Council has developed a set of guidelines which represent “best practice” for Ontario public libraries. First published in 1987, the Ontario Public Library Guidelines is now in its sixth edition. The guidelines can be used for self-evaluation or as a developmental tool, but libraries can also choose to participate in a more formal accreditation process.
In the accreditation process, a team of two auditors visits the library to evaluate it against the specific guidelines. If the audit measures are reached, the library is then recommended to the council and, once approved, become an accredited library, a recognized achievement within the Ontario public library community. Both the Buckhorn and Cavendish branch of Trent Lakes Public Library successfully passed the audit and are now accredited for the next 5 years.
For more information about the Trent Lakes Public Library, please drop in or visit the website at www.trentlakeslibrary.ca
by Angela Lavallee
Despite the stormy weather, Selwyn Township Council met to take care of business as scheduled. Many items on the February 12 agenda were deferred until the next council meeting but the main items that were a priority took just over an hour for council to complete.
Councillor Gerry Herron spoke to the council about Terms of Reference(TOR) regarding Airbnb. Councillor Herron would like bylaw enforcement on the issue. Councillor Ballantyne agreed with Councillor Herron that council need to adhere to the existing laws regarding short-term rental. She feels ongoing noise complaints and rowdy groups who are using Airbnb are a concern where police are called at all hours of the night.
Robert Lamaare, Manager of Building and Planning said Airbnb are used as single detached dwellings and it’s a trend much like cottage rentals. He agrees there are noisy groups at times but reminded council it is a short-term rental.
Councillor Ballantyne stated she would like to present to the Police Board and make aware of the issue and the problems in the past where Airbnb was used and cottagers in the area left because of the noise.
Airbnb is an online service where cottage or homeowners list their space for rent. Currently there are over 30 properties listed on Airbnb in Selwyn Township. Some of the objectives of TOR and creating a short-term accommodation stakeholder consultation group are to better understand the needs of the rental market as well as work with adjacent municipalities to achieve consistency in policies and licensing.
“I am concerned about noise and rowdiness with regards to Airbnb,” said Councillor Ballantyne. Mayor Andy Mitchell suggested the group meet monthly and if necessary meet more often. “I would like to see the group meet monthly and be chaired by Deputy Sherry Senis,” added Mayor Mitchell. As it stands now, the group will function until such time when council decides to take further discussion for public consultation with respect to policies and the licencing programs.
Also listed in the TOR the group may invite other organizations to attend meetings. The short-term accommodations stakeholders consultation group will be composed of two council members Deputy Sherry Senis and Councillor Gerry Herron also two concerned citizen representatives and a cottage rental agency representative. Depty Mayor Senis will provide updates to council with respect to meetings with the group.
Douro-Dummer experiencing troubles on gravel roads
Trent Lakes Public Library accepts accreditation at Gala
Selwyn reviews Airbnb regulations
"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
Ontario appoints special advisor for provincial parks
Introductory Ojibwa coming to St. Paul in Lakefield
Douro-Dummer to receive $50,000
A successful PolarFest
PAL set for another world class performance
Lakefield Legion to host PTSD info night
Free ice fishing in Ennismore
Observatory dome finds new home
Winter hunting includes public safety
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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