Niagara-on-the-Lake News - Volume 12 - November 3 2015

 Volume 12, November 3, 2015   Facebook icon Facebook   Twitter icon Twitter   YouTube logo YouTube 
 
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PRELIMINARY BUDGET APPROVED

At its November 2 meeting, Council approved the preliminary 2016 capital budget, 10-year capital forecast and operating budget.  Earlier this year, staff was directed to keep any necessary operating increase to no more than the Consumer Price Index.

Currently, the proposed capital budget for next year is $8,030,350, with a 10-year capital forecast of $62,160,021 and a Capital Reserve contribution of $2,337,687.  The proposed 2016 operating budget is $9,247,130.

However, councillors have been invited to forward any additional proposals or comments to Town staff for review and cost analysis.  A final capital and operating budget will be submitted for approval to Council at its December meeting. 

This budget review time-frame, which included two Council workshops in October, allows staff to move quickly on coming capital projects and to realize cost savings through an early tender process with suppliers.

The final 2016 budgets will be published in the December 15 newsletter.

QUEENSTON-GLENDALE TRANSIT PILOT NOT EXTENDED

The pilot transit line running between Queenston and Glendale will be discontinued due to declining ridership numbers.  While the service started strong in July and August, usage had dropped significantly in September and October, and as a result, the Town could not make use of provincial gas tax funding and fares were not enough to offset costs.

Further information on the Queenston-Glendale pilot transit project will be posted on the Town's website in the near future.  Staff will continue to monitor possible future options for the area through WEGO.

Our thanks to community members who supported this project, including the St. Davids Ratepayers Association.

  
council business
At its November 2, 2015, meeting, Town Council approved:

2016 Water and Wastewater Rates: Variable rates of $1.3241 per cubic metre for water and $0.9370 per cubic metre for wastewater; and a 3% increase in fixed rates for both.

2016 User Fees and Charges, which largely remain the same over 2015, except for a few minor increases to recover costs.

Terms of Reference for the Council Code of Conduct Working Group. A full report is expected in the New Year.

Terms of Reference for the UNESCO Committee, including the appointment of Councillor Disero and Dr. Richard Merritt as Co-Chairs, and the addition of Peter Harvey as a member.

Terms of Reference for the Age-Friendly Steering Committee, which provides guidance through Niagara Region on making our community more age-friendly.

COUNCIL MOTIONS APPROVED

Councillor Flynn – That Council direct staff to investigate the cost of applying calcium chloride to Dyck Lane for one year as a dust control measure, that staff be directed to obtain a legal opinion on potential liability if the Town were to provide any service on a private lane way, and that staff obtain an opinion on this matter from the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change.

Councillor Miele – That the Integrity Commissioner be asked to take part in an advisory capacity on the Council Code of Conduct Working Group to provide best practices and/or suggestions as needed on any issues when creating the new Council Code of Conduct; and as per the agreement with the Integrity Commissioner, a fee of $150/hour be applied to a maximum of $2,500.

General Resolutions:

That Councillor Paolo Miele be appointed as the Council representative to the Niagara Historical Museum to fill the vacancy of Councillor Jamie King.

That the Parking Committee be put on hold and for staff to look into refreshing the committee with a new Terms of Reference that includes items such as the Charette and Transportation Master Plan.

OFFICIAL PLAN TECHNICAL REPORTS

A series of technical reports are now available as part of the Town’s Official Plan (OP) Review process. These reports, developed with the assistance of Planscape and their team of consultants from Watson & Associates and North South Environmental, cover Growth Management, Second Residential Units, Agriculture and the Environment.

A new draft Official Plan will be available for public review on the Town’s website by mid-November. Hard copies will also be available at Town Municipal Offices, the Community Centre and NOTL Public Library.

The new OP is scheduled to go to the Committee of the Whole meeting on December 7.  At that time, members of the public will have an opportunity to provide comments to Council.  Other public input sessions are scheduled for the New Year prior to a second submission to Council in June 2016.  From there, the new OP must go to Niagara Region and the province for approval.  To view or download these reports, please visit the MyPlan web page at www.notl.org/content/official-plan-review.

For more information on these or other issues, please visit www.notl.org.
 
 
EVENTS & ACTIVITIES
 
 
 
COUNCIL COMMUNITY UPDATE  - Thank you to residents who joined us for the second Community Update on Tuesday, October 20, at the Community Centre.  Issues discussed included traffic, roads, residential development, and agricultural preservation.  A full report on the session’s proceedings will be released in the future.
 
 
GRETZKY WINERY & DISTILLERY - Friday, October 23, was the official ground breaking for the new Wayne Gretzky Winery & Distillery, located on lands next to Trius Winery on Niagara Stone Road and Line 3 in Virgil.  The event was hosted by Mr. Gretzky and his partners at Andrew Peller Limited. Pictured are Councillor Betty Disero, CAO Mike Galloway, John Peller Jr., Wayne Gretzky, Lord Mayor Pat Darte and Regional Chair Alan Caslin.
 
 
VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTERS NEEDED - Would you like to serve your community as a respected and highly trained professional Volunteer Firefighter?  NOTL Fire & Emergency Services is looking for residents who are at least 18 years of age and able to meet minimum fitness and medical requirements.  Successful applicants will also be required to attend and complete a recruit training program prior to being appointed as a Volunteer Firefighter.  Open Houses will be held at all NOTL Fire Stations on Monday, November 9, from 7:00 p.m to 9:00 p.m.  Application forms are also available on the Town’s website at www.notl.org/content/recruitment. All completed forms should be faxed to 905-468-0301 or e‑mailed to dlundy@notl.org by November 16, 2015.
 
 
ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION WORKSHOP - Join us for a second workshop on making our community more walkable and bicycle friendly.  Facilitator Paul Young will summarize ideas from an earlier session as participants will be asked to help design community priorities.  The workshop will take place on Tuesday, November 10, at 3:00 p.m. in the Mary Snider Room at the Centennial Arena.
 
 
HEALTH FAIR & FLU SHOT CLINIC - The Niagara-on-the-Lake Family Health Team is hosting a Health Fair and Flu Shot Clinic at the Community Centre on Thursday, November 5, and Friday, November 6, from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and again on Saturday, November 7, from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Residents can also book their flu shots through their local pharmacist.
 
 
REMEMBRANCE DAY SERVICES - The Royal Canadian Legion Branch 124 will host its annual Remembrance Day services on Wednesday, November 11.  The first service at the Queen Street Cenotaph in Old Town begins at 10:45 a.m. The second service in Queenston begins at 12:45 p.m. The Town is offering veterans free transit rides on NOTL Transit routes, and parking is free for veterans who have a poppy on their licence plate.  The Niagara Historical Society & Museum will host a program at 7:00 p.m. to commemorate Canada's involvement in both World Wars.  Presentations include songs and readings from material from that era.  Tickets are $15 and can be purchased by calling the Museum at 905-468-3912.
 
 
FORMER LAWN BOWLING LANDS - Residents are invited to provide their ideas on how they’d like to see the former Lawn Bowling Club property at 244 Regent Street used.  Earlier this year, Council passed a resolution calling for a review of the land under the following conditions: final use of the site should be financially self-sufficient; broad public use of the site is encouraged; and the sale of the land is not an option.  Please submit your ideas in writing by mail or e-mail by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, November 20, 2015, to: Holly Dowd, Director of Corporate Services / Town Clerk, 1593 Four Mile Creek Road, PO Box 100, Virgil, ON L0S 1TO or hdowd@notl.org.
 
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