Council Preview: May 22, 2019

Hi there! I hope you’re enjoying the (finally!) better weather we’re having. If you want to see the full agenda for tomorrow’s meeting, you can do that here.

Closed Session

Council will be starting at 4:30pm with a closed session with two items on the agenda related to CAO Recruitment and Director of Public Works Recruitment.

Delegations, Presentations & Petitions

A representative from Watson & Associates will be back in front of Council, this time discussing the latest updates on our asset management plan. We will see:

  • An overview of what asset management is all about
  • Ontario Regulation 588/17
  • Defining Levels of Service
  • An overview of the state of local infrastructure (très important!)
  • An introduction of lifecycle management strategy inputs
  • And a discussion of data gaps and action plan for addressing those gaps

And then Morgan Calvert, the County’s Director of ITS, will make his much-anticipated Information Technology Policies and Cyber Security Presentation! As a trained network and system administrator, I’m looking forward to this.

Consent Agenda

  • The April 2019 building report shows we’re still ahead of last year’s pace for total number of building permits issued.
  • April 2019 was slower than 2018 by 3 permits, but as stated previously we can all expect a huge uptick over the next quarter or two as EdgeWater Estates picks up steam, and eventually Kilworth Heights West gets going with building homes.

I’d like to take a moment to remind everyone that permanent pools and decks require building permits! Please don’t get caught digging a pool or erecting a deck without one, as by-law enforcement can charge you with a fine for doing so without a building permit.

  • At the March Community Services Advisory Committee meeting we see that Mark Russell, our by-law enforcement officer, presented a draft Parks & Recreation By-Law, and that staff will be making changes as a result of the comments made at the meeting.
  • We also see that the liquor licensing of our municipal facilities is moving forward, as a sample policy and procedure obtained from North Perth was presented.
  • Lastly, the Fire Services Inspections issue has come to a head.
    • County Council decided that Middlesex Centre’s proposal – which involved good legal standing that a formal delegation of powers to the County to perform fire inspections was sufficient and did not require a full transfer of authority – did not satisfy their legal and liability requirements.
    • As a result, all lower-tier municipalities in Middlesex County are now looking to implement other means to address their legal requirements to provide fire inspection services. Middlesex Centre and Strathroy-Caradoc are both fine to handle these on our own, or with a small bit of help from a third-party.
    • So, our staff are now putting together a long-term plan to ensure we can continue to offer this vital service, in addition to the public education services they have already been offering.
    • Jobs will be lost at the County, unfortunately, but hopefully all the lower-tier municipalities can put together a viable plan over the next few weeks. On a purely practical level, this could mean lower staff costs at the County but also increased costs at the lower-tier. We don’t have the numbers yet, though.

Staff Reports

  • Staff are recommending that Middlesex Centre participate in a new minor sports financial assistance program called “Play It Forward.” The Middlesex Dairy Producers are looking to fund up to 35% of a child’s sport registration fee in soccer, basketball, or hockey on an income-tested basis. All of the funding for subsidizing the fees is coming from the Middlesex Dairy Producers, and only staff time to review applications (in confidence and adherence with the appropriate data privacy legislation) and issue cheques directly to the sports association.
    • The program is intended to run for two years to start. The municipality would also need to advertise the “Recharge with Milk” program and make dairy products associated at concession stands. Each municipality in the County would receive $1,750 for funding the subsidized registration fees.
  • Staff are looking to extend a new month-to-month lease with Perth Care for Kids at the Ilderton Library.
  • Staff are also showcasing new ITS policies related to corporate and personal devices in the workplace, the protection of privacy and confidential information, and a user account and password policy.
    • I have sent a number of comments to our acting CAO and Director of ITS that I hope can be addressed or incorporated before Council approves these policies.
  • There is also a new Strategic Asset Management policy to consider. I think the only controversial portion, for some people, will be the line that states that climate change will be considered, along with adaptation. It’s fine in my books, but I know of at least one Ward 4 resident who will take an issue with this inclusion.
  • There is a motion to appoint Councillor Heffernan and a man named Dennis Adlington to the Ilderton Community Improvement Plan 2019 Evaluation Committee.
  • An update on the status of the asset management program which lays out the policies we need to have in place to remain legislatively compliant, a timeline of how to build out the current and missing portions of the asset management plan with a goal of being 100% complete by mid-2024, funding available from other parties (e.g. Federation of Canadian Municipalities), and what the municipality has done up until now.
  • Two departments are looking to swap vehicles, one Chevy Bolt for a Ford F-150. This is all internal, and will result in the vehicles being better aligned for actual needs. The 2007 Ford Ranger we were planning to dispose of and replace this year will also be kept, if approved.
  • Staff are recommending awarding the purchase of a tri-axle truck complete with combination dump body including snow & ice removal equipment from Team Truck Centres for $412,766.00, which is below the budget of $450,000.00 set out.
  • And finally, staff are recommending that the zoning by-law amendment at 6936 Egremont Drive, which was previously the subject of a public meeting, be denied.

Public Meetings

There are two public meetings regarding properties in Ward 4. They are:

There are a number of correspondence items, but at first glance none of particular importance to Ward 4 at this time.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please let me know! Thanks for reading!