Highlights from the March 7 Council meeting

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Township of North Dundas Council met for a regularly scheduled meeting on March 7. A meeting has since taken place on March 21, for which readers will find an update in the April 6 issue of the Times. Here, you will find a summary of some key happenings from the March 7 meeting.  

A new part time wage schedule was passed. Specifically, wages were increased for student positions which the Township seeks to fill in the summer. Last year, there were a few closures of the Winchester and Chesterville public pools due to the unavailability of sufficient lifeguard staff. The Township hopes that higher wages will attract more candidates to fill lifeguarding and other positions. 

The Township can now pull driver abstracts for employees who drive Township vehicles. This new policy is based on a request from the Township’s insurance company. In addition, only Township employees will be allowed to drive or be inside of Township vehicles. However, there are two exceptions: Township employees attending conferences will be allowed to take their spouse with them, and Council members will be allowed inside Township vehicles despite not being considered “employees” of the Township for insurance purposes. 

A motion defining “Municipally Significant Events” has been deferred. Up for discussion were issues such as the amount of insurance required for event organizers, and whether for-profit events could be considered “Municipally Significant”. Mayor Fraser suggested that clearer definitions are required, and his suggestion to defer was passed. 

Winchester Meadows has gifted a portion of land to the Township. The land gifted had previously been owned by Winchester Meadows with an easement in place because of the requirement for access to the Henderson Drain. 

A franchise agreement was passed covering an agreement with Enbridge Gas. The agreement will ensure continued service for the next 20 years. 

A motion to revise the open air burning bylaw was deferred. The proposed revisions to the bylaw are mostly administrative in nature. However, these proposed changes have caused criticism from some North Dundas residents, some of which is based on misinformation circulating on social media. Some of the criticism is surrounding the ambiguity of fire chiefs having discretion to allow certain permits, which is why Councillor Lennox suggested a deferral so that Council can have more time to consider the motion. The deferral, which was agreed upon, will also allow a chance for members of the public to have their say about the proposed changes. 

Recommended dates were approved for the 2023 Meet Me on Main Street events. The events will take place June 28 in Morewood, July 5 in Marionville, July 12 in South Mountain, July 19 in Hallville, July 26 in Chesterville, and August 2 in Winchester. It was confirmed that these events are expected to have a net zero expense, with no impact to taxpayers. 

The final phase of the new Lafleur Road well may soon go ahead. Council heard a report that stage 5 of the project – which includes design and construction of the well project – can move forward after a 30-day period designated for members of the public to provide comments. 

Council heard a municipal insurance update. This was in addition to other insurance discussions that took place as a result of other motions that were brought forward. Recommendations were made for Council’s consideration. 

As always, the full Council meeting can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/@townshipofnorthdundas3550.

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