by Sylene Argent
2017 Legacy Tree Program
Council received the report “2017 Communities in Bloom Legacy Tree Program.” In the report, it noted the program allows senior students of the local six participating elementary schools to plant one tree in their schoolyards on Earth Day. They present it as a gift to the kindergarten class. The intent is to engage the young students with environmentalism as they will adopt the tree planted at their schools and take care of it during the course of their elementary school years.
The Essex Communities in Bloom Committee has again received funds, $2,100, through the TD Friends of the Environment Foundation to offer the same program in 2017.
“D” Dock replacement
Council received and approved the report “Results of Request for Tender for the Replacement of ‘D’ Dock at Colchester Harbour” and awarded the Request for Tender to Kropf Industrial Incorporated in the amount of $139,523.13.
The report highlights that during the 2017 Capital Budget deliberations, Council approved funding towards the replacement of the ‘D’ dock at Colchester Harbour.
Director of Community Services Doug Sweet said $135,000 was put aside in the budget for the project. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans has agreed to forwarding additional funding for this project at the start of the fiscal year as of April 1, 2017, the report continues.
Council adopts Heritage Grant Program
Council received and approved the report regarding the Heritage Grant Program and provisionally adopted bylaw 1587 to approve a Heritage Grant Program for designated properties within the Town of Essex.
Councillor Bill Caixeiro pointed out that this program is over and above the CIP program funding. He believes this is a good compliment to the Community Improvement Plan (CIP). He believes it will encourage the designation of listed properties and help with people trying to upkeep the somewhat expensive venture that heritage homes can be sometimes. Individuals who invest in these types of properties typically invest for a reason, but he thinks the program will encourage those individuals to designate the properties and gett them into a better state.
Deputy Mayor Richard Meloche, Chairperson of the Essex Municipal Heritage Committee, thanked Assistant Planner Rita Jabbour, who also sits on the Committee as a Town-liaison, for the report. Members of the Heritage Committee believe they are moving forward and were 100 percent behind the work being done.
The report to Council notes that on Monday, March 6, members of the Planning Department discussed the social and economic importance of heritage preservation during a special Council meeting. In the presentation, heritage preservation was argued to have an impact on the identity of a community; resident and business retention; and, the attraction of cultural tourists. The presentation also identified a need for greater preservation efforts and incentives for owners of heritage properties.
The grant will offer three programs to eligible applicants: The Repair or Restoration Grant will provide 50 percent of the total costs of work up to $10,000 to conserve, reconstruct, repair, or restore significant components of the built and cultural landscape resources; The Professional Heritage Services Grant will provide a $2,000 maximum fee for service for professional heritage services such as an architect, archaeologist, engineer, or historian; and The Development Permit Fee Grant will provide a grant equivalent of the development permit fee or combination of fees charged by the Town for the approved project.
Application for the Grant program is proposed to be similar to the administration of the CIP.
$25,000 had been allocated for the Heritage Grant Program under the Heritage Committee budget in 2016 and $25,000 has been proposed for the next five years under the same budget for the program.
Listing policies for Heritage properties
Council received the report “Listing Policies for Heritage Properties” and its recommendation to adopt the listing policies proposed in the report. The report to Council notes listing is a mechanism instituted in the Ontario Heritage Act to identify properties that may have cultural heritage value.
Council attendance at fundraisers
Council received the report “Council Attendance at Fundraising Events” and move the recommendation that the travel and business expense policy be revised to allocate a portion of the annual limit for travel and business expenses of $8,053 to fund Council’s attendance at local, non-for-profit fundraising events. Further, it moved that funding to attend fundraisers be limited to $500 per Council member annually.
Clark Street extension
Councillor Sherry Bondy brought forward a Notice of Motion for the next Council meeting that would have Council consider having administration bring back a report to move up the timeline on opening the Clarke Street road extension planning and investigation by an engineer.
Possible sign for Lionel Sanders
Councillor Larry Snively put forward a Notice of Motion that will have Council consider installing a sign heading into Harrow indicating it is the home of world-class triathlete Lionel Sanders as a gesture of thanks and congratulations for his achievements.