Highlights – Town Council Meeting, May 11, 2021

(Held via webcast due to COVID-19 restrictions) Full recording and agenda of the Town Council meeting is available on the Town website.)

Mayor Ektvedt opened the meeting at 7:31 pm 

Question Period I

Questions sent prior to the meeting to the Town Clerk (as per instructions on the Baie-D’Urfé website)

  • Question regarding the branch chipper: Having only one chipper makes the procedure last for more than 21 days which is too long, it used to be shorter. – Answer: Director General Nicolas Bouchard: The first wait is usually the longest and that is due to the limited number of Manpower and number of branches.

Mayor’s Report

 1) Covid-19 vaccination: Baie-D’Urfé has one of the highest vaccination rates on the West Island. According to the CIUSSS West, 2nd doses are continuing in the retirement homes. May 17th a drive-through vaccination clinic with the capacity of 4000 vaccinations a day will be opening at the YUL airport. Booking will be available on Clic Santé. Special Mobile Clinics are visiting hot spots and low-rate vaccination neighbourhoods to encourage people to get vaccinated. 2) Strategic Vision: May 27th: Zoom meeting at 7pm for public. May 29th: Zoom meeting for youth age 7-18 (details in News and Views). April 20th: Employees participated in the exercise. May 6th: Our Council met with strategic company. May 13th: A meeting will be held with the associations. Dialogue between administration and residents is an important work in progress for the town. An online questionnaire has been prepared and will be made public soon to aid the process of this project. 3) Demolitions: 2 meetings were held in April. 4) Facebook page for the town has been launched this month. 5) April 29th: 25th Memorial of Officer André Lalonde who died during duty in Senneville.

 Councilors’ Reports

Councilor Gilpin: 1) Safety and Security: a) Contractors will be painting lines on town roads. b) Rescue boat has been successfully launched at the Yacht Club. As a reminder it is essential that boat owners have a license, and the training is essential. 2) Strategic Review: Youth are participating and offering new ideas. 3) Communications: a) More MailChimp are being sent out in order to communicate effectively b) New Facebook page

 Councilor Lowensteyn: 1) Parks and green space: a) Pump track trial period at Morgan Park completed and will start at Weir Park to help determine its permeant location. b) Generation Swing donated by the Junior Council will be installed at Morgan Park by May 21st. c) Ongoing assessment by Public Works for improving playground equipment. d) Green Spaces: To increase biodiversity and decrease the mowing of grass, the Town will leave 2 test plots north of Westchester unmowed this summer. One is to observe invasive natural plants growing and the other is to plant indigenous plants. Planting, observing, and documenting will be done by volunteers. Town’s environmental coordinator will be assembling the information. To help, please contact Councilor Lowensteyn or the environmental coordinator. e) Last week: successful virtual recycling and composting workshop. Event will be repeated. 2) On Monday 352 bags of home baked cookies were delivered to and very well received by the staff of the Lakeshore General Hospital and the teachers of our local schools. Cards were made by Dorset School students. 

Councilor Ryan: Council coordinated with 23-24 volunteers to control traffic flow during vaccine days at Proxim. Many thanks to the volunteers for their participation.

Director General’s Report 

1) Town Hall was shut down for a week due to the detection of mold while removing existing carpet. After replacing the surface, air test was conducted to ensure the safety of the employees and citizens at the Town Hall. It was reopened on Monday. Interior design and working space were discussed with the employees in order to provide the best services. 2) Large transaction ($13M) took place in the Industrial Park last month. Large property was sold. 3) Speeding situation: 4x the number of speeding tickets were issued in the last 2 months. An increased police presence is to be expected.

 Minutes

 Approval of the minutes of the regular meeting of the Municipal Council held on April 13, 2021

 Correspondence

 Three letters were received from Alain Brunet, Mrs. Sophie Dutoy and Mrs. Helen Fyles regarding demolitions. Demolition applicants are asked to provide an inspection report on the condition of the existing house as well as a drainage report and a report of every tree on the property. For the new building a complete set of plans is required including enough information to allow the planning department to evaluate whether the house complies with all the requirements. When the planning department is confident that the file is complete, and that the plans meet all the requirements, the file will then proceed to the next stage. If the house is within a zone subject to SPAIP bylaw, the file then will go to the TPAC. This bylaw applies to all houses on Lakeshore Road and its adjoining Cul-de-Sacs and to Oxford and Sunny Acres. The Council then receives a recommendation from the TPAC and makes the decision of approving or rejecting the file. Plans of the new house are displayed on the property before the hearing. At the hearing, citizens are welcome to ask questions about the plans, but the committee may not base its decision on these plans. The demolition committee is not to judge the fit of the new house into its surroundings. After giving the decision, any party can appeal the decision within 30 days. You are encouraged to respond to the survey that will be done shortly as part of the strategic plan process and to attend the webinar on May 27th. Your opinion will help us move in the right direction.

 Administration

  • Appointment of Karen Ohanian as the Information Clerk in the Urban Planning Department.
  • Appointment of two blue collars auxiliaries (seasonal and temporary): Mr. Marc Tait-Belvedere and Mr. Nicholas Cantafio.

Finance

  • Approval of the list of expenses for the month of April 2021 ($380 209,02)
  • Tabling of the Financial Report and the External Auditor Reports for fiscal year 2020. In May, deposit audited financial statements. Details will be posted on the website.

Parks, Recreation and Environment

 Grant request – Baie-D’Urfé Curling Club ($12,214.22): to aid the club respond to the Town’s requests to deal with the Covid-19 measurements.

  • Renewal of financial support to residents of the Morgan Arboretum. The town is to pay one third of fee to the Arboretum, up to $30 per resident. As of June 2021, the treasurer to be authorized to reimburse the residents upon receipt of payment.
  • Request for financial assistance to the Baie-D’Urfé Aquatic Club. ($30,154)

As was the case with last summer, residents will be provided with a free access to recreational swim hours. The aquatic pool season will be longer than last year.

 Public Works &Town Infrastructure

  • Authorization of an additional expenditure for the concept development for the drainage of Surrey Road. This will help rue David Kennedy and connecting streets.
  • Awarding of the public call for tenders. Rehabilitation works of the parking lot of the Whiteside Taylor Centre and the municipal library. ($569,422.88) This includes drainage work and paving.
  • Awarding of the public call for tenders. Rehabilitation works on 1.2 km of the service road of Highway 40 and lighting (East sector). This is a major undertaking in conjunction with what the MTQ is going to do with the Highway 40 and what Hydro Quebec must do in building a transfer line in the substation to feed the LRT. This includes replacing wires and streetlights and paving. This will help serve our industrial community.
  • Awarding of the public call for tenders. Rehabilitation works of the access road and the parking lot of the Fritz Community Centre. ($364 815,62)
  • Awarding of the public call for tenders. Rehabilitation works of Lakeshore Road West and various streets.

Town Planning

  • Request was approved of a Site Planning Architectural Integration Program (SPAIP) – 20389 Lakeshore.
  • Contribution for the purposes of parks and playgrounds – Creation of lot 6 415 309, being the amalgamation of part of lot 1 557 592 and lot 1 557 571 (308 Victoria).
  • Notice of motion and filing of draft by-law – By-law no 1074-1

Citizen Services and Community Affairs

  • Financial assistance to the Association de l’Ouest-de-l’Île pour les handicapés intellectuels (WIAIH) of $704.00.

Question Period II

  • Question: Where can the survey for the Strategic Planning be found and how does it facilitate the communication to the citizens? Answer: A MailChimp will soon be sent out with all the information concerning the survey, it will in form of an online survey as well as in paper form at the Town Hall. In addition, by sending emails as well as reminders it adds to the participation of the citizens and facilitates the communication.
  • Question: Can the Town obtain examples of the services and the contributions that were provided in other neighboring towns? Answer: The mayor has not seen any feedback from the citizens from other towns, but she has seen the results. This is a question that can be asked at the next meeting with the company.
  • Question received concerning Facebook. We have a website accessible to everyone. Why add the Facebook page? Answer: It is a different way to communicate with a certain demographic group of citizens. The town has taken the decision to move forward with Facebook page to reach as many citizens as possible. It is solely an informational page there is no interaction of the citizens.

Meeting closed at 8:41 pm.

Lara Ali, reporting for News & Views