Highlights – Town Council Meeting, November 16, 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.

Adoption of the agenda with the withdrawal of item no. F.3 (letter from Mr. Brady regarding street lamps)

Question Period I

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

  • Question 1- regarding traffic accident at Surrey near the  train station; the same issue was raised in a letter and will be addressed later in item F, Correspondence.
  • Question 2 – regarding the need for an inspection of construction sites as construction workers tied Hydro cables and caused damage to a property nearby – DG: poles and wires are owned by Hydro Quebec and are its responsibility; the resident should contact HQ directly – the town can assist the resident by directing them to the HQ department in charge of such incidents.
  • Question 3 – regarding the traffic at Joseph Henrico school with suggestions to improve security for pedestrians, cyclists and children. – Mayor Ektvedt: the established procedure with the three elementary schools in Baie-D’Urfé is for parents to go through the school’s Principal who in turn will get in touch with the town.
  • Question 4 – regarding the clearing of invasive plants and felling of trees by the town and the trimmings left behind, representing a hazard for pedestrians (on Surrey/Upper Cambridge and Ste. Andrew’s)– DG: the felling of the trees is done by outside contractors whereas the cleaning of the trimmings is done by Public Works hence the delay between the two.  PW is now aware of the situation and will address it rapidly.
  • Question 5 – if evergreens will be planted to replace the loss of forest due to the annual trimming; it was previously suggested and the resident was told it was under consideration for 2021 – DG: a PW employee will get in touch with the resident to provide an update.

 Commandant’s Report

Commandant Couture (SPVM Station 1):  No incident during Halloween – police officers were around town and at Picardy Park distributing candies to children as well as reflective bracelets for security.  Collaboration with VCops and Rescue Squad was greatly appreciated. 2) On November 7th, municipal election, two officers were assigned to the two polling stations and all went well, with no incidents.  3) In the Arboretum, a non-resident collapsed and the police asked for help and received assistance by the Rescue Squad and by a number of volunteers who tried to help. 4) With respect to traffic security, residents should not hesitate to call 911 when there is an urgent incident; the police now are watching more closely in certain areas for excess speed:  on the TransCanada where road repair is being carried out; on Lakeshore between Churchill and Carriere; around Dorset school and around the streets of Oxford, Cambridge and Victoria to respect parking limitations and particularly if cars are parked dangerously at crossroads. 5) There was a wave of break-ins in Baie-D’Urfé, and also in Beaconsfield and around the West Island, and a suspect was arrested thanks to the collaboration of residents. Since this arrest on October 21st, there have been no more break-ins. Some tips to residents for security: remain vigilant and watch for suspected behavior by passersby around the neighborhood; to make sure when going away that there is no accumulated mail or newspapers, ensure all front and back doors are locked, allow for adequate lighting at night and to avoid talking about one’s absences on social media. 6) To contact the police station:  by phone :  514-280-0101 or by email: pdq1@spvm.qc.ca.

Mayor’s Report

1) Words of welcome to the new and returning councillors.  2) The Quebec Government put a stop on all ongoing negotiations between the ASM and Montreal regarding the Agglomeration’s quote. This was a disappointment for the ASM’s mayors. 3) Thanks to the Citizens’ Association  (CA) for the Meet the Candidates Night on October 21st. with in-person as well as recorded event.  4) Thanks to all who participated in the Halloween contest and congratulations to Frans Lecluse who won the first prize. 5) On November 7th, participated in a nice ceremony in Ste-Anne de Bellevue for Remembrance Day, with the VCops and Rescue Squad present for the event. 6) On November 26th , the CA is organizing a first Tree Lighting event in Baie-D’Urfé thanks to the initiative of resident Diane Weiss; on November 27th , the Baie-D’Urfé Scouts and the CA are holding their annual Food and Toy Drive at the Red Barn, allowing our residents an opportunity to give to the less fortunate during the holidays period. 7) For residents who need bags for their leaves, the Baie-D’Urfé Scouts is a great source to acquire these bags.

Councillors’ Reports

Councillor Drouin: Thanks to the community. Reiterates the recommendation of Commandant Couture to contact the police to report traffic safety issues.

Councillor Ryan:  Thanks to the community. Welcome to the new councillors and looking forward to working with the group.

Councillor Gruber: Thanks to the community. A quick update about the Coast Guard; still in operation and able to rescue if needed until the end of November, before closing for the winter.  Words of welcome for the new Commander McLean.

Councillor Lowensteyn: Thanks to the community.  Welcome to the new councillors and looking forward to working with the group.  Lunch n’ Learn will continue the delivery system – the next session will be in January 2022 (there will be none in December because of the holidays). Participation is free of charge for senior residents and details about the January session will be in the December issue of the News &Views.

Councillor Bissada: Thanks to the Community.  In Addition to the Tree Lighting and the Toy Drive, the CA is also organizing a webinar about Cyberbullying presented by Dr. Shaheen Shariff on November 24.

Councilor Chartrand:  Thanks to the community and looking forward to working with Council and Administration.

Director General’s Report

1) Words of welcome to the new and returning councillors, and assurance of the Administration’s full collaboration to allow the new Council to achieve its goals and vision.  2) The 2022 budget will be exceptionally adopted in January and not in December; a provision in the law allows that when it is an election year; the reason for the delay is to allow time to receive the final figures of the Agglomeration’s quote part which is a significant portion of our budget. The Capital Expenditures however will be adopted in 2021 in a special council meeting right before the December regular council meeting.  2) For the Town Hall Restoration project, the archeological report was received last week, and it indicates that the site is of historical interest due to an indigenous presence; this will affect the excavation work.  The town will go to tender around February, a slight delay of two months. 3) Regarding the berm, the study to assess the possibility of connecting the drainage in Surrey to the pumping station on the bottom of Morgan was received and indicated that it would not be feasible since the pump is not big enough to accommodate the water.   This would have been the easier way to address the drainage issue before proceeding with the berm, so now other alternatives have to be identified and discussed with the Council.

Correspondence

  • Letter from a resident on Maxwell street complaining about the frequent nuisances and noise pollution generated by Public Works – DG: there has been an earlier follow-up with the resident, who was contacted directly by the Director of Public Works; some measures have been taken already to reduce the noise and address the noise problem.  It remains though that there are always activities around the Public Works building.
  • Letter regarding parking on St. Andrew’s, Oxford and Cambridge Streets – Councillor Drouin: the issue will be referred to the Traffic Committee once it is formed under the new council and ready to resume its activities.
  • Letter regarding a dangerous intersection between Surrey and the train station where an accident happened recently – Councillor Ryan : the traffic Committee once formed under the new council will receive the police report regarding that accident and address the issue accordingly.
  • Letter regarding delays in replacing street lamps at the intersections of Sunny Acres and Lakeshore – DG : the LED lights system installed a couple of years ago has the advantage of lasting quite a long time (around 15 years), but unfortunately it takes around three months to replace any lamp, and now sometimes longer because of the Covid situation.

Administration

1) Approval of the appointment of the councillors as Acting Mayors during different times assigned to each, from November 2021 to October 2025.

2) Approval of a professional mandate to the engineering firm Gravitaire s.e.n.c. for a total amount of $ 19,775.70, taxes included for civil engineering services – Town Hall restoration.

3) Approval of a professional mandate to Consultant Expertise en Ascenseurs Inc. for an amount of $ 7,174.44, taxes included for the study and follow-up of the work on an elevator – Town Hall restoration project

4) Approval of a contract award to engineering firm GBI Experts-Conseils for an amount of $16,845.00, taxes included for the  Studies on Characterization and Sampling of MCLA – Town Hall Restoration

5) Approval of a professional mandate engineering firm EXP for an amount of $ 10,347.75, taxes included for mechanical and electrical engineering services – Town Hall restoration project .

Finance

1) Approval of the month of October expenses in the amount of $2,852,285.99. There is a higher than usual expenditure due to the volume of projects underway

2)  Approval of Modification to signing authorization, removing the names of outgoing Councillors Ms. Lynda Phelps, Mrs. Andrea Gilpin and Mr. Kevin M. Doherty, and adding the names of Councillors Mr. Nicolas Drouin, Mrs. Nadia Bissada, Mrs. Brigitte Chartrand and Mr. Stephen Gruber to the list of authorized cheque signatories of the Town of Baie-D’Urfé.

Parks, Recreation and Environment

1)Authorization for the Director General to sign, for and on behalf of the Town, the partnership agreement with EPRA-Québec as an integral part thereof.

Public Works and Town Infrastructures

1) Renewal of contract – TP 2020-05 – Septic Tank Emptying – First renewal option for 2022 to 9363-9888 Quebec Inc. in the amount of $ 144,494.83, taxes included.

2)   Authorization to spend more than $ 25,000, up to a total amount of $ 50,000, taxes included,

on the rehabilitation project of Lakeshore of road and various streets (TP-2021-04) to be paid to Meloche, division of Sintra Inc.

3) Approval of the Town’s commitment to abide by the terms and conditions as outlined in  the TECQ 2019-2023 version no. 2 work program, which grants additional funding (provided by the provincial and the federal governments) to municipalities to revive the economy.

Question Period II

  • Question 1 – When the Council resumes its in-person meetings would the recording still be available? – Mayor Ektvedt: Council is determined to maintain the webcast once it resumes its meetings in-person, but the format of doing so is still to be determined.
  • A resident thanked the Council for taking on the responsibilities for the mandate and extended his best wishes to Council members.

Meeting closed at 9:15 pm.

Jack Toyota, reporting for News & Views