Highlights – Town Council Meeting, September 8, 2020
(Held via webcast due to COVID-19 restrictions)
Mayor Tutino opened the meeting at 7:37 pm.
Question Period I
Questions sent prior to the meeting to the Town Clerk (as per instructions on Baie-D’Urfé website).
- Waste collection & toxic spill in the streets: DG responded – We will make sure that the company responsible is made aware.
- 2 questions regarding Council meeting webcasts: Councillor Gilpin responded – For now, Council continues the webcasting & when discussing 2021 budget the intention is to maintain the virtual meetings
- Painting of Fritz Farm & Town Hall? DG: probably last done ~15 yrs ago. Part of the capital expenditures plan included painting if Council intends to move forward with those plans.
- Noise from new installation of compressor at Curling Club: DG: temporary installation is to prepare the ice properly & extension of curling season. Unfortunately due to COVID-19 shortages, the machine received is larger than the one ordered & is noisy. Expected to be needed for about a month. Sound-reducing mats have been installed last Monday to help with sound-proofing. Apologies for any inconveniences.
For the second question period, questions should be submitted after the particular agenda item.
Commandant Guy Bianchi (SPVM Station 1) was introduced. All is relatively calm in Baie-D’Urfé and activities are currently occupied with the start of school. Special COVID 12 hr shifts will be maintained until October. Reminder: don’t forget to wear your mask in public places, maximum of 10 people at private residences. Complaints regarding PumpTrack location on Morgan have been duly noted. Counter reception at Station 1 is open – please wear a mask when entering building. Online services/questions are also available on SPVM website.
1) Meetings that our MNA, Greg Kelly has organized to hear back-to-school concerns in Aug. for both elementary school & high schools. Good turnout of ~ 20 people per session and dialogue has continued between parents & Mr. Kelly following the meetings. Mr. Kelly has now also started Senior Consultations – Tony Brown was asked to attend due to Council members’ conflict.
2) Great to see people doing everything that needs to get done during pandemic – wear masks, wash your hands. Thank you everyone! Numbers in Quebec hovered around 80 cases/day, but last week was 130 cases per day and then rising to 200 cases per day. Quebec government has stated that when # cases rise too high they will need to take measures & may consider regional lockdowns. No new cases reported in Baie-D’Urfé.
Councilor Gilpin: Thrilled that PumpTrack is being used. Many comments received & which will be forwarded to the Junior Council. Traffic slowdown around schools campaign is underway.
Councilor Ektvedt: Thank you to VCOPS for their stellar help in student safety and traffic flow during the start of the school period, even very early in the morning. Thank you to all children from AvH, Joseph Enrico & Dorset elementary schools who participated in the making of the video for the Back to School Campaign telling people to slow down & pay attention to the start of school season (on Town website). Coast Guard Auxiliary had a problem with their boat, but were able to borrow another motor so that they can continue their assistance to boaters. They were recognized recently in Quebec for their Excellence in providing such services – congratulations & thank you to all the members of the Auxiliary.
Councilor Phelps: Thank you to Volunteer Town Historian, Mr Guido Socher. If anyone has any old photos or anything that would help with his project, please let him know (email: email@example.com; tel.: 514 458 7082).
Councilor Lowensteyn: Comments about PumpTrack received; trial at Morgan Park location will continue. Fritz Park garden volunteers hope to reach the $8000 worth of food donated to the food banks. Good job!
Director General’s Report
Survey to improve the permit request process has been initiated & those that had made requests for, and received, permits will be contacted. Thank you for your help with this.
- Identification of vehicles doing business in Baie-D’Urfé: DG: 1) company engaged for road work involved in filming roadwork area prior to start of work – normally we are forewarned, but this time we were given very short notice & not able to advise citizens. Other case is film company taking pictures when looking for movie locations. We will inform citizens when we become aware of these situations.
- Speeding along Morgan & PumpTrack at Morgan Park: Councillor Lowensteyn-noise of the Track usage depends on what is used on the track (bicycles vs skateboards or scooters) – looking at whether anything could be done to reduce the noise. Parking at Morgan Park will be looked at if this becomes the final location.
All in favor of adherence to the agreement between the Union des Municipalités du Québec and Energir.
List of expenses for August 2020 approved ($604 664.06): PumpTrack, shoreline stabilization, installation of toilets, pop-up tents replacement. Transfer taxes: probably be a little behind due to COVID-19, further report will be forthcoming.
Parks, Recreation and Environment
Due to COVID-19 the annual tree donation to citizens program for the year 2020 was postponed. The contract for the purchase of 500 trees was cancelled, by a majority vote. The program will be brought forward again in Spring 2021.
Public Security & Traffic
Awarding of a contract to Mazda dealership for the purchase of a vehicle for VCOPs (part of 3-yr capital expenditures plan).
Public Works and Town Infrastructures
1) Snow removal contract renewal approved, 2) Payment of additional work needed to repair damage caused by installation of a drain pipe on Gay Cedars, 3) Additional expenditure for the transportation of organic waste for 2020-2021 due to increased number of trucks was approved, 4) Price request for a Lakeshore Road Geotechnical Study and Environmental Soil characterization is being done along all of Lakeshore Road in anticipation of road repairs to be done in Spring 2021, 5) Implementation plan for the new Childcare Centre (CPE) at the Fritz Park location as determined through previous consultations with citizens on July 6th & further work & adjustments to bring the costs down was voted down by a majority vote. Prior to the vote, councillors took turn to state their position vis-à-vis the project; Mayor Tutino also made a statement as well to explain her reasons for no longer supporting the project. Despite the strong desire to help & attract young families in Baie-D’Urfé, due to continuing concerns about costs & feasibility of meeting the government deadlines during the pandemic, with regret, the new CPE will not be built.
3 questions were received by email regarding the CPE, prior to this Council meeting, and were answered by virtue of this vote. It was pointed out that there remains a great need for daycare spots for Baie-D’Urfé children.
Under the Site Planning Architectural Integration Program: 1) Approval for revised plans at 20329-20331 Lakeshore. 2) Minor exemption at 82 Morgan was not approved. Letter from citizen in support of exemption was received but did not change the TPAC decision.
Question Period II
Question regarding why minor exemption was not approved. DG: Decision is based on recommendation by TPAC and the matter is before the courts. If citizen would like to move forward, they would need to contact the Town through their lawyers.
Meeting closed at 9:49 pm.
Wendy Hauck, reporting for News & Views