North Frontenac Township swore in its new Council Monday in the Plevna Council Chambers, and it’ll be back to business as usual.
They did some business, like adopting an emergency plan and discussing (at the urging of Coun. Gerry Martin) whether councilors should be paid for attending meetings outside of the Township, but primarily this was a welcome back meeting.
Four years ago, newly elected Mayor Ron Higgins said “our key challenge is to offset the increased costs that are being downloaded onto the Township.
“To address this, we need to increase our economic viability and work closely with our fellow Townships, the County, our federal and provincial members and the many organizations that have been formed to address key issues that affect all municipalities.”
This year, he referenced those words, saying “I believe this was a success in that we have worked closely with the other three Townships, the County and the Province.”
Higgins then outlined 19 accomplishments including squashing a plan for wind turbines, a fire master plan, the war memorial and a playground in Plevna, completing a new official plan and zoning bylaw.
He also outlined several things he believes council will have to be dealing with during this term including the restructuring of municipal councils (if Toronto is any indication), staff workload and seniors housing.
(Higgins’ full address is available on the North Frontenac website.)
About the only other items of business for this inaugural meeting were the re-appointment of Fred Perry as Deputy Mayor and the appointment of Gerry Martin to replace John Inglis as the Township’s second representative at County Council.
“I feel it’s important to have a fresh face at County,” said Inglis. “A certain amount of skepticism with processes sets in over time.”
As the new Addington Highlands Council held its inaugural meeting Tuesday in Flinton, it marked 30 years in municipal politics for Reeve Henry Hogg.
Hogg’s resume includes six terms as Reeve of Addington Highlands, two as Reeve of Denbigh and one as a councilor in Denbigh.
The first order of business was to name Tony Fritsch as Deputy Reeve. As per the procedural bylaw, the Deputy Reeve must come from the ward that the Reeve isn’t from.
Coun. Helen Yanch was appointed to be the alternate representative to County Council in the event that the Reeve and Deputy Reeve were unavailable to attend
Council then made its appointments to the library board, joint fire committee, conservation authorities, the veterinary services committee and Eastern Ontario Trails Alliance.
However, when it came to the various internal committees, at the suggestion of Hogg, such as personnel and finance or roads, bridges and waste, Council decided to defer the matter until such time as they could discuss the need for such committees.
“We need to take some time to decide what committees we want to have,” Hogg said.
“They (the committees) need to be relevant and they need to have both real and perceived value,” said Fritsch.
Central Frontenac swore in its new Council Tuesday with an inaugural meeting at Oso Hall in Sharbot Lake.
After Clerk-Administrator Cathy MacMunn opened the proceedings and called the roll, Rev. Jonathan Askwith held a brief devotional service, Mayor Frances Smith took her oath and assumed the chain of office.
The rest of Council was then sworn in unison.
“It’s good to see such a large audience here when it’s not something controversial,” said the Mayor in her address. “In my opinion, this is the best job you’ll ever have.”
She noted that Central is one of the youngest Councils in the area and has the highest percentage of female members in the area (four of nine).
“I’d also like to thank our volunteer firefighters for all they do and the rest of the volunteers in the community,” she said. “We truly do live in a safe, beautiful, friendly community.”
Councilors took turns thanking everybody that supported them with Coun. Brent Cameron noting that “we need to keep in mind all the people who can’t be here but depend on us for our judgment.”
Long-serving Coun. Bill MacDonald noted that he managed to find a photo of his first Council, in 1989, and observed “I haven’t changed a bit.”
MacDonald was also acclaimed as Central’s second County Council representative and Victor Heese named Deputy Mayor for a one-year term.
Guests included County Warden Ron Higgins and County CAO Kelly Pender.