Suzanne Ruttan has been the South Frontenac Township trustee to the Limestone District School Board since 2010. She has served as the Board Vice Chair for the past three years, and when the new Board was sworn to office last night in Kingston, she assumed the role of Chair of the Board of Trustees for 2019.
“We held elections for officers and committee appointments at a working meeting last week,” she said when interviewed on Tuesday, and I put my name forward and ended up being the only candidate. There was an election for Vice-Chair and the position ended up going to Laurie French, another veteran trustee who represents Napanee.
Ruttan and French are two of only three returning members on the 9-member board, the third being Karen McGregor from Central and North Frontenac and Addington Highlands.
“We have a lot of new trustees,” said Ruttan, “and my goal is to make sure that they have the best start that they can.
There were orientation sessions for the new board of trustees in November, and one aspect of the training was to clarify for the trustees that we function as a governance board, and as such do not have a direct role in the day to day functioning of the board and its schools.
“As a governance board, we are totally focussed on the big picture of the whole board, making sure we are following our strategic directions at all times. As a Board, we have one employee to oversee, the Director of Education.”
As board Chair, Ruttan is responsible, with help from the director, for setting meeting agendas and ensuring the smooth running of the board. She will also be called upon to speak on behalf of the board from time to time. However, she pointed out, only under explicit instructions from the board. The position also includes ceremonial responsibilities, representing the Limestone Board at meetings and public events.
She said that new board could be dealing with some major issues in its first year. Community consultations are underway for changes to the health curriculum, which should be coming out early in early 2019.
“The minister spoke to our provincial group last weekend, and I believe her message was that the group ‘will be pleased when we see what comes out’ of that process. We also know that when the government is looking for budget savings, they are going to look at education, so that may have an impact on our board. 2019 is also a bargaining year for education,” she said.
There is a one-year term for the position of Chair of the Limestone Board of Trustees. Ruttan can run again for 2020 if she chooses to, as can any of the 8 other board members.
Local Rotary Clubs from Kingston, Napanee and Frontenac are selling the 2019 Rotary Cash Calendars this month. The $20 calendars are similar to other calendars in featuring scenes from Kingston and Frontenac County (many of the photos in the calendar are the work of Inverary-based photographer Joe Furtado)
Purchasers of the calendars are also eligible for daily draws throughout the year, each of which carries a cash prize, ranging from $25 on regular days, to $500 on special holidays. There are a total of $15,000 in cash prizes available, and no more than 3750 calendars are sold.
Rotary has deep roots in Frontenac County. It is one of the founding organisations behind the RKY Camp on Eagle Lake in Parham, (RKY stands for Rotary/Kiwanis/YMCA) and has an active membership from South Frontenac.
The Sydenham High School Music Program is also selling the calendars as a fundraiser for their program, and the calendars are available at the school. In addition to Sydenham High School, the calendars are available at Ormsbees Mercantile, The Sunbury General Store, Inverary Pharmasave, at Sydenham Farm and Pet Supply and Willow Agriservices Ltd.
Frontenac County’s Best Landlord Award seeks to champion landlords who strive to break conventional standards and provide their tenants with the best service possible. We are looking for local landlords that go above and beyond to provide safe and affordable housing for the individuals and families in these communities. The winning landlord and the tenant that nominated them will each receive a $200 gift card. Nominations for this award close December 20th, 2018.
“We are looking for good landlords, we know they are out there – we have had the good fortune to work with them throughout the Housing and Homelessness System. But we need to know who else is out there that fits into this category of being a good landlord,” says Amanda Pantrey, Rural housing liaison worker at Southern Frontenac Community Services. “It is no secret that we experiencing a major housing shortage situation in the county, and finding landlords has proven to be difficult. This award is about trying to encourage existing landlords to work with us and keep people safe and at home in their own community,” adds Pantrey.
For more details or to nominate your landlord, simply visit www.sfcsc.ca/landlord and tell us why you think your landlord deserves the title of Frontenac County’s Best Landlord. Details are listed on the website. Call Amanda at 613-376-6477 ext. 208 for more details.
Allan Zahara has been living on 14 Island Lake for a number of years, and for most of that time he has been working in the e-learning sector in healthcare.
“It has meant heading off to Toronto from time to time, and maintaining a professional profile outside of where I live. My goal now is to live and work in South Frontenac and Frontenac County, and that’s what got me into the accommodations field,” he said, in an interview from Sharbot Lake in early November.
Zahara has been developing his new company, Frontenacrentals.com, for a couple of years.
“I saw that there is a lot of potential for waterfront property owners to take advantage of the global market for the lifestyle that some of us enjoy all the time around here, but don’t know where to start and what they need to do,” he said.
Using himself as a bit of a test case, Zahara developed a 500 square foot cabin on 14 island lake, on his own property, which he rents out on a nightly basis at a premium price.
He uses Airbnb as a booking service, and his cottage is booked from early spring until well into the fall, even into the winter, belying the traditional concern that it is only possible to rent out a cottage in the summer months.
Frontenacrentals.com provides a set of services for property owners looking to generate revenue from their waterfront properties.
These include: online marketing and customer service, concierge and security services, staging and design, professional cleaning and maintenance, and account setup and training.
“There are some key factors involved in establishing the kind of 5-star ratings that can elevate a property to a gold star rating on Airbnb. We managed to get there for our property and the increase in interest has been dramatic,” he said.
One of the key factors to get to that point is to cover all the bases, from staging a property the way a realtor might, to excellent photography and making sure that visitors are greeted, the house rules are clear and reasonable, and that everything is impeccably clean.
"Homeowners may not realize they are sitting on tens of thousands of untapped revenue potential and that it can be done with very little effort or risk. They just need to ensure the whole experience, both online and on site, is white glove to appeal to a global market. When online shoppers see top reviews from people from many countries, the bookings flow in. It's all about knowing how to get those top reviews while ensuring your property and guests are in good hands."
Zahara thinks that the development his business, and others, reflects a change in the tourism potential for Frontenac County in the near future,
“I think that something is happening in our region. New businesses are coming up, visitors from all around the world are interested in coming. It is a good time for new people to step forward, and we are hoping our business can help that happen,” he said.
Remembrance Day 2018 will long be remembered by the young and not so young people of the Land O’Lakes area. Thanks to the Frontenac News (Nov 8 - Ringing Of Bells...) for mentioning Bells of Peace commemorating Armistice 100. Quick calls late Friday night revealed that no such commemoration was planned for the area. Hastily, social media was activated, friends called friends and 36 hours later, the Lions Hall was filled to capacity (120) with some standing. The Cloyne and District Historical Society lent us the church bell acquired from the defunct Anglican Church in Cloyne and at sunset, Scouts, Girl Guides and other young children rang the bell 100 times while a You Tube video of the sacrifices made during the Great War played in the background.
Sadly, the Land O’Lakes Royal Canadian Legion closed its doors last year. It was felt that not unlike many young soldiers during wars, the torch must be picked up by others when comrades fall if the goal is to be achieved. Hence, the Lions Club of Land O’Lakes picked up the torch, the community responded and our goal of remembering Them was achieved. Moreover, some of those who rang the bell may not know now why they were doing it, but you can be sure that they will forever remember doing it.
The Lions thank all for the excellent response and the numerous comments received. With your help, we will continue in our quest to live by our motto “We Serve”.
Contrary to Mr. Robert Craigue’s view that the Sharbot Lake Fire Department should be embarrassed by the circumstances attendant to its response to the three fires set by him, it seems instead that it is Mr. Craigue who should be embarrassed, even ashamed, about the event and his own response. Could it be that some facts are missing? Craigue says he discovered a fire hotspot the morning after he lit the fires, suggesting that his hotspot smoldered overnight, unattended, possibly as he slept comfortably indoors, obliviously. Everyone else should relax, too—Craigue offers assurances that he supervised his fire from 100 meters—about a football field away!
Perhaps the concerned citizen who reported the matter to the fire department should be commended, not condemned. It may be that the citizen did not even observe the remotely positioned Craigue, possibly obscured by smoke or trees, or that the citizen observed Craigue in the distance and was alarmed by Craigue’s lack of judgement and apparent indifference to the potential risks his conduct posed to others in the community and their property. In any event, both the citizen and the Sharbot Lake Fire Department did a service to the community, including the ungrateful Craigue.
Apparently, the smoke from his fires and heat from the hotspot has clouded Craigue’s thinking and caused his arrogant outrage, in lieu of the appreciative, remorseful and apologetic response that could be expected from a reasonable person.
The effectiveness of fire departments and their dedicated professionals and volunteers is not measured solely by the types and numbers of fires they extinguish—regardless of whether the fires are the result of natural cause, accident or the acts of fools. Their commitment to public service, as well as their efforts and results attendant to prevention, containment, safety and public education are important considerations, too.
Relative to your 15/11/18 edition, the comment about a man who had been charged for a team to extinguish a fire that was not a danger, I wish to relay my own concerns about busybody people who use the law as a patsy to harass innocent people.
Years ago I started a fire in my back yard at 2pm and by 7pm it was ashed over and not a problem. The combustible area was wet and it had been set after a rain. At 1am, I was awakened by my dog barking and lights flashing and firefighters running all over the property. I pulled my pants on and went out to ask why all the fuss and I was told someone had phoned about a fire on my property. I watched as the entire lot was inspected and no fire was found.
I then volunteered to them the details and time element, and the actual location of the fire I had set. It was still warm when I pointed it out but no action was taken.
Next day I received a call from the fire chief and asked if I had any disputes or hard feelings with my neighbor to the west. I answered not to my knowledge, but was aware the individual was fighting with his neighbor to the west and had taken the trouble to foment a dispute to my own neighbor to the east who was and is an excellent neighbor. I of course knew then who the clown was and the chief said he would be paying the individual who had called in, a visit next day. I offered to do that myself and he agreed.
I went over and told the individual he must have been in his cups as I had started the fire 12 hours previous and he had not called it in at the height of the blaze. I then told him to mind his own business and that I would be having a few more fires to burn more brush
I was not charged for the call. A year later I called the fire department about some brush I was going to burn in two days and the location, but was told I could not burn it legally. I communicated to the individual that it was stacked on the shore of a lake with the predicted winds to be blowing in a direction that would carry the smoke and any sparks across the lake ] and I was going to proceed. He told me if anyone called the fire in, I would be charged $3600 for the fire department to respond. My answer was that I had my own people who would be there and if any moron called them, I would not be paying anyone. I told him I WOULD CALL IT IN if it became a problem and would pay the cost personally, but not if some clown with no idea of the situation did.
That was it. I burned the brush as appointed and proceeded to do that several times over that year.
The writer of the episode needs to determine who the regulation formulators and backers of the asinine statute are and if they are in elected office, publicize their names and work for their defeat. There is no way an idiot with no knowledge of the specifics of a situation should be able to arbitrarily call in a fire UNLESS it is a danger, and have anyone pay for their stupidity and their not minding their own business.
Paul Pospisil, Susan Munro, Gordon Patterson & Walter Downs all
turned 80 this year and are still extremely active on the Maberly Fair Board.
Maberly Fair has had a banner year all things considered. Maberly Agricultural Board/Fair is strictly a volunteer organization. Our Board members started 2018 off with discovery of some very disheartening news. It was revealed that our main bank account had been wiped out and the Maberly Agricultural Board/Fair was in financial ruin. This was devastating and rocked our faith to the core. To live in a small tight knit community where everyone helps their neighbour and then to have one decimate that trust is overwhelming. After investigation the immediate past treasurer was charged by Lanark County OPP with fraud over $5000 and has had three court appearances in which she did not attend but was represented by council and the process is ongoing. Keep in mind there has been no conviction as of yet.
However when word got out the residents of Maberly and surrounding communities, the Perth Fair and other organizations stepped up to restore our trust. The Maberly Agricultural Board/Fair wish to thank all who donated and offered help in any way. It goes to show that trust can be destroyed only if you allow it so we may bend but we did not break. The 136th Maberly fair was held on the 25th of August and it may have been a bit smaller but we did it. The fair hosted a parade, many hall exhibits, horse draw, light horse show, poultry and cattle shows, music on the grand stand and of course our famous zucchini races. A lot of thanks go to four long time members who hit the 80th mark this year. These volunteers are tireless workers. Gordon Patterson (animal classes) has been on our fair board since 1956 for a total of 62 years, Paul Pospisil (horticulture/flowers) since 1991 or 27 years, Walter Downs (grounds maintenance & gates) since 1999 or 19 years and Sue Munro (horse draw & euchre parties) since 1994 or 24 years. This is called volunteer dedication
All prize monies have been disbursed. We are still hosting card parties the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of every month from March until November at the Maberly Community Hall starting at 7:00 pm.
(Editors note - The Frontenac News can confirm that the immediate former treasurer of the Maberly Fair is Bonnie Palmer.)
At 430pm on Sunday, November 11, the Bells of Peace were rung at St. Paul’s Anglican Church in Sydenham; over 70 people were in attendance to witness this historic event.
The Bells of Peace was a national initiative by the Royal Canadian Legion, and St. Paul’s Anglican Church and Branch 469 RCL teamed up to make this happen in Sydenham.
The purpose of this event was to commemorate the one hundred years from the end of World War I in 1918 until 2018, and, therefore, the Bells were rung one hundred times in honour of this occasion. The bells were rung by a group of local children and youth including Lillie Marshall, Sophia Antoine, Meghan McKinstry, Addy Schjerning, Mason Schjerning, and the entire group of Tucker children: Benjamin, Mary, Anna, and William, Charlotte and Katherine.
Following the bell ringing, Last Post and Reveille were played and everyone present entered the Church for a service of Remembrance, followed by fellowship and refreshments.
Thanks to all who helped organize this wonderful event!
New Leaf Link is a grassroots organization that serves developmentally disabled adults in South Frontenac. NeLL champions the interests and abilities of participants in Arts, Healthy Living, and Community Participation. NeLL is a friendship project whose mission is to recognize, extend, and support participants’ special interests in an environment that fosters long-term relationships. NeLL is incredibly grateful to operate from the Harrowsmith Free Methodist Church from 9:30 am - 2:30 pm on Wednesdays and Thursdays, from September to June.
2018 has been an exciting year for our small organization. On September 22, New Leaf Link received the County of Frontenac's 2018 Access Award, presented at the annual Warden's Reception in North Frontenac.
This spring we began training with Sensei Marty Tucker from the Academy of Martial Arts in Sydenham.
In June, Artists Nicholas Steiner Bell & Keifer Blight displayed their work at the Tett Centre for Creativity & Learning in The City of Kingston as part of the Artistic Futures program. This program is facilitated by Gabriel Deerman of Salmon River Studios in Lennox and Addington County in partnership with New Leaf Link.
In August and September, NeLL members were grateful recipients of cheque presentations from a private donor and Norwex Canada Foundation. Two community fundraisers for the New Leaf Link program were held at Trousdale’s Foodland in Sydenham and Verona Foodland in May and September. Our participants will benefit so much from the generosity of our community!
What amazing support we received for the New Leaf Link end of year Open House on June 7! So many people turned out!
Our Christmas Open House/Fundraiser will be held on Thursday, December 6 from 11 – 2 at the Harrowsmith Free Methodist Church. A goodwill offering in support of New Leaf Link would be gratefully appreciated. All members of the community are welcome to view our play presentation, refreshments, games, raffle and activities.