| May 26, 2005


Feature article, May 26, 2005

Feature article May 26, 2005

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Sunday hunting shot down again

by Jeff Green

Bill Guigue doesnt give up easily.

The Central Frontenac Councillor was so incensed by the decision of Council several weeks ago to reject calls from the Ministry of Natural Resources for townships to legalize Sunday Gun hunting, that he took the unusual step of requesting that council bring the matter back up for discussion.

That required a two-thirds majority, and Council chose to accommodate Bill Guigue by agreeing to bring the matter back on the table.

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Guigue then implored Council to pass the resolution in favour of Sunday hunting, saying the reasons given for rejecting the proposal in the first place were totally off the point. Remember, it is a proposal to allow hunting on private land. The argument about bird watchers not being able to do their bird watching is wrong. Logan Murray can watch all he birds he wants on his own land. This Sunday hunting would be the best thing the township could do for economic development. It would bring more people into the township.

Councillor Logan Murray said, The problem is that people dont know where the boundaries are between different peoples land, and Crown land. My own land is 1,000 feet wide by a mile and half long. Rifles can fire more than 1,000 feet. By the way I only said Bird Watchers might come into the township as tourists just as hunters come in. Im not a birdwatcher, the only birds I watch are at the end of a shotgun.

Mayor MacDonald reiterated his position that it would be preferable if Crown land were included in this proposal because hunters dont know where private land ends and Crown land begins.

I will support the motion, mind you, he said. Dont forget folks, were not just talking about the Sunday in the middle of Deer hunting season here. Were talking all hunting seasons, from September 1st to mid January. This time Sunday Gun hunting garnered four votes in favour while four Councillors voted against. The tie vote meant the motion was defeated. Councillor Bill Snyder was absent.

Confusion over tender

Council considered several tenders, all of which were straightforward, save one. It was decided to award contracts for a truck cab and chassis to the Kingston Truck Centre for $99,414.26, and for plow equipment to Champion Road Machinery at a cost of $72,144. The total cost of $171,558 is within the budgeted framework of $190,000 for the purchase.

A tender for cutting the grass on over 550 kilometres of township roads was awarded to the lowest bidder, Scotts Snow Ploughing and Grass Cutting, at a cost of $13,600, which is also within the budget of $15,000 for grass cutting.

Council had difficulty, however, in deciding about the tender for surface treating of roads. Smith Construction, which has done all the resurfacing work for the township in the past, submitted a bid for $294,000.

Rockwell, a company out of London, Ontario, submitted a substantially lower bid that no one in the township, including the Public Works Manager, had ever heard of. The Public Works Manager solicited a list of work completed by Rockwell, and had received the list back in time for the meeting, but had not yet phoned the customers to confirm the quality of the work.

We normally pay 10% of these contracts up front by certified cheque; the rest is paid upon a satisfactory completion of the project Nicol said in answer to a question from Councillor Guigue about how the township safeguards itself when entering into construction contracts.

After kicking the matter around, Council decided to award the tender to Rockwell, subject to a check on references by Public Works Manager Bill Nicol.

Katarokwi Native Friendship Centre request refused

Ann Marie Wilson of The Katarokwi Native Friendship Centre sent a letter to Council requesting support for a funding application for an aboriginal community development worker and a nurse practitioner.

The goal is the provision of culturally appropriate primary health care services to the off-reserve aboriginal population of Southeastern Ontario Wilson wrote. The letter noted that recent census data puts this population at approximately 10,000.

The two workers would be based in North Kingston, and both positions would involve extensive community outreach work to establish links and work with other community groups and agencies involved in service delivery and/or health promotion programs, Wilson wrote.

I think we need to improve health care services for everyone, said Councillor Bob Harvey.

I would like to se us approve this, said Mayor Bill MacDonald, its similar to what is taking place with the Family Health Care Team in Sharbot Lake.

The vote on sending a letter of support was split 4-4, and was declared defeated.

Hiring Policy

Council spent about 45 minutes debating the current hiring policy, and two proposals for changes, one contained in a resolution from Councillor Logan Murray, and one contained in a staff report by Chief Administrative Officer Heather Fox.

At issue was Council involvement in the hiring of department heads and supervisory personnel. In the end only Councillor Murray supported his own motion, and the staff proposal was declared defeated after another tied vote, 4 in favour and 4 against.

Staff will continue to submit proposals until Council finds something that they can support, said Heather Fox.

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