| Aug 09, 2007

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Feature Article - August 9, 2007

Three South Frotnenac firefighters honoured:South Frontenac Council report

by Wilma Kenny


Fire Chief Rick Chesborough presented service awards to three members of the volunteer fire department. He spoke of the more than six decades of service to the community that these rewards honoured: volunteers giving time and skills to fire prevention/protection, as well as providing training and education to other department members. Captains Charles Pocklington and Steve Spencer and retired district Chief Michael McQuillan each received municipal, provincial and federal recognition for 20 years of service. Chesborough later remarked that he was pleased at the way the township fire departments have come to work together in the last few years. The solemnity of the presentation was emphasised by a minute’s silence in honour of Deputy Fire Chief Bill Salmond of Addington Highlands, who was killed earlier the same day in the course of duty.


South Frontenac Council has agreed to enter into a one-year agreement with KIMCO Steel Sales Ltd for disposal of electronic waste from the township. Through this program, electronic waste that would otherwise end up in landfills will be collected and recycled at a cost to the Township of .28 per lb. KIMCO has increased the range of acceptable electronic products to include electrical, telephone and data cable, as well as power tools and small household appliances. Bill Blum, Manager of Public Works will work with Councillor Robinson to draw up a specific list of items eligible for this service, prior to its initiation. Blum noted in his report that this was a worthwhile project, and a one-year agreement would allow council opportunity to judge its effectiveness before proceeding further. John Fillion emphasized that it’s still important to continue to encourage manufacturers to be responsible for recycling their products.

SF Council also supported the establishment of a permanent Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) facility in the township, subject to final cost approval by council. Last year, the township held two one-day collection events which drew over 450 vehicles, for a total cost of $32,000 ($53/vehicle). Bill Blum noted that not only is this the most expensive way to deal with the problem of HHW, but it is limited in its effectiveness because residents must be available on the day of the event, and contend with long line-ups and waits. The cheapest option would be to continue the present arrangement with KARK whereby individual residents pay $32/vehicle and deliver a (size limited) amount of HHW to Kingston. However, the response to last year’s events seemed to indicate that many residents were not using this latter option. A permanent depot which could be operated one day a month May-October would cost the township the approximate equivalent of $32 per car, based on estimated use, plus the capital cost of establishing the site. This capital expense will be eligible for funding under the gas tax program. Probable location would be at the Keeley Road township site. Blum noted that the underlying premise is that if hazardous waste disposal is made more convenient for residents, they are less likely to dump toxic substances down the sink, or into the regular garbage.

The Township received $23,265 as their first quarterly payment from the residential Blue Box Recycling program.


Council accepted M.A.Barr Station Management’s bid of $382, 635 to remove the township’s underground fuel tanks, and replace them with above ground tanks, in spite of the fact this (lower) bid was $20,000 above budget. Bill Blum explained the higher cost was a result of the price of concrete, and the engineering firm was looking at ways to redesign the supporting pads to lower the amount of concrete needed. Any overrun will be covered by money from the gas tax fund. The township has no choice but to replace the tanks (most over 25 years old), to meet insurance requirements.


A resident’s request for a by-law which would prevent his neighbour from planting trees that would restrict his view (across the neighbour’s property) was rejected by council.


A report of three coyote cattle-kills last month had Councillor Fillion asking why there wasn’t a bounty on coyotes. (Seems this is a provincial issue.) A fourth dead cow was judged to have been "cast", rather than killed by coyotes or lightning. "Cast," a familiar farm term, takes all the humour out of cow-tipping jokes: if a cow becomes wedged in a fallen position, her lungs soon collapse, and she dies.


The Sydenham Lake boat ramp at the point will be closed for Sunday August 19, to accommodate a large Sydenham Canoe Club event: boat ramp access to the lake will still be available off Wilmer Road at the east end of the lake.


Councillor Robinson brought up the concern that "too few people are making too many decisions" at the county table. Several others agreed that it seems unfair that South Frontenac pays 58% of the county’s costs, yet has only 25% representation on county council. There was consensus that this issue deserves more discussion, along with the need to update or develop a strategic plan for South

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