Jule Koch Brison | Jan 20, 2011

Addington Highlands Community Centre – Denbigh (AHDCC): Councilor Tony Fritsch reported that the cleanup of the Centre is complete and the transfer of the utilities to the township is well underway. Drawings will be prepared to determine the layout of the Family Health Team’s (FHT) quarters in the building. Fritsch also said that a major part of the project will be to reverse the orientation of the building and move the main entrance and parking to the north side.

Presently the main entrance is on the south side, where there is a steep slope, and also, the well and septic are both located there. The north side, however, is level and has ample room for parking. Dr. Tobia and the FHT have agreed to the change and Fritsch asked for council’s endorsement of the plan.

Councilor Adam Snider, however, suggested that “subject to MTO [Ontario Ministry of Transportation] approval” should be added to the motion, and a discussion ensued as to whether MTO approval would be required or not, as the south entrance is off Centre Street and not directly off Hwy 28.

Roads Superintendent Royce Rosenblath said that because of the existing entrance it was a “gray area”. He could not predict how MTO would respond if their approval were needed.

Fritsch said that the Family Health Team would be put on hold waiting for a decision from MTO. In the end Snider withdrew his amendment and council voted to support the change of orientation of the building.

Reeve Hogg later said that the township will consult with MTO at some point in the future.

A tour of the community centre, followed by a meeting to receive the public’s input and form a Denbigh Community Advisory Committee is planned for tonight, January 20. Sign up sheets for the committee will be available.

Bill MacDonald visits: Liberal MPP candidate Bill MacDonald attended the council meeting in Denbigh to find out what issues the municipality sees as being the most pressing. He said that, of course, he was also asking for their support and cited his many years of experience as a municipal politician and in the educational supply business. He said that there is a “missing link” in the provincial government, namely someone who would voice the concerns of rural municipalities, and he asked council what he could do to help out if he were elected.

In response, Reeve Henry Hogg identified long-range infrastructure support as the township’s biggest need. He said that roads and bridges are the township’s biggest long-term deficit, and that the province gives a portion of gas tax money to cities for transportation but rural municipalities get nothing. Addington Highlands has over a million dollars in bridge needs alone but no funding to pay for the work.

Hogg said that social services have been uploaded to the province, but as the township has had its Ontario Municipal Partnership Funds (OMPF) reduced, there is no net benefit to the township. The OMPF assists municipalities with their social services costs.

Denbigh Homecoming: Bonnie Thompson attended council to ask for their support for a Denbigh Homecoming event that is planned for July 27 - 29, 2012. Thompson is part of a group of friends who are organizing the Homecoming, and they are asking local merchants, organizations and groups to take part in, and perhaps run some of the different events of the weekend. She said the group’s plans have received much support and enthusiasm from residents and former residents, and that the Homecoming is for everyone, not just for people who attended the Denbigh school.

She asked for council’s permission to use the township facilities: the community hall, the recreation park and the new community centre, and whether there would be a charge for their use. Council agreed that as it is a public event there would be no charge.

The question arose, however, of whether the Homecoming could be covered under the township’s insurance. The suggestion was made that the Denbigh Recreation Committee could run the bar and the Saturday night dance but Councilor Helen Yanch pointed out that a similar question was investigated before and it was found that the rec committee was not automatically covered by the township’s insurance.

The township’s insurers will be contacted about the Homecoming.

Deputy Reeve Bill Cox asked Bonnie Thompson whether she could come back with more specific details. She replied that the group does have a more specific schedule but she did not want to bring it to council before she found out whether council would agree to the use of the facilities.

Loss of long-time employee: Royce Rosenblath spoke of the loss of Mike Kerr, a 20-year employee of the township, who died suddenly on January 6. Rosenblath said Mike’s death had left a big hole in the crew. Council appointed Cameron Lloyd as lead hand in Mike’s place.

Blue Box Recycling: Rosenblath reported that the Blue Box recycling is going well and is working as intended to reduce contamination in the recyclables. He said that people can now easily spot, and take out things that should not be in the recycling bins.


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