Jule Koch Brison | Apr 19, 2012

Trenton mill closure will affect local logging industry

The township received a letter from Wayne Snider and Shawn & Patricia Gray asking council to send a letter to the LFL&A MP and MPP informing them of the impact of the impending closure of the Norampac paper mill in Trenton on the local economy.

Cascades Inc. announced that the mill will close no later than June 1, 2012 after employees rejected a final offer for a new collective agreement.

The letter from Mr. Snider and the Grays said that all wood deliveries to the mill have been stopped. "Loss of this mill will greatly impact the local logging industry not only for the sale of round wood pulp, but also the sale of our saw logs as the mills that buy our logs will not be able to send their chips … The next closest mills are in Thurso, Quebec, or Espanola, Ontario. Shipping to these mills would not be economical because of distance and low revenue from this product, as well, the transportation regulations are not the same in Ontario and Quebec."

The letter estimates that losses to the local forest industry will be in the millions.

Council agreed to send the letters to the MP and MPP as requested.

Denbigh Ambulance Service -Councilor Tony Fritsch spoke briefly about the Denbigh Ambulance Service, whose fate was decided at the L&A County Council meeting on April 11. The base will not be closed, but will continue as a 12-hour instead of a 24-hour base. Fritsch acknowledged that the Denbigh area was on the brink of having no service at all and said he is grateful that it has been saved to some degree. He expressed his thanks to everyone who was involved in the intensive lobbying to save the base – to the citizens and the businesses as well as the council.

Reeve Henry Hogg said that he was asked at the county council meeting whether the township could help to some degree with the costs of the base, but that the township has no existing secure facility that it could contribute to serve as a base. Also, the township would not build such a facility. Councilor Fritsch commented that it wasn't reasonable to expect free space from the township.

Councilor Adam Snider commented that since the ambulance has to stand down so often, it is often not available for calls. Councilor Fritsch agreed, saying that people often make the decision not to call the ambulance even when they should, and they get themselves to the hospital some other way.

Source Water Protection - Council received draft Source Water Protection plans for consultation from both the Mississippi Valley and Quinte Conservation authorities. The deadline for comments is May 4 for the MVCA plan and May 18 for the Quinte Conservation plan. Council will request an extension for the former in order to properly consider both plans.

Yard maintenance by-law - Council considered a new draft yard maintenance by-law, which mentioned "firewood being stacked neatly" and "inoperative farm machinery being lined up in rows". The main thrust of the bylaw is to "prohibit deposition of refuse or debris on land without the consent of the owner or occupant". However, Councilor Snider asked how the bylaw could be enforced, as the township has no bylaw enforcement officer. The township does currently have a bylaw in place, and council decided to see if it could be built on instead of passing a new bylaw.

Council voted to remove the half-load restrictions on April 23, two weeks earlier than usual.

Tweed Hearing Centre - Laura Moloughney of the Tweed Hearing Centre wrote to council about plans to start holding a hearing clinic in Northbrook once a week. The letter said that the Tweed Hearing Centre would like to "participate in a patient-centric clinic that could provide several medical disciplines…" The letter mentioned the need for a storefront office-type space and asked for council's assistance in locating potential resources.

Council said that they would advise Ms. Moloughney to contact Land o'Lakes Community Services for assistance in finding a suitable space.





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