Jule Koch Brison | Apr 17, 2013

When is a well not a well? When the water is not potable water intended for human consumption, is it a well? This question was debated at the Addington Highlands Council meeting in a discussion of a well that serves the washrooms at the Flinton library. The water is taken from the river and is only used to flush the toilets at the library. The question has arisen because the person who has purchased the former United Church, next to the library, wishes to purchase an unused road allowance between the properties to install a septic system, and septic systems must be a certain distance from wells. Council decided to first get a water test done for the well. Reeve Hogg said after the meeting that the well in question is basically just a hose that takes water from the river.

Senior of the Year award: Council received two names from the public to be nominated for a provincial Senior of the Year award: Henry Hogg and Ruby Malcolm. Hogg, who is the reeve of the township, declined the nomination and council will nominate Ruby Malcolm for the award.

Algonquin Land Claim: The Municipality of East Ferris forwarded a resolution saying that their council "does not support the transfer of crown lands to the Algonquin First Nation and that further no crown lands over which individual home owners access their private residences should be transferred to the Algonquins of Ontario". Council voted to support the resolution.

Reeve Hogg reported on attending a public meeting in Madawaska on April 6 that was called by the Township of South Algonquin to give municipalities an opportunity to voice their concerns about the Algonquin Land Claim process. He said that at the meeting there was considerable concern expressed about the ramifications of the Agreement in Principle for the affected municipalities and the lack of consultation with them.

Hogg told his council that it appears the rules that were initially announced for the Agreement in Principle are already changing. He said, "Unless we kick up a fuss now the whole municipality will be penalized."

Council discussed drawing up a resolution but the Township of South Algonquin was also going to draw up a resolution after the April 6 meeting, so Addington Highlands will wait until it is received. They discussed sending their objections to the Ontario chief negotiator, Brian Crane.

When interviewed after the meeting, Reeve Hogg said that among the township’s main concerns are the costs of having to apply zoning to Crown land that is slated to be turned over to the Algonquins. That land would then become privatized and the township could be required to provide services such as fire and ambulance and to maintain roads. He said that the lands are not on main traveled roads; they are undeveloped lands in areas that do not have a big tax base.

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