Report on Council for February 8, 2010

Confidential/Closed Session; Solar Energy; Council Remuneration; Wind Turbine Update; Beach Signage; Street Lights; Budget Update

REPORT ON COUNCIL
February 8, 2010
Committee of the Whole Meeting: 9:00 am –12:36 pm and 1:09 to 3:47 pm
Regular Evening Meeting: 7:00 pm – 7:40 pm
All members of Council present

CONFIDENTIAL / CLOSED SESSION: 1:10 pm – 3:47 pm and 7:40 pm – 8:20 pm
John Barzo of Burgar Rowe was present, as was Tom Moutsatsos of Hicks Morley. The evening closed session concerned “A proposed or pending acquisition or disposition of land by the municipality.”

SOLAR ENERGY
Council members briefly discussed a presentation by Mike Henderson of Dommelvalley Green Power from the previous meeting. One member enquired if consideration should be given to fitting Township buildings with solar panels. Staff was directed to consider this possibility.

COUNCIL REMUNERATION
In 2008 council approved a salary adjustment which made their remuneration comparable to that of neighbouring Councils. At that time they decided to review the situation before setting 2010 compensation. After discussion they concluded that no further action was required at this time. This appears to be a prudent approach.

WIND TURBINE UPDATE
Several members attended a meeting in Durham regarding wind turbines. Approximatley 400 people attended with major concerns centered around health and setbacks. It was reported that 43 municipalities in Ontario are proponents of an independent study regarding setbacks before any further construction is undertaken.

BEACH SIGNAGE
Further to discussions regarding Summerama, Council directed staff to proceed with signage at Kitching Land and at the acess point just north of the Sunport Motel to clearly depict the extent of Township-owned property at those locations.

STREET LIGHTS
In response to a letter from a resident who resides on Concession 18 near Georgian Drive, discussion ensued regarding the three streetlights to be erected in that subdivision. Staff advised that the lights were required if the developer were to conform with current standards. Council does not wish to change the standard but is empathic to problem of ambient light blotting out the night sky and requested staff to analyze the possibility of using different lights which would satisy the safety requirements while minimizing ambient light.

BUDGET UPDATE
A few items were finalized including provision for parking machines at Balm Beach. Parking will be carefully considered in conjunction with the Master Plan, safety, and concerns the business association may have.
After discussion Council agreed on a budget increase of 1.5% which will allow for approxiamtely $300,000 to be added to the reserve funds. The cost of living increase for staff was also set at 1.5% which is in line with the core CPI increase last year. Council also considered the impact of the harmonized sale tax and the new Ontaro rent guidelines in that decision.
Please note that individual tax bills will vary, depending on MPAC assessments and the 4 year phase in period. The final tax rate will be established by the Township before the Feb. 26th Committee of the Whole Meeting.