COUNCIL BRIEFS: JANUARY 19, 2016

Council Briefs-001

In addition to the larger stories, other items go through Thorold City Council and General Committee. Some may be important to someone affected and others are just a little interesting. The following are some of those items:

  • Mayor Luciani welcomed back Councillor Shawn Wilson who has been absent for some time due to illness, and congratulated him on the birth of his child.
  • If anyone’s following the progress of the Welland Canals Fallen Workers’ Memorial, there will be an information night at the Lock 3 Centre in St. Catharines on February 8, 2016 from 6:30-8:00 p.m.
  • Councillor Charron asked that something be done to let owners of rental houses know about the new snow clearing by-law and also that the City distribute door hanger notices to all homes.
  • Councillor Handley requested a report of all unfinished projects with expected start and completion dates so that Councillors can inform taxpayers who request the information.
  • Councillor Ugulini raised the question of a Project Manager for the Arenas and Operations Centre projects. CAO Fabiano replied that staff is considering hiring one since the money spent annually on projects has gone from $3 to $5 million in recent years. He also said they are negotiating with someone.
  • Councillor Longo entered a Notice of Motion that he will be asking for the dissolution of the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Committee, citing a lack of applications and poor attendance at meetings. The committee, which was started two terms ago, had been started by former Mayor D’Angela and acted as an advisor on youth views as well as raising money for worthwhile charities. They also started a talent contest two years ago.
  • As every year, CAO Fabiano presented Council with this year’s goals and objectives for staff. Asked by Councillor Handley what happens if the objectives aren’t met, the CAO responded that the salaried staff falling short would receive lower raises. Councillor Handley suggested that, if goals and objectives aren’t met, staff should lose money, not be rewarded with smaller raises.
  • The question of sidewalks on Abbey Drive is alive once again. Last term, Council turned down a recommendation that sidewalks be installed for safety reasons because of residents on the street objected. While staff said that it would be part of the Transportation Master Plan, Councillor Paone wished to move ahead with public meetings now, citing the danger of walking on that particular street for students and those walking to the park. Councillor Charron suggested putting up signage to use the walkway through Decew Woods, but withdrew it when it was explained that the crossing on Decew Road is more dangerous there due to a curve and poor sightlines. Council will be looking at puttig a sidewalk on the west side of Abbey Drive, nea the curb. Councillor Ugulini asked, since residents don’t want the sidewalk, that they not have to pay for it as is customary with such local improvements, a suggestion which is being considered.
  • There was a public meeting for some requested zoning revisions. Another new structure I going in near the end of Albert St. E. at Front St., where four buildings are now. It’s going to be four stories high, with 18 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom apartments (it was pointed out that it isn’t for students) and 6 commercial units at ground level. This building will also have on-site underground parking. The allowances they wanted were a narrower driveway, one parking space per unit instead of 1-1/4 and a lifting of the height restriction to allow for an elevator housing. Now it will be on to Council, once all the comments are in.

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