COUNCIL BRIEFS: September 20, 2016

Council Briefs-001

In addition to the larger stories, which happen quite infrequently, 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.

  • Councillor Neale announced Tuesday that he wants to catch a tiger – a Giant Tiger, that is. He heard they’re expanding and wants Thorold to try to lure one here. Councillor Paone said he isn’t opposed but he’s concerned about how it might affect downtown businesses, while Councillor Handley declared that supporting Giant Tiger is supporting Canadian jobs. It would be nice to get some department-store-type items without going to St. Catharines.
  • Councillor Whalen wants some City property – Chestnut Hall, the property behind the library and the lot that contains a garage right beside – it declared surplus. Councillor Neale agrees so long as they put out a request for RFPs for long-term care facilities. They’ve requested a report on the matter. I hope they include in that report that the Thorold Public Library’s only meeting and programme space, the public washrooms, the janitor’s room, and all of the hydro, gas and water meters are in Chestnut Hall. If they want to sell it, the library will require an extension to replace all of that space. Councillor Longo requested that the report also recommend alternative sites.
  • Councillor Ugulini, after plugging the Canal Bank Shuffle (Oct. 13 to 15 – tickets $25 in advance, $30 at the door), asked that staff provide a report on what the next step is to slow speeders on Winterberry.
  • Councillor Handley announced that he’ll be volunteering at the Shuffle, as will most community activist in Thorold. He then went on to complain about large holes on Schmon Parkway, unmarked and with no barriers. He also once again rendered his opinion that Thorold is “not getting what we paid for” in regards to recent sidewalk work. He says the poured sidewalk isn’t thick enough and asked staff to produce the contract so that he can see what they demanded of the contractors. And, finally, he reported on the ongoing work to put washrooms in MacAdam Park (Thorold South), listing some of the recent donors in time and material which he obtained.
  • Councillor Paone wants staff to prepare a strategy and time-lines on how to get bike lanes on St. Davids Road.
  • Council voted to share the cost of maintenance of a new multi-use trail going on the Merrittvile Highway from Decew Road to Brock. This will include snow ploughing in winter.
  • There was some confusion in dealing with proposed new contracts with the Black Hawks Jr. “B” and the Senior hockey teams. The proposal was for subsidized ice time for the Juniors but not the Seniors and for the Juniors to receive 40% of board advertising revenue with the Seniors receiving 30%, with a $5,000 guarantee. But first they had to split the two items because Councillor Ugulini declared a conflict of interest on only the Seniors’ portion (he works for one of the owners). That led to some procedural wrangling.

 The councillors pretty much agreed that a for-profit business shouldn’t get subsidized ice time, but they should get the board revenue. Councillor Whelan then suggested that they should  get the same contracts in those respects. But rather than lower them the Juniors to 30% ad revenue, they raised the Seniors to 40%, with no guarantee (removing the guarantee at least  protects the City form a loss should no ads sell).

  I don’t think they should have received any subsidy. The City of Thorold should not be in the business of propping up businesses, even if it is hockey.

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