COUNCIL BRIEFS: November 1, 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.

Note: if you were looking for last meeting’s “Briefs”, I didn’t do any. There just was too little to report on.

Council was pretty short once again Tuesday night. I don’t know what happened to all the important items that everyone has been waiting for, but not much is coming forward. Here is a sample of what is coming forward, most of it in other business (which means Councillors brought it up):

  • Councillor Handley raised the issue of the tree cutting again, saying people have been concerned that there has been no stumping and replanting. While he realized that the money and effort has been going into cutting the affected trees down, he believed that the emerald ash borers are still active in the stumps and must be destroyed. Staff replied that the City has to continue with the cutting for safety reasons and that stumping and planting will happen, but afterwards. Handley suggested, once again, that the City should start up their own tree service and thereby save themselves a lot of money.
  • Handley doesn’t think Thorold looks so great. Well, he was referring to road and sidewalks, actually. Citing the ugly bricks in the sidewalk, which not only look bad but present tripping hazards, he urged the City to replace it.
  • The Councillor also wants the Police Board to come and talk to Council about police deployment, which he said was too sparse in Thorold, an issue with which Mayor Luciani took exception. Handley suggested that “We spend so much on policing, we could have our own police force.” First our own tree service and then our own police force – he may have the answer to unemployment in Thorold.
  • Councillor Ugulini wanted to draw Council’s attention to the four young trees that were snapped off on Winterbury (where most of the student trouble is now). He also congratulated the Thorold South Volunteer Firefighters for their Hallowe’en party and the $500 education bursary they created.
  • On the downtown parking front, Ugulini also asked Engineering staff where the parking machines are for the new parking lot beside Fire Station #1. He also asked for the status on the new drop-off ones for Front Street. Staff replied that the drop-off zones will put in as soon as the manpower is available, but the parking machines, which are intended to allow 2 hours’ free parking and then charge $1.00 per hour, may not be feasible. A report is forthcoming but, in the meantime, Council voted to have signs installed posting a 2-hour parking limit n the lot.
  • Councillor Whelan thanked donors for supplies donated to making the gazebo in Sullivan Park possible. It should be completed soon.
  • If you’re one of the parents who sits and waits on the bike lanes in front of Richmond Street Public School, you may want to take note: the No Parking signs are to be removed and replaced with No Standing signs. For those who may not know the difference, No Parking means you can stop as long as you stay in the car. No Standing means no stopping there at all. This is the result of a joint effort by the City of Thorold and the District School Board of Niagara due to concerns about children running out from between the vehicles to get into cars. It’s also about the concerns that the bicycle lanes, which are there for safe cycling, are being blocked, forcing cyclists into traffic at the busiest times in order to get by the vehicles.
  • An interesting point was brought up by the City Clerk about the new election legislation: because all elected positions on the ballot have to be elected in the same way Region-wide, if the Region decides to go with ranked balloting, all the member municipalities will have to as well.

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