In contrast to the much shorter and light Council meetings recently, this Monday’s upcoming (Zoom) meeting looks like it will be a marathon. Three delegations, 6 Integrity Commissioner reports , 16 Staff reports, 2 closed sessions. Do not forget Correspondence and New Business!
Let’s take a look at some of the more interesting items…
Of the three delegations for the evening, one of them looks interesting. The delegation is from a local startup called Canalside Soda. They are taking a unique take on traditional soda pop with truly “Made in Grimsby” flavours and hope to drive local tourism through their “Soda Shop”. Sounds like a tasty delegation!
Integrity Commissioner Reports
With all the divisiveness that has emerged within Council recently, it appears there has been a slew of Integrity Commissioner complaints arising from the Town’s Code of Conduct. Six of the reports will get their time in the spotlight on Monday, but they are not attached to the Agenda as of this writing.
Given the numbering of the reports, it appears there is still at least another 4 reports that either have yet to come forward or have been withdrawn.
This should be quite an interesting watch to see whether Members of Council attempt to settle their differences or retreat to the confines of partisan politics.
Grimsby Beach Study
There could be another discussion to watch, as the memo from Planning indicates that the study to be undertaken will be in the range of $230,000… but that the cost will not have further levy impact in 2021.
The cost is not insignificant, but the truth of the matter is previous terms of Council have neglected the area from a Planning perspective and a proper study is
needed to ensure this unique area does not go off the rails.
Reports, Reports and More Reports
There are 16 reports on the Agenda, ranging from electronic signs, agreements with Niagara Regional Broadband Network, Public Works related items, a general statement of operations and the Town’s request for a “Part II Order” to bring a halt to the Region’s attempt at plowing through the Woodlot with their proposed Livingston Avenue Extension.
Town Sale of Surplus Lands
The last report is on the possibility of the Town selling “surplus land” to raise revenue. The interesting parcel that Town Staff are proposing to put on the sales block is the northeast quadrant parcel of land at the QEW and Casablanca interchange… AKA “Site #4”.
If you have been a long time reader of this site, you will remember that Councillor Bothwell, a former GCFRG contributor and then just a resident, fought hard to protect that quadrant, appearing as a delegation at the February 20, 2018 Council meeting:
“Dorothy Bothwell appeared as a delegation to speak regarding the northeast quadrant parcel and height bonusing. In addition to the comments provided in the agenda package, she reaffirmed that the parcel within the Winston Secondary Plan following extensive public engagement, had been identified in the 2014 Waterfront Master Plan as public beach access “green” parking and should be protected as Town property. Once public lands are gone, there is no recouping them. Sharing beach access parking with high rise condominium developments (Losani) with interior on-road parking as suggested by Planning staff, will not work.”February 25, 2018 gcfrg pOST
Once development is complete at the Losani site, only then can community needs and benefits be assessed by Town Staff in determining whether the land is “surplus” (unneeded) or not.
If the throngs of people at Grimsby beaches this year is any indication of future demand, this quadrant will be required and it is simply too valuable to sell just to raise some short-term capital.
Given the rebuke and rejection of the previous Council and their propensity towards “high rise commercial development” by voters in the last election, this property will serve as a litmus test as to where individual Council members stand on the issue.
This property definitely deserves a scratch from the potential sales list.
Inclusiveness, Indigenous Statement, National Anthem
Spanning across the Correspondence and “Notice of Motion” categories are two somewhat related items. Correspondence from the Region and other municipalities regarding inclusiveness will be received, surely with some discussion as to how Council will proceed with such recognition.
Two notices of motion on procedural matters including a request for a report on an Indigenous Statement and the playing of “O’Canada” at the beginning of meetings will be presented and scheduled for debate at the August meeting.
Read Up & Tune In
You can find the full Council agenda for Monday’s meeting by clicking this link.
The electronic meeting will start at 6:30 PM (summer start) and you can view the Town’s livestream at https://vimeo.com/grimsbycouncilchambers or the simulcast on Facebook Live.