For some months the Township of Frontenac Islands has been considering the construction of a new fire hall for Howe Island. Planning for this moved another step forward at their June council meeting when Howe Island’s Fire Chief Captain Mike Quinn was present with Patrick Thompson, Thompson Construction Management Services to give a status report on the project. Council has entered into a service agreement with Thompson Management Services for this project
“We are now requesting that Patrick begin the next step on our behalf for requests of interest and proposals,” the Chief said. “This is one of the larger capital projects we will be considering,” according to Mayor Vanden Hoek. “By the next meeting in July council will probably be asked to consider issuing an RFP and if the price is right the municipality may very well go down the path of a new service building for Howe Island,” he said.
Chief Quinn said that a site location has been selected and a preliminary sketch has been prepared along with a preliminary cost estimate. Thompson said the next step is the public invitation for Expressions of Interest from Design Build contractors through public advertising for the upcoming construction of a new 5000 square foot Fire Hall based on certain mandatory design elements. Through a committee selection process 3 or 4 companies will then be considered for participation at the RFP stage. Thompson will work with Deputy Clerk Carol Dwyre and Chief Quinn as representatives of the township on this project.
In other business: At the request of Council Patrick Thompson looked at a way of expanding the Wolfe Island Emergency Services building ( perhaps going up) to provide overnight accommodation for ambulance volunteers who come from the Kingston. He informed council that “going up” would be a very expensive option. He suggested instead a ground level addition. Thompson will bring further recommendations to the July meeting.
After many months and much work by Howe Island land owners D. Driscoll and R. Vradenburg the Township has agreed to assume the Baseline Road Extension as a limited service street and to maintain it to the same standard as Fuller Road when the Extension has been built by the owners according to established standards.
The Council moved into the Committee of Adjustment for the hearing of 5 applications for consent, all of which generated much discussion. Three of the applications were deferred until council obtains more information
regarding ‘impact assessments of aggregate’.
The Woodman consent was deferred to determine if it is a request for a 3rd or 4th severance.
The H. McIntyre consent (approved as a limited service residential) in spite of concern over width of access road.
Mayor Vanden Hoek announced that CAO Terry O’Shea will be absent for 4 plus months due to poor health, expressing best wishes for a quick recovery. Councillor Hobbs expressed concern with the work load that will fall to remaining staff as a result. Clark Consulting will provide some insight into staff work load around the wind power project. Council will consider other options if necessary.
Councillor Calvin informed council that the $17, 000 estimate for equipment acquisition for Big Sandy Bay came in at $10,850. He also noted an equipment donation valued at $500. from Cathie Herroun and Roly Jansen, already.generous contributors.
Mayor Vanden Hoek wondered if council members were prepared to re-visit the trailer bylaw which had received significant debate but with no passage of a proposed amendment. Further input by council was requested by CAO O’Shea some time ago.
Budget deliberations are well underway. Councillor Grant’s question regarding “Cash-in-lieu of parkland” recommended for most consent application will be discussed at the next budget meeting. A Frontenac Islands web site update will be prepared for the next regular meeting of Council to be held on Wolfe Island, Monday, July 10th.
Run, Walk, Enjoy! The Wolfe Island Classic 5K-10K Run now in its 26th year will happen, rain or shine on Sunday July 2nd .The run, with categories, prizes and medals for men , women and youth from under 12 years to over 70 years starts at 9:30 a.m. in Marysville and ends 1 km west of the village by the water . (Perfect place to cool off at the end of the race.)
The event sponsored by the Wolfe Island Business & Tourism Association in association with the Kingston Running Room regularly draws runners from the USA and many parts of Canada.
It is a family event beginning with the ferry ride from Kingston or Cape Vincent, a Kiddy Kilometre for children 2-6 years and free light breakfast and pre-race presentations at the Island Grill. For further information contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or Call Race Director Linda Thomas 613-385-1947
Medical Clinic Annual Meeting: The Wolfe Island Medical Clinic re-elected Mildred Hawkins-Walton as President of the Board of Directors for the year 2006-2007. Dr. Duncan Day is Vice President, Secretary Elise Huffman with Marietta Banting continuing as Treasurer. Directors include Frank Balint, Catherine Merry, David Colbourne and Frontenac Islands Councillor Jim Calvin ex-officio member.
FYI , the Clinic Board is sponsoring a Charity Golf Tournament in support of the Medical Clinic on Sunday Aug 6th at the Alston Moore Golf Links.
Speaking of golf: The Wolfe Island River Front Golf Course is a participating member in the “Take a Kid to the Course Week”, a program held during the 1st week of July (3-9) to encourage children to learn the game of golf. The annual event is sponsored by NGCOA Canada (National Golf Course Owners Association). For details call the River Front at 613-385-2978.
Around Town: * A Potluck Supper to celebrate Fr. Grainger’s 40th Anniversary as a priest and to welcome him to Howe Island was turned instead into a Farewell. Fr. Grainger is taking a sabbatical.
* A Farewell & Thank You will be held for Fr. Ray Vickers at Wolfe Island’s Sacred Heart of Mary Church grounds after the 9:30 Mass, Sunday July 2nd. Fr. Vickers came out of retirement in November 2005 to serve there when once again the parish was without a pastor.
*Take note registration for the WI Fire Dept Gary Bryant Memorial Golf Tournament at the River Front Golf Course is now underway. Teams of 3 only. Call Joe Taggart 613-385-2233.
Finally, the formal process of establishing a large scale wind farm on Wolfe Island began with a public meeting called by the Township of Frontenac Islands to consider an Official Plan Amendment application and to hear the comments and concerns of the community.
An application for an Official Plan and Zoning bylaw amendment was submitted by CREC, the wholly owned subsidiary of Canadian Hydro Developers Inc. The Official Plan amendment if approved by council will add a policy to the Official Plan permitting commercial wind turbines throughout Frontenac Islands (Wolfe & Howe) in both rural and agricultural areas. Provincial policy now permits wind farms in agricultural zones.
Chaired by Mayor Jim Vanden Hoek the meeting was attended by all members of Council, CAO Terry O’Shea, township planners Clark Consulting Services Bob Clark, Jennifer Current and Margaret Gordon, and representatives from CREC including IBI consultant John Ulianna, Jeff Carnegie, and John Forrester.
“This meeting is for council to hear comments and concerns from the community for the debate council will have before it makes a final decision for the municipality. There is no resolution to approve or reject the application at this time,” the Mayor said.
Bob Clark reviewed the Planning process required for the Official Plan amendment, while Jennifer Current followed with an outline of what has transpired since the township received the application from CREC who are now completing the Environmental Screening report process for the wind turbine project. The Zoning bylaw amendment will be dealt with at a future Public meeting. A site plan agreement process is also undertaken by the applicant.
Clark Consulting Services has recommended that the differentiation between rural and agricultural lands in the Official Plan be eliminated for the whole township (not just lands optioned by CREC) and the need for a site specific Zoning bylaw be retained. The blanket approach recognizes the possibility of further requests for wind turbines on the islands. John Ulianna offered some comments on behalf of CREC and the benefits of clean renewable energy to the prosperity of the island.
What followed was a comment and question period, that ranged from the expected to the unexpected. All comments were heard. All questions with few exceptions were answered or deferred for further information.
Questions were posed regarding noise; danger to bird and butterfly migratory pathways; local road maintenance during and after construction; heavy traffic (trucks, cars, bicycles); resident transportation problems; over use of the ferry; possibility of more wind towers; height & size of towers; what benefit there is for all islanders; tax agreements with developer; property values; set backs, site plans; tower lighting , loss of night skies; what benefits to eco tourism; disposal of waste during construction; permanent job creation; how much per kilowatt will CREC receive; and more.
A number of residents spoke enthusiastically about the project, and their desire to see it move forward based on there own studies of many of the issues. Indeed some of them had visited Europe and were favourably impressed with the wind farms they had seen.
Generally many of the 80-90 attendees appeared satisfied with the answers they received from Bob Clark, CREC’s Jeff Carnegie and Mayor Vanden Hoek, and pleased with the information put forward. Residents were encouraged to submit written comments to the Wolfe Island Town Hall.
Residents are anxious for the next step when CREC calls a public meeting at which time they will finally see a site plan for the 86 wind towers slated for the island and the all important Environmental Screening Report. That site plan will answer many of thus far unanswered questions about set backs., distances from homes, noise etc.
Art in the Garden Tour Plans are well underway for Wolfe Island’s 3rd Annual Art in the Garden Tour to be held, rain or shine on Sunday, June 25th . The tour offers visitors an opportunity to experience the historic charm of Wolfe Island, to discover hidden gardens and the work of its many multi- talented artists, who will present works in different mediums including watercolour, acrylic and oil painting, pottery and ceramics, wood and stone carving, glass and metal sculpture displayed in those gardens.
Buses will be on hand to greet ticket holding guests coming by ferry from Cape Vincent, NY and Kingston to the island and the gardens shown for the first time on this tour. Guides will provide a running commentary about the history and lore of the islands. Lunch will be provided by the W. I. Volunteer Fire Fighters at the Sanford home by the water where guests can also enjoy the island’s peace and charm. The Art in the Garden Tour is sponsored by the Wolfe Island Business & Tourism Association. For tickets ($25.00) and information call 613- 385-1551 or email@example.com.
Catholic School Debate: The Director of Education Michael Schmitt, staff and members of the Board of the Algonquin Lakeshore Catholic District School Board met with parents and friends of Sacred Heart school, presented a capital plan, provided a staffing update and announced that in spite of a general decline in numbers within the board and province, Sacred Heart is a viable Catholic school with stable enrolment and will remain open with 3 teachers and a full time teaching vice principal. The Ryan Centre will remain open but the board is looking at different staffing and operating models.
Two organizational charts were presented , one continuing the present arrangement with Limestone District School Board (all JK & SK at Marysville), and the other with the return of the JK and SK children to Sacred Heart. The board, looking for input to determine which way to proceed, received comments for and against change. They were also asked to keep Adam Geris grade 7-8 teacher on staff.
The board will look into the arrangement they presently have with the Public School Board and the request by some parents that Jr.& Sr. Kindergarten return to Sacred Heart School.
* Wolfe Island Community Medical Clinic Annual Meeting Wed. June 14th at 7:30 pm at the Medical Clinic
* Rev. Raymond de Souza has been appointed pastor at W.I’s Sacred Heart of Mary Church. * Rev. Shawn Hughes appointed to Gananoque and St. Philomena , Howe Island.
* Congratulations to Des Pitts on his induction into the Queen’s Sports Hall of Fame.
*People are out walking and running in preparation for the W.I. Classic Road Race July 2nd. To register on line: www.events.runningroom.com