Captain RF (Richard Francis) Fawcett was the first islander my husband and I met on the very day we moved to Wolfe Island 22 years ago, a cold November day. It was 'RF' who told us about the tightly knit community we had come to, about loyalty among families, and about the island way of life we had chosen to be come part of. And about the ferry. ” It is a way of life. You will either love it or hate it,” he said. (He also got our moving truck unstuck after unloading-he was that kind of neighbour!)
Throughout the ensuing years, it was he who told us about the people and life on the island in the old days, his time on council, growing up on the farm, his dedication to the Anglican Church community, fishing- commercial and otherwise, and of course the development of the Wolfe Island ferry service, where he served as 'Captain' for more than 30 years (retiring in 1988),
RF shared the home he made with his wife and best friend Marette (LaRush) and his family with us, with everyone in fact. Their door was always open, the kitchen table beckoning and the coffee at the hand. And of course the history and stories of the island he loved so much, flowed…
Captain RF Fawcett died (Dec.9th in his 90th year) quietly while waiting with Marette by his side in the line-up for the ferry. Leaving to mourn are their children, Barry, Heather, Kelly, Semoine, Annette and their families, grandchildren and great grand children..
At this moment the flags on the Wolfe Islander III and at the terminal are at half mast, acknowledging his passing. “The signal pennants up forward read: Romeo, Foxtrot, 2nd Repeater for: R F F,” according to Brian Johnson, Senior Captain on the Wolfe Islander, who speaks often of RF's influence in shaping his career. “It is the end of an era,” he said. “But, oh the memories, RF let me steer the older boat when I was about five years old, I wouldn't let go of the wheel! I guess I never did! I will miss him -“
Most recently RF's picture graced the front page of the WI Historical Society's newsletter honouring his service on the ferry and to the community. One of Captain Fawcett's last public appearances was at the island's annual November 11th Remembrance Day Service, where he placed a wreath together with fellow Canadian veteran of the Merchant Navy WWII, Vernal Yott. The funeral service was held at Trinity Anglican Church. RIP.
Afghanistan has been battleground at the crossroads of Asia since the time of Alexander the Great (700BC) according to Wolfe Island resident, a member of Canada's military, Colonel David Patterson. “As a society Afghans are stressed out,” he said likening their state to post traumatic stress disorder.
Patterson recently returned from a year-long tour serving with the (US) 10th Mountain Division (Fort Drum N.Y.) in Southern Afghanistan where he was the Executive Officer to the Deputy Commanding General for Operations at Regional Headquarters, and also Chief of Operations and intelligence and Senior Mentor at the Operations Coordination Centre. He was speaking at a meeting of the WI Historical Society where he presented first a brief history of Afghanistan governance, noting that Afghanistan has had many governments and regimes. They knew a stable period between 1940 -1970's, a communist led revolution in 1978 followed by the Soviet invasion in 1979. Following the departure of the Russians in 1989 , a seven year civil war ensued which eventually led to the rise of the Taliban, who eventually became more severe in their interpretation of Islam. “
“So for 33 years and counting, Afghanistan has basically been at war which really colours peoples' perceptions,” Patterson said. ” But it was the 9/11 attacks on the United States which led to the initial 2001 US led invasion of Afghanistan in which Canada participated, and the Taliban's initial defeat setting the stage for a new government.” (The city of Kabul was ISAP and NATO territory while the rest was US). ” However the Iraq invasion in 2003 took away resources from Afghanistan which led to the Taliban reasserting their control particularly in the south in 2005, ” he said adding that between 2003-06 NATO began to expand its influence over the mission and Canada returned with larger force always with a development focus (schools,infrastructure, roads)and of building the Afghan army and Police force. It was in 2009 that US President Obama announced a surge of troops by 30,000, from 70,000 to 100,000 into the south. While the Canadian mission has come to an end, Canada still has some troops in a training role with a focus on development. The Afghan army (12,000) and Police force (9,000) continues to grow in Kandahar province.
Colonel Patterson went on to describe his personal experiences, the people he has met, their love of family, their formality until they know you, their love of gardens, (turning in one instance what was a soccer field into a garden), picnics ( “roads make it possible now”), love of clothes and celebrating feasts. He spoke also of the challenges facing Afghans, literacy, health care, dependency, education, poppy growth or not, who to trust and the practicalities of life housing, transportation, getting produce, cantaloupes, pomegranates, (“best in the world”), to public markets, developing mineral resources, etc. He spoke also of Pakistan and of the Afghan's distrust.
David noted the return of elders into the communities. He spoke of his job including his relations with the Afghan army and police, their increasing numbers, training and housing them. He noted their improving ability to take the lead in many situations but cited literacy (“task to get them to grade 3”), and money drying up as an ongoing problem.
“Afghanistan is a frontier at a crossroads,” Colonel Patterson said. “Between now and 2014 Afghan's must generate forces, and take more control. The next year 2012 is critical for them. As American and NATO troupes leave we must be able to reassure them that there will continue to be support across the region,” he concluded A lively question period followed. Colonel Patterson has now been assigned to 1 Division at CFB Kingston.
Around Town: A great Christmas Tree has been erected in the Town Square on Wolfe Island. The tree was a gift from resident Theresa James and was cut and put in place by Roly Jensen.
Coming Events: * Smoking Cessation WI Community Medical Clinic Thursday December 8th, 7PM Speaker: Vince Martin (Kingston Family Health Team) *The W.I. Santa Claus Parade Saturday, Dec. 10th leaves from the Fire Hall at 3:30 pm. Festivities following the parade take place at the Opening of the RINK at the Community Centre grounds. * Frontenac Island Council meets on Howe Island, Monday, Dec. 12, 2011 at 6:30 pm
Finally, after years of trying to have it happen, NineMile Point Road on Simcoe Island will be plowed by the township in its entirety, including the last 1.3 km to Carol Leonard's house. The issue was dealt with in a matter of minutes at the Frontenac Islands November council meeting when, for the 12th time, Simcoe Island resident Carol Leonard requested that the township road be plowed to the end where her home is located. The township stopped plowing the entire length of Nine Mile Point Road in 2003, when the road designation was changed to 'Limited Service' on township maps, resulting in the plow turning around 1.3 km away from her home.
Leonard has paid on average $600 per year to have plowed and it is done by the same person under contract to plow the road for the township. “Snow plowing on a township road is deemed a normal service providing emergency protection for residents. Denial of this service by the previous council seems highly irregular.” Leonard said at the meeting.
Mayor Doyle commented that he had visited Simcoe during the summer, noting that the road is in very good condition and provides year round access for full time as well as seasonal residents including Leonard. ” I can't see why it should not be plowed to the end costing less all round. Doyle said the Nine Mile Point road in the Official Plan does not show the last 1.3 km with a different designation. Council approved the snow removal request to the road's West end.
In a second situation pertaining to Simcoe Island, Ed Griffiths, initially on the agenda to talk bubble systems at the island's ferry docks and preferably all the way, spoke first about low water levels affecting the loading and unloading of the ferry particularly on the Simcoe side.
“I can no longer put a car on the ferry nor can many other people with low cars . If the water gets any lower I won't be able to get my van off to get to my house. I'm afraid at my age I can't walk it nor can my wife. I'm hoping you will take a look at it to see what can be done to the dock in the short term. In the long term it will be a big job”. Griffith renewed a request that Council continue to pursue a bubble system for the Simcoe Island Ferry, referring to $50,000 he heard during the election was set aside by the township for that purpose. Griffith talked about crossing on the ice when the ferry shuts down and the difficulties that arise with milder winters and changing ice conditions “There isn't nearly the ice, it sank, and there was 8 inches of water and my wife and I could not walk across. Ten years ago we could still do it . But now we can't. My wife and I will not be able to stay in our home unless you get it fixed. The ice really isn't safe, and sooner or later I feel someone is going to go through and drown,”
Mayor Doyle noted need for more bubble system around the docks at least to help the ferry get moving.
” We will follow up with MTO for the longer line refused last year.” Doyler added that the Simcoe situation and provincial funding requests had been outlined for MP Ted Hsu who was also asked about availability of federal funding .
“I have lived there over 50 years and the last two years ice conditions are the worst I have ever seen.” Griffith said. Roads Superintendent Leo Greenwood will inspect the Simcoe Island ferry dock to determine what repairs or changes can happen in the short term to improve vehicle boarding conditions.
In other business:
- Before approving the Official Plan council took note of some changes including reduction of Village of Marysville area (diected by Municipal Affairs & Housing), Fuller and Driscoll Roads as Local Roads on Howe, all of Frontenac Islands included as a Community Improvement Area. Deputy Mayor Jones questioned “a proposed” bridge location designation which will be change instead to “potential”.
- Prior to approval of the payment voucher it was explained that any payment for the Assessment Review Board Hearing concerning the Wind Plant are listed under Wind Plant not administration.. It was also noted that repairs to the sand dome are complete.
A Dreams for Kids Bike Race (Can. Sunshine Foundation from the WI Community Centre Grounds May 5, 2012. Details to be worked through with the Community Centre Board. Concerns raised by Councillor Springay about younger children cycling.- Howe Island resident Dave Munroe raised issues about the quarry in a letter to MNR that affect many residents. Council will be in touch with MNR on behalf of constituents.
- A request for a 4:45 a.m. summer ferry trip from Wolfe Island and a bubble system at Simcoe Island will go to the Minister of Transportation Bob Chiarelli, with a further letter directly to MTO's Kathy Moore, Stewart Jones and MPP John Gerretsen.
- A budget amendment will be made in December that $200,000 in Wind Plant Amenities Agreement funds will go into a reserve for use as an Investment Fund for the WI district.
- Council will create a reserve fund for any donations received for the WI Historical Society and Old House Museum. - The Volunteer of the Year Award will go to WI Hockeyville Committee at January's meeting .
- Councillor Grant said islanders are looking for a heating system in the Townships Community Hall. Councillor Springgay noted new budget year coming up.
- Councillors provided with a draft of the Procedural By-Law, suggested a number of word changes and additions.
- A draft bylaw regarding fences was distributed for comments before December meeting.,
- Three quotes rather than 3 tenders for purchasing a township truck deemed acceptable approach.
- CAO O'Shea in receipt of email from MP Hsu with regard to $5.50 entry fee (by boat) into USA suggesting at this time if trip is under 300 miles there is no charge. Council meets next: Monday Dec. 12th 6:30 pm. Howe Island.
Please note the Nov. 26th Turkey Supper at St. Margaret's Hall HAS BEEN CANCELLED until further notice.
A Pumpkin Festival has been an annual Wolfe Island community event for 12 years. It has always involved local farmers, vegetable growers, pie makers, the school children, young people, local businesses and a participating community who come to enjoy the fun. It includes contests that measure size, weight colour shape , best decorated and best carved pumpkins, from a variety of age groups and families. Pie eating contests, pie judging , baking and food tables, a barbecue,' Whites Wagon' rides and in the past a wide variety of children's activities are all part of the festival. And…it is held at the Wolfe Island Town Square in the Township Community Hall, a building that like the WI Town Hall, has a long history as the hub of the community and where it may be safely said island history was made.
For the last two years the Community Hall has been without a furnace, or heat from any source, and according to a study, also requires an electrical power upgrade. Even a request to use the Summer Crafts shop (a separate part of the building) for a fall/winter quilting program could not be accommodated.
So the township building has essentially been rented through the summer by Stone Heron Gallery owner and operator Pat Sanford (who undertook interior painting, ramp, window repairs etc.) and the remainder of the year is too cold for meetings or public gatherings etc. The community has continued to use the building on Remembrance Day, during Pumpkin Fest, and Christmas Tree lighting occasions…..with event organizers between shivers, showing a quiet anger and frustration with the situation on each occasion.
And in spite of the cold, Pumpkin Fest did happen with winners ( and prizes) in every category thanks to Heather Posthumus, Pumpkin Fest coordinator. Festival Winners were for: Heaviest pumpkin:1.Bill and Cathy Allen, 2.John Posthumus, Circumference:1.John Posthumus. Best Colour:1.Erica Posthumus, 2.Sierra Panetta. Best Shape: 1.Jacob Panetta, 2.Allison Posthumus. Best Carved: Family 1.Pyke Family, 2. Basil Woodfine, 3.Sarah Doyle, Best Carved:JK - 2: 1.Sonika Woodfine. Grades 3 - 5 1. Azzurah Woodfine 2. Emma Tohman 3. Sara Tohman. Grades 6-8: 1. Cara Vingar, 2. 7/8 Class Marysville Public School. Best Decorated Family: 1.Sarah Posthumus. Best Decorated: JK - 2: 1.Victoria Lumb, 2.Skeet Leeman, 3.Aaron Leeman. Grades 3-5:1.Emma Mosier, 2. Shelby milikow/Anna Vingar, 3. Emily Thoman' Grades 6-8: 1. Derek Posthumus, 2. Audrey Creighton. Best Apple Pie winners : 1.Heather Posthumus, 2.Sandy McCready, 3.Maureen Bolton. Best Pumpkin Pie: 1.Toni Vingar, 2. Heather Posthumus, 3. Nicole Clark. Congratulations to All
Although a significant amount of money has gone toward the WI rink development, budget constraints resulting it seems from the costs of the major services (roads and the landfill site) as well as administration & the general costs of operating the township has led to little else happening. A township with miles of roads to maintain was made worse with the download of roads #95 & #96. Without the wind power money coming into the township, one can only speculate whether Wolfe Island might have gone broke just trying to maintain the roads.
Wolfe Island's many Community organizations support themselves for the most part through the efforts of volunteers. Community development on the other hand has come about through the fund raising efforts of the Wolfe Island Business and Tourism association ( for signage, info centre, public washrooms, village beautification, etc.) and the many successful grant applications made by them on behalf of the community.
Most recently through a network of the many island organizations including WIBTA, and with the sponsorship of the township, the Wolfe Island Network (WIN) for a Healthy Community was the recipient of a grant to pursue their common goal of promoting the health and well-being of Wolfe Islanders through projects focused on Islanders' health needs. Now not only does the Wolfe Island tax paying community need to have the Island's Community Hall fully usable once more, the WIN needs a functional community location to host many of the programs it plans to offer. Regardless of the cost, it is time for the Township to upgrade the historic WI Community Hall on behalf of the citizens on Wolfe Island.
Once again the small community of Wolfe Island gathered on Remembrance Day, not in front of a magnificent memorial, but in the Wolfe Island Town Square at the historic Town Hall . There stands a simple plaque dedicated by the residents of Wolfe Island, as a tribute “to the men and women of the community who answered the call of their country to help preserve the peace and freedom we now enjoy. Some made the supreme sacrifice. Others suffered from severe wounds and hardships. Still others continued to serve in Canada’s Forces and still do today,” the plaque says. And this year as the community gathered for an event uniquely there own, the significance of those words took on new meaning.
The names of islanders who lost their lives and all those who served Canada in war and in Peacekeeping, some present wearing their decorations, were read by Theresa Broeders and Diane Hawkins. Officer Cadet Adam Goddard played the Last Post and Reveille, and wreaths were laid by Frontenac Islands Mayor Denis Doyle, Merchant Navy Veterans R.F. Fawcett and Vern Yott, Peacekeeping Veteran Major Keith Walton, the island’s Women’s Institutes, Historical Society, Emergency Services, and the school children, all assisted by the cadets.
It was at this moment when three Wolfe Islanders, active members of the military and Veterans of Canada’s participation in the Afghan Conflict, stepped forward together to lay a wreath that the significance of the wars of the past to preserve our freedom took a new meaning. A new tier of young Veterans standing with those who grow old, together remembering how fragile the peace those who went before sought to preserve. They were Corporal Simon Berry, Colonel David Patterson and Master Corporal Jamie Sanford.
There were poems of remembrance by children from both island schools, Major Keith Walton, Trudy de Ruiter, and an RMC cadet. Cadets in their brilliant red joined Wolfe Island this year in greater numbers. There were prayers and readings by Pastor Erin Burns of WI United. Fr. Ray de Souza Pastor of Sacred Heart of Mary, offered a biblical reflection “on the 11’s , of our remembrance” while Rev. Gerry Moore of Trinity Anglican gave the closing prayer and blessing. And once again, after a year’s absence serving in Afghanistan, island resident Colonel David Patterson offered a military perspective of Irwin Kelly, born on Wolfe Island in 1897 who died at the age of 21 at the Hindenburg line during the last days of World War 1.
Special thanks to Ken Keyes who led the singing of O Canada, CAO O’Shea and all event organizers, in particular this year, the WI Historical Society. A reception followed in the Community Hall.
Kingston and the Islands MP Hsu visits Wolfe Island
Ted Hsu, MP for Kingston and the Islands was warmly welcomed by Mayor Denis Doyle, members of council and the public who gathered at the Wolfe Island Town Hall. The special Frontenac Islands council meeting was initiated by MP Hsu who wanted to determine how he might be of assistance to council with their federal government related areas of concern. Hsu expressed his pleasure at returning to the island for the first time in his capacity as MP.
At the outset Mayor Doyle outlined areas that could benefit from MP Hsu’s involvement and/or intervention. He also was open to comments from the public.
Areas of concern included: 1. Frontenac Islands need for increased Federal Government funding and Gas Tax programs for aging infrastructure and road maintenance. To which MP Hsu noted discussions of possible funding increase to offset inflation. 2. Federal Government support for the better management of Lake Ontario water levels (important for ferries) as well as for fishing /wildlife/tourism/ boating. 3. Horne’s ferry, an International link to the US is important to business/tourism for Kingston and Wolfe Island. Horne’s Ferry operator Bruce Horne outlined problems with over aggressive customs officers and the resulting negative effects to business. A further cause for concern is the proposal to charge a $5.50 entry fee to each person entering the United States ‘by boat.’ Metal Craft Marine with facilities in Kingston, Wolfe Island and Cape Vincent, NY is looking for a designation of the Horne’s Point and Cape Vincent, NY terminals as Commercial Ports of Entry . Hsu will continue to discuss the entry fee proposal with US officials. He has been in touch with Minister of Foreign Affairs John Baird. “This needs some publicity ,” Hsu said.
4.Continuous flashing red lights on the WI wind towers to alert planes concern the whole region including Cape Vincent. Mayor Doyle noted a new technology in lights activated only when a plane approaches is available. A resident suggested if the island lights can’t be changed, new projects throughout the province should be notified of the new technology. There was a suggestion that all off shore wind projects be cancelled to protect National Parks. MP Hsu will be in touch with the Ministry of Transport re lighting.
5. With regard to the preservation of Simcoe Island’s Nine Mile Point Lighthouse, Hsu indicated that a proposal may be coming to save all pre-Confederation lighthouses. (There were lookouts on Simcoe during the “War of 1812.” ) Yelda Miedema who is spearheading a proposal to save the lighthouse perhaps through Parks Canada, was invited to stay in touch with MP Hsu.
6. Important to the region including Frontenac Islands is the support of DND’s CFB Kingston. MP Hsu will be meeting with DND Kingston to discuss what cuts are expected.
Further local issues needing support include :*a village water & sewage system; water flow through Island canal ; bubble systems to keep Simcoe & Howe cable ferries winter operational; *support for WI’s ice pad, biomass / biogas production; funding for home/ municipal energy improvements and continued availability of the summer jobs program.
Judy Greenwood Speers commented that as the population ages, the availability of potable (clean-safe) water is a requisite for keeping the frail elderly accommodated on the island . Yelda Miedema spoke of the importance of bubble systems noting the difficulties (walking the ice, isolation, medical emergencies) faced by residents living alone on Simcoe. Councillor Norris wants HST removed from home heating oil. MP Hsu listened to it all, took notes and promised to assist in whatever ways he can. “I look forward to coming again. Keep in touch,” he said as he left the building.
In other business: 1. The Frontenac Islands consolidated Financial statements were presented KPMG’s Vicki Leakey. 2. Glenn Tunnock of Tunnock Consulting Ltd. presented the final draft of the Official Plan clarifying a number of word changes, village boundaries etc. It will receive approval at the regular monthly council meeting. Howe Island Ratepayers Association representative Brian Humphries reminded council of HIRA’s concerns regarding growth management.”We are not looking for a freeze on development only that you recognize the limitations of the island’s ferry service and act accordingly,” he said. 3. Council members had in their hands and interim report of financials actual to the budget, and finally Deputy Mayor Jones thanked CAO O’Shea and Roads Superintendant Leo Greenwood for questions answered and the more detailed draft council minutes he had been looking for. “I appreciate your embracing the concept,” he said. Council meets again Nov.14th.
Island residents are watching water levels and hoping against hope that it gets no lower than it is right now, particularly those living in Marysville and to the west. Inevitably lower water levels mean that the Wolfe Islander III will leave the MTO dock in Marysville and move to the MTO dock at Dawson Point until next spring. (Although over the years, the ferry has sometimes remained in the village through the fall and winter months.)
When the ferry moves out of the Marysville, village residents suffer as do village businesses. Village residents, particularly those without any other form of transportation who must find ways of getting to the winter dock, and businesses, because of the loss of traffic in and to the village.
However it is important to also note that the slow-down begins not just with the re-location of the ferry but naturally after the Thanksgiving weekend marked by the departure of most summer residents, a slow down in visitors, the closure of a WI Bakery's summer location in Marysville (except on special occasions) as well as the Island Grill. The Horne's ferry goes out of service after Oct. 26th until May 1, 2012 although for us and Kingston, it is our international link. In fact, with the new Metal Craft Marine USA location opening at Cape Vincent, Metal Craft has asked that Cape Vincent be declared a Commercial Port of Entry.
(To be perfectly fair however, there are many residents living east of Marysville who welcome the move to the winter dock for many reasons, primarily shorter driving and wait times.) So for the present it is a waiting game. Will the Wolfe Islander III stay where it is? Will it move? If so, when? But whatever happens, life on the island goes on.
- For instance, the Township of Frontenac Islands has announced that a “Special” meeting will be held on Tuesday, Nov.8th at 1pm at the WI Town Hall with a rather interesting agenda billed first as a a 'meet and greet' session with Ted Hsu, MP for Kingston & the Islands. MP Hsu has indicated his desire to meet, discuss and work together with Municipal Council to address federal requirements and concerns the township now has, and those that may come up in the future. The 2nd agenda item will be the final presentation of the updated “Official Plan” by Planner Glen Tunnock before a final vote on the plan is taken at the regular November meeting of Council Monday Nov. 14th .
“It would be good to have people out, and hopefully we have enough chairs for those who do come, ” Mayor Doyle commented. “It is difficult during the day but with the double draw of our MP Ted Shu and the final presentation of the Official Plan people have been waiting for, we might just get a big crowd.”
Council will prepare a list of priority items for discussion, and question the availability of Federal Infrastructure Funding for some of them. At the same meeting Council also plans to deal with minor budget updates related to roads and begin discussions on the Procedural By-law Update.
- Congratulations to Eldon and Sandra McCready, owners of the Wolfe Island Riverfront Golf Course who were the recipients of a Vision Award for the Township of Frontenac Islands from the Land O'Lakes Tourist Association (LOLTA). LOLTA celebrates new innovative businesses in the nine municipalities where they operate, with their biennial Vision Awards. This year, 2011 marks the fourth time awards have been presented. Winners are selected from the nominations received from the nine municipalities. Mayor Doyle was on hand for the presentation.
*Award-winning Canadian journalist, Kim Lunman of Brockville, whose company Thousand Islands Ink produces and distributes Cottage Life magazine, was the guest speaker at the Wolfe Island Historical Society's AGM. Her topic, “Confessions of an Island Crasher.” Lunman has taken pictures, written about and produced brilliant full colour publications highlighting many of the islands within the Thousand Islands. She has visited well known islands, some islands not so familiar, others deserted with historic empty buildings and exciting stories to uncover. Lunman's interesting presentation encouraged the ongoing efforts of the Historical Society to uncover Wolfe Island stories. The newly named executive and board of the WI Historical includes: President Denis Chercuitte, Vice President Hank Connell, Secretary Judy Greenwood Speers, Past President/Treasurer Brian MacDonald, Brian Johnson, Theresa Broeders, John O'Shea.
- The Wednesday “Lunch Bunch Trip Around the World Series” organized as part of the “Wolfe Island Network (WIN) for a Healthy Community” project and held at the United Church Hall had some 2 dozen folks out to hear about David Field's long trip to India, view his pictures and listen to his informative and sometimes hilarious stories. The “Lunch Bunch” Series meets each Wednesday at 11:30 until December 14. Bring a sandwich and a friend. Next up Alaska and then Scotland'. * Quilting Classes (another WIN initiative) have begun. Ten students are being mentored by experienced island quilters as they make their first quilted project. For more information contact: Linda Van Hal 613-385-1521
1. Pumpkin Fest, Sat. Oct. 29th at the Wolfe Island Town Square Registration @ 11 a.m. Winners announced @ 1p.m. For more info: www.wolfeisland.com
2. A Turkey Supper & Craft Sale will be held at the Wolfe Island United Church Hall, Sat., Oct. 29th . Doors Open at 4:30 p.m.
3. Spiritual Heart Yoga and Meditation Retreat , Oct. 28-30th For further information and to register for all programs at Shanti Retreat on Wolfe Island, 613-385-9912 email@example.com www.shantiretreat.ca
4. A 'Flu Shot Clinic', open to all residents of Wolfe & Simcoe Islands will be held on Saturday, Nov. 5th, from 9 a.m. to 12 noon at the Wolfe Island Community Medical Clinic, 102 Hwy. 95. Bring your valid Health Card.
Frontenac Islands Council authorized the signing of an agreement with Frontenac County for the provision of Planning Services at their September meeting. A further resolution requiring applicants to pre-consult (at no extra cost)with the municipality before submitting a planning application was also accepted. Peter Young, Frontenac County Community Planner and Marian Vanbruinessen, Frontenac County Treasurer, were present to discuss the County proposal. “This agreement will allow more direct contact with the Planning Services,” Mayor Doyle commented. (Deputy Clerk/ Treasurer Carol Dwyre is the township's Planning Co-ordinator). The agreement will come into effect October 1st. “Sounds to me like a win-win all the way around,” to Deputy Mayor Jones added.
- Paul Hogan, Chairman of Wolfe Island's Community Centre Board presented an 'up-date' on the installation of the refrigeration unit for the island's NHL sized rink which has been installed in the nearly completed building beside the rink. The building was left open at one end to accommodate the unit and to complete interior work, insulation, connecting pipe, etc. (Bringing water and power to the unit, while ongoing, will still take some time.) A CIMCO engineer will set up the low maintenance unit which they will also service, according to Hogan and a CIMCO representative will also come to teach a number of people (4-6) how to use the equipment and what to do in case of an emergency. “It's a matter of pushing buttons most of the time ,” he said. The work will be completed in 2-3 weeks. The Community Centre Board is a sub- committee of Council and operates the Community Centre grounds located at the south side of Marysville on Wolfe Island.
- Rebecca and Mike Kinney, Anne Prichard, FCFDC, and Linda Thomas, WIBTA president were present to discuss a request to make an application for a grant for accessible washrooms for the Community Hall. The Kinney's who have operated a theatre in Sackets Harbour indicated their interest in establishing themselves on Wolfe Island and opening a theatre possibly in the Community Hall. They plan to submit a theatre proposal at a later date and indicated that Pat Sanford who operates the Stone Heron Gallery supports the idea. The Wolfe Island Business & Tourism Association will submit an application to meet a early deadline on behalf of the Township to Human Resources and Skills Development Canada for an accessibility grant for the Wolfe Island Community Hall.
*Road Speed bylaw: “I have heard many complaints about speeding in the village and a change is in order,” Mayor Doyle said. While it is costly to bring in the police to deal with speeding issues Council passed a resolution to reduce the speed on the Main Street of Marysville from 50 km to 40 km per hour. “Speed limits are within our realm to change,” Deputy Mayor Jones added. “On Howe Island some residents are saying 80 km (virtually unenforced)is too fast and I totally agree.”
*Payment Voucher: Councillor Springgay had concerns that road work going way over budget on both Howe and Wolfe. “We did a lot of work on this during budget deliberations and it shouldn't happen.” It was suggested that no more overtime be authorized.
“It is all about process,” Dep. Mayor Jones said renewing his complaint about an overstock of gravel and an overpayment ($5000) for 10 km of road on Howe. “If it wasn't the roundup of the work, I would be complaining too.”Councillor Norris added.
*Priority Boarding: Council will ask the Ministry of Transportation to continue to grant priority boarding on the ferry for agricultural commodities as it has since 2009 as well as for a complete list of all who presently receives priority to board the ferry. At the same time Councillor Springgay said that she has been receiving complaints about the 'Septic Solutions' truck receiving priority boarding and not being there the required 20 minutes before the ferry leaves and having priority on the return trip from the city. (Septic Solutions makes between 3-4 trips a day during the summer season and services the WI Information Centre which offers the township's only directly supported public washroom.) Priority Boarding will also be an October agenda item.
- WI Island resident Linda Van Hal asked to use Craft room in Community Hall to offer classes. Wants to use portable generator to heat. Options to be considered.
- Council proclaimed Wednesday October 26, 2011, as Child Care Worker & Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day.
UNDER NEW BUSINESS
There is much discussion regarding an application for a demolition and building permit request where there already is and has been for some time a trailer. The trailer issue is on the minds of all members of council with Councillor Norris reminding members that Howe Island has Trailer bylaw which works well while Wolfe Island does not. Property Standards was also part of discussion. Building permits do have a time frame (as do demolition permits) but are renewable and will be discussed with Building Inspector. All soon to be on Council agenda.
Again brought forward by Deputy Mayor Jones, the question of Municipal Insurance took up a portion of the meeting (all to be reviewed , also with County before next budget), also signage bylaws, sign removal from township sign posts and Line painting on Howe (ferry to ferry) Cost of latter to be looked at now.
Councillor Springgay concerned about garbage not picked up during music festival said person supposed to do the job is doing a second job that took priority .”We need to get back key to Recycling Centre from him, issue no more keys, and hire someone to do the job during “dump open” hours.
Councillor Grant was concerned with WI library painting costs ($6000) Staff to check.
The meeting ended following an in camera session.
Congratulations to Dave Woodman and Hunter Chown did very well at the International Plowing Match. For coming events Check Out: www.wolfeisland.com
Due to the Thanksgiving Holiday, Frontenac Island Council meets next Tuesday Oct. 11th on Howe Island at 6:30 pm
The Wolfe Island wind towers provided a perfect backdrop for Celebrate New Energy on Wolfe Island, offered as a first by (NEP) the New Energy Project. NEP, the initiative of local government- and institutions in Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington is all about sustainability and offering opportunities to showcase the many new energy opportunities and resources that are available in the region.
“I received a lot of support on Wolfe Island and from Kingston in organizing this (all ages) event,” said NEP project manager Ruth Noordegraaf. ” So many people were more than willing to help and to participate, and I am delighted to see green energy business, green energy kids activities, arts, music come together here today,” she said. “My mandate as the new energy project manager was first of all to know what is going on in the area and in the city, and secondly to see what challenges they have, and how they want to develop in the region. I know all the people who are here. While not a huge event I believe it offers a showcase of new energy initiatives and happenings and is in keeping with NEP's goal to combine economic development information with community awareness.
John Gerretsen, running for re-election for the Liberal Party, and Robert Kiley, a first time candidate running for the Green Party attended the event. Accompanied by Frontenac Island's Mayor Denis Doyle, they visited every area on the site and were enthusiastic in their observations. Gerretsen also took a turn at flying a Trans Alta kite- successfully. Later they joined project manager Ruth Noordegraaf who invited them to cut the cakes celebrating the occasion.
While the weather did not fully cooperate, none the less people came to visit the many different sites providing information and insight into their energy initiatives, technologies and products set up at Wolfe Island's Community Centre grounds in Marysville.
Trans Alta was there offering information about wind power as well as kites for kids ( and adults too) as was OSTAR and SWITCH, Rietzel Brothers Insulation, retro fit products, Tackaberry, CEMENT 2020, New Leaf Homes-Cansolair Solar Heating, Cycle Kingston, VieSSman, Village Water, L&M Solar, among others. There were books and literature on the subject of sustainability and all that entails, as well as children's art activities and music offered by Chris Morris and Justin Bird. And last, but not least, Metal Craft Marine had two “green” boats on display in the water at the Village dock, a 'Kingston 23 Electric Hybrid' and an ” Atkin's Dory Biodiesel', converted to run on vegetable oil.
“This project, Celebrate New Energy, will certainly build on the region's identity as a sustainable and focused green energy community,” NEP chair Anne-Marie Young, commented at the end of the day. Young is Frontenac County's Manager of Economic Development. For more information: www.newenergyprogram.ca
It was a perfect day for the 55th annual WI Plowing Match held on Wolfe Island. Light winds, sunshine, and soft, moist earth to turn. The Plowing match held this year at the Henry Posthumus-Janine Handforth Morningsight Farms provided great lands for the more than 40 participants, men and women, many arriving off the early morning ferry to show off their skills whether with horses and antique tractors or with more modern equipment. The judges Ross MacGillivray from Dalkeith and Robert Timbers, Uxbridge were ready and eager to begin.
The good weather and blue skies brought out many visitors throughout the day, some to re-acquaint with friends, others keenly interested in the art of turning the furrow and still others interested in seeing the agricultural displays (antique combine etc.) and other exhibits, having a bite to eat and enjoying the warmth of the sun and the beginnings of the changing colours of fall under the wind towers located in the distant fields. Unfortunately, university commitments prevented Lenay Repath W.I. Queen of the Furrow from attending.
W.I's Denis Mosier, an experienced ploughman (national & international judge), was there with his four grandsons Hunter, Cowl, Reed & Orrie Chown with only three competing in this year match. Hunter will also be competing in the International Ploughing match .
” There is a great ploughing history on Wolfe Island, said Everet Hogan long time member of the Wolfe Island Plowmen's Association. “At one time the ploughing match gave farmers an opportunity to show their skills handling their horses and a walking ploughs Now there are many other classes and judges look at depth and consistency of the furrows and straight lines.” A number of new farmers tried their hand at competitive ploughing.
Many participants settled down right where they were in the fields to enjoy lunch provided by KFC (Nat, Kate & Paul Lollar). Tri Heat provided fuel for participants. Twenty-five businesses and individuals sponsored the event. Trophies were donated by businesses, industries & the W.I. Plowmen's Association. Trophies and awards were presented at the end of the day. Unfortunately due to heavy ferry traffic, visiting plough people attempting to get home with their horses and equipment experienced a very long wait.
The Wolfe Island Plowmen's Association was formed in 1956. (Competitions have been held since 1947.) The Association's president is Jason Pyke, (www.pykeviewmeadows.com) Secretary: Wilma Sjonger.
2011 WOLFE ISLAND PLOWING MATCH RESULTS
CLASS 1 - HORSES
Terry Linton, 2. Marwin Antoine, 3. David Gamble
CLASS 1A - HORSES
1.Terry Phillips, 2. Elswood Gamble, 3. Kim Hadwen,
CLASS 2 - MOUNTED TRACTOR
(under 14) Hunter Chown,
CLASS 3 - TRACTOR - (under 18)
Jeremy Posthumus, 2. Derek Posthumus
CLASS 4 - TRACTOR 2-FURROW
1. Dick Posthumus
CLASS 5 - TRACTOR 2-FURROW- Visitors
1.Ron Stinson, 2. Jeff Dowall, 3. Allan Carkner, 4. George Burns
CLASS 6 - TRACTOR 3-FURROW
1.Garry Posthumus,2. Dan Berry, 3.Tom Berry, 4. Henry Posthumus
CLASS 7 - TRACTOR -4+ FURROWS
1.Dave Woodman, 2. Dwayne Woodman, 3.Jack Pyke,
CLASS 8 LADIES & QUEEN OF THE FURROW
1. Joyce Buckley,
CLASS 9 - ANTIQUES
Peter Myers, Craig Hulton, Ben Greenwood,,Jim Hulton, Marvin Dillon,
Ken Carkner, Russell Jones, Robert Dobma, Jack Hutchings, Jack Posthumus.
CLASS 10 NOVELTY & SPECIAL EQUIPMENT
1.Orie Chown, 2. Reed Chown
What an exciting day it was in Cape Vincent, NY, where Metal Craft Marine recently signed a 5-year lease with Anchor Marina, owned by Ron Trottier, to set up shop in one of two very large buildings located at the marina site. Metal Craft Marine US Inc. currently has facilities in Clayton, some 15 miles (25 kms) east, that they have outgrown. “We were looking for a larger & more suitable location in the Clayton area but didn't have any luck. We could not find suitable space on the water to launch our larger boats such as the Fire Storm 70 so here we are today, announcing our move from Clayton to Cape Vincent,” said Tom Wroe, President and co-owner of Metal Craft Marine Inc., as he met me coming off Horne's ferry from Wolfe Island and through US customs to hear the announcement.
The open house event held inside the new facility, decorated with a Metal Craft Marine US Inc banner and Canadian and United States flags, was sponsored by the Cape Vincent Local Development Corporation and was attended by a formidable list of local and state officials. This included Metal Craft representatives and about 200 local residents, who see the arrival of Metal Craft Marine as a tremendous asset to their community, i.e. a new beginning.
Dignitaries welcoming Metal Craft into the Community included: New York State Senator Patty Ritchie, State Assembly Woman Addie J. Russell, and Jefferson County Legislator Michael E. Docteur. Local representatives included Glen Kennedy, Cape Vincent Local Development Corporation, Donald Alexander CEO Jefferson County Industrial Development Agency, Cape Vincent Mayor Tim Maloney, Town Supervisor Urban Hirschey, and Ron Trottier owner of Anchor Marina, all who in one way or another, are responsible for bringing Metal Craft Marine to Cape Vincent. “An historic moment that could spark all kinds of industry along the river, create jobs, draw people” was the common consensus, Also in attendance was Steve Haul, District Director for US Congressman Owens and Sue Merrill, North Country Director representing US Senator Gillibrand.
Tom Wroe, commenting on the growth of Metal Craft to the US, spoke of the constraints of the Jones Act which says that any vessel that trades in American waters, must be built, owned and crewed by Americans. “I am a boat builder and we are going to build boats here,” Wroe said. General Manager Michael Allen spoke of his pleasure at being part of Metal Craft, its strengths and innovation, while Bob Clark, Contracts Manager. noted that “every year during the recession Metal Craft sales went up, and with continuous improvement every boat that goes out of the shop is better than the last. Every person at Metal Craft never stops every single day to make our company better,” he said.
On a short tour of the Anchor Marina, prior to the announcement, Wroe pointed out the merits of the Anchor Marina location and the buildings “It has a deep water harbour, lots of space, lots of parking and a second very high building that we also hope to lease at a later date,” he said, noting that with the two buildings it would be a 15000 square foot facility. “But we will start with one. Right now we have a pair of 36 footers and a 24 ft. boat as well as a big order for Firestorm 70's (high speed aluminum fireboats) on the horizon,” he said. Once the building renovation is complete, Metal Craft expects to double the present US staff, hiring locally. “There were no grants to bring us here. It just all fits into our expansion plan, and Ron Trottier understood what we are trying to do “, Tom said, noting some of the new contracts include even larger/longer boats. “We expect to train and increase our staff here, and hire aluminum welders and other tradesmen.”
State Assembly Woman Addie J. Russell, who was watching one of the Metal Craft fire boats pull in from Kingston, commented that, “Kingston, Wolfe Island and Cape Vincent have a shared heritage of boating and of water. The guys on this side know how to build boats and the guys on that side know how to build boats because they all came from the same ancestry. It is such a high level of skill.” Russell has visited Metal Craft Kingston which presently has 87 employees.
At the same time, the short notice in the local paper announcing the expansion of Metal Craft Marine into Cape Vincent brought many people to the site, or maybe it was the very distinctive Metal Craft boats they saw and heard coming into Anchor Marina.
Made aware of the event, Kingston's Mayor Mark Gerretsen commented that Metal Craft Marine is a company that has experienced a lot of growth in Kingston and is dealing with customers world wide. “We are so fortunate to have them right here on our waterfront in the downtown. To understand that Metal Craft found it in their best interest to also set up a stone's throw away from where they are located on the Canadian side on the American side is great for the company and is great for Kingston,” the Mayor said . ” We exist so close together we will have to overcome challenges, if they exist, but it is not the first time that a company has set up on the other side of the border and, I am sure, that Metal Craft has deemed whatever the challenges, they will not hinder their opportunity to continue their good business practices on the other side of the border and bring them more competitive opportunities. I think the whole idea of this is fabulous,” Mayor Gerrestsen concluded.
MetalCraft Marine Corporation was formed in 1987, acquiring the Kingston Marina in 1996. It has locations in Clayton, NY, now also in Cape Vincent (Metal Craft Marine U.S. Inc..) and operates a Research and Development arm of Metal Craft Marine on Wolfe Island.
What's next for Wolfe Island - If access improves?
It has been quite a summer on Wolfe Island filled with any number of events, activities and opportunities for businesses, islanders and visitors. Tourism is up with interest developing in new sectors. Marysville seems to have the best ice cream and a bakery that draws a crowd. Cyclists came in droves most respecting the island roads. (Others, unfortunately, with little regard for traffic.) Kingston views it as a tourist destination with a free ferry, golf courses, Big Sandy Bay etc. Construction is up. The Metal Craft Marine Research & Development Centre is operating full steam at its secondary shop at the Old Kraft plant. Now, as we move into fall, Metal Craft and Trans Alta's wind towers continue to draw interest in broadening the island's green sector initiatives ……. farming, food production, solar panels, bio gas, conservation, etc. as well as green sector activities…walking tours, park and ride, cycling, sailing, rowing, paddling, farm visits, the ploughing match, Pumpkin Fest, special days at BIG Sandy Bay and the Corn Maze, as well as the ” Celebrate New Energy Event” coming up Sept. 24th organized through the New Energy project. ( The New Energy Project is an initiative spearheaded by the local governments in the Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox and Addington Area, St. Lawrence College, Queen's University and Private Companies. The project goal is to market and position Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox and Addington as the New Energy Region.) And on the island, you can see it happening.
After such a busy summer one would think the island activities would come to a halt…..Far from it. One only has to check the WIBTA web site to dispel that notion, (wolfeisland.com) Even Horne's ferry to Cape Vincent continues operational 'till late October.
If there downside to any of this, it is of course transportation to our isolated island community, which has been extremely busy with long wait times, and continues so particularly at peak periods. (Kingston seems so close but is very far away if you can't get on the ferry the island's only public mode of transportation.) None the less, visitors, whether walking, cycling or driving continue to come much to the delight of island businesses.
While islanders may find it very trying, perhaps they also experiencing a feeling of optimism in the wake of the coming election, that the URS Canada & MTO's Transportation Plan for a dual ferry system to Wolfe Island is available for a 30 day public review in a number of island and Kingston locations (library, municipal buildings and on line at www.WolfeIslandTransportationStudy.ca)
The transportation study plan recommends a new, more efficient (75 car) vessel between Barrack Street and Dawson Point (winter dock) year-round, and the Wolfe Islander III between Barrack Street and Marysville moving to Dawson Point through the winter. The plan also considers Travel Demand Management measures such as priority boarding for HOV/green vehicles, implementing a toll regime, dock improvements etc., and recommends a fixed link (bridge) feasibility study in the future. All good news, with some improvements already underway.
And speaking of MTO, a special thank-you is extended for once again employing a wonderful team of students for the summer. They helped make the ferry wait times not only bearable, but honest through the summer months. Honest by keeping the line tight, moving cars forward and always on the watch, as they rode their bikes or walked up and down to see that no car 'snuck' in and informing the Captain if someone did. No matter the weather, hot, wet or breezy, they were approachable, courteous, friendly and cheerful even if some people waiting in line were not friendly and often times angry at “not getting on.” So, to Melissa Lacompte (French /Math) at Laurentian University, Pamela Chesney (History/Sociology) Queens, Ethan Sorenson (Geography) Guelph U, Camille Prior (QECVI) Focus Program, Creative Arts, and Peter Johnson, (Environmental Studies) at Trent, thank you and good luck in your studies. We look forward to your return next spring.
Around Town: In September 2010, Frontenac Islands Council said yes to one big decision agreeing to go ahead with the refrigeration plant, and its required building, for the NHL sized rink on Wolfe Island. The rink was also supported in large measure by the township along with a large donation. It has been a long wait but the refrigeration plant has now arrived and is in its building, and the Hydro lines are also in place. While some rink board changes may be required to accommodate the location of the large blue plant, and the Zamboni, it looks like there will indeed be artificial ICE this winter. Frontenac County engineer, and project manager, Patrick Thompson was on hand during the installation. This year, perhaps, hockey enthusiastic Wolfe Island (note Hockeyville WI) will finally have the ice they need to play the game they love, all winter, and to accommodate others who might want to do the same….
2. The 2nd annual Howe Island Terry Fox Run is planned for Sunday September 18th. This year the island hopes to once again increase both participation and funds raised. For more information, call 613.542.1905.
3. Waldo, a metal crafted figure that identified Waldo's Way, a road on Wolfe Island, disappeared recently. A reward for “finding Waldo” went unheeded. Not to be daunted, using a 'cherry picker', a new replica of WALDO, (or perhaps his twin brother) has been mounted very high up on the road side post. Thanks Mike.
4. The Stone Heron Gallery has closed for the season. Many thanks to Pat Sanford for efforts in providing a place for artisans to show their works.
5. Great new yellow lines on our major roads, The better to see you with…..
6. Wolfe Island's Golf courses Alston Moor and Riverfront are featured in a TV golf series Highways to Fairways .The WI episode airs September17 & 18 on Shaw Direct and Bell ExpressVu . For more information : www.wolfeisland.com There is lots happening.
Frontenac Islands Councillor , Howe Island politician, Patrick Norris was recognized for his many years of service to Howe Island at the August meeting of Frontenac Islands Council. Deputy Mayor Jones in thanking council for their support of the Howe Island's 1st Proclamation Day event in July, brought to their attention that Councillor Norris was the recipient of the 1st Proclamation Day Award and called for council members “Hear,Hear” and a cheer. Norris, a lifetime resident of Howe Island has served the island, Frontenac County and now Frontenac Islands in one capacity or another for over 40 bringing wisdom and experience to the task. At the close of the meeting it was further decided by resolution that the Howe Island Ball Park located on Howe Island Drive be renamed the “Patrick Norris Community Park”.
In new business: 1. Ruth Noordegraaf, Project Manager of the New Energy Project , made a presentation to Council concerning a proposal for a Wolfe Island New Energy Festival, to highlight green energy, an initiative of Frontenac Islands and Kingston represented by KEDCO to market this area as New Energy.(wind, solar, biomass, sustainability, local food, community gardens etc.), “a broad spectrum.” In addressing council she said that private companies, local governments and institutions in Kingston and region have joined forces, as described in her handout, to showcase and to coordinate renewable energy resources and economic opportunities in the New Energy Project. She was in touch with Mayor Doyle to talk about the organization of the day's events on Wolfe Island tentatively scheduled to be held at the WI Community Centre grounds Sept. 24th (dedicated as a Green Energy Field Day). Noordegraaf was seeking ideas and support . She thinks it is doable but would only go ahead if there are people to put the plan in place although she will take the lead. For information contact email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.greenenergyproject.ca
2. Frontenac County CAO Elizabeth Savill, and Peter Young, Frontenac County Community Planner, made a presentation to provide planning services for the Township of Frontenac Islands. Savill reminded council that County Council wondered if county staff could provide planning services to the townships. “We are able to do it,” she said, “The service would be for our common constituent for whom we can be very responsive. We have a very good track record with face to face reponses to questions. ” (The County's Joe Galivan brought the concept forward in July and had been invited back.) “However he is away,” she said. Along with the Frontenac County Planning proposal contained in the council package of information, there was a letter and outline of the services provided by the present Township Planner, GlennTunnock ,Tunnock Consulting Ltd.
Council members seemed to favour the County proposal and noted delays in the Tunnock Consulting Frontenac Islands Official Plan (2008) review. CAO Terry O'Shea advised council to hold off making a decision for future planning services. “The other municipalities have been invited to do this to. (study the County proposal),” he said. Maybe we should discuss it with them. “I think we are really rushing it to get it done b y Sept. 1. Our procurement bylaw probably says we should get another proposal. Either we go with the by law or not. Maybe October 1st would give us time to look at what other townships are going to do.” It was concluded that some outstanding work with Tunnock would be concluded and the Frontenac County Planning proposal would be considered at the September meeting.
3. Howe Island's Austin Page, Chairman of the Howe Island Schoolhouse Committee, presented a Building Condition Survey and Rehabilitation Proposal for S.S. # 1 St. Mary's or North Side School as prepared by Thompson Construction Management Services. The big question now, according to Page, is determine if the building is of heritage/historical significance. Council authorized the committee to request the Trillium Foundation to transfer already approved funding for an EA review and/or historical value survey and present the study to Frontenac County.
AECOM's Guy Laporte and Darrell Niles (Septic Solutions) made a presentation to Council concerning a proposed commercial sewage disposal system on Wolfe Island. Niles indicated that he is looking at a Bio Filter, a fairly new type for a permanent year round working lined lagoon. Laporte indicated he was working with Darrell “This is a unique situation,” he said. “The island village is dependant upon Darrell. ” Kingston is putting up costs of taking sewerage, 3 & I/2 hours of wait costs, and at least 143 holding tanks. There is a need to do a feasibility study, find land with buffer zone, go to funding authority or bank. Niles is looking for rezoning , for property and consideration from the township for this project.
Councillors' concerns: A tax adjustment for a resident brought up the question of a Trailer By Law, by Councillor Springgay. Its time to look at it again. There are concerns by residents. “How long can a trailer sit on a property before you build,” she said. Also wonders about permit for ice cream cart, and garbage not collected in village during weekend events.
Dep.Mayor Jones had concerns about an oversupply of gravel on Howe Island and complaints of dust on roads seeping into houses.
Councillor Grant's concern is was about very bad drainage on Lawrence Street in Marysville, “Time to fix it,” he said.
And Mayor Doyle has concerns about speeding in the village. Sees a need to lower speed limit.
Frontenac Islands meet next Sept. 12, 2011 on Wolfe Island at 6:30 pm.
Around Town : Welcome to the Wolfe Island Corn Maze Open August through October. A wonderful place to explore.
(Reservations are required for flashlight nights and large group bookings.)
For more information: Please call 613-385-1998 or Email at: email@example.com
Web Site: http://www.wolfeisland.com/maze/
Following on the heels of an already busy summer on Wolfe Island, the 11th Annual Scene of the Crime festival brought together a cadre of Canadian writers of the crime genre, writers and would be writers as well many guests. All interested in meeting and hearing from the authors and about their books. The Scene of the Crime festival is small if compared to other events on the island, for example, the road race or the family ball tournament, but year after year they come , many for a second or third time to enjoy a well organized day held in variety of places on the island.
This year’s guest authors all nominated for, or winners of, writing awards, included: Elizabeth Duncan, A Brush with Death, (Brannigan mystery series); C.B. Forrest, (The Weight of Stones, Slow Recoil; R.J. Harlick (Meg Harris mystery series set in Quebec) and Howard Shrier, (Jonah Geller investigator series Buffalo Jump, High Chicago). Choosing particular portions of their books or new manuscripts they read to an attentive audience.
Vicki Delaney a prolific crime writer, (psychological suspense, Constable Molly Smith series), a Scene of the Crime board member presented a well attended writing workshop “Writing the Criminal Mind”-creating the Character of the Antagonist, which because of its popularity may in fact be lengthened in future years.
Guest lecturer Staff Sgt. Kristina Patterson, from the Belleville Police Service, currently Officer in Charge of the Criminal Investigations Unit (who befriended Vicki Delaney) and obviously loving what she does, offered insights into overcoming fear, self protection in the face of danger, the criminal mind, and tactics used by police officers everyday.
And last, but not least, the winner of this year’s Grant Allen award, British born Canadian writer , Maureen Jennings participated in a panel discussion with the guests authors moderated by Vicki Delaney on Writing the Villain.
Jennings, this year’s recipient of the Award for her contribution to Canadian crime writing. is acknowledged for her Murdoch mystery series set in late 1800’s Toronto and adapted for TV, her Christine Morris Books, many short stories, and coming full circle, the recently released Season of Darkness, the first book in a WW2 crime trilogy set in Britain.
The Grant Allen award, individually created in the form of a kaleidoscope by local artist Linda Sutherland, is designed to have particular significance to the winner. The kaleidoscope was chosen because a familiar painting of Grant Allen’ seated in his study in England shows one on his desk.
In presenting this year’s kalaidescope adorned with glass tubes and marbles, Festival board member Rev. Chris Carr read a note from the artist to Jennings. Of Detective Murdoch she said, “perhaps a man before his time, he sometimes used glass tubes and beakers and chemistry to solve his mysteries so the glass rods express his forward thinking and experimental nature.. Of course marbles were a common pastime,” he read.
‘This is absolutely amazing,” Jennings said in accepting the book-like-box containing the award noting that the picture painted on it was the image of a the photograph (found in an antique store) used for the Murdock series. “I don’t know who he is it is, but that is who Murdoch looks like,” she said. Opening the box she lifted out award exclaiming as she raised it to her eyes, “How beautiful, how beautiful.” Jennings went on to read an excerpt about Dunkirk from her newest book “Season of Darkness”. This was followed by a one-on-one informative interview between the author and the Whig Standard’s Greg Burliuk. The event offered opportunities to meet and greet at the Island Grill, to buy books from Novel Idea, experience island hospitality at the luncheon held at the WI United Church Hall and dinner at Trinity Anglican’s St Margaret’s Hall where this year’s short story contest winners were announced. They are: 1st for ‘Blue Plate Special” by Ken Loomis, Chilliwack, BC; 2nd “He’s No Humanitarian, But Damn Can He Take A Punch” by Sam Wiebe, Vancouver; 3rd “They Gave Him the Gears” by Michael Januska, Toronto who was present to accept the award from Scene of the Crime President Violette Malan.
The annual Scene of the Crime Festival celebrates Wolfe Island's heritage as the birthplace of Canada's first crime writer, Grant Allen. The event is made possible through its dedicated board of directors and volunteers. Next year’s Scene of the Crime Festival will be held Sat. August 12, 2012
The Wolfe Island food producers organization, ‘Taste of Wolfe Island’ presented a ‘farm to table’ dinner, under a great white tent in front of the Town Hall on the main street of Marysville, for over 175 diners on a beautiful evening in late July. Local produce, herbs, meats, local breads and sweets, specialized jams, sauces and salad dressings were all part of the extensive menu prepared by islanders. Well known Chef Eric Connell and Jen Connell worked in a mobile kitchen on site, from Mobile Kitchens Canada Inc., for the occasion. They were assisted by a host of enthusiastic volunteers.
The dinner provided the 175 dinner guests the opportunity to taste the best in local cuisine, building on the connection from ‘farm to table”, and for the producers to showcase their food products. The menu included Pykeview Meadows ‘Meatball’ (Bison) with Henderson Farms ‘Apricot Jalapeno Glaze’; slow- cooked ‘Black Angus’ beef from de Ruiter Farms as well as salads,(warm carrot, cold beet) roasted new potatoes, seasonal vegetables and ‘Grilled Polenta’ for vegetarians; plus WI Bakery shortcake and deserts. Produce was provided by Okee’s Farm; Van Wagner Farm CSA & Market Garden, Windkeeper Community Farm, and Sugar Woods Farm. Table flowers were by Margaret Pyke.
It has been a busy time for the Taste of Wolfe Island organization since its inception in February 2010, with the launch of an island ‘ Farmer’s Market’ in May of the same year. It is now held throughout the growing season on Saturdays in front of the WI Town Hall, where it offers island products and now, this premier event of a ‘Farm to Table Dinner’.
The aim of the island’s food producers is to increase relationships between growers and processors, chefs, B&B’s and distributors, to create experiences based on a sustainable food system. “It is all about encouraging local food consumption, education about the food we eat, and offering opportunities for culinary tourism, while at the same time supporting local food producers. The Food to Table Dinner was our first event focusing on all those aspects,” according to Windkeeper Community Farm operator Kathy Rothermel, president of the organization. The Taste of Wolfe Island Food to Table dinner was supported by a $9,000 grant from the Ontario Ministry of Tourism & Culture…Celebrate Ontario Fund. For further information about Taste of Wolfe Island, email: firstname.lastname@example.org Ask about Aug. 28th Farm Tour on Wolfe Island.
Around Town: It has been one very busy summer. Traffic is¸ dare I say, UP from other summers. Many more walk-ons, tourists, families, young people and cyclists coming by way of the “free ferry”, owned by Ontario tax payers. They are encouraged by radio and TV ads, newspapers and Kingston’s Info Centre to board the ferry for a much better view of Kingston’s Royal Military College, Fort Henry, Garden Island, and sailing ships while en route to the island’s Big Sandy Bay, a close up of Wind Towers, or to Cape Vincent, NY via Horne’s Ferry. Or maybe simply to see all that the village of Maryville has to offer and to participate in a host of events. The ride itself is often a great family event for many, although vehicle traffic is rather overwhelming, all keeping MTO’s summer student employees working very hard.
Family Ball: Perhaps bringing the most vehicular traffic to the island was the 26th annual Family Ball Tournament. The heavy downpour on the Friday did not stop the tournament getting underway this year with 27 teams playing at 3 locations ( Community Centre, Sacred Heart School) with elimination games Friday evening and all day Saturday, completing the last game before 8pm. The Radtke-Reitzel Family team were the A Division winners with the MacDonald Family Team winning in the B Division
The Fargo Team received the Bill Kyle Sportsmanship Memorial Trophy presented by Karen Kyle.
The Wolfe Island Family Ball tournament, played by teams made up of both men and women using a larger ball, known as a Mellon ball, is among the last of such tournaments in Ontario. This year the teams seemed to have a greater number of younger folk playing, grandchildren perhaps, maybe even great grandchildren, all looking forward to next year’s tournament. * Howe Island’s Gene Manion, retired pilot and author of best selling “Flying on the Edge”, was invited to conduct a speaking forum on northern bush plane and helicopter flying at the annual Oshkosh Air Show in Wisconsin, the largest aviation celebration in North America in late July. *Wolfe Island Corn Maze Information: IS NOW OPEN * You can support the Wolfe Island Community Centre’s fund raising efforts by playing golf at the Alston Moore Golf Links on Sundays as All green fees will be donated to the Community Centre. For more information call: 613-385-2461.
WI’s Sacred Heart of Mary Parish mourns loss of Archbishop Francis Spence. Parishioners who knew Francis Spence as the Archbishop came to know him differently in his retirement when he frequently came to the island to celebrate Mass in the absence of a priest. In the homily at his funeral, Fr. Joe Lynch spoke of the Archbishop’s attention to detail, his dignity, his quiet attempts at humour and his brilliant mind. At Sacred Heart we saw that brilliance in his sermons, always a little longer than intended, as suddenly his eyes would light up as he offered yet a new insight. I will remember his compassion during my husband’s long illness, and the prayers he offered on his behalf. But what I will remember most about this thoughtful man, attuned to the world, yet almost shy in his approach, was his fidelity to the Church and his vocation as a Catholic priest. Such fidelity is an example for us all to remember as we mourn his passing.
Did you happen to wonder why, or even notice that the wind towers on Wolfe Island were not turning last week? If you did, the explanation according to Mike Jablonicky, Site Manager of the Wolfe Island Eco Power Centre revolves around preventive maintenance. “The annual Preventative Maintenance Program is a proactive program,” Mike explained. “ It is not carried out as a result of break downs, faults or tower failures. As a matter of fact the program is a way of making sure we don’t have breakdowns, faults or failure. It generally occurs during the summer, low production months for wind farms so we pick one. This year July,” he said.
Jablonicky noted that during the annual 3 or 4 day maintenance period, ( longer if extra maintenance work is required) they work with Hydro One who shut down the island’s point of connection at the Gardiner Sub Station, ensuring that contractors and their own Wolfe Island crews can work on the extremely high voltage equipment in the safest environment possible .
“Our Black and MacDonald friends were back carrying out the Program where we check, lube, operate, measure, test, tighten, sample, diagnose every item within the fenced area here at the substation, not much different than performing the 5000km oil change in your own car. When cleaning the 230,000 volt breaker insulators the crews make sure that any dirt or buildup is removed and polished clean.
“Over the last weeks, “ Mike continued, “ if you were on the island you may also have seen Siemens crews using professional rope access, inspecting turbine blades looking for cracks or any other blade deficiency from their root at the hub to their tips, as well as anything that in any way might cause their inefficiency. The crews are completing last year’s remaining inspections. Later this summer (and every 2 years), you will see turbine cleaning crews using the same rope access methods, to ensure our turbines look as new as the day we built them.
Other plants check their prime generator turning equipment and so do wind farms,” he said. “ Our prime mover is the wind and the blades that make up the turbine rotor are what turn the 2.3 Mw generator, so we ensure the blades are in perfect shape to do the job.”
“We generally inform the township and the power authorities about what we are doing but sometimes we forget the people we should be calling as we have this time. So, as we go forward we will let the good people of the island know what’s happening. And by the way,” Jablonicky concluded, “if anyone ever has concerns, curiosities or complaints about the wind plant, please call or visit. You are welcome to visit . I don’t get many visitors………” Phone: 613.385.2045
*The Wolfe Island 197.8 megawatts Wind Facility is located on the island at #209 - 4th Line Road. At this time it is the second-largest in Canada and includes 86 (80 metre) wind turbines. The power produced is sold under a 20-year Renewable Energy Supply II Contract with the Ontario Power Authority. TransAlta owns and operates the Wolfe Island facility through its wholly owned subsidiary Canadian Hydro Developers. www.transalta.com
Frontenac Islands council approved a minor variance for a 'take out' shop to sell specialty coffee/ lattes, home made gourmet ice cream and sweet goods on the main street of Marysville. The walk-in location, in an accessory building beside the residence, is just a few metres away from the WI ferry dock and will be easily accessible particularly by walk-off ferry traffic. (Does this approval open the door to new business operations in the village, to further economic development?)
The variance requested by island resident Mike Phillips, raised alarm bells on the part of an adjacent property owner and a number of island businesses who rely on the strength of summer sales to stay open, (or not), through the winter months.
During a discussion, Phillips, defending his request, said people coming from Kingston and Toronto are accustomed to finding specialty coffee and ice cream but can't find it here on Wolfe Island. “I will not be selling anything that the island already has and it will bring tourism and maybe other new businesses.” Supporting Phillip's request Darin Madore of the island's Shanti Retreat (formerly Brown's Bay Inn) commented that islanders fear new businesses ” but we should break the status quo and bring in new things to attract more people.”
*The General Wolfe's Mustafa Ismail noting traffic and parking issues in the village called on the township to develop a master plan for village business development (businesses, ferry line ups, parking, etc. ” We need some structural changes. Without that we will not move forward,” he suggested.
*WI Pub & Pizzeria operator James Kirkham spoke of his dependency on summer revenues to remain open during the winter, adding that he also sells ice cream and coffee. “But the island does need more (businesses) to attract visitors,” he concluded.
*A very concerned Dan Hogan owner of Megaly's Grocery & Convenience, whose business relies heavily on summer trade with ice cream being a specialty said, the new business will affect his business because of its location.
*Summer resident Matt Dochoda commented that Marysville needs to be more tourist friendly suggesting it offers very little for them.
Councillor Wayne Grant had no problems with the opening of new businesses but has a problem with the location. “I think it will cause more congestion in the ferry line,” he said. Councillor Springgay wanted some assurance that although the planning act allows for 25% of residential property in the village to be used as a home based business, that in this instance, “the variance is exclusive to this applicant.” A concern was raised about an ice cream cart operating without a permit, by-law enforcement issues, types of businesses, parking etc.
Frontenac County's Joe Gallivan, said that under 'Incentive Program' work done by the County, a Community Improvement Plan developed for Marysville, when undertaken, will address many village parking issues and commercial concerns including business development.
The variance received approval from the Health Unit (as a take out facility only), and was recommended for approval by Town Planner Tunnock Consulting as meeting the Official Plan criteria, (home based business) with conditions related to waste and signage.
Deputy Mayor Jones and Councillor Norris voted in favour of the variance . Councillors Grant and Springgay against. Mayor Doyle broke the tie noting he could see nothing in the Planning Act to stop the shop and that an OMB appeal would be very costly for the Township.
In other business: *With council's approval a Zoning By-Law Amendment application made by Bob Clark Consulting on behalf of Werner Daechsel (refused twice by Council) will be appealed to the OMB.
*Council also approved an application for a variance to allow an additional half storey to a garage made by Robert Malcolm and Philip Street.
- County of Frontena Planner Joe Galivan brought forward a Frontenac County proposal for planning services being offered to each township in the county. “I believe it is very doable, certainly less costly, offers day to day planning, face to face meetings,” he said. “We are aligned with economic development and are prepared to work with the community. In terms accountability it would be with the council.” The concept was met with approval by council and will be further deliberated. Galivan will aso meet with staff concerning the proposal.
*From Thomson & Jemmett Insurance, Blair Shaw and Scott Lee were present to answer questions on the coverage and premiums of the Township's policy. A RFP for insurance will be brought up at the August meeting.
*Council awarded a contract for the surface treatment of Frontenac Islands roads in 2011, to Smith Construction, $239,747.64 for Wolfe Island and $166,901.60 for Howe Island, ( a $406,649.24. total). Frontenac Islands Council meets next: Howe Island, Mon. Aug. 8th, 6:30 pm.
Around Town: Proclamation Day on Howe Island was a celebration of the date (July16, 1792) General John Graves Simcoe (Upper Canada's Lieutenant Governor) named the island Howe after general Sir William Howe. A rousing success, commemoration of the date will become an annual event..
* The annual Wolfe Island Family Ball tournament is next weekend (July 29,30). Expect ferry traffic to be very heavy and plan for it. Better still, park and walk on if you can.
* You will be happy to know there will OPP presence at the WI Music Festival Aug. 5-6th. *Wolfe Island's Big Sandy Bay Conservation Area has become a very popular destination particularly during the HOT weather,(maybe too popular).
*Don't forget Euchre, Thursday's, 7 pm at United Church Hall. * visit www.wolfeisland.com
Operated seasonally at the Community Hall located behind the Wolfe Island Town Hall and beside the Tourist Information Centre, the Stone Heron Gallery owned and operated by island resident Pat Sanford opened recently for its 7th season. Its seasonal operation at this locations offers a distinctive opportunity for the island’s many artists and artisans to show their works to visitors who come to Wolfe Island from different parts of Canada, the US and the rest of the world.
Many tourists travelling by way of Horne’s Ferry to and from the USA across the Island are surprised at what they discover when they wander into the gallery . The Stone Heron Gallery holds works on display and for sale by Sanford herself as well as noted artists Kim Woodman, Jan Fitch, Linda Sutherland, Jamie Sanford, John Eves, Virginia Seward ,Pamela Meidima, Susi Walters, Debra Krakow, Claire Guernsey, Stephanie de Bruin among many others. The gallery includes watercolour, oil and acrylic painting, wood carving, photography, unique jewellery, unique bird carvings, and paper art. “Our annual grand opening for this season (July 1st-Labour Day) was a great success. Many, new to the island and visiting the gallery for the first time were enthusiastic about what they saw,” Sandford said. “This year, we have added a number of new names to the list of presenting artists, and, I am also delighted to have Andre Demers, a bilingual, second year University of Ottawa student (from Ottawa) working here for the summer and overseeing the gallery. He is looking forward to a busy season.”
Pat, an enthusiastic participant in the life of the community along with her husband Joe, is responsible for the many improvements made to the gallery, making it first of all accessible, and secondly appealing to the eye. The community is indebted to her generous spirit.
When you are on the island… why not stop by… For further information: www.wolfeislandart.net
(Visitors coming just to enjoy the ferry ride and to see the what Marysville has to offer are encouraged to park their cars in Kingston and to walk on.)
Attendance was light at Sacred Heart school when MTO presented the preferred alternatives to improve the Wolfe Island Ferry Service. This may have been due in part to the non delivery of meeting notices because of the mail slow down or was it because, as one Islander put it “We have heard it all before, nothing happens and wait times for the ferry keep getting steadily worse anyway….” Or, could it be “that we can’t seem to agree on what is best…” as another commented, or how about, “Say Yes to whatever MTO offers ‘except fares for island residents.’ Many of us won’t live long enough to see another ferry anyway.
However, whatever the thinking, islanders listened attentively as Engineer Kevin Phillips of URS Canada Inc. outlined the components of the preferred alternative, a dual ferry service that includes a new ferry along with the Wolfe Islander III.
“The purpose of the recent ferry study was to look at the currents characteristics of the ferry service, and come up with a sustainable transportation plan, a 20 year plan with an eye to the future beyond that as well,” Phillips said. “It was to be more than building a bridge or improving ferries but also to look at the softer sides of the service.”
Phillips noted that since the 1st public meetings last year the outlined alternatives have been screened and reduced to a more manageable list, evaluated in detail.(service, economics, impacts to the island, cultural, heritage natural etc.) and from that, the engineers and the planners came up with the technically preferred solution, ‘a dual ferry service with a new 75 car aero dynamic ferry from Barrack street to Dawson Point and the Wolfe Islander operating from Barrack Street to Marysville (until ice in or lower water levels).’
“ We want to hear what you have to say about the solution and the other proposed initiatives including marshalling,terminal improvements and traffic demand management considerations, (tolls, priority boarding, better signage, integration with Kingston transit etc.) A final recommendation is a bridge feasibility study between Dawson Point and CFB to address the long-term access needs, (beyond the 20-year planning horizon of this study),”Phillips concluded.
URS was retained by the Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) to undertake the Transportation Study to examine access between Wolfe Island and the mainland and to come up with a sustainable transportation plan.
Representatives from the MTO Regional consultant team were available to answer questions, and discuss the next steps as residents moved through the display panels. MTO Operations Officer Heather Roebuck commenting on the new boat alternative, said it would be some 3-4-years before islanders would see a second boat in the water because of requirements to get it built , and added that the bridge option (Dawson Point to CFB ) would only be consideration once Causeway congestion problems are resolved “which is a very long way off,” Roebuck said “making our Wolfe island ferry plan the best option to meet ferry traffic volumes over the 20 year study period.” Noting the many differing opinions and concerns of islanders, Roebuck encouraged them to submit their comments then and there, or go to MTO’s www.WolfeIslandTransportationStudy.ca site, to do so.
(The last ferry study was undertaken by the province in 1994 but the environmental assessment process was never initiated.)
After many special meetings the 2011 budget for the Township of Frontenac Islands was approved at the regular meeting of council in June. Before passing the by-law to levy taxes Mayor Doyle thanked members of township and county staff as well as council members for their effort.
“Its been a long drawn out process but we have reached the end of it. We were delayed somewhat by the County Budget where we did manage a decrease of about 2%. Here we have managed to keep both wards at about a 3.1% increase which is just barely inflation,” he said adding that much work is slated to be done on roads. “ A lot of good, very expensive capital work is getting done.” ( Doyle said that Community groups that applied for funding will be advised regarding amounts to be received.)
The total net spending by the township will increase by 8.5 % ($92,000) with a county decrease of $21,000. The final mill rate increase of 3.1% in both wards was arrived at by using many reserve funds to keep the tax rate lower in spite of higher road costs and the WI Rink refrigeration unit. Many roads on both Howe and Wolfe are slated for surfacing: (Dep/ Mayor Jones is looking for a capital plan in the coming year for Howe Island reserves, particularly roads, “to maintain our roads in good order as we move forward.”
In other business: an application by Dan Keyes of Temper All Refrigeration Ltd. to sever an existing Howe Island quarry operation from a rural agricultural retained lot, drew many comments from the public specifically Dave Munroe, Rick Monroe and Kathy Piercy. The comments however related to the quarry itself, the berms that are supposed to be there and they say are not, gaps in berms not of sufficient height, also noise, appearance, hours of operation, relationship with MNR etc. as well as concern with what the owner has in mind for the future of the quarry, rather than the requested severance recommended for approval by the Township Planning Consultant. Keyes maintains he is in compliance with MNR and there is no timeline to what is being done and expressed frustration with the ongoing complaints with the quarry. Council, while acknowledging the public’s concerns approved the requested severance which is essentially to separate the quarry off the farm. One condition of severance is that the retained lot is suitable for agricultural uses. Residents were not happy with the outcome….
*Council also refused an application, made by W. Daechsel (not for the first time) to amend a shoreline residential zoning bylaw on Howe Island to permit a 2nd house, as contrary to the bylaw. “Our position on this request has not changed at all ,” Councillor Norris commented.
*Frontenac County’s Joe Galivan , Manager of Sustainability Planning, presented a report titled “Population, Housing and Employment Projections for the Frontenacs” as part of the sustainability project referencing in this instance Wolfe and Howe Islands. “As a result of our work we have a growth model that we can update every year to keep track of what’s happening on the ground. Its an attempt to give each council a snapshot of growth over the next 25 years and what it means specifically for each township. Galivan said the county has a higher aging population as compared to the city ”as baby boomers age in place and more come here when they retire.” He spoke of cottage conversions, employment, home based business, more seniors rather than families retiring to the islands, stress on the ferry system, pressure on the official plan and land use. “One outcome of the study, ( also seen by MTO), is that the county has set aside funding to do a seniors housing study,” Galivan said much to the pleasure of Councilor Springgay. Access the study at: directionsforourfutuure.ca
*Frontenac County Human Resources Specialist Colleen Hickey presented the Human Resources Review proposal to be completed for the Township of Frontenac Islands. Mayor Doyle noted that there is money in the budget to proceed.
*“Taste of Wolfe Island” president . K. Rothermel firmed up plans with council for a temporary closure of Road 96 and the erection of tents in front of the WI Town Hall in order to hold a “Farm to Table Dinner” on July 23rd and tent removal (best efforts) by 9 am July 24th. A notice will be sent regarding the road closure.
*Livestock damage payments were pretty heavy this month.
*Following n update by HI resident Austin Page council will seek an deadline extension from the Algonquin Lakeshore Catholic District School Board regarding acquisition of the Howe Island Schoolhouse to December 31, 2011.
*Council indicated their support for a series initiatives from the WI Ferry Transportation Demand Management (TDM) citizens group and will ask MTO for their support. Read at wolfeisland.com (WI Digest entry). Councillor Springgay requested a recorded vote on this subject.
*Discussion followed as council supported a resolution made by the Township of Thessalon concerning the negative impact created by the installation of ground mounted solar systems. Minimal control over their location is cited as a very serious problem. What are they worth to the township? Industrial tax?
*Howe Island resident Bonnie Smith made a request to rent municipal property to open a store and was invited to come back with a formal plan for consideration. Is there a need for a Development committee? a question put forward.
*Dep. Mayor Jones expressed frustration with the County’s dollar decrease for the HI Proclamation Day event.
- Mayor Doyle noted a letter will be sent to “Le Régiment des Voltigeurs de Québec” (historically significant to Wolfe Island) inviting them to join in 200th Anniversary of the War of 1812 festivities next year and receive keys to the Township.
Next Council Meeting Wolfe Island, Mon. July 11th at 6;30 pm.
Around Town: *Tickets are now available for Taste of Wolfe Island “Food to Table Dinner” July 23rd (which begins at 5:30 pm with Dinner at 6:30 pm.) from www.tasteofwolfeisland.ca members, WI stores, Tara Foods, Kingston Info Centre - $35. each. * W I Farmers' Market takes place Saturday’s 9 am - 12pm , Town Hall. No need to bring a car. * Just a week to go before the Wolfe Island 5k-10k Road Race, Sunday July 3rd. *Euchre, Thursday’s 7 pm, WI UC Hall *All Howe Islanders are invited to celebrate Proclamation Day!, Saturday, July 16th from 4PM, Howe Island Municipal complex .Tickets $5
The former Wolfe Island Kraft Plant is alive with activity of late. Some months ago all manner of boats were brought from the mainland and are now parked around the building. Then a number of people began arriving off the early morning from Kingston apparently going to work at the building, (among them Jerremy Neff, the former WI Devlopment intern.) More recently the left wall of the building was rebuilt , a very large aluminum double door was put in place and finally what was obviously a Metal Craft Marine built aluminum boat arrived and was moved through those doors. Finally Wolfe Island resident and Metal Craft’s Tom Wroe began spending many days there as well. At that point it seemed appropriate to ask Tom what’s going on?
“Originally Metal Craft had some space here to do experimental work,” Tom said “ but we were able to negotiate for the use of all of the west end of the building from Scott Industrial Services, owner of the building, so we now have 12000 square feet of manufacturing space.. The building is not very high so is not suitable for bigger jobs and will serve instead Metal Craft’s Research and Development work.
Presently Metal Craft has a contract for the retrofit of two existing Metal Craft built and purchased boats, one operated by the Harbour Master of the City of Annapolis, Maryland, (a sister city to Kingston with its Military College, water and boats) built 10-12 years ago and the other, their sewage pump-out boat built 4 years ago . The pump out boat was built with the help of an EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) grant , an agency put in place in 1970 by then US President Nixon.
“ Now both engines, though fairly new, do not meet the new EPA Tier 2 Marine regulations,” according to Wroe. “Annapolis received a grant from EPA to refit the boats and turned the plan into a proposal to go instead diesel/electric/ solar, a plan which we (Metal Craft) then took to the National Research Council. (NRC). NRC came up with some money for us to learn how to do it as they could see a market for that type of propulsion. Though the project is heavily subsidized, that’s how new technology gets off the ground in many cases.”
Tom went on to talk about the operational profile of the boats (35 knots per hour) but not in the harbour where they loiter and how they hope to fulfill the contract . “ So far we have come up with a system that uses diesel, electric power from solar panels, a generator on board charging batteries and plugging in on shore. The challenge is to meet speed requirements when loitering or moving out of the harbour.”
Tom went on to talk about some of the projects underway at the island facility. Metal Craft employees have engineered a painting booth and recently were able to completely paint two boats. “It’s great. Here we don’t tie up the whole building as can happen in Kingston but only a portion of it.”. They are doing a number of projects with aluminum and structural foam, “easy to work with, amazingly strong, no distortion, reduces welding and time.” They are completing a boat that will run on used vegetable oil. “It’s not like having a rad. We are having a hard time capturing the heat to preheat the oil but we have a couple of ideas that will work or set the boat on fire.”
Wroe said they have done this kind of experimentation before but had to steal people away from a job and do it in a back room. “Here on the island we are dedicating more time to experimentation although the pressure is on us to also do money earning work. So we will have the paint shops going, custom metal work being done on both sides, boat building in the end bay and myself and a few others focusing on new projects, experimentation with a 70/30 split at this shop. I am looking at everything based on reducing our carbon footprint and coming up with ways of making do with less. So our focus here at the Research and Development Centre is going to be on fuel efficiency with an overriding purpose of reducing our carbon footprint which will give us an competitive advantage,” he said.
“ The diesel, hybrid, electric idea for the Annapolis boats for instance. If we can add an inexpensive option and reduce the town’s expenditures and at the same time reduce the carbon footprint and fuel consumption there is a market We are not just doing this to save the planet, You have to keep making money or you don’t get to keep on experimenting That’s a fact of life.
At the present time the work force at the island’s Metal Craft Research and Development plant is made up of 3 in the office including Wroe, 6 or 7 men from the city in the shop, “five of us from the island including two 2 part timer’s doing projects, and Josh DeBruin (13) who is crazy about boats . He volunteers here once a week and we do boat things together.”
A tour of the site was a real experience, many different types of boats being worked on, specialized metal equipment in place , etc. and, a happy work force.
“Right now we are just trying to get everything set up . And there is a lot of talent on the island, people who could fit into this. There are those trained in alternate energy programs and so on. We see solar as a big thing,” Wroe concluded. But that’s a story for another time.
Around Town:* Take note of The final round of PIC’s for the WI Transportation study, Mon. June 27th, Sacred Heart School , 5-9 pm (presentations 6 & 8 pm.) Also Tues. June 28th, 4-8 pm, Holiday Inn. Presentations 5 & 7 pm. Within 20 year time frame,the technically preferred plan includes dual ferries: new, vessel Barrack Street and Dawson Point year-round. . Wolfe Islander III, Barrack Street and Marysville, (ice/water conditions- Dawson.) Plan considers Travel Demand Management ie.. priority boarding for HOV/green vehicles, implementing a toll regime, etc. *6TH BARRETT BAY REGATTA June 26, 2011 9:00 am Registration (Wolfe) Island Grill. * Islands council passed budget.
Transportation may be the most difficult problem confronting the CITIZENS of Wolfe Island as evidenced by the overcrowded ferry from May to October and at peak periods all year. But island roads and their upkeep are a bigger headache for the Township of Frontenac Islands. Since the “Who Does What” period of the Provincial Government when Roads #95, #96 and the winter dock road, all once designated as Provincial highways, were turned over to the Township. At the time Frontenac Islands received what seemed like a large sum of money to compensate for the downloading of the many miles of highway “as is” by the province. Therein lies the rub. Since that time Frontenac Islands is responsible for ALL municipal road development and maintenance, as well as the former highways, all very costly (It has been estimated that resurfacing 1 Km of road would cost $50-$60,000) and….prior to amalgamation the combined WI Roads Departments (MTO &Township) had a crew of 12. Frontenac Islands presently has a crew of 4.
All of this came up at a recent budget meeting where council studied a request from an island resident that the township look at surfacing treating 1.1 KM of Joy and Langdon Roads. “Resurfacing of island roads is a priority,” said Mayor Doyle following the meeting, “but we have learned that surface treated roads last much longer when culvert work and ditching is done and the extra gravel needed to build up the level of the road is allowed to settle over a winter. We need time otherwise money is wasted.”
The request, according to the mayor, suggested the township develop ‘a defendable process’ that would determine the number of households per kilometre using the road to be surface treated, and give priority to those roads that have the greatest number of people per kilometre. It also questioned how roads are chosen for resurfacing.“The budget request and the suggested process all contained in the very thoughtful letter to council requires further discussion which will happen.” he said.
Regarding the budget Doyle further added that with inflation running at about 3% it is difficult, if not impossible, to have ongoing tax increases of less than 3% without cutting services although council is working hard to keep the increase to not much more in both wards. Council will have one more meeting before the June 13th regular meeting when they plan to formally present and pass the budget. “With the number of kilometres of roads throughout the township and the small tax base there is never enough money to do what council, staff and the public would like to do,” Doyle added. (By the way, last year the mil rate dropped 12% and perhaps we need to catch up.)
Interesting to note that at a earlier budget meeting council determined that the administrative costs divided between Howe and Wolfe, be changed from an assessment base to a 70-30 split pending the Human Resources review being done by Frontenac County. At the same time legal expenses relative to wind farm matters will be funded from WI “Amenities Monies” and any charges related to the wind farm previously made to any Howe Island account will be reversed and allocated to “Amenities Monies.” These items have been high on the agenda of Deputy Mayor Jones.
Around Town: The Tourist Season has begun on Wolfe Island
As the municipality continues its budget deliberations and deals with the concerns regarding roads, transportation etc., Islanders are gearing up for busy tourist season and a summer of events and programs,( as well as family visits, kids home from university and grand kids on holidays.)
In spite of the rainy weather gardens are growing , spring flowers, masses of trillium, crocus, tulips and lilac, though heavy with rain, bloomed vigorously. At the same time there are ongoing efforts to spruce up Marysville .
Island business, closed for the winter months, while the ferry was operating from the winter dock are now open for business including the General Wolfe Hotel, the Island Grill and the very popular Wolfe Island Bakery location with its tempting smells and treats, always a ‘must stop’ place for visitors and cyclists.
The Grill has already lined up a number of musical groups for summer weekend’s and will host the Barrett’s Bay Regatta in June. The WI Pub and Pizzeria operated by James and Linda Kirkham, which saw islanders through the winter has increased its hours and is now open every day. And of course Fargo’s General Store and Megaly’s Convenience offer a wide variety of goods and services all year.
The Wolfe Island Information Centre is now open, and the Stone Heron Gallery owned by local artist Pat Sandford will once again operate at the Island’s Community Hall behind the island’s historic Town Hall. The Gallery includes the works of local artists including among others Kim Woodman, Jan Fitch, Linda Sutherland…. The Old House Museum will open soon and a self guided walking tour of Marysville is in the final planning stages.
All is not rosy however. It is perhaps our farmers who are having a most difficult time with the cool, wet weather first getting crops planted or using the heavy equipment they require to do their work. And at the same time the island’s many food producers are facing the same kinds of problems, very slow growth in the cool ,wet land . Not to be deterred however the food producers “Taste of Wolfe Island” Farmers Market will open weekly on Saturday’s outside the WI Town Hall beginning June 18th to Sept 18th inclusive (8am-1pm). Watch for details of the First Taste of Wolfe Island Dinner to be held July 23rd (serving only island produce and meats) . Tickets on sale soon.
Big Sandy Bay now open for the 2011 season, is managed to preserve the ecological integrity of this sensitive area and its fragile dunes. As a result, facilities are limited. You have been asking: EMC stands for Extended Media Coverage
Coming Events: *The Annual Kane- Mosier Memorial Golf Tournament, Sat., June 11th WI Riverfront Golf Course. Call Ward McCready @385-9925 * 6th Annual Barrett’s Bay Regatta, Sun. June 26th For Details:Leann at 385-1762 or Tom at 385-2222 * 31st Annual Wolfe Island Classic 5K-10K road Race Sunday, July 3rd Check out info: www.wolfeisland.com *Proclamation Day on Howe Island, Sat., July 16th from 4 PM Howe Island Municipal complex and Fire Hall (Tickets.)
Frontenac Islands may be the smallest township in Ontario but attending Island council meetings brings home the fact that size and a small population does not mean fewer problems to solve or areas of concern to deal with, transportation, roads, development, waste management, safety, water, policing , health, recreation, land use, policy, sustainability, tourism and more …
Within minutes of the start of Frontenac Islands May meeting , Deputy Mayor Jones (Howe Island) once again declared that the Township “procedures by law” is flawed and expressed frustration with the lack of reference to any council debate contained in April minutes council was about to approve. Jones said that a reference to comments made by staff and members of the public had been recorded but his comments had not. He added that unless one attended meetings or read the paper residents would know little from the minutes, referring again to a township insurance payment. “The payment was not approved , was not brought back and we did not receive a 2nd tender. I believe council was circumvented on this issue,” Jones declared. He proposed a resolution to review the township’s procedural by law to consider a more detailed format for minutes including a summation of debate, (as at county meetings).
Following the Municipal Act and Robert’s Rules, not everything that is said is recorded but resolutions must be, according to the Mayor, deferring Jones’ request to other business . However problems came up again when Jones questioned the township’s accounts payable policy regarding the payment voucher and bills already paid without council approval . The possibility of policy reviews had come up before, this time resulting in resolutions commissioning thorough reviews of the Townships Procurement and Accounts Payable Policies and Procedures, as well as a review of the Procedural bylaw to consider a more detailed format including debate summaries
WI’s Maureen Lollar and members of the WI Women’s Institute were in attendance to encourage the township to upgrade the electrical and heating system at the WI community Hall to make it usable all year. “It has been a vital part of the community for many years,” Lollar said. “Even with unreliable services, organisations have persevered. We are sure that the financial investment in the building will reap dividends .” Mayor Doyle indicated a quote for services will be considered during budget deliberations.
WI Community Medical Clinic Board President Kathy Gilbert, and Treasurer Walter Knott, presented a Clinic update and Financial Report. “Last year we ran the clinic. We didn’t build it,” Gilbert said acknowledging the financial support to rebuild from the community through money, donations and insurance. “It took time to make this substantial community building operational and then the rules for a doctor changed,” Knott added. The report includes the strategic plan for the clinic and outlines activities to date since opening its doors. “Most recently a regular monthly foot clinic through a liaison with Kingston’s Seniors Centre with further healthcare initiatives being considered,” Gilbert said. Councillor Springgay noted the importance of getting the report out, so the community sees what is being achieved and once again rally round. “The dilemma is that if you have a good doctor in the city, it is difficult to say I’ll go here.” “Perhaps as doctors retire that will change,” Mayor Doyle added. The report was (received as information), and is available at the Town Hall.
In other business: Council discussed the destruction of 17 trees including heritage trees (as described in a letter from Bruce Horne) cut down by Hydro One on Rd.95 toward Horne’s Ferry, some on township property. Horne is presently dealing with Hydro One. Council members resented the implication that the Township had approved the tree cutting which is not the case (confirmed) and will indicate same in a letter to Hydro One Networks Inc. The Township also want a clean up on Thunder Rd. where tree trimming also occurred.
Council approved the temporary closure Rd 96, Friday Aug 5th for the WI Music Festival; two tenting nights Aug. 5 & 6; a Vendor’s Village Aug. 6th at the Community Centre, site of the festival. Policing arrangements are underway.
A joint WI Business & Tourism Association / WI Women’s Institute Garage & Bake Sale will be held along the the east side of the WI Town Hall on Saturday May 21st
Council approved a request made by Kathy Rothermel and Hank Connell representing WI food producers “Taste of Wolfe Island”(TWI) to use the WI Town Hall’s East side parking area to host a Public Market Saturday’s June 18th to Sept 18th inclusive (8am-1pm).
In further business Councillor Norris questioned why an undersized culvert has not yet been replaced and the lack of action on the sign bylaw. He wants the littering bylaw be posted.
Councillor Springgay is concerned that the WI Demand Management team’s “transportation report “ presented to council was released to the press before a public meeting was held. She also raised concerns about ground mounted solar panels over which the township has no control. (Roof mounted panels require a building permit.)
WI resident Ed Kenney attended the meeting to ask the same questions of council he asked in April related to his assessment appeal and requested they be included in council minutes along with the answers. His written statement noted a published statement that the township has no responsibility for property assessment for tax purposes. His questions related to: Who hired the law firm to represent the township at a hearing regarding a residential property assessment appeal? Why? Was it a council decision? (NO) Ever done before? (NO) Is any portion of my municipal taxes paying for this law firm to oppose my appeal to MPAC? (NO) Costs of hiring this law firm to date? (were made available) Is this township being reimbursed by Trans Alta for any of the costs? (NO) Kenney noted that the hearing has been moved to Kingston because of inadequate facilities on the island and will be arranged by Cunningham and Swan. at the township’s expense. Frontenac Islands minutes are published on the township’s web site. Frontenac Islands Council meets next on Howe Island Mon. June 13th, 6:30 pm.
Around Town: A WI entry posted to Kraft Celebration Tour promoting Victoria Park baseball diamonds and riding ring requires your comments. Please Read entry & Post a comment at www.kraftcelebrationtour.ca or facebook/ tweet http://www.kraftcelebrationtour.ca/nominations/share/36/ Your support is needed once again.
-What great news to anticipate that as a result of a reduction in the levy to be paid to Frontenac County, municipal taxes on Frontenac Islands could go down. But that may well be the case, according to Mayor Denis Doyle.
“Recently we talked about approximate numbers, ” Doyle said. “But now it is official. The Frontenac County levy this year (2011) is $821,595 compared to the 2010 levy of $843,291, representing a 2.6% reduction, which is very good compared to a near 8% increase last year.” The county budget was passed in April and has been received by the township as it continues its own budget discussions. And there is more good news according to Doyle referring to the Federal Gas Tax money received by the County and how it will be dispersed this year.
“Deputy Mayor David Jones and I are very pleased that an agreement was reached to transfer a good portion of the Federal Gas Tax money down to the townships for roads and bridges (as stipulated in the program). “This year we have negotiated a much better deal ,”Doyle said. “Of the approximately $850,000 the County receives annually, $510,000 will be distributed among the 4 townships still leaving Frontenac County with $340,000 to spend. (last year the County transferred only $110K of the $850K gas tax money to the townships.)
“This year the new County Council has decide to transfer an additional 400K of the gas tax money to the townships which means an additional $40K to Frontenac Islands for a total of about $51K. In addition we get about $80K of Gas Tax money directly which must be used for infrastructure items, primarily roads,”
“While David Jones and I made it clear that the rate of 7 to 8 % County budgets increases over the past few years was just not sustainable for our Frontenac Islands tax payers, Doyle said,”It is important for people to know that the entire County council along with very competent staff worked hard to lower expenses. Our deliberations included a detailed analysis by staff to determine just where we could cut without negatively affecting the very important services Frontenac County provides. Our decisions regarding gas taxes however does means cuts in certain County initiatives.”
The passage of the County budget allows Frontenac Islands council to move forward with a clearer picture of what Frontenac Islands municipal taxes will look like. “Our plan is to have one more working budget meeting (May 12), another in late May and to have it finalized at a public meeting.” According to Mayor Doyle, Frontenac Islands pays about 10% of the overall County expenses, and the same figure is used to transfer the Gas Tax money. “Now with the finalized County figures we can move on knowing that as a result of the changes our net payment to the county will be reduced .”
It is interesting to note that the new county structure initiated last year provides greater opportunity for review by the townships with 2 representatives (mayor and one other) from each of North, Central and Frontenac Islands, and 3 representatives from South Frontenac. Formerly County Council consisted only of the four mayors. Now both Mayor Doyle who lives on Wolfe Island and Deputy Mayor David Jones from Howe Island represent Frontenac Islands at the County. The change while presumably creating longer meetings no doubt allows for more intense deliberation and discussion.
In other business of interest to Wolfe Islanders and the public at large, was a recent meeting of OPP members Judy King and Sandra Barr with WI Community Centre Board representative Paul Hogan along with Kingston's Virginia Clarke, organizer of WI's annual Music Festival, and Rick Lindgren representing the Wolfe Island residents in the village of Marysville to talk about a number of island issues. Also attending the committee meeting was Mayor Doyle, Councillor Wayne Grant and CAO Terry O'Shea.
Clarke was looking to have camping permitted at this year's Music Festival both Friday and Saturday nights. Since this was not a council meeting, no official decision could be taken with regard to this issue until the May council meeting.
Lindgren was there to express the concerns regarding the unacceptable behaviour in the past of some Music Festival attendees. Hopefully details will be worked out with respect to OPP coverage at the Music festival in August and how to better control those who wander through the village.
It was determined that The OPP will be invited back to an open public meeting where they will present their recommendations on how the community can to deal with further issues of concern on the island, including break-ins, as well as loitering and trespass particularly at the west end of the village by the Cruickshank's property during the summer months. Issues at Big Sandy Bay also came to light including the boaters who trespass and others who do not clear customs, that also require a solution. The May meeting of Frontenac Islands Council will be held on May 9th at 6:30 pm. at the WI Town Hall. FYI The Council of the Township of Frontenac Islands will also have a Special Meeting of Council on Thursday May 12, 2011, at 10:00 a.m. in the WI Town Hall, Its purpose to continue budget discussions.
- With the return to service (May-Oct) of the Horne's Ferry, WI becomes an International link. Interesting thought. * WI has been registered in the Kraft CelebrationTour with TSN Sports. The required first letter has been posted to www.kraftcelebrationtour.ca. Now it is your turn to send letters extolling: community spirit, passion for sports and Healthy active life style. The closing for letters midnight June 10th. To see submissions: http://www.kraftcelebrationtour.ca/nominations/detail/36/ Not as complex as Kraft Hockeyville. Ten communities across Canada win $25,000. The top 20 is by letter selection only. Post a letter. Finalists announced on July 1st. * Community Euchre 7pm Thursday's UC Hall.
The April meeting of the Frontenac Islands Township Council held on Howe Island may have been the township’s shortest but it was not without interesting issues and others of some concern, all offered here in no specific order.
*Council passed a resolution of congratulations , thanking everyone involved in the Wolfe Island Hockeyville campaign as well as all those involved in organizing events. It included a special thank you to the five ladies who drove the island’s bid, Toni Vingar, Julia Crosier, Lisa Posthumus, Sharon Kane, and Michelle Joy which resulted in WIsland being named one of the top five communities in Canada. Also acknowledged for their efforts were Paul Hogan, Doug Corrigan, James Kirkham, Rick Lindgren and Dick Posthumous. “Most of all we would like to thank the people throughout Kingston and the Islands, across Frontenac County and around the world who supported Wolfe Islands bid with their votes”, the resolution states.
*The Frontenac Islands payment voucher caused a stir at the April meeting when Deputy Mayor David Jones once again questioned payments in the voucher to Thomson Jemmett, Commercial Brokers, to the Municipal Insurance policy with Cowen Company. (Cowen is known to be the only company that will bid on insurance for Frontenac Islands although another Company was asked to quote and the quote is pending.)
The Municipal Insurance proposal with Cowen Company was on the agenda of the January council meeting at which time the Deputy Mayor first noted a 2.7% cost increase for insurance but a decrease in coverage with a diminished benefit in a number of cases. He also queried the ‘one bid’ only and asked about a township procurement policy . The subject was deferred to the February meeting but the representative from Thomson Jemmett was unable to attend. At that meeting Jones reiterated his concerns regarding procurement policy and was advised the township was waiting for another bid.
At the April meeting the Deputy Mayor was clearly frustrated, “this payment looks like to me ‘set and forget’. three months have elapsed. As I recall a proposal was put to us in January, it was deferred and now its paid. We were backed into this” he said noting a number of other items in the voucher that concerned him as sole source procurement.
”The payment was paid to meet a deadline,” Mayor Doyle said, “with the understanding that the 2nd quote can be looked at when it comes in. But next year we will want to do a more formal tendering and we need to look at our procurement policy.” The payment voucher was approved for payment with Jones voting against. CAO O’Shea will provide copies of the procurement policy, and council will begin a formal review and update (of the policy) as required.
*Howe Island’s Jim Mills, Chairman of the Howe Island Proclamation Committee made a request for a change of venue to the Howe Island Fire Hall property on the baseline road for the island’s July 16th Proclamation Event. Council had no objections to this request. The event was originally to be held at the island’s ball park. However according to Mills the site has insufficient parking resulting in roadside parking, raising safety issues for attendees coming to and from the event. It was noted that the island’s Fire Fighters are partnering with the events of the day and would manage a licensed bar facility at the Fire and Rescue Building with all proceeds going to support the Fire Department.. The fire hall location means the event will happen rain or shine and offers extra facilities including electrical service. A tent will also be raised on the grounds. Mills added that General William Howe (or his facsimile) along with his Pipe Band and a Musket Brigade will attend the Family event. He also reminded council of the committee’s funding request (to purchase a plaque) submitted for consideration during council’s budget deliberations.
*The Stone Heron Gallery, owned and operated by local Wolfe Island artist Pat Sanford will re-open at the WI Community Hall on June 18th closing Sept. 5th. Sanford has operated the Gallery for seven years and carries business tenants insurance. Over time Sanford was responsible for building the ramp entrance, interior painting, floor finishing as well as securing the windows with bars. In her letter of request to use the facility, Sanford noted good attendance and Gallery success.
*The Nine Mile Point Lighthouse Preservation Society (NMPLPS) requested council’s support in their effort to ensure that the lighthouse on Simcoe Island remain an active aid to navigation and continue to be owned and maintained by the Government of Canada. According to the NMPLPS the Lighthouse Protection Act protects only those lighthouses federally owned and requires that surplus lighthouses are transferred “to a person of body” suggesting that the intent is to not protect surplus lighthouses but to off load their responsibilities for maintaining them. Council passed a resolution in support of the Society’s efforts to ensure the Nine Mile Point light ( the oldest operational lighthouse in the Great Lakes)is never extinguished and that that it continue to guide boaters through the Lower Gap “as it has done for 178 years and counting.”
*Council also supported the South Central Ontario CAA and the Good Roads Association request that the Ontario Government direct some HST revenue charged on gasoline and diesel sales to a new funding mechanism for municipalities to invest in transportation infrastructure.
* WI resident Ed Kenney who is appealing his property assessment with MPAC (May4-5) asked questions of council:
. Why has the township council hired a lawyer to represent them at the hearing? Was it a council decision? Has council ever hired a lawyer before to oppose a request of MPAC? Any portion of (my) taxes paying for the law firm, legal costs to date and is Trans Alta reimbursing those costs to the township. Council will research the information requested. The Kenney’s believe their property has been devalued due to the island’s wind power project. Council meets next at Wolfe Island, May 9th, 6:30 pm.
Around Town: * Pitch In Canada Day on Howe Island organized by HIRA (HI Ratepayers Association) takes place Sat. April 30. Rain Day Sun. May 1st. Gloves & Garbage bags available from the Township Office. * The Island Grill will re-open soon.* The General Wolfe has re-opened. * As the holy days begin, A Blessed Easter to ALL.
It has taken some months for the residents Frontenac Islands, Wolfe Island ward to hear council’s answer to the question of ‘who gets the money’ from the wind farm amenities agreement. They did not get the answer in December or at a Frontenac Islands special January council meeting to deal with the agreement where a resolution ‘to have the amenities money remain in the Wolfe Island district for its benefit for the term of this (present) Council, was laid on the table,’ till the March meeting
FYI the agreement is the financial contract between Canadian Hydro Developers (CREC), now TransAlta, and Frontenac Islands over the life of the WI Wind Power project (20 years +) as a form of compensation for loss of taxes expected from the 86 turbines. The money was never identified by the previous council as a pooled amount in the Township budget, or clearly Wolfe Island specific.
Before “taken from the table,” at the March meeting, WI Resident Allan Hulton addressed council “I would like to see the money spent on the community or on an old age home. As far as investing I do not see enough return,” he said. Hulton also expressed displeasure with how the motions at the January meeting were handled.
It was clear as council returned to the subject, Councillors Springgay and Grant wanted the money allocation voted on in favour of Wolfe Island while the concerns of both Howe Island Councillor Pat Norris and Deputy Mayor David Jones against the vote remained the same. Norris has been consistent that the assessment based administration allocation, between the two wards needs be adjusted according to use, and that area rating is maintained. “I don’t want to talk about this until then,” he said.” Deputy Mayor David Jones believes that amenities money should be set aside as a legacy “until we understand compensation as a safe guard to what may happen if our tax base is eroded by devaluation. No one I represent is looking for a pay day,” he said.
Throughout, Mayor Doyle carefully stick handled the discussion, noting his concern that the original resolution extended only for the life of present council, and should instead extend through the full term (20 years plus) of the agreement, and that there were legitimate reasons to study the present administrative cost split between the 2 wards based on use of staff and services.
In the end, there was an amendment to the original resolution and two further resolutions passed, (3-2 in each case recorded with the mayor breaking the tie). The agreement reached is that the ‘amenities money’ remain in the Wolfe Island District for the benefit of Wolfe Island for the term of the “Amenities Agreement “and that Council commission a study of the district split of administrative fees. The review is to include the establishment of appropriate position descriptions for all staff, and a document outlining specific activities and that the changes will be used to determine percentage of admin expense charge backs during each budget cycle. What has not been settled is how the funds will be used. (by the way- a dictionary definition of amenities is “agreeable ways.”
In other business: * AECOM’s Guy Laporte presented the 2010 Wolfe Island Waste Disposal Site annual report a requirement for the (1994) Certificate of Approval and expressed his delight at having such a large crowd on hand to hear his report and that of Golder Associates, Lauren Bekeris and Paul Smolkin’s ground, drinking and surface water monitor program for the site. Laporte noted good compliance, continued good stewardship and recycling decreasing the site’s use, which might extend its lifespan beyond 2020 . However the township has not been meeting covering requirements (once a month in the winter time and twice a month in the summer (May-August) as pointed out by the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) . The Golder report identified areas of concern and possible ways to achieve compliance. Council authorized submission of the report to MOE and to the neighbouring property owner and accepted Golder’s 2011 cost estimate for water monitoring.
*Linda Thomas, President of the Wolfe Island Business and Tourism Association presented a review of the Associations 2010 activities and some of the proposed activities for 2011 and submitted a copy of WIBTA’s budget which included a request for a grant from the township. She advised council that the Taste of Wolfe Island group received funding for a July food festival. Council supported WIBTA’s application
to the Community Foundation for Kingston and Area for plaques for a Marysville Walking Tour now in the planning stage (text, brochure etc,). The intent is to encourage people to walk on the ferry to make the village tour. Thomas noted the possible availability of funding for a future cenotaph identified by a WIBTA member. She also noted a series of letters in support of Development Intern Jeremy Neff and the work he has accomplished in the community. His island term is coming to an end.
*Representing WI’s St. Lawrence Street property owners, Alex Quist wants a solution to the consistent flooding of the street and private properties from heavy rains and a fast snow melt coming downhill from the community centre property causing serious drainage problems. Quist also asked the township to replace the sidewalk on the west side. The matter was referred to the Township Road Superintendent Leo Greenwood for recommendations.
*With regard to concerns raised by WI’s David Cruickshank re the foot of Allen Street, a plan for steel fencing with gates is being considered. Shore well owners will be advised . At the same time the OPP is prepared to meet with council to advise on this issue and others facing the township.
* Building permit application fees have been revised. * Half load signs have been posted in the township. * Budget meetings continue : Wolfe Island Town Hall. Friday, April 1st. 10 am
Frontenac Islands Council meets next Monday , April 11, Howe Island 6:30 pm
Around Town: Wolfe Island made it to the top five in Kraft Hockeyville 2011. Voting began March 19th and ended at 11:59 pm March 21st. Now the island waits. The CBC will be filming in the top 5 communities and broadcast live for Hockey Night in Canada, April 2nd when the winner of Kraft Hockeyville 2011 will be announced.
TOWNSHIP OF FRONTENAC ISLANDS
Monday March 14, 2011, 6:30 p.m.
Wolfe Island Town Hall
1. Call to order.
2. Adoption of agenda.
3. Approval of minutes of Regular Council Meeting of February 14, 2011, & Special Meeting of Feb. 25,2011
4. Disclosure of Pecuniary Interest.
5. Application for Consent: B-02-11-H made by Temperall Refrigeration Limited.
6. G. Laporte, AECOM, Wolfe Island Waste Disposal Site 2010 Annual Report.
7. L. Thomas, WIBTA 2010 review, 2011 grant request.
8. St. Lawrence St. residents re: flooding.
9. Allan Hulton re: Amenities Funds.
10. Motion to retable Resolution # 2 from January 21, 2011, re amenities funds. Attached a letter from T. Botten regarding this issue.
11. By-Law to amend By-Law No. 20-98 to increase building permit fees.
12. Payment Voucher # 2.
13. Communications: - D. Cruickshank re: Allen St. vandalism (from February 14 meeting)
- David & Lori Verton re: Carpenter’s Point Road speed limits
- M. Chan, Ministry of Tourism & Culture re: Heritage Conservation - Township of Woolwich re: Aggregate Resources Act.
14. Items for Council Information:
- AMO re: Gas Tax Funding
- T. Kontra, Ministry of Community Safety & Correctional Services
Emergency Management & Civil Protection Act complianc
- J. Gallivan, Frontenac County, re: Green Energy Task Force
- S. McDonald, resignation from Howe Island Schoolhouse Committee - — Ducks Unlimited re: Thank You for donation.
- MNR re: Emergency response
- Land O’Lakes re: 2010 activities & 2011 programs
- Cowan News
- AMO re: January Board Meeting
- OGRA Board Brief
- OSUM re: 2011 Conference
- FCM newsletters Feb. 7, 14, 21 & 28
- Kingston Community Foundation Newsletter
- Switch newsletters Feb. 15, 22, Mar 1, 8
- Water Levels.
15. Other Business.
16. Resolution to adjourn to In Camera Session if necessary.
17. By-law to confirm proceedings of Council.
18. Motion to adjourn.
Fr. Ray De Souza, pastor of Wolfe Island's Sacred Heart Parish travelled to Nazareth recently wearing his Wolfe Island Kraft Hockeyville 2011 baseball cap. And in to-day's National Post he also mentioned Wolfe Island's “among the top 10” selection.
Now its time to vote.. vote often and have a smile at Fr. De Sousa's picture.
Excitement Continues-CBC Sports producer Jen Barr is coming to Wolfe Island with a Camera Crew on Sunday Feb. 20th to experience that excitement for themselves . They are coming the same day the Island holds it annual outdoor winter event, (ChiliFest) this year called HOCKEY FEST in honour of its bid for Hockeyville 2011. (The CBC, by the way, is visiting a number of communities that took part in Hockeyville 2011.)
Hockey Fest will begin with a parade at 12:30 pm on Feb. 20th. Floats are welcome but come early. Following the CBC filming at the Community Centre where they will talk to people about the importance of hockey and community reaction to the contest, Marysville will host a series of events, street hockey, games, music along the main street as well as any number of other winter activities skating, hockey, sleigh rides, kite boarding and the like… there is also a plan to line the streets from the boat to the village with Hockey Jerseys as well.
There has been NO slowdown in Wolfe Island’s enthusiasm for Hockeyville 2011. In fact enthusiasm intensified when the island’s Hockeyville committee announced that, “It’s Not Over Yet” and encouraged islanders to post videos and pictures to the Kraft Hockeyville Face Book Fan page and Twitter site, (take a look or at wolfeisland.com, Hockeyville) and to keep the spirit alive by holding Hockey events, parties, games, writing songs etc.
Most recently a formidable group of some 40 island women, dressed in hockey gear with sticks in hand boarded the Wolfe Islander III, posted a very large sign that said, “The Puck Stops Here,” set up their nets and played a spirited game of hockey on the deck of the ferry on its 11:20 pm return trip to the island. The Wolfe Island ferry has hosted many official events but an “All Women’s Hockey Game” is a First..
Hockey Fest is next. Plan to be there.
The Puck Stops Here - Wolfe Island Hockeyville 2011
LET'S SHOW CBC SPORTS AND CANADA WOLFE ISLAND IS HOCKEYVILLE!
For your information: On March 8th, the top ten communities in Kraft Hockeyville will be announced on the CBC and voting begins, (if Wolfe Island is included in that 10).
Around Town: The Wolfe Island United Church is holding their annual Garage and Bake Sale Saturday, February 19th 9am-2pm United Church hall. * Sacred Heart Catholic School Open House, Wednesday, February 23rd Drop by between 5:30 pm-7 pm * Taste of Wolfe Island AGM Thurs. Feb 24th, 6pm. At Pykes Store * Community Euchre Thurs. 7 pm UC Hall.
Wind Plant Bird & Bat Monitoring on Wolfe Island TransAlta has released its 3rd Post-Construction bird and bat monitoring report for the Wolfe Island Wind Plant. The plant completed one full year of operation of all 86 turbines in July 2010. ”TransAlta’s Post Construction Follow-Up Plan (PCFP) is essentially a 3 year monitoring program to Assess the direct (mortality) and indirect effects (habitat, avoidance, displacement) to birds and bats from operating wind turbines, that would trigger an adaptive management response,” according to Garry Perfect, TransAlta Environmental Specialist. The PCFP ensures that any potentially significant unanticipated adverse environmental effects are identified if they occur. Perfect’s role it is to ensure that the prescribed monitoring activities at the Wolfe Island wind Plant are completed.
According to PCFP all 86 towers at the Wolfe Island plant are searched once per week including winter surveys with year round carcass searches including scavenger removal and searcher efficiency trials The reports are submitted to Environment Canada, Ministry of Natural Resources, Natural Resources Canada and to Ducks Unlimited Canada for review and comment.
“The latest report indicates that 66 carcasses of 28 bird species including 10 raptors were collected during the January 1 and June 30, 2010 reporting period and 12 during the July 1 and Dec. 31, 2009 reporting period),” Perfect said . ”The estimated mortality rate for all birds is 6.39 birds/turbine (2.78 birds/MW). When combined with the July-December 2009 period, the annual mortality rate has been calculated to be 13.39 birds/turbine, (5.82 birds/MW). The 5.82 figure is well below the adaptive management threshold of 11.7 birds/MW identified in PCFP.”
“ However the raptors mortality rate for one year slightly exceeded the .09 MW threshold (0.12) triggering adaptive management measures,” Perfect said. “One to do a raptor behavioural study to help identify factors that may be the cause. A work plan and methodology was developed , reviewed by Environment Canada and MNR. Implemented in August 2010 it will wrap up in May 2011.” (It will look at flying characteristics on migrating birds and those staging in the area, ( distance to lakeshore, towers; habitat features that are close to where birds are spotted.) “ We will collate that information to weather conditions (wind speed, direction, etc.) to determine when raptors fly more often and when not perching to try understand conditions directly related to mortality and find ways to minimize those rates”
(In the recent study, seven red-tailed hawks, one osprey, one northern harrier and one turkey vulture made up the group of 10 raptors. The majority appeared to be individuals migrating through the study area.) “We had 22 raptor mortalities over the one year period, 5 were breeding , 1 was a wintering bird. The rest were considered migrants based on when carcasses were found . Mortality pulses are late summer/fall, mid April migrations. As the year round monitoring goes on, if two raptor carcasses are found in a consecutive 6 week period, I am notified and inform NMNR and ECanada . If it continues for a full year we will exceed our .09 threshold. It is a check as we go on our day to day monitoring and avoids surprises at the end of the year. We will look at all the data (weather wind etc.) Once understood we will devise next steps.” Perfect added that at the Melancthon II Wind Plant in spite of raptor mortalities, data indicates no detectable difference in raptor numbers. Do fledglings offset the number? “
When it comes to Bats, Perfect said 34 bat carcasses of 3 different species were collected during the reporting period. . The annual mortality rate of 8.69 bats/MW while the TransAlta PCFP threshold for adaptive management follow up plan is 12.5 bats/MW. “However 15% of the 214 bat fatalities recorded during year round monitoring on Wolfe Island fell within the spring months peaking in the 1st week of May.. So even though the number is under the threshold we are implementing a research program aimed at reducing fatalities. It will include adjusting the ‘cut in’ speeds of the turbines ( 3.5metres per second of wind speed) to a 4.5 or 5.5 metres per second wind speed at night in low wind periods when bats are most active at the WI Plant. Trans Alta has done similar research in Alberta realizing a significant drop in bat mortalities.. “ according to Garry Perfect. “We are also participating in a research project being conducted by Erin Baerwald (University of Calgary) to further understand bat migration characteristics. Migratory bat carcasses are sent for DNA and Isotope analysis with an objective of determining points of origin. Where did they come from. We are also sending bat carcasses to U of Guelph for study. Thus far no sign of White Nose syndrome although it has been found in Ontario.”Garry Perfect concluded.
Garry Perfect will present the findings of the report to WIRE (WI Residents for the Environment). The report has been received by Frontenac Islands Council. The Wolfe Island Post Construction Monitoring report can be found at: http://www.transalta.com/facilities/plants-operation/wolfe-island/post-construction-monitoring
Wolfe Islander III Celebrates Birthday
February 5th marks the 35th Anniversary of The Wolfe Islander III. As has been done in past years the ferry will be flying her original 'christening' flags that day, the day she was inaugurated into service.
Wolfe Islander III Capt. Brian Johnson proudly brings out the flags every year as a reminder of the tremendous years of service the ferry has provided and continues to provide through the Ministry of Transportation.
According to Johnson whose tales of boats and ships and sailors and local waters frequent the Kingston press the Wolfe Islander has been in service five years longer than the former Wolfe Islander (II) the ex- Ottawa Maybrook 1946-1976. But has not beaten the 42 years of service of the Wolfe Islander (I) the ex- Tom Fawcett 1904-1946… A paddle wheeler the Wolfe Islander (I) was the longest serving ferry to Wolfe Island, beating the Pierrepont (II), Watertown, Gazelle and Pierrepont (I) which were about 20- 30 years on average.
Further to things ferry, Wolfe Islander Darrel Mullin was recently promoted to Captain of the Wolfe Islander III in December 2010. Darrel continues the family tradition following his father Captain Elwyn Hinkley, better known as ‘BUCK’ Mullin (according to Capt. Johnson’s historical notes) and can be traced back to Captain Coleman Hinckley of the steamers Watertown, Gazelle and Pierrepont (both I and II) to Sam Hinckley, Coleman's father, one of the first ferry operators on the south side! Congratulations are in order for Captain Darrel Mullin..
(Capt. Johnson was the recipient of a Kingston Historical Society award in December recognizing his work in the preservation of local history (columns & stories). Also honoured former islanders, Donna Ivey and Norma Kelly.)
Frontenac Islands solicitor Tim Wilkin (Cunningham Swan) attended the second meeting of the newly elected Frontenac Islands Township council. He came to review for council, and for the public, the details of the amenities agreement, a contract between Canadian Hydro Developers (CREC), now TransAlta, and the township with regards to Wolfe Islands wind power project which according to Mayor Doyle was never that clear.
“It is important in the debate you are having around the use of amenities money, to understand the nature of the agreement,” solicitor Wilkin began. “It was basically an agreement between CREC, Canadian Hydro, and the township. Its purpose was to make provisions for compensation or benefits to be paid to the township to compensate for any perceived adverse effect of having the wind farm in the municipality specifically on Wolfe Island,” he said.
The agreement provides a number of benefits, infrastructure rehabilitation (roads) and an ongoing compensation payment to be made according to a negotiated formula over the life of their agreement with the power authority. “This agreement does not speak to what the township is to do with the money,” Wilkin said. “That’s up to the township to decide on its own. In fact that wouldn’t have been anticipated or have been appropriate for that agreement to contemplate what the benefiting corporation (township) would do with the money, any more than if 2 parties decided to buy a piece of property, you wouldn’t expect in an agreement how the purchaser was to use the money. And the same would apply to this contract with Canadian Hydro.” There is nothing in the agreement that would be the basis for a legal obligation for the municipality to use the money one way or another.
Councillor Barb Springgay noted two issues, about where the money is spent and how. From the agreement she read, “whereas the parties have agreed that the nature and the size of the Wolfe Island Wind Plant and its construction, operation and maintenance will have significant long term impact on Wolfe Island and its residents. There has been pain on Wolfe Island and people want it (the money)to remain on Wolfe Island,” Springgay said. “ And in terms of hardship, although not concluded yet, one might be if anyone should go to MPAC and say their property value has gone down due to towers and have their taxes reduced based on a lower assessment, the Township would receive less. Wolfe has the problem, not Howe” she continued.
Mayor Doyle mentioned that after the project started the province changed the rules for taxation on wind farms. “Originally the township was looking a quite a sizable industrial tax income,” he said. Doyle commented that with a major reduction in the assessment base to $45,000 (later modified to $85,000) compared to the cost of each tower at some $5 million , “ had the higher figure been used the township would have received $1.3 million in revenue instead of the $22,000 it does receive. That’s the dilemma and that’s why the contract was discussed in the first place to offset the lower taxes.”
Wilkin confirmed what Mayor Doyle said as some of the motivation for the agreement, noting that the taxes on an industrial assessment at $4 or $5 million a tower would have been very substantial. “The province had capped the assessment on towers effectively making the municipalities bear the brunt of having wind towers in their communities.” Councillor Grant added that the council of the day worked hard on the agreement so that everyone on Wolfe Island would benefit, not just the landowners with towers.
In other business: council passed bylaws: one to regulate the use of ATV’s on Municipal Highways; and another for a Lease and Facility sharing agreement with Frontenac County regarding the Wolfe Island Ambulance/ Fire Hall.
After much discussion regarding a bylaw to accept reduced general municipal insurance coverage by Frank Cowen and Company at a higher cost, the bylaw was deferred until the February 15th council meeting. Deputy M ayor Jones wanted to know how much it would have cost to have the same coverage as the prior year.
Council approved a resolution for the submission of an application to the Ontario Municipal Internship program. It was noted there are only six but it is important to apply. *Sydney Eves bid for snow removal on municipal roads on Simcoe Island was approved.
Councillor Wayne Grant, Frontenac Islands (FI rep.) representative : WI Recycle & Waste Disposal committee; the WI Community Policing Association; the WI Volunteer Fire; WI Community Medical Clinic.
Councillor Pat Norris, FI representative: Howe Island Fire & Rescue; Howe Island Social & Recreational Ctte.;
Councillor Barb Springgay, FI rep.: WI Business & Tourism Assoc.; WI Historical ctte.;
Dep. Mayor David Jones, FI rep.: Howe Island School House ctte.; Cataraqui Source protection Board.
Appointed to the Marysville Waterworks Class EA steering ctte. : Councillors Grant & Springgay and CAO O’Shea. Grant and Springgay were both appointed to the Community Centre Board.
* A resolution was passed by council to receive the petition sent to MPP John Gerretso, to rescind the amalgamation agreement (Wolfe& Howe) submitted by John O’Shea be received by the township as information.*It was announced that a grant is being sought for a “Local Food Festival” in July. *Council is still waiting for a date to meet with MTO about many things regarding ferry transportation (water levels, etc.)requested some time ago (not specifically about the ongoing MTO ferry study.) He noted also that Intern Jeremy Neff has been asking WI residents for ideas about what they can do for themselves to improve island transportation and will meet with a group in late January.
* Council passed a “Good News” resolution in support of W Islands nomination to Kraft Hockeyville 2011.
And finally, before closing the meeting, Mayor Doyle requested a question period with the public. And there were many questions: received , responded to, and to be responded to.. concerning snow plowing; ferry line up violations; a public amenities meeting; need for more lights, tree trimming and widening of winter dock road for parking including culverts; need for more lights in Marysville; heard information about Healthy Communities; question about how many names on the petition (237); request for official opening date of Wind project. The meeting ended at 7:50 p.m. Council meets in next: Mon. Feb. 14th on Howe Island at 6:30 pm.
Memories of Christmas 2010
With winter finally here and before the good feelings that come with Christmas become a thing of the past it is important to remember a couple of Christmas 2010 events that occurred on Frontenac Islands, specifically Wolfe Island.
The Island’s small United Church community has, with little advertising or fanfare been presenting the Christmas Nativity Story outside on the church grounds enacted by church member, adults and children for a number of years.
It was a small enthusiastic crowd that gathered this year in the early evening darkness brightened by one shining light to watch as Mary & Joseph accompanied by their (Llama) donkey made their way to Bethlehem to be counted in the census called for by Caesar Augustus and the subsequent birth of Jesus in a stable. And so it was that the children acting the part of the angels presented the ‘Good News of great Joy’ to startled shepherds urging them to go and see the child lying in a manger and singing them on their way to the words, ‘Glory to God in the Highest’.
With a star to guide them, three wise men carrying gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh and their and camels (Llamas) found the baby with Mary and Joseph and presented their gifts as the angels, the shepherds and the gathered community jubilantly sang ‘The ‘ First Noel’, bringing to an end the simply told story that IS Christmas.
A few days later at Sacred Heart of Mary church, at the end of Christmas Eve Mass , Wolfe Islander Bobby Pyke walked resolutely up the long aisle of the church to the podium. There in a voice filled with emotion, he thanked the people of the parish for their prayers during his long months of an illness, an illness that had brought him close to death on a number of occasions and from which he has survived. “I was overwhelmed and will be forever thankful for the prayers you offered on my behalf. . That is what Wolfe Island is all about ,” he said. “A believing community that cares for each other and I will never forget.” Wishing all a Joyful Christmas and a Happy New Year, Bobby made his way back down aisle to the sound of clapping hands and smiles and tears on every side as Fr. De Souza concluded the Mass and the congregation joined the choir in singing… Oh Come All Ye Faithful…. There is much to think about, much to ponder, and much to remember about Christmas 2010.
The tendency by the press at this time as a new year begins is to review the news and events of the past year.. After much thought and the recent election, now a thing of the past, it seems to me it is time to look to the Future of Frontenac Islands. What will 2011 bring?
*I cannot predict the future but it can be assumed that 2011 is the year when the most recent Wolfe Island Transportation Study undertaken by the MTO (Ministry of Transportation) to look at long and short term requirements of the Wolfe Island ferry service to year 2029 will be completed. The study is being done as part of a review of the province’s transportation system to determine a long term sustainable transportation plan. The study team is presently assessing the options: alternative ferry routes, fixed link options, ferry design changes etc., all of which were outlined at information centres in 2010. Also included was a long list of possible improvements like public transit access, expand marshalling areas, dual vessel, faster vessel, and incentives such as carpooling, fares etc.
Islanders were urged at the time to submit their comments and concerns about the identified alternatives. One can only hope they did. The Township was not asked to evaluate or access the alternatives and their impact on the island in advance of the projected second round of Info Centres to be held this year. The 2nd Round could include the presentation of a draft transportation plan bringing us a step closer to the final Wolfe Island transportation alternative. By the way, it should be remembered that a stand-by alternative is always “ to do nothing.” Considering the province’s deficit and debt that might end up being the alternative.
*Wolfe Island’s Community Centre Board expects the funded, new NHL sized rink to be operational with a chiller, a building to house it and power very soon. How much further will the Board’s plan for a covered rink, large community facility with a hall and community kitchen proceed in 2011? Will any funding be available for this larger project?
*It is anticipated that Frontenac Islands will deal with the distribution of the monies received from the Wolfe Island Wind Power project at the January meeting of council. It is a delicate problem. Wolfe Islanders see the money as theirs. Some, because they see it as tax revenues they did not receive once the province froze the assessments for each tower at $80,000 each. Others because they, and some members of the community feel they have been affected by the project. Howe Islanders are asking for clarification of the (amenities) agreement since they are part of Frontenac Islands.
*In Jan 2010 the question was: Is there going to be a phase two Wind Power project on Wolfe Island? Trans Alta emphatically said no… However one can not help but wonder about the first Ontario approved off shore Feed-in Tariff contract wind power project. The “Wolfe Island” Shoals project is to be located west of Wolfe Island in the waters of Lake Ontario one of the windiest areas of the province. Will Ian Baines president of Windstream Energy Inc. succeed in getting the project underway? What effect could it have, if any, on Wolfe Island? The proposed site is up wind from the WI Wind Power Centre. While “Wolfe Island” is part of the name of this project, in reality the power from it would be fed directly to the Lennox Power Centre.
*As the rules and regulations governing water and sewage in the province of Ontario become more and more stringent, I can’t help wondering whether the XCG Marysville Waterworks EA, slowed down for whatever reason will be completed in the coming year. The preferred option identified in the EA was to acquire water from the City of Kingston and have it piped across A ‘walk-thru’ tour of the City of Belleville’s ‘Gerry O’Connor’ Water Treatment Plant (from the water input (Bay of Quinte) to distribution), confirmed that water can be piped long distances . Belleville water is pumped under the Bay of Quinte to Prince Edward County. The township area served receives a steady flow of potable water. Water from the Trenton water plant is piped to Consecon. It was stated during the tour as well that the experience of providing water and services to the adjoining municipality had not been difficult for the city. It was the political and legal issues that required the most effort in order to bring it all about. Of concern to the Township of course is who would bear the cost of bringing water to Marysville and installing a distribution system. On the other hand can Marysville develop or must it be contained at its present size? Can Marysville support a seniors facility without it? While water did not rank high on the priority list at a first meeting of what to do with Wind power money, those who favoured water also wanted sewerage services.
*There are quite a number of Frontenac Islands issues that will come to the forefront in the next weeks and months. Ferry issues are always there for both Howe and Wolfe, but right at the moment Islanders are dreaming about Wolfe Island becoming this year’s Kraft Hockeyville 2011. If Wolfe Island wins, the prize money will go towards the Wolfe Island rink. To get involved or for more information contact Paul Hogan 613-328-5832. Also visit www.wolfeisland.com to participate. Writing a story and….. VIGOROUS on line or by telephone Audience voting, will be the key to success.
Around Town: * Community Euchre Thursdays, Wolfe Island United Church Hall 7 pm. * In an effort for more open communication the Frontenac Islands Council meeting agendas will be posted on the ferry and on the Wolfe Island website at www.wolfeisland.com.. * Family Fun day – In a bid for Hockeyville 2011, a Family Fun Day will be held at the WI rink- Sunday January 16th beginning at 11:00, with a COMMUNITY PHOTO SHOOT at 11:15. Bring your skates- Wear a Hockey jersey if you have one. Come out for hot dogs, hot chocolate, music and skating to promote the island’s community spirit, and passion for hockey. A hockey games is in the works…