Municipality of the District of Clare
REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING
Wednesday, December 19, 2018 at 7:00 pm
PRESENT: Council: Warden Ronnie LeBlanc, Deputy Warden Nil Doucet; Councillors, Hector Thibault, Carl Deveau, Brian Comeau, Eric Pothier, Yvon LeBlanc, and Danny Hill
Staff: CAO Stéphane Cyr, Executive Assistant, Ashley Hanks and Communications Officer, Amy Paradis
Presenter: Natalie Robichaud, Société acadienne de Clare
1) Call to Order
Warden LeBlanc called the Council meeting to order at 7:00 pm.
2) (a) Approval of the Agenda
Warden LeBlanc asked that the following additions/revisions be made to the Agenda:
- 8.2 Letter – Tracey Taweel, Deputy Minister, Communities, Culture and Heritage
- 10.2 Report – Villa acadienne de Clare, Councillor Brian Comeau
- 12.2 Contract Negotiations – Rural Internet, move out of the Closed Session and add as 11.7 under New Business
MOVED BY Councillor Danny Hill and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the proposed agenda be approved with the above noted revisions.
(b) Declaration of Conflict of Interest
Warden LeBlanc asked for any declarations of conflict of interest.
3.1 Clare dans un soir 3 – Natalie Robichaud, Société acadienne de Clare
Ms. Robichaud provided a recap of the two previous Clare dans un soir productions. Both were well received by the community, focusing on a comedic telling of the stories and history of Clare. The Société acadienne de Clare would like to produce a third and final Clare dans un soir. The cost to do so has been projected at $26,000 and the Société is requesting $5,000 from Council, during the 2019-2020 fiscal year, to aid in this effort. Council thanked Ms. Robichaud for her presentation and indicated it would take the request under consideration and advise the Société of its decision early in the 2019 calendar year.
4) Adoption of the Minutes from Previous Council Meetings
4.1 November 21, 2018 - Regular Council Meeting
MOVED BY Councillor Danny Hill and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the minutes of November 21, 2018 be accepted as circulated.
4.2 December 5, 2018 - Council-In-Committee Meeting
MOVED BY Councillor Eric Pothier and SECONDED BY Councillor Hector Thibault that the minutes of December 5, 2018 be accepted as circulated.
4.3 December 17, 2018 – Special Session of Council
MOVED BY Councillor Danny Hill and SECONDED BY Councillor Carl Deveau that the minutes of December 17, 2018 be accepted as circulated.
5) Business Arising from Previous Meetings
5.1 Upcoming CRA Changes to Council Honorariums
The upcoming CRA changes to Council honorariums will take effect as of January 1, 2019. As a result of these changes, Council honorariums will now be fully taxable. In terms of dealing with these upcoming changes, two options are available for Council’s consideration: 1) Maintain the status-quo (i.e. same gross pay), thus resulting in lower net earnings or 2) Increase the gross pay to all councillors to maintain the current level of net earnings. In reviewing the position taken by other municipal units across the Province in response to this issue, the trend has largely been to increase the levels of gross pay. After much discussion, Council passed the following motion:
MOVED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet and SECONDED BY Councillor Eric Pothier that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare increase Council honorariums effective January 1, 2019 to counter the impacts of pending taxation changes imposed by the Canada Revenue Agency and to maintain the same levels of net pay.
*Councillor Brian Comeau requested that his vote against increasing the honorariums be reflected in the minutes from this meeting.
5.2 Calls for Applications – Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program
The application deadline for the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program – Green Environmental Quality Stream is January 18, 2019. The CAO has asked Council if they had projects which they would like to put forward for consideration. Deputy Warden Nil Doucet raised the possibility of installing a waste water system on the Belliveau Cove Road. For his part, Councillor Eric Pothier proposed installing a waste water system on a portion of the d’Entremont Road. However, with the program deadline fast approaching, Council felt there wasn’t sufficient time for proper public consultations or to conduct the necessary research / design work needed for both projects. Therefore, rather than submit a rushed proposal, the CAO and staff will evaluate the feasibility of both project concepts and present them to Council for consideration at a later and if appropriate, a possible Fall 2019 funding application.
6) Warden’s Activity Report – Warden Ronnie LeBlanc
The Warden provided a summary of the meetings and events the he attended since the last Council meeting.
November 22 - Attended a meeting with Colette King, Community Development
Officer for the CDÉNÉ, to discuss the organization’s draft community
development plan for the Municipality of Clare.
November 24 - Attended the firefighter’s banquet in Little Brook.
November 27 - Attended a meeting with John Ferguson, CAO for the Municipality of
the County of Annapolis, and Chris Norman, Chief Technology Officer
with Mainland Telecom, to discuss the Internet project.
7) Official Statements from Members of Council
Councillor Hector Thibault would like to congratulate Trysten Deveau of Church Point for winning the bronze medal at the North American Karate Cup on December 1st in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Trysten thanks the community for its support. She will be competing in the Karate Senior National Championships in Gatineau, Québec, in January 2019
Councillor Eric Pothier attended the firefighter’s banquet in Little Brook. Medals were awarded to members including three for 50 years of service.
8.1 Letter – Kelliann Dean, Deputy Minister, NS Department of Municipal Affairs
The CAO read a letter from Kelliann Dean, Deputy Minister, Nova Scotia Department of Municipal Affairs. (See attached)
8.2 Letter – Yvon Comeau for the neighbours of Chemin de la Montagne Road
The CAO read a letter from Yvon Comeau for the neighbours of Chemin de la Montagne Road. (See attached)
8.3 Letter – Tracey Taweel, Deputy Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage
The CAO read a letter from Tracey Tweel, Deputy Minister of Community, Culture and Heritage. (See attached)
As the only municipal unit in Nova Scotia to offer its services in both official languages, the funding outlined in this letter is to aid the Municipality with the incremental costs associated with the delivery of French-language services.
9) CAO Report – Chief Administrative Officer - Stéphane Cyr
The CAO presented his report for the month of December 2018. (See attached)
10) Committee Reports
10.1 Building Permits – Councillor Danny Hill
Councillor Danny Hill read the building permits report for the month of November.
Year Permits Construction Value Year to Date
2017 15 $ 556,479 $ 11,409,274
2018 14 $ 289,380 $ 10,289,139
10.2 Report – Villa acadienne de Clare – Councillor Brian Comeau
Councillor Brian Comeau read a memo from the Villa acadienne de Clare. The Villa is still waiting for final approval from the government regarding the construction of a replacement facility. However, approval was recently granted from the Minister of Health and Wellness to go ahead with the schematic plan for the new facility. The Minister has requested that this schematic be for a 96-bed facility, which represents an increase of 10 beds. The Villa is continuing with their site selection process and is hoping to have this completed early in the new year.
The Villa is pleased to welcome Councillor Yvon LeBlanc to their Board of Directors. Councillor LeBlanc will be replacing Warden LeBlanc on the Board.
11) New Business
11.1 Motion to Approve Funding Request – Operation Compassion
PROPOSED BY Councillor Hector Thibault and SECONDED BY Councillor Danny Hill that the Municipality of the District of Clare award a grant in the amount of $1,450 to Operation Compassion to assist a refugee family moving to Clare.
11.2 Motion to Approve Document – Hospitality Policy
Council has reviewed the draft hospitality policy. Although they agree with the contents of the policy, they have requested further clarification regarding signing authorities and more specifically, the rationale and appropriateness for appointing the Audit Committee Chair as a signing authority. The CAO will consult with the Municipality’s auditors and report back to Council.
11.3 Motion to Write NSTIR Regarding Road Safety Concerns, Common Cross Road, Saulnierville
PROPOSED BY Councillor Carl Deveau and SECONDED BY Councillor Brian Comeau that the Municipality of the District of Clare send a letter to the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal asking them to complete a study of a section of Common Cross Road in Saulnierville due to road safety concerns stemming from the lack of a guardrail.
11.4 Motion to Appoint a Development Officer – Hubert Surette
PROPOSED BY Councillor Danny Hill and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the Municipality of the District of Clare appoint Hubert Surette as a “development officer” for the Municipality of the District of Clare, in accordance with the provision of the Municipal Government Act, R.S.N.S. 1998, c. 18, and specifically, section 191(d), which states: “ “development officer” means the person or persons appointed by a council to administer a land-use or subdivision by-law.”
11.5 Motion to Approve New Road Name – Chemin Comeau Twins Road
PROPOSED BY Councillor Eric Pothier and SECONDED BY Councillor Hector Thibault that the Municipality of the District of Clare officially name the road shared by the properties PID (Property Identification Number) 30079842, 30080592, 30080600 and 30080535 as follows:
In English: Comeau Twins Road
In French: chemin des Comeau Twins
11.6 Budget – CMA 2024
The CAO presented Council with a summary of the CMA 2024 Bid Committee’s activities to date as well as an overview of the proposed $8.5M budget for the event. Community consultations and promotional efforts via social media have generate much interest in the event and support for hosting it in Clare/Argyle in 2024. In terms of the budget, it was developed in keeping with past CMAs and vetted by the CMA 2024 Bid Committee as well as by third parties with in-depth knowledge of the CMA. The budget is believed to be conservative with a strong focus on risk mitigation. Contained within the budget is an anticipated contribution of $500,000 from municipal government, to be divided equally between Clare and Argyle, with the understanding that should other municipalities contribute financially, the amounts committed by Clare and Argyle would be reduced accordingly. After some discussion regarding the content of the budget, Council expressed its support for the CMA 2024 bid and passed the following motion:
PROPOSED BY Councillor Hector Thibault and SECONDED BY Councillor Carl Deveau that the Municipality of the District of Clare approve a contribution of up to $250,000, spread over five (5) years, for the Congrès mondial acadien 2024 (Clare/Argyle).
11.7 Contract Negotiations – Rural Internet
The provision of high-speed rural Internet remains a strategic priority for Council. To this end, discussions have been underway for quite some time with the Municipality of the County of Annapolis regarding a fibre-based solution (i.e. fibre backbone, fibre to the home) within both respective communities. Annapolis has invested significant time and money in the development of their model which has been widely recognized as a best practice. In recognition of their efforts and in order to advance the development and implementation of the Municipality of Clare’s model, the notion of purchasing access to the contract between Annapolis and Mainland Telecom was discussed by all parties and a figure of $20,000 was put forward. Again, keeping in mind that the Annapolis / Mainland contract took nearly two years to negotiate at a cost of several thousands of dollars, Council believed this to be good value for money and passed the following motion:
PROPOSED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc SECONDED BY Councillor Eric Pothier that the Municipality of the District of Clare purchase access to the Design Build Agreement for Fiber Optic Cable and the Indefeasible Right of Use Agreement, developed and signed by both the Municipality of the County of Annapolis and Mainland Telecom Inc., for the sum of $20,000 plus HST to be divided equally between both parties.
12) In Camera Session
PROPOSED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that Council proceed to an in-camera session.
12.1 Sale of Municipal Property – Ecoparc
PROPOSED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that Council return to the Regular Council Meeting.
13) Date and time of the next Regular Council Meeting
The next Regular Council Meeting will be held on January 16, 2019 at 7:00 pm.
MOVED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet to adjourn the meeting at 9:40 pm.