Municipality of the District of Clare
REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING
Wednesday, March 20, 2019 at 7:00 pm
PRESENT: Council: Warden Ronnie LeBlanc, Deputy Warden Nil Doucet; Councillors, Carl Deveau, Brian Comeau, Eric Pothier, Yvon LeBlanc, Hector Thibault and Danny Hill
Staff: CAO Stéphane Cyr, and Executive Assistant, Ashley Hanks
Presenters: Alain Poirier
1) Call to Order
Warden Ronnie LeBlanc called the Council meeting to order at 7:00 pm.
Warden LeBlanc made the following declaration celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Official Languages Act.
“On this International Day of La Francophonie, the Council of the Municipality of Clare wishes to commemorate a significant date for all of Canada and for the residents of Clare. The year 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Official Languages Act. This law identifies French and English as Canada’s official languages. As the only municipality in Nova Scotia that conducts business and offers services in both official languages, we recognize the importance of communicating with our Acadian and francophone residents—as well as our anglophone residents—in their first language today and for many years to come.”
2) (a) Approval of the Agenda
Councillor Brian Comeau asked that the following item be added to the agenda:
- 12.5 Dangerous and Unsightly
MOVED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc and SECONDED BY Councillor Danny Hill that the proposed agenda be approved with the above noted addition.
(b) Declaration of Conflict of Interest
Warden Ronnie LeBlanc asked for any declarations of conflict of interest.
3.1 Festival acadien de Clare – Alain Poirier, President
Alain Poirier presented an overview of the events held by the Festival acadien de Clare in the past year and provided a summary of events planned for 2019. The Festival’s goal this year is to add more daytime events as most of their events are currently in the evenings. They would also like to get more youth involved with festival events. Mr. Poirier thanked Council on behalf of the Festival acadien de Clare for their continued support.
4) Adoption of the Minutes from Previous Council Meetings
4.1 February 20, 2019 – Regular Council Meeting
MOVED BY Councillor Danny Hill and SECONDED BY Councillor Carl Deveau that the minutes of February 20, 2019 be accepted as circulated.
4.2 March 6, 2019 – Council in Committee Meeting
MOVED BY Councillor Carl Deveau and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the minutes of March 6, 2019 be accepted as circulated.
5) Business Arising from Previous Meetings
5.1 Human Resources Policy Manual
The Human Resources Policy Manual as prepared by Wickwire Holm was presented to Council at the Council in Committee Meeting on March 6, 2019. Council proposed two minor changes be made to the manual and requested additional information regarding a section proposing payout upon retirement of unused sick leave. The two aforementioned changes were made and upon discussions with some 15 municipal units throughout Nova Scotia, the statement pertaining to the payout of unused sick leave was deleted. In light of these revisions, Council passed the following motion:
MOVED BY Councillor Eric Pothier and SECONDED BY Councillor Hector Thibault that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare approve the Human Resources Policy Manual as presented.
5.2 Tipping Fees – Rates for 2019 – 2020
An overview of the Municipality’s current tipping fees as well as the proposed commercial rates for 2019-20 was presented to Council at the Council in Committee Meeting on March 6, 2019. To not impede contracts that companies may already have in place, council would like to maintain the current rates for fiscal 2019-20 and advise the public (including commercial operators) that the commercial rates will be increasing in the 2020-2021 fiscal year.
MOVED BY Councillor Hector Thibault and SECONDED BY Councillor Eric Pothier that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare increase the commercial tipping fees in the 2020-2021 fiscal year.
5.3 Southwest Eco Energy Ltd.
There has been a renewed interest in the Southwest Eco Energy Properties since the Municipal Tax sale. To this effect, the Tax Sale by Tender for these properties has been re-issued with a closing date of April 5, 2019.
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.
February 21, 2019 – Attended a networking dinner in Halifax hosted by the CDÉNÉ Board of Directors. Simon Paul d'Entremont, Deputy Minister for the Nova Scotia Department of Energy and Mines and the Department of Seniors was the guest of honor.
February 22, 2019 – Attended the Board of Directors meeting of the CDÉNÉ in Halifax.
March 5, 2019 – Participated in an interview with Kelly Toughill, a journalist for the Public Policy Forum. The interview focused on rural immigration in Atlantic Canada and specifically in the Municipality of Clare.
March 13, 2019 – Attended a reception at Cineplex Theater in Yarmouth to celebrate the success of the Connector Program managed by the WREN.
March 15, 2019 – Attended a meeting with Christophe Katsahian, Deputy Delegate for External Action of the Local Authorities of France to discuss the possibility of a twinning between the Municipality of Clare and a region in France with Acadian heritage.
March 19, 2019 – Attended the Board of Directors meeting of the Harborside Lodge in Yarmouth.
7) Official Statements from Members of Council
Councillor Brian Comeau would like to congratulate Janece McNutt of Comeauville and is awarded to principals who demonstrate innovative leadership, an entrepreneurial spirit and and willingness to have an even more important impact on publicly funded education in the congratulate her for this honor.
8.1 Letter – Karen Mattatall, Mayor, Town of Shelburne
The CAO read a letter from Karen Mattatall, Mayor, Town of Shelburne (See attached)
MOVED BY Councillor Carl Deveau and SECONDED BY Councillor Danny Hill that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare send a letter of support to the Town of Shelburne supporting their request that 0.75% of the provincial HST be given back to municipalities.
8.2 Letter – Wayne Gaudet, President, Clare Health Centre Foundation
The CAO read a letter from Wayne Gaudet, President, Clare Health Centre Foundation. (See attached).
The CAO has already approved the request of $500.
8.3 Letter – Layla Abboud, President, Pleine voile vers un avenir vert
The CAO read a letter from Layla Abboud, President, Pleine voile vers un avenir vert. (See attached)
Recreation Manager Réanne Titus and Communications Officer Amy Paradis will be working with this group to explore ideas on how to make municipal events and activities more environmentally friendly. Councillor Carl Deveau asked that his contact information be sent to the group as a resource person, given that he sits on the Waste Check Board of Directors.
9) CAO Report – Chief Administrative Officer - Stéphane Cyr
The CAO presented his report for the month of February 2019. (See attached)
10) Committee Reports
10.1 Building Permits – Councillor Danny Hill
Councillor Danny Hill read the building permits report for the month of February 2019.
Year Permits Construction Value Year to Date
2018 4 $ 88,840 $ 854,040
2019 3 $ 34,000 $ 894,000
11) New Business
11.1 Motion to Approve Funding Request – Séniors en sécurité
The Séniors en sécurité program has a proven record of success and has shown itself to be an asset to the Municipality and its aging population. Council passed the following motion:
MOVED BY Councillor Danny Hill and SECONDED BY Councillor Carl Deveau that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare provide a financial contribution in the amount of $37,869 per year, for the next three years, to the Association des seniors en sécurité and that this contribution be adjusted annually in accordance with the previous year’s Consumer Price Index (CPI).
11.2 Motion to Appoint Community Representative – Western Regional Housing Authority
MOVED BY Councillor Carl Deveau and SECONDED BY Councillor Brian Comeau that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare appoint Denise LeBlanc as the Clare community representative on the Board of the Western Regional Housing Authority.
11.3 Motion to Accept Employee Salary Scale
As per the Municipality’s Salary Administration Policy, a review of municipal salary scales must be done every three years to ensure fairness, competitiveness and sound financial stewardship. As part of this review, the CAO compared the Municipality’s salary scales with those of the Town of Digby, the Municipalities of Digby, Yarmouth Argyle and Barrington. Furthermore, the comparison was expanded to include partners such as the CDÉNÉ, the WREN and Université Sainte-Anne, as well as salary data from the Association of Municipal Administrators of Nova Scotia. The results of this review concluded that the Municipality’s salary scales are very competitive and compare well with those of its municipal neighbors. As such, Council passed the following motion:
MOVED BY Councillor Hector Thibault and SECONDED BY Councillor Danny Hill that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare accept the proposed municipal employee salary scales, for the three-year period commencing April 1, 2019, and ending March 31, 2022.
11.4 Motion to Approve the Terms of Reference – Audit Committee
MOVED BY Councillor Brian Comeau and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare approve the Terms of Reference for the Audit Committee as presented.
11.5 Motion to Enact By-law No. 37 – A By-law respecting Subdivisions, Second and Final Reading
Following a discussion with two local surveyors regarding the proposed by-law and more specifically their concersn around the use of instruments of subdivision, the CAO is recommending that the by-law be sent back to the by-law committee for further review. Council passed the following motion:
MOVED BY Councillor Brian Comeau and SECONDED BY Councillor Eric Pothier that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare send the proposed Subdivision By-law back to the By-law Committee for further consideration.
11.6 Motion to Adopt the Volunteer Fire Service Vehicle Assessment
Emergency Management & Training Inc. has completed their assessment of the fleet of fire trucks within the Municipality of Clare. The report details which trucks and pieces of equipment are in most need of replacement or repair. Council is pleased with the report and passed the following motion:
MOVED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc and SECONDED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare adopt the Volunteer Fire Service – Vehicle Assessment Report as prepared by Emergency Management & Training Inc.
11.7 Motion for Letter of Support – Sustainable Oceans Applied Research Ltd. (SOAR)
Sustainable Oceans Applied Research Ltd. (SOAR) is asking for a letter of support for their application to the NRCAN Power Forward Challenge. This challenge is looking for high-quality projects that explore the cutting edge of smart grid innovation using tidal, wind, and solar power. The Municipality of Digby and Université Sainte-Anne already support this project. Council passed the following motion:
MOVED BY Councillor Brian Comeau and SECONDED BY Councillor Danny Hill that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare write a letter in support of the Changing Tides Partnership’s proposal for the Canada/UK Power Forward Challenge.
12) In Camera Session
PROPOSED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that Council proceed to an in-camera session.
12.2 Rural Internet
12.3 Former Saint-Albert Elementary School
12.4 CAO Evaluation
12.5 Dangerous and Unsightly
PROPOSED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that Council proceed to the Regular Council Meeting.
13) Date and time of the next Regular Council Meeting
The next Regular Council Meeting will be held on March 20, 2019 at 7:00 p.m.
MOVED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet to adjourn the meeting at 9:40 p.m.