Municipal Council Notes
January 18, 2023
DELEGATIONS / PRESENTATIONS
Indigenous Services Canada re: 69 Seventh Avenue Temporary Zoning By-law Presentation
Representatives from Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) presented Council with an update on their use and future plans for 69th Seventh Avenue, a federally owned former staff residence and part of the old Zone Hospital campus.
Following the granting of temporary zoning approval approximately a year ago to continue operating the site as a Nurses Stores warehouse for the provision of health equipment and supplies for northern nursing stations, ISC informed Council they had looked at other options for the warehouse such as constructing a new facility or leasing an existing facility. ISC also informed council that the investigation also took into consideration the eventual transfer of warehousing responsibilities from FNIHB to another agency (i.e. SLFNHA).
ISC also shared in a presentation to Council, “Lac Seul First Nation (LSFN) has indicated their intent to include the Zone Hospital property within their Addition To Reserve (ATR) application, requesting that surplus federal real property be transferred to the First Nation. This would include 69 Seventh Avenue once it is declared surplus.
“LSFN has indicated their support for SLFNHA (Sioux Lookout First Nations Health Authority) to proceed with construction of a new Primary Health Care Centre, to be located on a portion of the current federal Zone Hospital campus. Steps are being taken by FNIHB to facilitate this project.”
A shortage of available buildings to lease locally as well as the fact that ISC said it expects warehouse activities will eventually be transitioned resulted in ISC informing council they see, “the only appropriate solution for the foreseeable future is to continue to operate the warehouse from 69 Seventh Avenue and seek an extension of the temporary zoning for that location.
“Meanwhile, we will continue to explore suitable alternatives with our health partners.”
Former Mayfair Theatre
Council directed staff, with respect to the former Mayfair Theatre property, to pursue Option 1: continue to market the property in its current state and attempt to sell.
After discussing the matter, Council advised staff they wanted to take one more year to attempt to sell the property before moving forward with possible demolition.
Lost Lake Centre
Council directed staff to consult with the residents of Hudson regarding their needs and wants for a community centre, and seek input on an interim location; and further Council directed staff to explore a possible partnership with the Sioux Lookout Area Aboriginal Management Board (SLAAMB) for the construction of a new community centre in Hudson; and further Council directed staff to allocate $10,000 in the 2023 operating budget to undertake repairs to the Lost Lake Drop-in Centre to ensure the environmental safety of the building until an alternate or new location is found; and further
Council directed staff to report back to Council following its consultations with the local residents and SLAAMB.
Municipal Manager of Development Services Jody Brinkman outlined in his written report to council, “The building is in a severe state of disrepair, including extensive foundation damage, mold growth in the basement, water damage to the floor system and plant growth through an exterior wall.
“In late 2012 through a grant, some remedial work was completed to the floor system under the kitchen area and beams were installed in the basement to support floor joists, which have seriously deteriorated ends where they embed into the concrete foundation. The floor system under the kitchen was extremely deteriorated since the ground around the building is higher than the interior floor. This is the case for the majority of the building, during heavy rains water flows readily thorough the rim board into the basement.” He added, “The building is continuing to deteriorate and it appears that the mold growth in the basement is expanding to potentially unsafe levels. The building at minimum requires significant upgrades in order to be suitable for use into the future.”
Options were presented for Council to decide to maintain the status quo and make repairs as needed, undertake a complete renovation/repair of the building, demolish the building and construct a new building of the same dimensions, or demolish the building and provide an alternative location such as at the Hudson Community Centre.
Bigwood Service Extension Project Update
Council received the Bigwood Service Extension Project update in regards to cost changes, as contained within the Treasurer’s Report No. 2023-11, dated January 18, 2023.
Municipal Treasurer Carly Collins shared in her written report to council, “At its August 24, 2022 Council Meeting, Council was presented with an updated budget breakdown on the Bigwood Service Extension Project. Staff informed Council that the project costs had increased from $2,200,000 to $5,851,856. Staff had also requested Council to increase the Curtis Street Water Pumping Booster Station Project by 60%, in anticipation of higher bids, based on other recent bids for similar infrastructure projects. The bid came in just under 60%of the increased cost that staff had requested. During the meeting, Council gave direction to Staff to reach out to funding agencies to ask if there was a possibility of increasing their contributions to the project.”
In her written report Collins reported, “After multiple discussions, the following is the outcome of those conversations: NOHFC had denied our request to increase the contribution by $25,000. New processes are now in place with the funding agency that if additional funding is requested, the current application would need to be rescinded and a new report submitted. This would need to be pre-approved prior to rescinding the current application, as it is a lot of work for both the municipality and the funding approval board. The funding agency would only approve it if they felt it was worth resubmitting. FedNor has temporarily denied the request to increase the contribution by $525,000. The funding agency informed Staff that at this time there are no available funds to support our request. The funding agency and Staff have decided to keep the request open in hopes that something will become available in the future before the project is completed.”
Ontario Regulation 284/09 – Compliance Report 2023
Council adopted the compliance report for expenditures excluded from the 2023 budget, as a requirement of Ontario Regulation 284/09.
Authorization – Human Resource Reserve
Council authorized staff to create a Human Resources Reserve for the purpose of retiree benefits, collective bargaining and arbitration; and further Council authorized the transfer of $19,250 of the 2022 unused budgeted amounts for these purposes to the reserve.
Accessible Elections Report (pursuant to Section 12.1(3) of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996, as amended
Council received, as information, the Manager of Corporate Services/Municipal Clerk’s Accessible Elections Report (Report No. 2023-13), dated January 18, 2022, pursuant to Section 12.1(3) of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996, as amended.
Brian P. MacKinnon, Manager of Corporate Services/Municipal Clerk, explained in his written report to Council that, “The purpose of this report is to fulfill the legislative requirement of the Municipal Elections Act to provide Council with a report about the identification, removal and prevention of barriers that affect electors and candidates with disabilities arising from the 2022 Municipal General Election.” More information can found in MacKinnon’s report at https://bit.ly/3QWFK1q.
Transition of Blue Box Recycling to Full Cost Producer Responsibility
Council directed staff to terminate the contract for Blue Box Program effective June 30, 2023 with a proviso to extend the contract should it be required; and further Council directed staff to notify Circular Materials that the Municipality wishes to opt into the program by transferring the responsibility of the Blue Box Program as of July 1, 2023 through to December 31, 2025, the transition period.
Municipal CAO Michelle Larose informed Council in her written report, “Since 2017, the Province of Ontario has been working towards the transition of its Blue Box Program (recycling) under the framework within the Resource Recovery and Circular Economy Act, 2016. The Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) has taken the lead in representing municipalities across the province, working with the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) through various stages of the program development. The Ontario government is shifting to a waste management system approach where the producers of products are responsible for the waste generated from their product and packaging, and waste is seen as a resource that can be recovered, reused and reintegrated back into the economy. The goals to be achieved will be to reduce litter and waste in our communities; protect the environment; drive innovation, performance and competitiveness and stimulate the economic growth and development.”
Larose goes on to explain in her report, “The transitioning of the current Blue Box Program to a producer responsibility system will commence on July 1, 2023 for some municipalities with others transitioning in phased in dates up to January 1, 2026. At the August 19, 2020 Council meeting, Council directed staff to request a transition date of July 1, 2023 for the Municipality. It has been determined that Sioux Lookout will transition as of that date along with other municipalities in Northwestern Ontario. The new model means transitioning costs the current Blue Box Program away from municipal taxpayers and making the producers of products and packaging fully responsible for the waste. The Model will improve recycling across the province by: 1. Addressing the serious problem of plastic pollution and litter 2. Expanding collection to all communities outside the Far North by 2026 3. Standardizing what can be recycled across Ontario 4. Accepting common single-use and packaging-like products such as paper and plastic cups, foils, trays, bags ad boxes sold for home use 5. Collecting single-use items that are distributed or sold to consume food and beverage products, like stir sticks, straws, cutlery and plates.
“The new program will accomplish the following: 1. Standardizing what goes into the blue box across the province 2. Taking the cost burden off municipalities and allowing producers to innovate 3. Expanding recycling services to more communities, including smaller, rural and remote communities 4. Putting recycling systems in places like parks, schools, apartment buildings or industrial sources 5. Providing produces with greater options for recycling while maintaining Ontario’s alcoholic beverage deposit return program 6. Setting high targets to drive collection from more sources.”
2023 Interim Tax Levy
Council authorized the passing of By-law No 01-23, Being a Bylaw to Provide for the 2023 Interim Tax Levy and Late Payment Charges; and further Council approved the 2023 Interim Tax Levy to be due in two installments with due dates to be the last working date in February and last working date in April, 2023.
2023 Temporary Borrowing By-law – Municipality
Council authorized the passing of By-law No.02-23, Being a Bylaw to Authorize the Temporary Borrowing of Monies to Meet the Current Expenditures of The Corporation of the Municipality of Sioux Lookout.
RIDE Program Agreement 2022/23 and 2023/24
Council authorized the passing of By-law No. 04-23, Being a Bylaw to Authorize and Direct the Mayor and the Clerk to Execute a Transfer Payment Agreement Between The Corporation of the Municipality of Sioux Lookout and His Majesty the King in Right of Ontario, as Represented by the Solicitor General (R.I.D.E. Program Funding 2022/23 and 2023/24).
Michelle Larose, Chief Administrative Officer, advised in her written report that, “The purpose of the report is to request that Council approve the Municipality to enter into a transfer of payment agreement with the Ministry of the Solicitor General for the transfer of funds for the OPP R.I.D.E. Grant Allocation.”
Her report went on to explained, “The purpose of the RIDE Grant Program is to assist municipal police services, OPP municipal contract locations and First Nations police services in offsetting their staff costs for implementing RIDE programs of sobriety checks in their jurisdictions.
“The funds assist with costs of staff overtime or paid duty for street level enforcement activities in relation to the RIDE Grant Program. In turn, the Municipality agrees to undertake the RIDE program project in accordance with the Agreement and its Schedules.
“This year, the local OPP Detachment requested that the Municipality assist with the administration of the RIDE grant allocations on behalf of the First Nations communities of Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug, North Caribou Lake and Wapekeka.”
Her report adds that, “All funds received by the Municipality of Sioux Lookout for our own program as well as the additional First Nations of KI, North Caribou and Wapekeka will be used for the respective RIDE programs. There are no financial implications to the municipal budget, as all revenues received will be used for the RIDE program expenses.”
Exercise of Delegated Authority during the Municipal Election Period
Council received the report from the Chief Administrative Officer as it pertains to the delegated authority under By-law No. 104-21, Being a By-law to Authorize the Delegation of Authority to the Chief Administrative Officer, the Clerk, and the Treasurer to Conduct Certain Business of the Corporation of the Municipality of Sioux Lookout and Its Council During the 2022 Municipal Election Restricted Acts Period.
REPORT FROM CLOSED SESSION
Council ratified direction to staff in Closed Session regarding policing cost negotiations.
Council also approved amending Schedule “A” to By-law No. 68-22, Being a By-law to Make Appointments to Various Boards, Commissions and Committees), by adding: George Hoggarth to the Sioux Lookout Environment Committee and Wendy Simpson to the Municipal Accommodation Tax Committee.