Summer is nearly over (impossible to believe), and Council in Niagara-on-the-Lake is back in full swing. Advisory Committees are also gradually starting to meet again online, which is great news for all of our volunteer members and for Members of Council who will benefit from this additional input from the community.
Council and Committee Business
In August, Committee of the Whole addressed reports and information items related to the following:
August 10 - Planning
Glendale District Plan update from Niagara Region
Queenston Mile Vineyard Site Plan Agreement
Virgil Skate Park project
New Tourism Management Advisory Committee for Niagara-on-the-Lake
Chamber of Commerce regarding Tourism
Proposal to permit A-frame signage temporarily in the Queen-Picton Heritage District
August 17 - General
Replacement of volleyball courts at Memorial Park with two additional tennis courts
Updates from Councillors Cheropita and Burroughs on their work to coordinate a COVID-19 Ambassador program
Presentation from staff on the Town's new "eRigation" app to assist users of the local irrigation system, including active pump volumes
Proposal for the Town to offer new pay parking options through the Honk mobile app
Reduction of speed on Concession 6 section
On August 24, Council heard delegations, discussed reports, by-laws and Notices of Motion regarding:
Official appointment of Sandra O'Connor as Municipal Councillor
Initiating a long-term Tourism Strategy
New route for the Pedal Pub in the remainder of 2020
Presentation on the future restoration of 240 Centre Street
Receipt of the 2019 Integrity Commissioner's report
The CAO Selection Committee met on September 2 and will reconvene on September 9 for further discussion. The competition for this position closed on July 31 and the Committee is now reviewing a long list of applicants provided by the recruitment firm.
The agenda for September 14 Committee of the Whole - Planning will be posted on Thursday, September 10 and can be found at the following link: https://domino.notl.com/sites/notl/NOTLCOTW.nsf/webCOTWFiles?ReadForm
Masks and Face Coverings
In response to COVID-19 Council approved a temporary mask and face covering by-law for indoor public spaces in Niagara-on-the-Lake. I had the opportunity to speak with Matt Holmes at CKTB in advance of this decision and you can listen to the full interview here: https://www.iheartradio.ca/610cktb/audio/notl-council-to-discuss-whether-or-not-to-make-masks-mandatory-1.12989982?mode=Article
Helping Local Businesses
I have received a lot of feedback this month from local businesses in the Queen-Picton Heritage District who want more signage to draw visitors in to their shops, which are easy to miss if located off of the main Queen Street route. These are requests for creative solutions and temporary relief from the Sign By-law, which is very restrictive in the District.
On August 10, Committee of the Whole moved the creation of a temporary signage permit process to assist local businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Lord Mayor and CAO are now working on this process, and the CAO indicated on August 24 that it should be in place soon.
Thank You to the Joyners
I've had the pleasure of getting to know Geoffrey Joyner through the Riverbrink Art Museum Board, and he is an amazing wealth of knowledge and experience on art and material culture. His wife Lorraine is equally engaged in the community and an absolutely lovely person. It was so wonderful to see recent coverage of the Joyner's gift to the Pumphouse Art Gallery, and read about their accomplishments and contributions in print.
Find the full article below, and thank you to the Joyners for being such an engaged and active part of our arts and culture community.
Announcing Crossroads Radio
I'm very happy to announce the launch of Crossroads Radio, a new podcast for conversations on local issues and topics related to life in Niagara-on-the-Lake.
Episode One is about Leadership Under Pressure, and features perspectives from Gary Zalepa, Donald Ziraldo and Cindy Grant.
Episode Two will focus on Tourism through interviews with Lezlie Harper, Tim Bala and Wendy Cheropita.
Listen to Crossroads Radio on Stitcher and through clarecameronnotl.com
Stay well, Niagara-on-the-Lake!